“If Pac-Man had affected us as kids, we'd all be running around in dark rooms, munching pills and listening to repetitive electronic music.” ― Marcus Brigstocke
My little gamers drive me nuts. They obsess.
48 hours after Christmas, and B had defeated Kaos and beat the whole new Skylanders Wii U Swap Force game. He had also dropped $200 of his Christmas money on additional Skylander figures.
He wanted to spend more, but I cut him off.
b, on the other hand, stayed glued to his Nintendo 3DS and continued to scream and yell at Mario Kart 7. Sometimes even head-butting the screen - yikes.
So I cut him off, and he threw a FIT.
Oh the agony of these games. It is truly a love hate relationship - they love them, but they hate them, too.
In the past, I limited "game time", but I had decided to let them blow it out during Christmas Break, especially since the weather was horrible and we could not go outside. Since school has started, they have been back on a bit of lock down and we have all suffered.
It is like breaking an addiction.
Part of the problem with B and b is that they are over-the-top perfectionists. a-hem. They feel driven to play the game over and over until they play it just perfect.
If they are not playing the game, they are on the computer looking up strategies and watching Youtube how-to videos, or they are drawing and designing new video games.
B has been working on designing new Mario games, one of which is a hybrid of Mario Kart 7 with Skylanders characters integrated in each level. He wants me to find out "who in Japan" he can send his designs to. He has 3 notebooks full of designs and 8 slideshow presentations in my Google Drive. For real.
He also conducts races around the pool (our cement racetrack of sorts) and records time trials for Mario Characters in a notebook and charts them on a Google Spreadsheet.
Since playing the DS, b has started showing a competitive nature we have never seen before in him, ever, and he has even come out of his shell a little, too. He tells me how he gets his classmates to "play Mario" games on the playground and he tells me about conversations he has with his friends about who has what games and which are their favorites. My non-social child has also started asking me to have friends over to have playdates for playing games. He draws pictures of Mario characters and watches old Mario Show dvds. Spongebob has taken a back seat around our house lately. #sorrynotsorry #ThankYouJesus
Sooooooo....are the games ruining their lives? Are they stunting their creativity and imagination? Are they making them socially inept? Are they becoming brain-dead zombies, vegging out on the couch?
No. And it appears we're back to where we always seem to spin back to, moderation and common sense....and perspective, because this is really just their "thing" right now, and before too long they'll move on to something else.