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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Willy Jetman: Astromonkey’s Revenge (Switch, PS4, PC)

A starship with a careless space chimp pilot on board has exploded, leaving wreckage on a nearby planet.  So now it’s up to intergalactic garbage man Willy Jetman to clean up the mess.  But as he’s cleaning up, he ends up fighting some rogue robots and frees a space monkey from their prison.  Could this be the same monkey from the crashed spaceship?  And why is the monkey causing so much trouble?  It’s up to you to find out in this 2-D action platform shooter, available on most current consoles and PC (reviewed on Switch here).  The game kind of reminds me of a cross between Cave Story and an obscure NES game I used to rent as a kid called Solar Jetman.

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Amiibo Duo Clad in Blue-o

Got a couple of new amiibo figures recently.  Both are from Smash Ultimate and are echo characters: Dark Samus from Metroid and Richter from Castlevania.  Let’s check them out.

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Rescue Pets (Mobile)

Run your own pet rescue center in Rescue Pets, a free to download title on mobile devices (reviewed on iPad here).  You’ll get to select a breed of dog to help you, and then name it.  And every time you pet your pup, you’ll get coins you can use to upgrade your rescue center.  So yeah, it’s an endless clicker.   Or in this case, an endless petter?

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Sonic the Hedgehog Toys in Arby’s Kids’ Meals!

Just in time for the live action Sonic the Hedgehog movie, Arby’s has toys in their kids’ meals based on the popular game characters.  Heck, I didn’t even know Arby’s had kids’ meals!  Anyway, I managed to get one, so let’s take a look and see what they’re like!

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New Mario Valentines!

You know those cheap paper valentines with popular cartoon characters that you’d give out to your classmates on Valentine’s Day?  Or maybe your kids do that now?  Well they make Mario ones and I wrote about them last year.  They’re doing the same thing this year, but the valentines are a little different so I’m writing about them again!

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The Adventures of Elena Temple: Definitive Edition (Switch, Xbox One, PC)

I’m such a staunch console gamer now that it’s hard to believe that I started out as a PC gamer in the home.  Well, I started in arcades, but you know what I mean!  But yeah, our first gaming ‘console’ was actually an Apple ][+ computer.  Aside from playing far better arcade conversions than what was on the Atari 2600 (Pac-Man, I’m looking at you), I also enjoyed playing games on our family’s Apple like Spare Change, Aquatron, and Lode Runner.  Speaking of which, another popular type of game on computer back then were single screen 2-D platformers, sometimes with multiple maze like areas that made it feel like an adventure.  Some of these kinds of games I remember were Montezuma’s Revenge and Miner 2049er.  The Adventures of Elena Temple pays tribute to those kinds of games.  It’s available for download on a couple of consoles and PC, but reviewed on Switch here.

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Heroland (PS4, Switch, PC)

There is a theme park on an island where tourists can go and pretend to be RPG heroes.  It’s called Heroland, and visitors can explore dungeons, battle monsters in turn-based fashion, and nab treasure.  But they need a tour guide to help them.  That’s where you come in.  Play as “Lucky” who has come to Heroland for a job as a tour guide.  On his first day he breaks a priceless vase and will be working off debt for a long time.  But is this island more than it seems?  That’s what you’ll find out in Heroland, available for most consoles and PC, but reviewed on PS4 here.

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Cary’s Best Games of the Decade 2010 to 2019 Awards Show Special!

I wasn’t sure at first if I was going to do a ‘best games of the decade’ blog since I wasn’t clear if the decade ends at 2019 or 2020.  But then I looked at the last time I wrote a ‘best games of the decade’ blog and it was at the beginning of 2010, and it went from 2000 to 2009, so I figured I’d do one now after all.  I provided a link to my last ‘best games of the decade’ blog because I thought it was interesting to read something I wrote ten years ago.  So we’re doing it again, although it’s pretty much the games that won my “Game of the Year” award for the past ten years.

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Swag and Sorcery (Mobile, PC)

A king needs your help to find a lost treasure, so you must recruit heroes and equip them with armor, weapons, and swag and send them out on adventures to get more stuff.  All with neat 16-bit style pixel graphics and humor.  Swag and Sorcery is available to download on mobile devices and PC, but reviewed on iPad here.

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My Pizza Family (Mobile)

Two young city dwelling siblings, Camilla and Alex, are making a video blog, or vlog.  Their family is both Italian and Spanish, and they’re documenting the rise of their family’s pizza restaurant.  It’s fallen on hard times, but is about to have a grand reopening.  Their newfound success comes from the fact they grow some of their own ingredients, and the family encourages their neighbors to join in and make a community garden in a vacant lot.  Pretty normal stuff so far, but here’s where it gets weird.  The family gets advice from a group of talking pizza ingredients, like a tomato, dough ball, basil leaf, pepperoni slice, and more.  My Pizza Family is an activity center for kids that focuses on family and community, as well as shape recognition and Spanish and Italian language learning, too!  It’s available to download on mobile devices, but reviewed on iPad here.

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