GamerDad and family Welcome to GamerDad: Gaming with Children. My name is Andrew S. Bub - the GamerDad - and I've been writing about videogames, movies, and children for over 15 years now. After working as a magazine journalist, I switched gears to write about how media violence affects children, educating parents about them, and working closely with magazines, newspapers, major retailers and even politicians. GamerDad is an internationally recognized expert in this field. Games, movies and media are fun, kids and families love them, they aren't going away. So join me in cutting through the hype and lets have a real conversation about the things that matter: Video Games, Violent Media, and their supposed effect on children and families.
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Hotel Hustle (Switch)

Help a couple of crazy cats run a hotel in Hotel Hustle on Switch. Check in guests, keep them happy, and clean the room when they’re done.  Do this quickly and efficiently to earn points and stars so you can move onto the next level.  Two can play at the same time, too!  It’s similar to other time management games like Overcooked.

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Unplugged: Blueprints of Mad King Ludwig (Boardgame)

The boardgames of Mad King Ludwig continue to shrink. First we had Castles of Mad King Ludwig where players auctioned tiles, placing them to build their own personal castle. Next came the Palace of Mad King Ludwig (reviewed here) where all players work together to finish only a single castle. Now, there isn’t any building at all, only the blueprints. In Blueprints of Mad King Ludwig, players simply draw out their dreams on a piece of paper, in the hopes of catching the king’s eye and his favor. Players are still placing funny shaped rooms into a castle area, but gone are the auctions and money shenanigans of the original Castles of Mad King Ludwig. This slims the game down and keeps it moving at a quick pace. Your opinion of this “flip and write” game will depend on whether you are willing to give up the greater strategic depth of money auctions and associated shenanigans for a faster-paced and shorter over-all game.

Blueprints of Mad King Ludwig
Designer: Ted Alspach
Publisher: Bézier Games
Players: 1-5
Ages: 15+ (although easily played by a 10 yr old)
Time: 60 min
(review copy provided by publisher)

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Sonic Sighted at IHOP!

Back in April, Sonic the Hedgehog teamed up with IHOP for a promotion.  There were menu items and other online goodies.  Unfortunately, the promotion only lasted for about a month.  Just as fast as Sonic, this just came and went!  Sorry I didn’t get this news out sooner, but I’m only one person and I can only do so much.  Plus having such a short promotion was hard to keep up with.  But I figured I might as well go over what they had.

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Goliath Depot (Switch, PC)

Robots in a warehouse, factory, and even the cold icy parking lot are taking over, and it’s up to you to stop them by…closing all the doors and windows?  Hey, who said video games had to make sense all the time?  Goliath Depot is a single screen 2D platform action game that takes inspiration from arcade classics like Donkey Kong, Mappy, Bubble Bobble, and even…Hotel Mario?  But it’s still a pretty good game and is available on Switch and PC, but reviewed on Switch here.

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Tell Me Your Story (Switch, PC)

A granddaughter is visiting her grandmother, and while unpacking, she sees some of her grandmother’s trinkets and asks about them.  Turns out in her younger days, her grandmother  travelled around the world and had lots of adventures and experiences!  Re-create her stories and put them in a scrapbook by playing little puzzle mini-games in Tell Me Your Story.  It’s available on Switch and PC, but reviewed on Switch here.

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The Pizza Pixel Podcast Episode 21: Saturday Morning Fever

Get a bowl of your favorite sugary cereal ready, because in this episode of The Pizza Pixel Podcast, my brother Jeff and I talk about our favorite Saturday Morning cartoons!  Those are kind of a thing of the past thanks to streaming services and whatnot.  But for a good long while, they sure were big with kids.

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Electronics Puzzle Lab (PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One, X/S, PC)

Solve switch based puzzles in circuits with Electronics Puzzle Lab.  You might even learn a thing or two about electronics and circuitry along the way.  Maybe.  It’s available on all current consoles and PC, but reviewed on PS4 here.

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Cyber Citizen Shockman 3 (PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One, X/S)

Cyber Citizen Shockman was a series of 2D action platformers back in the 16-bit days.  They starred a pair of superhero cyborg teens (a guy and a gal) who were created by a crazy professor.  They would fight intergalactic baddies with their swords and beam attacks.  The first two were on the PC Engine, which was the Japanese version of the TurboGrafix-16.  The second game was even brought out to the US.  The third game in the series was on the CD add on in Japan.  And now you can play it on modern consoles (reviewed on PS4 here).

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Little Kitty, Big City (Switch, Xbox One, X/S, PC)

In this unique game you play as a regular old house cat.  You are lying on your favorite windowsill when you accidentally roll over and fall out.  You land safely via a string of comical incidents, but now you must figure out how to get back up to your owner’s apartment.  So you must explore the big city below, helping out other animals and causing cat-like mischief as well.  This game reminds me of a mix of Untitled Goose Game, as well as a PS2 game I played a long time ago called A Dog’s Life, which was kind of the same premise except you were a dog doing dog things.  The game also has a bit of a Katamari Damacy vibe with the simple graphics and the Japanese style city setting.  Little Kitty, Big City is available on some current consoles and PC, but reviewed on Switch here.

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Kudzu (Switch)

Kudzu was originally a modern day homebrew monochrome Game Boy game.  You could even buy a cartridge for it.  And now you can play it on your Nintendo Switch.  In the game, a mysterious asteroid falls on a mountain nearby a mansion and surrounding farmland, which causes the plants to become sentient.  When the invasive plant species Kudzu was introduced, it takes over everything in a plan to rule the world.  A team of botanists are dispatched to research this phenomenon.  You play as the gardener Max, and it’s up to you to solve the mystery of the Kudzu and save the day.  The game is an overhead action adventure that pays homage to classic titles like The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening.

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