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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Clubhouse Games: 51 Worldwide Classics Part 2: Card Games

For the second part of my Clubhouse Games run through, we’ll ‘shuffle’ through all the card games you have to ‘deal’ with.  I’m such a card with these puns!

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Clubhouse Games: 51 Worldwide Classics Part 1: Board Games

Nintendo recently came out with a collection of board and card games for the Switch called Clubhouse Games: 51 Worldwide Classics.  I wanted to go through all the games briefly and share my personal impressions, but there are so many of them we’ll have to split this up into three parts with a wrap up at the end for the holiday weekend.  So first we’ll look at the board games in this collection!

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Shantae and the Seven Sirens (PS4, Switch, Xbox One, PC, Mobile)

I’m a HUGE fan of the Shantae game series.  I even still have the original game on Game Boy Color, box and all!  But who is Shantae?  She’s a half-human, half-genie dancer who can magically transform into different animals to help her get past obstacles in her 2-D platforming adventures.  In her newest escapade, Shantae and her friends travel to a tropical island for a much needed vacation.  Other Half-Genies will be there, too, so Shantae is especially excited to meet more of her kind.  But shortly after she arrives, the other Half-Genies disappear.  Risky Boots, the nefarious she-pirate and Shantae’s arch-nemesis, has been snooping about the island as well.  Could she be behind all of this?  It’s up to you to find out in Shantae and the Seven Sirens.  It’s available for pretty much anything you can play a game on, but reviewed on PS4 here.

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Rigid Force Redux (Switch, Xbox One)

Rigid Force Redux is a horizontally side scrolling 2-D shooter, using elements from classics like R-Type and Einhander but with 3-D polygon graphics.  It’s available on Switch and Xbox One, but reviewed on Switch here.

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Awesome Pea 2 (PS4, Switch, Xbox One, PC)

There are plenty of retro-styled games out there now that imitate the look of 8- and 16-bit games, but not so many that recreate the pea soup green hues of the original Game Boy!  But now you can play one ironically starring a little green pea!  Awesome Pea 2 is a super hard 2-D platformer in the vein of other popular ones like Super Meat Boy.  I never played the original Awesome Pea, so I don’t know if the sequel has any significant improvements, but I’m going to make a guess that it’s just more of the same.  Awesome Pea 2 is available to download on all current consoles and PC, but reviewed on PS4 here.

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The Games of the Contra Collection

The last classic collection I got on sale recently was the Contra Collection.  I’m not a big fan of Contra either, but I do like it a lot better than Castlevania.  I was never very good at Contra, though.  I do remember it being very popular when I was a kid in the 8- and 16-bit days.  Most people I know either had it on the NES, or rented it a lot.  It may not be the first run and gun game, but it is one of the first that perfected and popularized the genre.  I even remember one time reading a newspaper comic strip back then where two kids were running home to play NES games, and one of the kids said “Let’s play Contra!”  So anyway, let’s take a look at the Contra Collection!

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Knight Squad (Switch, Xbox One, PC)

Play as one of several multicolored knights as you battle it out in top down viewed arenas in a gameplay style similar to Gauntlet or Atari’s Combat on 2600.  Up to eight can go at it locally or online in this title available for Switch, Xbox One, and PC (reviewed on Switch here).

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PONG Quest (Switch, PC)

For the longest time I thought the first video game I ever played was Pac-Man.  But it was actually PONG, I just didn’t realize it at the time.  You see, when I was very little, my dad built our very first TV.  He ordered parts and instructions through a place called Heathkit.  This was in the late 70’s, so it was a great big old wooden monster that looked like a piece of furniture.  But that TV also lasted well until I was in high school!  He also built a metronome with Heathkit, and one of the other extra things he added to the TV was a home PONG clone that you could pull out at any time and play if you changed it to channel 3.  I was so young at the time, though, that I didn’t realize this was a video game, just something you could do if there wasn’t anything on TV.  Anyway, that’s my PONG story.  Never would I have imagined that someone would combine PONG with a dungeon crawling RPG, but now you have PONG Quest.  It’s available for Switch and PC, but reviewed on Switch here.

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The Games of the Castlevania Collection.

So I have to admit, I’ve never been a big Castlevania fan.  So why did I get this collection?  Well, one, it was on sale.  Can’t resist a sale.  Plus I wouldn’t have bought it full price being digital only.  And two, I also love classic game collections period.  And three, it has one game in the series that I do really like, and it’s my favorite Castlevania game ever.  It’s also never been released in the US until now.  Can you guess what it is?  Well you’ll just have to read on to find out!  So let’s take a look at every game on this collection!  And let me know in the comments section what your favorite Castlevania game is.

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Fly Punch Boom! (Switch, PC)

If there was ever a game that needed the Dragon Ball Z license, this is it!  Fly Punch Boom! is a unique take on fighting games.  You control a Punchy, a super powerful being with the ability to fly and possesses ridiculously strong attacks.  You fight other Punchies in locations like cities, underwater, and even outer space.  This over-the-top action fighter is available on Switch and PC, but reviewed on Switch here.

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