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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Math Land (Switch, Mobile)

Arrrr, Matey!  Embark on a pirate-y arithmetic adventure in Math Land.  An evil pirate has stolen a gem that makes all these islands infested with purple gems and evil flowers.  You, as the good (?) pirate, must solve math problems and explore islands to collect special artifacts to stop him!  This game is great practice for grade schoolers who are working on addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division problems.  And even adults can enjoy this game as working out math problems in your head is a great brain exercise.  Math Land is available for Switch and mobile devices, but reviewed on Switch here.

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Underhero (PS4, Switch, Xbox One, PC)

In this game, you start out as a generic hero ready to storm the evil lord Mr. Stiches’ castle.  As you approach, a few weak minions prepare for the worst, but one of the minions decides to kill the hero by dropping a chandelier on him!  After that, you take control of that minion!  When you approach the defeated hero, a talking sword hilt says that now YOU’RE the new hero!  But you still work for the bad guy, who tasks you with returning three special stones to the bosses that the original hero defeated.  But secretly, the sword hilt tells you to defeat those bosses again and get strong enough to battle your boss and become the Underhero.  Underhero is an action RPG game that turns RPG archetypes on their ear, since you are sort of on the enemies’ side!  It’s available to download on all current home consoles and PC, but reviewed on PS4 here.

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The Jackbox Party Pack 6 (PS4, Switch, Xbox One, PC, Mobile)

If you have a bunch of people over to play games, but not enough controllers to play with everyone, then Jackbox has you covered!  Their latest batch of party games is out, and all you need are cell phones to play them!  Just connect to Jackbox.tv on any phone and enter in the room code and you’re in!  It’s pretty simple and works well, and in some games, even people who don’t have cell phones can be part of the audience and participate.  The Jackbox Party Pack 6 is available on most anything that can play games, but reviewed on PS4 here.  Let’s take a look at all the games!

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Tilt Pack (Switch)

Sometimes the simplest ideas can work out great.  That’s the case with Tilt Pack, a couch multiplayer game for up to four players for Switch.  All you do is move rectangle boxes with faces on them and they’ll flip and rotate as you try and knock the other boxes off the playfield.  And that’s it, really, but it’s surprisingly fun.  It’s like a sumo match with personified Pong paddles!

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Glass Masquerade 2: Illusions (PS4, Switch, PC)

If you like putting together jigsaw puzzles with pieces that look like broken bits of stained glass, then this game is for you!  It’s really more of the same from the first game, which I reviewed around this time last year, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing when it comes to these jigsaw puzzle games.  The theme of the last one was world travel, but I’m not sure what the theme is this time.  Weird stuff like clowns, jesters, and magicians, I guess.  Anyway, it’s available on nearly all current home consoles and PC, but reviewed on PS4 here.

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Psikyo Shooting Stars Bravo (Switch)

Back in the 90’s and seeping a bit into the 2000’s, one of the kings of arcade 2-D shooters was Psikyo.  Now NIS America has compiled a couple of collections of Psikyo’s games on the Switch, so today we’re going to take a look at the ones in Bravo, as opposed to Alpha.  I hate it that I missed out on reviewing Alpha earlier, but I liked this Bravo collection so much that I went out and bought them both, so I can talk about Alpha later.

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Unplugged: Shovel Knight Exceed Card Game

Shovel Knight is one of the most beloved and prolific indie games in the past few years.  It’s gotten several spin-off games and cameo appearances, and now you can play a card game featuring the characters.  Exceed is an existing card game with fighting game mechanics.  In fact, they did a version of it with Street Fighter characters that I reviewed last year.  So how does it fare with Shovel Knight themes?  Read on and find out!

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SpeedRunners (Switch, PS4, Xbox One, PC)

Do you remember the intro to Disney-Pixar’s The Incredibles?  It was done in silhouettes and solid colors with a bravado brass heroic soundtrack.  That’s what I first thought of when booting up SpeedRunners.  The game has been out for a while on nearly every platform, but for some reason I haven’t reviewed it yet.  Just one of those games that fell through the cracks for me I guess.  But it was recently released on Switch, so I finally hopped on board.  Anyway, SpeedRunners is a 2-D platformer racing game where you choose a super hero character and race against others in lap-based levels.  It also kind of reminds me of Runbow, so if you liked that one, you’ll definitely want to check out this review and the game itself.

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Wattam (PS4, PC)

Those of you who know me may also know that I’m a huge fan of Katamari Damacy.  It was my Game of the Year back in 2004 and aside from a couple of early mobile offerings, I’ve played every game in the series since.  And I’ve also played other games from the Katamari creator, like Noby Noby Boy and I really want to get the Play Date handheld for his other game, but it may be too expensive.  So you can imagine my surprise and delight when I visited Annapurna’s booth at PAX South and found out they were publishing another game by the Katamari creator, and it’s every bit as weird and charming as his other works.  And I was even more happy that I get to review it!  The game is called Wattam and it’s available on PS4 and PC, but reviewed on PS4 here.

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Haunted Halloween ’86 (Switch, NES, Xbox One, PC)

Donny and Tami are two schoolkids in 1986.  Which means they’d be about my age now.  It’s Halloween night, and they’re walking home from school to get ready to go trick or treating.  But on the way they hear about some strange noises at a farmhouse, and decide to investigate.  But they fall into a trap and now must defend their town from a zombie attack!  The game is like a cross between River City Ransom on the NES, and maybe, I dunno, Castlevania or Costume Quest, what with the Halloween themes and all.  Anyway, Haunted Halloween ’86 is available to download on most current consoles and PC, and even an old console as well!  Yeah you heard that right, at one point you could get this game as a homebrew NES cartridge!  So it’s actually running on that hardware!  But it’s reviewed on Switch here.

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