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DS Games for Pre-readers? 256

ProfJonathan writes "My daughter just got a DS from the grandparents for her 6th birthday. She's only beginning to read, but wants a bunch of games of her own rather than just playing her older brothers' games. She got Nintendogs with the DS, so that's taken care of, but other relatives are asking what she might want. Can anyone recommend some good DS games that don't require reading skill, that might be age-appropriate and interesting for a 1st grade girl?" Wouldn't it be creepy if the kid had a really good brain age?
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DS Games for Pre-readers?

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  • Some Ideas (Score:5, Informative)

    by stoolpigeon ( 454276 ) * <bittercode@gmail> on Sunday December 02, 2007 @12:26PM (#21552053) Homepage Journal
    Here are a few.
    Diddy Kong Racing [amazon.com]
    Yoshi's Island [amazon.com]
    Super Princess Peach [amazon.com]
    Kirby Squeak Squad [amazon.com]
    Lego Star Wars [amazon.com]
    Strawberry Shortcake [amazon.com]
    Smart Girls Playhouse [amazon.com]

    I know my 4 year old son loves Mario Kart. Lego Star Wars is his other favorite. That has a lot to do with how much he likes the films also. So if your child isn't familiar with the movies, or doesn't care for them, it would make a big difference of course.

    Based on my own daughters - I would also recommend Animal Crossing [amazon.com]. Now this involves reading, but that's not bad. It's really going to encourage and motivate her so that she can play. The ideas are pretty much what you get with the whole webkinz rage - and I know my 6 year old and 7 year old girls are totally into that. There so many more ds titles she would probably really enjoy it isn't even funny. Barbie stuff, Disney Princess stuff, etc.
    • Re:Some Ideas (Score:4, Interesting)

      by xtracto ( 837672 ) on Sunday December 02, 2007 @12:34PM (#21552095) Journal
      I would also recommend Animal Crossing. Now this involves reading, but that's not bad. It's really going to encourage and motivate her so that she can play.

      I agree completely with that!

      If the girl is 6 years old then I guess she should be learning to read by now don't you think so?? In any case, I completely recommend to use the games to encourage them to learn to read. I am really glad my first language is not English because when I was a kid (around the the Atari/NES times) playing RPGs like Final Fantasy , Dragon Warrior and Ultima made me want to learn English (even having a dictionary at my side when I played). There was also another game which name I do not remember, it was a Tiny Toons (or Looney Toons) game in which you had to create a "film" and it even had the text clouds with some dialogues.

      I have always thought games are the *best* way to teach kids (it is the natural way of learning, not only for humans but for every species!) from learning to talk to learning AI algorithms (programming intelligent software mini robots that fight against each other )
      • If the girl is 6 years old then I guess she should be learning to read by now don't you think so?

        And indeed the post says she is beginning to read. The process of learning takes a while. Certainly games will provide motivation, but in my experience (I have two six year olds myself) kids do not lack motivation to read anyway.

        If you give a child a game where the language comprehension needed is beyond them their experience with it will be frustrating. The first thing that will happen is that they won't w
    • Sorry, but Lego Star Wars on the DS--well, Lego Star Wars II: The Original Trilogy, at least--is a mediocre game at best. Bad camera angles, unresponsive controls, and a few levels (Endor, especially) with chronic slowdowns that make it virtually unplayable. It's a shame because the game is so good on many other platforms; even the Game Boy Advance version, while much simplified, is more fun to play.

      Of the games my wife and I have, Club House Games [amazon.com] is probably the only one (aside from the excellent Mar
    • by Anonymous Coward
      I'm surprised that she's only beginning to read at age 6. Myself and most of my friends were reading Hardy Boys books at that age. My son just turned 3 now, and he's quite able to read Berenstein Bears and similar books by himself. My nephew is 5, and he just finished his first Goosebumps book.

      It's too late to rectify the situation now, but your daughter probably should have started to read when she was two or three years old. By the time she's six, she should be quite able to read newspapers, magazines, an
      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        Don't worry about the girl -- some people just let their children wait until school to learn to read. I learned to read in first grade at age 5, but today I'm minimizing... let's see... ah: "The Design and Implementation of Typed Scheme" to post on Slashdot.
        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          These days reading isn't the only way to learn. The use and manipulation of different GUIs might as important 20 years from now as reading text. That said, early childhood education is very important, while the brain is growing and forming it's most basic pathways it's an educational advantage if "how to learn" is being hardwired in. The difference is most noticeable in children where given little interaction at as babies/infants. They (statistically)never are able to absorb new concepts or information as q
          • by Gonoff ( 88518 )

            These days reading isn't the only way to learn.

            True, you could have someone read everything to you. Most people just don't have the luxury of a full time personal servant at the age of 6.

            Classrooms will teach so much, and then you need to do a lot yourself, even at the age of 6/5/4.

            It sounds to me like this child has been given a poor start in life. Help her and she can catch up and pass where she should be by now. Some work on the part of her parents and she will be fine.

            • Most people just don't have the luxury of a full time personal servant at the age of 6.

              Most people don't have Mothers? Oh, you mean most mothers can't or just don't spend enough time interacting with their children. By age 6 it's way too late, most of the foundations have already been made. You can't just strap the kid into a stroller and sit them in front of Barney or even Baby Einstein and think that they will just catch up when they get to preschool. Babies learn through human interaction, go rediscov
      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        Whoa there, way to make someone feel bad.

        When you start to read has very little relation to reading ability later, my son didn't really learn till 6, he was quite late compared to some in his class, now he's ahead of them, a whole 2 years later.
      • At six years old, I was probably still drawing crayon pictures in the family encyclopedia set that no one uses. However, by the eighth grade, my reading skills was college level. I would recommend giving the kid crayons and an encyclopedia set instead of a DS and games. :)
        • by madprof ( 4723 )
          But just think how much better you could have been had you learned to read earlier. You might know a few extra languages by now. ;)
        • However, by the eighth grade, my reading skills was college level.
          Things have down hill ever since, haven't they?
      • by Orange Crush ( 934731 ) * on Sunday December 02, 2007 @01:40PM (#21552565)

        The trick isn't getting a kid to read as early as possible, it's getting them to *want* to learn to read and continue reading. What did it for me was when my parents finally bought a computer. I was 5 or 6, IIRC. Back in the DOS days it was awfully difficult to get around unless you could read. I was determined to learn to read so I could play with it. I've been a voracious reader ever sense. And I beat Mickey's Space Adventure before my older sister did and bragged like hell about it for months. (Yeah, I was a bit of a little twerp that way. ;D).

        Get the kid as many good games with lots of text as possible. Buy her any book she wants and keep encouraging her to read to her heart's content. Don't get pushy. You don't want her to equate reading with "you're not leaving this table until you eat those brussel sprouts!" If she learns to love reading, she'll have a much easier time in school and might just grow up to be smart enough to take good care of you when you're old and senile. ;)

        • So long as the kids are in an environment that is sufficiently flexible, it is fine for kids to learn to read later on. What's really cool about homeschooling is that it gives that flexibility.

          We homeschool out kids. One wanted to start reading when he was four and was reading pretty well by the time he was five.

          The other was not keen on reading early on and only really got keen when he was 9 (though he could read at a low level before then). He's now 11 and reads Moby Dick - level books. With **self** moti

      • You exemplify a growing trend for people to spend way too much fucking time raising everyone else's kids.

        How about you just worry about your own, let he worry about his, while I worry about mine?

        You OK with that, champ?

        Or would you really prefer that everyone else tell you what to do with your own children, too? I'm sure that no matter what you say about them, I can find something sufficiently abnormal about your statement to feed a steady stream of admonishment toward you, your children, and your methods
        • by Wumpus ( 9548 ) <IAmWumpusNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Sunday December 02, 2007 @05:49PM (#21554589)
          As long as my tax money pays for your kid's education, your kid's education is my problem. Our society thinks that how children are educated is everyone's problem, because if you (hypothetically speaking) are content not to teach your child how to read, write, do arithmetic and not beat up the other children and she grows up to become a burden on society, then she's a burden on society and society thinks that something should be done about it. Like telling you to educate your kids.

          While you could make the argument that this is nobody's business but your own, and that YOU don't want to pay for other people's children's education or medical insurance, it seems that enough Americans think otherwise and don't want to change it. As things stand now, society at large takes an interest in how you raise your kids. Deal with it.
        • How about you just worry about your own, let he worry about his, while I worry about mine?

          That would be fine, in the case of people who haven't posted questions about how to raise their kids on Ask Slashdot....
          • by adolf ( 21054 )
            Um. Uh. Er.

            The question was about video games. The answer was about child rearing.

            I fail to see the connection.

            Might you care to explain your position in greater detail?

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by EtoilePB ( 1087031 )
        I could read books at age 3. My ex-boyfriend couldn't read until he was in the 3rd grade, aged 9. Guess what? In our late 20s, we're both voracious readers (I finished my 80th book of the year last night!); he went to an Ivy League school and I've got a master's from a respectable enough university.

        Not all kids learn on the same pace. And many adult gamers are ALSO voracious readers. (There's more text in some Japanese RPGs than in all of War and Peace, I swear.) I wouldn't go freaking out about the
    • by oakbox ( 414095 )
      My son likes(d) Super Mario Brothers and Cars. Pokemon is a complete nightmare if your child cannot read well.
      • Ditto that. Years ago my two boys got given (older) Gameboy + Pokemon and (younger) an Educational Toy. The ET was clearly understood to be no fun, younger son, who could not read at the time, later got a Gameboy + Pokemon, got very frustrated for a while.

        As soon as a kid can read, Pokemon, at least the old Red/Blue versions, is a fine game, vastly superior to the TV show, movies, and card games.

        Super Mario Brothers is pretty good fun.

        Also, younger son was not reading at the beginning of 2nd grade, which
    • Hi,

      I'd add 'Mario 64' to the list... it's 'reading light' so it was motivating for my 6-year old. He wanted to read the little 2-4 word "what to solve on this level" titles, and the flavor text before the boss battles. So it required minimal reading to play, but had enough reading from time to time to motivate him that, yes, reading is useful.

      Others he likes (as a pre-reader) are Yoshi Island, Yoshi Touch-N-Go, Scooby Doo Unmasked, and Mario Kart.

      But be careful with that last one, child predators may use

    • As the parent of a 5yo daughter, I definitely agree with games mentioned in the parent post. Super Princess Peach is probably the best in that group (in my opinion), because it strikes a good balance of being easy for kids to control while still being very fun to play. It also encourages thinking skills -- you can use elemental tools such as fire to melt ice obstacles, water to douse fires, etc.

      I also agree that it's okay for games to have words, even if the child cannot yet read them. My daughter is ju
    • Does she have any interest in Pokemon? If she doesn't, she still might like the games.

      Pokemon Diamond and Pokemon Pearl have some reading (just don't stick to non-reading games), require some money management, some puzzle solving, and are fun.

      Besides, maybe she'll start insisting on getting and reading the strategy guides. My son's teachers liked to push this "reading for content" business long after he was studying the strategy guides.

      You want it to be fun, but fun with incidental educational aspe

    • I know my 4 year old son loves Mario Kart. Lego Star Wars is his other favorite. That has a lot to do with how much *I* like the films also
      There... fixed that for ya.
  • Colors! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by tepples ( 727027 ) <tepples@NOSpAM.gmail.com> on Sunday December 02, 2007 @12:29PM (#21552069) Homepage Journal

    Get the R4 adapter [r4ds.com] and a microSD card [google.com], and put Colors! [collectingsmiles.com] on it. Look what others have made [brombra.net].

    • Not only that but you can buy all the games that stoolpigeon [slashdot.org] recommended and then put them on the R4 so you never have to worry about your daughter losing any of her games. But maybe she's more responsible than a 23 year old "adult" and she won't have that problem (if anyone sees my Mario Kart, let me know).
    • That is awesome.
    • by vrmlguy ( 120854 )
      I have two seven-year-olds, one boy and one girl, and they're constantly borrowing my DS to play games. They like Mario Kart DS a lot.

      I bought Datel's Games 'N' Music; it's similar to the R4, is easy to find at Walmart and Best Buy, but is generally held in low esteem by the homebrew community. That said, all of the homebrew works with it, although I haven't found anything the kids want to keep playing.

      There are DS demo download stations installed in game stores and airports across the country, and many o
    • by GweeDo ( 127172 )
      I can not recommend this enough. My 22 month old daughter loves Colors (and the R4 lets me do some homebrew too!). Here is a little pic of her playing with colors:
      picture [grebowiec.net]
  • Ummmm (Score:5, Insightful)

    by inSpecter ( 25343 ) on Sunday December 02, 2007 @12:34PM (#21552093)
    She is 6 and cannot read? I would focus on that part first before letting her play games.
    • Every kid is different, and I wouldn't be too quick to jump to any conclusions without more information. Plus - she may be working super hard on learning to read, but she is still going to need some down time and fun. The DS can be a great motivator for the reading and even a nice supplement if she moves on to playing games with some text.
      • by MBCook ( 132727 )
        See, that's why a game like Mario and Luigi: Superstar Saga is good. If she can get into it (she's a little young for the amount of text, I think) it has a fair amount of text so she reads it and gets practice reading, but isn't thinking about that, she's just playing a game.
    • Re:Ummmm (Score:5, Interesting)

      by nido ( 102070 ) <nido56NO@SPAMyahoo.com> on Sunday December 02, 2007 @12:55PM (#21552227) Homepage
      I'm 26 and never really learned to read myself [slashdot.org].

      Kids learn to read anywhere between the ages of 2 and 9. My mother taught herself to read when she was 5 years old - her parents had decided that a caretaker was cheaper than kindergarten, and mom was extremely bored. Motivation is what counts, mostly. By trying to force all kids to read at age 5, the system hurts children who won't want to learn to read until later.

      I do okay with non-fiction, but my "imagination" functionality is totally disabled. Almost got it figured out...

      Read the comment & follow-ups linked above for more on how I figured out that I can't really read.
      • by sqrt(2) ( 786011 )
        Trying to understand your particular deficiency is almost like getting a blind from birth person to understand the concept of colors. I'm having a hard time wrapping my head around it. Being able to visualize concepts from words is such an automatic and common mechanism that I can't understand what it's like to live without it. I never read fiction on my own until high school when I discovered sci-fi and Tom Clancy. I think I read all the Heinlein books at the library starting with Starship Troopers. Vonneg
      • but my "imagination" functionality is totally disabled.

        Because of this I would wager that you are one of the few people who's driving isn't effected by talking a cell phone. Personally, the visual centers of my brain tend to focus on the concepts I'm talking about, not on the information coming from my eyes, I walk into things when talking on the phone or thinking intently about something.
      • by shalla ( 642644 )
        I guess my question would be if you can picture it or get it well enough if someone else reads it to you? Or do you not enjoy fiction in any form?

        I admit that this is somewhat of a foreign concept to me, as I'm so textually oriented that I read things unconsciously sometimes, but I do struggle to parse spoken words when I get really tired. (It's like my brain just shuts down and hears English like it's a foreign language and I have to concentrate to break it down into disparate words and then translate th
    • There's plenty of kids who have a mental stumbling block with respect to reading. But generally once you get it, even if it takes till 6 or 7 to get it, they shoot off real quick. It's like a switch that flips in their heads. But not reading at 6 is not the norm. A lot of kids are reading in kindergarten, some in preschool already.

      For every 6 or 7 year old 'late' reader there is a 2 year old reader. My son is 2 and sounding out words already, I have no doubt he'll be reading simple books in a few months.
      • I entered first grade not knowing how to read, but I picked it up plenty fast.

        In highschool, I had extremely high standardized test scores, placed out of college english requirements with 5's on the AP english exam, excellent scores on SAT and SAT II for english and german, had a pile of german awards (highest score on the standardized german exam for the state), and a smattering of journalism awards.

        In college, I studied german, french, and japanese simultaneously while doing a double major in physics and
        • I'm not sure modern games would be as good for this. I played hundreds of games as a kid, each requiring adapting to a new set of rules, objectives, and strategies to complete. Modern software is much larger, and more repetitive, so it may not have the same effect.
          WarioWare anyone? But otherwise, it's unfortunate that this appears to be limited to commercial DS games, as there are plenty of minigames on Newgrounds.com that would replicate your "hundreds of games" experience
  • by Abjuk ( 29648 ) on Sunday December 02, 2007 @12:35PM (#21552105)
    Disney Princess: Magical Jewels [amazon.com] is another good one, if she's in to the whole Princess craze.
    • Disney Princess: Magical Jewels is another good one
      Are there a lot of non-Disney princess games? I can imagine that a lot of Slashdot readers don't really want to be financially supporting the company behind statutory extensions of the copyright term.
  • Here's one! (Score:5, Funny)

    by Gigiya ( 1022729 ) on Sunday December 02, 2007 @12:36PM (#21552113)
  • reading (Score:5, Insightful)

    by digitalderbs ( 718388 ) on Sunday December 02, 2007 @12:37PM (#21552115)

    DS games that don't require reading skill

    Why not make this a good opportunity to teach her how to read -- you're never too young to learn. If she encounters something she can't read, read it for her, or you can sit next to her as she plays the game. It's a great way to get kids to read without making them feel like it's a chore. The animation of the scenarios can help her understand what she's reading too.

    To answer your question, I believe the new Super Mario would be a good choice.
    • You're never too young to learn on your DS either. Taco seems to think it'd be funny if she scored a good brain age, but why the heck not let her try? All of us grew up seeing Game Boys and Nintendos as basically toys. It'd be great if the next generation saw them as learning devices along with entertainment devices.
  • Age 6? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 02, 2007 @12:42PM (#21552151)
    Umm, I have a few friends with a 2-1/2 and 3 year olds. They're already starting to teach their kids to read. You may want to focus on that instead of giving her games. Buy her some books. Let her play the DS after spending 30-60 minutes of time a day working on reading.
    • Re:Age 6? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Sibko ( 1036168 ) on Sunday December 02, 2007 @03:19PM (#21553405)

      Let her play the DS after spending 30-60 minutes of time a day working on reading.
      No, do not do this. Reading should never be related to work. She should not be 'forced' to read for an hour if she wants to play her games. That turns reading into a chore, and she won't want to do it.
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by bitt3n ( 941736 )

        Reading should never be related to work. She should not be 'forced' to read for an hour if she wants to play her games.
        Why don't you force her to play with the DS for an hour before you let her read a book. Maybe you can fool her into literacy.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by rothbart ( 813487 )
      As a parent of a 6 yr old girl myself that is a great "phonetic" speller and budding reader, I think a lot of you are COMPLETELY overreacting over this. My daughter is very close to reading... she can read age appropriate books. Actually "read", not memorize. But honestly, when you're 6, reading is a bit of a chore and it's not hard to understand it might be "fun" to actually have some ENTERTAINMENT in addition to the total-stranger-advocated-reading-tutorials some of you seem to be pushing. Remember, t
    • 6 is a totally normal age to start reading. If kids start reading naturally at 2-3 years old, that's great. But most aren't, and parents who try and push their kids into this kind of thing before they're ready really piss me off. I love the suggestion above of giving her a more reading-intensive game like Animal Crossing - that's the kind of motivation she needs, not seeing reading as a chore to get over with so she can get on to fun stuff.
  • You've left me wondering why you want recommendations of games that don't involve reading. Six years old is hardly too young to be learning how to read. If anything, you want games that will help teach reading. So what you really want is a game that has reading in it, but can still be understood even by a gamer who isn't a good reader yet. There are many games that fit that bill. As a suggestion, check out Meteos. It's a really great puzzle game with five different levels of difficulty (so she'll be able to win it at least on the lowest level), and after completing the campaign mode, there are a multitude of all-text epilogues explaining how your victory (or lack thereof) in the final level affected events. That's a great way to practice reading. You can sit down with her and read it for her when she's playing; it'll be a good lesson, and she'll be interested because she'll want to know how the game ended up.

    Incidentally, I first learned the word "Congratulations" when it popped up at the end of a particularly hard Game Boy game I had been playing for a long while (this was when I was really young). I asked my dad what it said. After that, I was more proud of being able to read such a long word than at having beaten the game.
    • by chitokutai ( 758566 ) on Sunday December 02, 2007 @02:03PM (#21552749)
      I recommend Oregon Trail. How else will a child learn the words Typhoid and Cholera?
      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by Neko-kun ( 750955 )
        Can't forget dysentery...

        It was a while before it occurred to me to look it up but once I did, I wound up reading up on the history of the Oregon Trail and really made me appreciate dying of natural causes :3

        And speaking of ancient games, as a kid, before we were allowed to start playing Oregon Trail we had to prove we understood the concepts of operating a computer with a mouse. Crap everyone knows by now :P But I would really like to get a copy of that one. All I remember was the computers it ran on
    • I still remember how funny I though it was that 'Filch' was on the SATs, and the only place I had previously ever seen it used was in Zork II: The Wizard of Froboz. People definitely underestimate some kinds of entertainment as learning tools.
    • Perhaps the child is not so brilliant. Perhaps the child is brilliant, but is, for example, dyslexic. Lots of other comments here are also from people saying, 'ooh, but I was a genius, I was reading in the womb!' Well, good for you. But other people do not have a moral obligation to be you.

      So yes, in general, this is a bit late to be starting reading.

      But have some thought for the specific, why not?

      ... Or maybe the stereotype of the slashdot crowd as a gaggle of empathy-impaired clods is justified, after

  • monkey island (Score:2, Interesting)

    by diskis ( 221264 )
    Give her games with real text. Those old Monkey Island games taught me English. Was quite fun the next year when we started learning English in school. When most pupils could say "This is a book", I used words as "rubberchicken with a pulley in the middle". You could actually install ScummVM and run Monkey Island on the DS :)
  • by readandburn ( 825014 ) on Sunday December 02, 2007 @01:07PM (#21552319)
    I'm sure many of you are familiar with this site [videogamecritic.net], but the VGC just reviewed a couple of DS games for young kids. Reviews are also tagged with icons to determine if a game is suitable for young ones.

    Also, in light of the recent controversy at Gamespot, this is a good site for truly independent reviews (although it can take a while for new games to show up). You can see what one game publisher did after he gave a bad review [videogamecritic.net].

    • Gamespot's reputation for independent reviews may be history [penny-arcade.com] now after a game publisher pulled their advertising and the reviewer got canned.
  • There are some great review sites that often include this type of information in the review.

    GameSpot gets a 10/10 in this area.

  • A 6-year-old "pre-reader" with a personal game system? Great - she'll need those gaming skills to keep herself happy when she plows through a series of dead-end jobs in her twenties.

    Before it's too late, let the thing run low on batteries and then have her pitch in with her own cash to buy more. (Your 6-year-old IS familiar with money by now, right?) That will get old fast, and she'll be back to playing with other kids, running around the block, setting fire to cats and all the other things 6-year-olds s
  • I agree with the various posters about the late reading age.. I was already programming in BASIC by that age, and was reading at a grade 6 level by then as well.
  • I recommend Big Brain Academy which is basically the same thing as Brain Age but is aimed for the under-10 set.

    It does require some limited reading skills but the puzzles in it are not as complex as the Brain Age ones... while still being tricky enough to drive grownups nuts.

    Sorry, no link but it's easy enough to find.

  • Good lord (Score:2, Insightful)

    I played video games a LOT when I was a teenager, but it's stories like this that make me extremely happy that my eight year old boy loves going outside, building stuff with wood, taking things apart, reading books, and generally hates video games from the times he's gone over to his friends' houses.

    It's only later in life that I realized that video games are basically mental sugary sweets. They're empty entertainment that exist solely to cause your mental wheels to spin. I don't subscribe to them being a

    • by Bagels ( 676159 )
      I would respectfully disagree. Even the most abstract puzzle game exercises pattern-recognition, logic, and reflexes; many others tell relatively complex and entertaining stories. A few, like Animal Crossing, even facilitate creativity and socializing. There are indeed meaningless progress-quest games out there that roughly fall under the definition you've given (mostly amongst the more vapid web-games and RPGs), but they do not and should not define the medium for you or for anyone.
      • Even the most abstract puzzle game exercises pattern-recognition, logic, and reflexes; many others tell relatively complex and entertaining stories.

        Some do... I should say that my kids enjoy some of the activities on the Disney web site, which you might call "games" in a broad definition.

        But those aren't the typical games you find on consoles. It's mostly reflex mental masturbation. I'm sure there is some reflex and pattern recognition benefit, but you can get that from any sport, plus all the added b

        • I've got a stack of studies sitting in front of me (doing a paper on it) showing that action video games like Unreal Tournament improve a host of spatial cognition skills, and can even help to close the usual gender gap in these skills.

          Don't kid yourself that cartoons are better than video games. How many puzzles do you have to solve to watch Tom & Jerry? How much exercise does the cartoon give you versus a round of Wii boxing or DDR? Will your kid learn more about history (not just facts, mind you, b

          • I've got a stack of studies sitting in front of me (doing a paper on it) showing that action video games like Unreal Tournament improve a host of spatial cognition skills, and can even help to close the usual gender gap in these skills.

            Again, I don't argue that their might be a slight reflex benefit. I just argue that the benefit isn't more than they would get from physical sports and/or playing outside, and it's entirely possible that the benefits are only tied to video games, and don't help much with

  • by Nom du Keyboard ( 633989 ) on Sunday December 02, 2007 @02:56PM (#21553211)
    If she wants other games than already exist in the family collection, that's reasonable. But if she just wants her own copy of a game her brother already has, a firm "No" is necessary.

    Better to have her learn at a young age the difference between reasonable, and unreasonable, demands. Fail here, and you'll pay an ever more expensive price each year for decades to come.

  • Shame on you. My dad started teaching me when I was two.
  • Electroplankton (Score:3, Insightful)

    by makapuf ( 412290 ) on Sunday December 02, 2007 @03:01PM (#21553255)
    This is a really good "game" for a younger (starting from three), I let my son play with it. It doesn't focus on 'winning', 'baddies', killing people or whatever, it is just an introduction to music, sounds, ... He LOVES it.

    Of course, he likes also me playing with him to it, and making mario boucing into walls at super mario world really makes him laugh.
  • Slashdot Culture (Score:3, Interesting)

    by toiletsalmon ( 309546 ) on Sunday December 02, 2007 @03:48PM (#21553649) Journal
    I find it strangely interesting (and entertaining) that the sex-starved, pale, anti-social geeks that supposedly frequent this place have so many strong opinions about how someone else should raise their child. The mind boggles...
    • Absolutely... I read the first 20 or comments and the vast majority were boorish advice of an intrusive and arrogant nature. What a bunch of fucking wankers.
    • Not all stereotypes are true.

      And not only people who have their own children should believe in education.

  • Because bullets are the universal language!
  • Your six year old can't read yet and you're giving her video games that DON'T require reading? Why exactly are you encouraging illiteracy in your own offspring? Take the DS away and replace it with some readers, or get her some 'learn to read' games. No third option.

MESSAGE ACKNOWLEDGED -- The Pershing II missiles have been launched.