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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Rooms of Doom (iOS, Google Play)

ROOMS_BOXRooms of Doom is a new free-to-play mobile game from the makers of Crossy Road and Pac-Man 256 (reviewed on iPad here).  In the game, a mad scientist creates mutant minion creatures and tests them to see if they are worthy of being his minions by making them run through obstacle-filled rooms.  These rooms resemble 2-D challenges from other platformers and mobile games.  Survive as long as you can to boost your score and collect coins so you can make new minions and build new rooms for them to ‘play’ in!

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Gotta Protectors (3DS)

GOTTA_BOXOne of the cool things about the Xbox 360 was that amateur game makers could create games for it that you could download later on under their ‘indie games’ section.  Many of these games were quite amateurish, but there were some standout gems.  One was a Japanese game called Protect Me Knight.  It was an 8-bit styled, action oriented tower-defense game.  It was made by famed video game composer Yuzo Koshiro and his team at Ancient, so you know the tunes were good.  Actually the whole game was fantastic, and it was one of my favorite multiplayer Xbox LIVE titles on the 360.  And now, about five years later, we finally get a sequel in Gotta Protectors, a downloadable title on the Nintendo 3DS!

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Dots & Co. (iOS, Google Play)

DOTS_BOXIt may look like your typical free-to-play match-three mobile puzzler, but Dots & Co. has a few gameplay elements that separate it from the rest of the bunch.  Clear out same-colored adjacent dots by connecting them to one another on the touch screen, and they’ll disappear.  There’s actually been two “Dots” games before this one, but I’ve never played them so I don’t know what’s new or added to this one.  It’s available free to download on iOS and Google Play, but reviewed on iPad here.

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Tadpole Treble (Wii U)

TADPOLE_BOXWhat is it with tadpoles and music in video games?  First it was Super Mario RPG, and now this!  OK, maybe that was too obscure of a reference for an introduction.  Anyway, in this game, you play as a young tadpole named Baton.  She swims too far away from her frog family and gets snatched up by a pelican.  She escapes, but now must swim downstream back to her pond in this downloadable music/rhythm action game for Wii U.

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Cary’s Spring and Summer 2016 Movie Roundup!

ECTO3Well, summer’s almost over, so you know what that means.  It’s time for me to talk about the movies I saw this summer (and some in the spring, too), as well as movies I wanted to see but didn’t get a chance to.  I’ll try to keep things spoiler-free, but there may be a few that slip out, so just be warned.  So let’s do this thing!

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Mutant Mudds Super Challenge (PS4, Vita, Wii U, 3DS)

MUTANT_BOXA few years ago, game developer Renegade Kid released Mutant Mudds, a run-and-gun 2-D platformer about a kid armed with a water gun who zaps monsters made of mud who are trying to get you!  It featured classic 8-bit graphics and sound, as well as a challenge level similar to games of that era (meaning it was hard).  Well, if that game wasn’t difficult enough for you, now there’s Mutant Mudds Super Challenge.  It’s the same basic game, but the new levels are super tough!  You’ll be hard-pressed to get through Stage 1-1 unless you are a pro!  Mutant Mudds Super Challenge is available for download on most current consoles, but reviewed on PS Vita here.

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Rodeo Stampede (iOS, Google Play)

RODEO_BOXThe makers of popular mobile games like Crossy Road and Pac-Man 256 have roped in a new free-to-play downloadable title for iOS and Google Play (reviewed on iPad here).  In Rodeo Stampede, you must ride wild animals without getting thrown off, and jump and lasso the next critter in the stampede.  Keep on doing this for as long as you can, and you’ll even befriend these animals and invite them to live on your floating zeppelin zoo! 

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Disney Art Academy (3DS)

DISNEY_BOXFor nearly a century, Disney has been synonymous with artistic animation and cartoons, and now they’ve teamed up with Nintendo for a new Art Academy game.  Nintendo has been teaching art lessons with their Art Academy franchise on multiple consoles, spanning the DS, 3DS, and even the Wii U.  So it only seems natural for them to feature art lessons with Disney characters on the 3DS.  I’ve wished that this series would get more recognition, and maybe now with the familiar Disney license, it might just do that.

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Buddy & Me: Dream Edition (Wii U)

BUDDY_BOXWhat if whenever you go to sleep, you could dream about playing with your best friend, who happens to be a big, furry, yellow floppy-eared smiley dragon thing named Buddy.  Well that’s the premise behind Buddy & Me, a new downloadable game for Wii U.  I’m not sure what’s so different about the “Dream Edition” in the title, but I imagine at one point this was a mobile game.  It may be yet another continuous running 2-D platformer, but it’s certainly the most charming one I’ve ever played, as it combines the appeal of Dr. Seuss-like characters with a bit of My Neighbor Totoro for good measure.

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Shephy (iOS, Android)

SHEPHY_BOXI’m not sure how you pronounce it, but Shephy plays like one of those indie card games you buy at those fancy gaming and comic book stores.  In fact, while looking up pictures for this review, turns out that Shephy IS a real card game.  You can even buy it on Amazon.  It’s a Solitaire style game where you try to build your flock of sheep up to 1,000 by strategically playing cards that add and take away from your flock.  It’s a free-to-play downloadable title on iOS and Android, but reviewed on iPad here.

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