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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Cary’s Favorite E3 2014 Games (And a Rant)

E3LOGOAnother E3 has come and gone, so I thought I’d write a blog about my favorite games and news stories from the show.  But before we get to that, I have to rant a little bit.  I do apologize in advance, but for the second year in a row I was denied a press pass to E3.  So I have to gripe about that a second.

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SQUIDS Odyssey (Wii U)

SQUID_BOXA group of squids out raiding treasures in undersea ruins come across a terror that plagued the ocean many years ago.  Mysterious black ooze is covering the aquatic creatures and turning them evil.  It’s up to the squids to escape and recruit an army to fight this menace.  SQUIDS Odyssey is a downloadable WII U title with a unique mix of turn based strategy combined with…the classic game of marbles?!?

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4444 (iPad)

4444_BOXThis is a uniquely named puzzler (not sure if it’s pronounced “Four four four four,” or “four-thousand, four-hundred forty-four.”  In the game you must make squares of the same color to make a bigger square, and the only rule is that you have to place a certain color square on a different color space.  With this simple rule they’ve created nearly half a dozen gameplay modes in this downloadable game for iOS and Android devices (reviewed on iPad here).

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Scram Kitty and his Buddy on Rails (Wii U)

KITTY_BOXFelines are being cat-napped from their pet owners, and are being held prisoner in a giant space station overrun with super-intelligent lab rats out for revenge.  It’s up to you to hop into your wall-traversing spinboard and save the kitties in this downloadable platform shooter for Wii U.

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Unplugged: Knock Down Those Rainy Day Blues

domino fallSummertime is upon us, and that means lots of chances for the younger ones to drive their parent’s crazy with so-called “boredom” and other funny business. “Go play outside” is the best play in a parent’s playbook, but what happens when it’s raining outside? This summer, GamerDad Unplugged will try to help fill in those gaps with a few handy ideas. First up – Dominoes!

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Child of Light (360, Xbox One, Wii U, PC, PS3, PS4)

CHILD_BOXYoung Princess Aurora happily lives with her father, the king.  But one day she falls into a deep sleep and wakes in a strange, new magical land.  She soon meets a talking firefly and is given the power of flight, and is tasked with the job of saving this world.  She must return the moon and the stars to their rightful places, and thwart the evil plans of the dark queen Umbra.  Along the way she’ll meet a colorful cast of characters who will fight alongside her, including a jester, a merchant mouse, and many more.  Child of Light is a downloadable gem for nearly all current consoles that is one part 2-D platforming and one part tried-and-true turned based RPG gameplay, and it’s also one of the best games this year so far (Xbox 360 version reviewed here).

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Blowfish Meets Meteor (iPad)

BLOWFISH_BOXUnder the ocean lives a bunch of mermaids and deep sea diver guys, and they’re all happy together.  Until one day a meteor crashes nearby and somehow traps all the mermaid girls inside groups of blocks.  Now you, as one of the diver guys, must leave the comforts of your underwater dome home and your loving mermaid wife, and bounce around a tiny meteor with a giant shell to break blocks and free all your mermaid daughters.  Blowfish Meets Meteor is a unique take on the brick breaking, ball bouncing, BreakOut and Arkanoid style of gameplay, and you can download it for iOS devices (reviewed on iPad here).

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Legends of Oz: Dorothy’s Return (3DS)

OZ_BOXLegends of Oz: Dorothy’s Return is a new computer animated movie where Dorothy comes back to Oz to save her friends from an evil Jester.  And now you can play a 3DS game based on the film’s adventures.  So what kind of game is this?  It’s a match-three puzzle game.  Yup, really.  But for what it is, it’s actually not that bad, even if the license it’s based on is.

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Cary Ranks All the Current Mario Kart Games

toadkartIn honor of the upcoming release of Mario Kart 8, I thought I’d write a blog ranking my favorite games in the Mario Kart series.  Mario Kart 8 itself isn’t on the list, since I haven’t played it yet as of this writing, but I am looking forward to it.  So read on to find out which Mario Kart game took first place, and which ones ate dust!

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Hyper Crazy Climber (PS3)

HYPER_BOXWhen I was a little kid in the early 80’s, I would love to go to arcades.  They were some of my first experiences that shaped me as a gamer.  Many of the games I played back then you can still find today if you look hard enough.  These special games seemed to be in every arcade I visited, because they were so popular.  Some of these include Pac-Man, Galaga, Dig Dug, Pole Position, Centipede, etc.  But there were other arcade machines that I remember seeing in nearly every arcade back then, but you don’t hear so much about them now.  One good example is Crazy Climber.  I used to see it in nearly every arcade I went to, so it must’ve been popular back then.  But you don’t see much about it now.  However, in Japan, where the game originated, there have been some sequels, ports, and remakes of Crazy Climber since then, and one of them was Hyper Crazy Climber on the original PlayStation.  Now you can download and play Hyper Crazy Climber on PSN thanks to MonkeyPaw Games (reviewed on PS3 here).

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