Video Game Buying Guide
There seems to be an unending supply of video games these days. Video games have come a long way since Pong and Pac Man , and contrary to what some might think, not all games need to be violent. Within a given genre, there may be games with a high body count, if that's what gets you going, as well as games that are more family-friendly. (For more information on ratings, you can check out ELSPA and PEGI). If you are new to gaming and need some general hints about genres, you've come to the right place. Looking for a gift? Read below to see if any of the genres appeal. But don't forget to buy games that are compatible with the player's game system! You don't want to buy your nephew Football Manager 2007 for PSP only to find out he's using an Xbox 360 !
- Emphasise problem-solving skills and exploring. The main character explores a virtual world looking for collecting objects or clues and completing tasks, usually as part of an overarching storyline.
- Many games have graphically violent content, so be careful to use discretion if shopping for a child.
- Fahrenheit ,Still Life ,Grand Theft Auto ,Prince of Persia ,Myst , and Wario-Ware are some examples of adventure games.
- There's nothing like being behind the wheel of a Ferrari. Racing on screen is the next best thing. Games can be raced with one or two players (one-on-one, championship mode, or against the clock). There are also battle-car races.
- Diverse and suitable for gamers of all ages.
- Gran Turismo ,Need for Speed ,Formula 1 , and Mario Kart DS are some popular racing games.
- Focus on arena combat.
- Some may find these games too violent. However, they are primarily based on hand-to-hand combat instead of using guns. Discretion should be used when buying for children.
- Tekken ,Street Fighter and Mortal Kombat are classic fighting games.
- Nearly all games in this genre are geared towards PC gaming because they require the Internet to interact with other players. They sometimes require extra fees for playing.
- Fantasy, Sci-Fi or FPS (First Person Shooter) styles.
- Final Fantasy ,Battlefield ,Lineage ,World of Warcraft ... and the list continues.
- Involve matching and tapping out rhythms either on a gamepad or on a dancepad or other type of controller.
- Dance Dance Revolution is the most famous of these Rhythm Games.
- Usually 2D or 3D, very simple to play and only require minimal skills, such as running, jumping and climbing. They are called platformer games because the character progresses from one platform, or level, to the next.
- Traditional games are good for all ages and especially for children.
- Donkey Kong ,Mario World ,Sonic - chances are, your old favourites are in this category.
|Puzzle, Board, Card, Arcade, Party|
- Classic arcade games are household favourites, typical board games get converted to console and PC format, and puzzle games keep you thinking.
- Fun for the whole family.
- Mario Party ,Trivial Pursuit ,Lemmings ,Tetris , etc.
|RPG (Role Playing Games)|
- Strategy is usually the term used for PC-based games, however, these are all basically the same as role-playing games for consoles. They tend to feature imaginative worlds and creatures and an epic saga to complete. Often real time games are played online or on a network against other gamers.
- Fable ,Guild Wars ,Star Wars ,The Elder Scrolls , are some well regarded roll playing games.
- Flight Simulators : These focus on flying a plane. Sometimes they involve shooting targets.
- Tycoon style: They range from building a house and community, to creating a zoo or amusement park, to running a motion picture studio.
- Depending on the title, these can be safe bets or slightly too adult for children.
- Most of the titles are PC-based.
- Air Combat Collection ,Zoo Tycoon ,Football Manager 2007 , etc.
- 'Shooters are typical action games. As these games inevitably involve guns, make sure to check their ratings before buying for a child. Basically, from a first person's perspective, the character goes around finding weapons, fending off enemies, and trying not to be killed.
- Tactical Shooter games are similar to FPS in that they usually tend to be violent and/or based on war simulation.
- Third-Person Shooter
- Survival Horror