|So what might happen if I go on this bridge? Does it look safe?|
1> It's a slow-paced, deliberate game. There are very few times when something happens onscreen that's too fast to follow, or when something comes as a complete surprise. This gives my son plenty of time to take in the scene and evaluate what's going on -- he can look around for threats, think about basic tactics, and develop an idea about where to go or what to do. This pace also affords us plenty of time to talk. Once enemies are dispatched, it’s usually safe to simply stand around and break down what just happened. Why did I get hit? What is that sword called? Why did I not use an Estus Flask there?
|Fighting this turtlebro up close is really tough. How else can we get him?|
The biggest obstacle to proper PG’ing here was the speed at which Titanfall plays. It’s an extremely fast game and everything is constantly in motion, not to mention that when players get killed, they respawn quickly with little fuss, Things are constantly running at full tilt. As a result, there's no real time for analysis of on-screen elements, of what just happened, or really, to have any discussion at all
|This is a lot of stuff happening really, really fast.|
Another interesting aspect of this was that the first-person interface made it a lot tougher for him to follow what was going on in general.
|A lot more info than you might expect is affected by the perspective a game uses.|
While both of these experiences were quite different, they did have something in common -- after ending play sessions, my son would immediately want to roleplay what he’d just seen. Acting these things out via real-life play is a great way for kids to process information mentally, so even after the consoles were shut down, we had even more time to learn with (and from) that content.
When playing ‘Dark Souls’ he would pretend to be a bad guy and hide around a corner, or behind the couch. As the player character, I would walk forward and let him pop out and stab me in the back with a plastic sword, or we would circle around each other with weapons and shields, and try to block or parry. He was also very quick to remind me to ‘drink my potion’ every time he had delivered a few hits.
When playing "Titanfall", he would be a Pilot and dash madly around the living room, firing a plastic gun and giving jump kicks to imaginary enemies. After a few seconds (because he knows you can't call your Titan right away) he would draw an imaginary green circle on the ground, and call me in. He then hops on my back and we run around as I take shots with my own cannon. Of course, anyone who’s played the game knows the Titans don’t last long, so he'll frequently "eject" (aka, jump off my back) after a few minutes and then watch me ‘explode’ in a nuclear fireball.