Filed under: Big Kids, Just For Dads, Toys, Gadgets, That's Entertainment

I grew with video games. I was born in 1969, so I was just after the pong craze, when the original Atari first entered the home video game market. I also went to arcades, which housed both nerds and drug users, with the occasionally nerdy drug user making strange noises mastering Asteroids or Tempest or other simple addictions.

My friends and I played Intellivision baseball until we could no longer look at each other without seeing the ridiculously basic baseball player outlines in each others eyes. My best friend's father, bless his OCD soul, was the master of Space Armada, although Andrew, my friend, secretly could beat him. I stuck to sports games mostly - and then driving games as I did not get my license until I was 30 and this was the only way I could maneuver a vehicle.

From Sega Genesis to Super Nintendo - even into our 20's we managed a very unhealthy obsession with all things video game. We did not go to arcades anymore, a little weird at 25, and they slowly gave way to the home video market anyway. Not unlike the evolution and eventual disappearance of porn theaters, allowing people to only feel shame and embarrassment and of course excitement in the privacy of their own home.

Eventually the gaming came to a halt. Alcohol became more fun and gaming and boozing really don't mix that well.

Well, enter the Wii. Santa was nice enough to drop one down our chimney this year. Hudson is just about on the edge of gaming, playing online simple games on sites like Nickelodeon or Treehouse TV, so after selling our soul to the devil, we were able to find one for Hud to enjoy. When he noticed the Wii all set up, glowing blue on our TV, he freaked out for a bit, but it did not snatch his attention like the other, more tactile Santa gifts that he opened.

Of course that all changed once he started playing. He has found three or four basic games that he can do, do very well, and now of course wants to play them all the time. I also have found a renewed interest in video games - much to the chagrin of my wife. But it is something that Hud and I can do together, and, something Hudson can earnestly beat me at. Besides, Steph and I have recently taken a like to Guitar Hero III. But that it is a post all on its own. And probably on a different site anyway.

We monitor the usage - just like we do with the television. An hour a day seems about right. He splits the hour usually. We set the stove timer so he knows exactly when the time he has allotted is up. The beep goes, the controller goes away. So far so good.

No exceptions....well that is a bit of a fib. The hour doesn't count when I am playing with him does it?

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AdviceMama Says:
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.