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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Magic Cat Story (iPad)

MAGICCAT_BOXMagic Cat Story is a free-to-play puzzle game downloadable for iOS and Android devices (reviewed on iPad here).  In the game you help a wizard cat stop an evil magician from turning all the people into animals.  But storylines in puzzle games really aren’t that important.  To thwart the evil wizard, you must match colored blocks to make them disappear.  While most free-to-play puzzle games are similar to Candy Crush or Bejeweled, Magic Cat Story plays more like a falling block puzzler such as Dr. Mario or Puyo Puyo.

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Reader Review: Stardust Vanguards (PC)

STARDUST_BOXStardust Vanguards is a multiplayer space-themed action game downloadable on Steam for PC.  One cool thing about this game is that it was made by local folks (well, local for me and my friend anyway). Speaking of which, I had my friend, Robbie Allen, review this game for me, so please check it out by clicking here!

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The Fighters of Under Night In-Birth Exe:Late

WALDSTEINRecently I reviewed a one-on-one 2-D fighting game called Under Night In-Birth Exe:Late.  That’s a really long name!  When I first started playing it, I thought the characters weren’t that interesting, because they all looked like typical anime stereotypes.  But as I kept playing, some of the characters ended up being a little more interesting than I thought.  And since I sometimes like to write about fighting game characters in blogs, I’ll do just that with this game right now.  Plus I don’t have any other blog ideas anyway.

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Under Night In-Birth Exe:Late (PS3)

UNDER_BOXBoy, what a long name.  I bet it’s hard to say all that during a gaming discussion!  Anyway, Under Night Etc. is a 2-D one-on-one fighting game made by the same folks who did the Guilty Gear and BlazBlue titles.  It’s available for the PlayStation 3.  But how does this one stack up against those other series?  Read on to find out.

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Lucky Charms St. Paddy’s Day Edition (Cereal)

CEREAL1Holiday themed cereals are nothing new.  I think it all started with Cap’n Crunch’s Christmas Crunch.  I remember that as a kid.  It was just Crunch Berries with red and green pieces.  Later on, other cereals followed suit with Christmas and Halloween editions of cereals like Rice Krispies and, well, I know there are others, I just can’t think of them.  Well the next holiday has gotten the cereal treatment and it’s St. Patrick’s Day.  And naturally, the cereal that goes along with it is Lucky Charms!  So here’s a look at the Lucky Charms St. Paddy’s Day Edition box! (shouldn’t it be St. Patty’s Day?)

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Hola! Amiibos! (Wave 3)

AMIIBO_LOGOWell, I finally managed to get all of the Wave 3 Amiibo figures (well, almost all of them), so here’s a blog about them!  Amiibos are Nintendo’s answer to Skylanders and Disney Infinity, but since the Amiibos are based on characters that I actually like, I’ve made more of an effort to collect them.  So check them out!

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Unplugged: Dice Masters (Boardgame)

Dice Masters Faerun boxDice Masters Battle for Faerûn
Designers: Mike Elliott, Eric M. Lang
Publisher: WizKids Games
Ages: 14+
Players: 2
Time: 60 mins (I found it to be closer to 30 min)
(Review copy provided by WizKids)

Dice Masters is a line of collectible games based on rolling dice to get monsters and then using those monsters to attack one’s opponent. Dice provide both “energy” (a form of currency) and monsters which (when paid for with energy) are sent out to battle one’s opponent. Perhaps more importantly, energy can be used to purchase additional dice (from a pool in the center of the board) to be used later in the game. The newest release (just arrived) is based around Dungeons and Dragons. Previous editions, based on Marvel superheros, sold out repeatedly so the game is quite popular. Dice rolling (and the randomness that implies) is often fun, but the game also provides options for strategic decisions preventing it from becoming too random. While random rolls of the dice can sway the game in favor of one player, there is some strategy in choosing which dice to bring to the table. The result is a nice mix of chance and challenge. It is only a two player game but is a great fit for parents with kids or even a game between “grownups.”

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Iron & Steel Pack (360, Xbox One, PS3, PS4, Vita, Wii U, PC, iOS)

PINBALL_BOXThe latest tables to hit Zen Studios’ Zen Pinball 2 and Pinball FX2’s collection are a western-themed table called Wild West Rampage and a medieval-themed table based on one of Zen’s other games: CastleStorm.  You can download and play them on consoles that support Zen Studios pinball platforms, but they are reviewed on Xbox 360 here.  When you download Pinball FX 2 or Zen Pinball 2 (depending on which game console you own), you’re just downloading the hub.  It’s free, and then you purchase separate tables for play in the game.

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Reader Review: Brandish: The Dark Reverent (PSP)

BRANDISH_BOXFalcom is awesome!  They’re the ones responsible for games like Ys Seven, Gurumin, and Legacy of the Wizard on the NES (those are my favorites anyway).  It’s too bad that Falcom isn’t as well-known in the US, though.  But luckily, one of their classics is being remade for download on PSP thanks to XSEED.  Since my friend Leroy is a big fan of Falcom, too, I had him review Brandish: The Dark Revenant, so check it out!

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Pokémon Shuffle (3DS)

SHUFFLE_BOXPokemon Shuffle is a puzzle game downloadable for the Nintendo 3DS.  It plays similar to other puzzlers like Candy Crush, Bejeweled, Puzzle Quest, or Puzzle & Dragon.  The game is also free-to-play, with in-game purchases, which is unusual for a 3DS eShop title to have.  So is it worth downloading anyway?  Read on to find out!

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