New Video Games and Apps for Kids- and the kid in all of us

Got gamers? Us too. These are a few of the titles that have our kids (OK, and maybe us as well) occupied during rainy days and cold nights.

Lightseekers from TOMY is an app that you can play with by using just the app, or by connecting toys or trading cards with it.  Using “Connected Play” , a “proprietary technology platform that integrates video games and smart action figures” with Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality, and Artificial Intelligence with trading cards and figures and more into the app experience. Use the figure as a controller to the game, which is a fun and pretty unique experience. I’ve not done that before, and it was pretty neat.
No portal needed in which to put the toys, you just need the app and your tablet and that is that. They interact with each other and the app via bluetooth. The interactive trading cards brings features into play and into (virtual) reality as you use them as well.  The game gets better as you use it, based on feedback, reviews, gameplay, and more.  Starter packs available for about $40 at stores like Toys R Us.

For the fans of the Nintendo 3DS, there is Metroid Samus Returns. Bounty hunter Samus Aran is back to finally rid the planet of the menace that is known as Metroid. A “part two” (if you will) of the 1991 Game Boy classic game, Samus Returns has new moves, upgraded weaponry, and of course foes that just won’t quit. It’s a great game for fans as well as those who have never played before.  The game is $40 and for the 3DS family only.  There are amiibo for the game as well, Samus Aran as well as Metroid. The 2 pack is about $30.

The LEGO NINJAGO Movie has been widely anticipated, fans have been eagerly awaiting it’s arrival. As eagerly awaited has been the The LEGO NINJAGO Movie Video Game, which is based on the brick flick.  Fans will have tons of fun battling enemies as they take on the persona of their favorite Ninjago heroes- like Kai, Cole, Zane, or Master Wu – as they fight to defend their homes from Lord Garmadon and the evil Shark Army.  Available for about $40 and for many gaming platforms.

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Brutes.io App

Have your children been playing .io games as much as mine? At first, I didn’t know what ‘.io’ meant. After doing some research, I learned that ‘.io’ represents an entire class of multiplayer games. Some are focused on action, like traditional free-for-all bouts. Other .io titles are more puzzled-based, challenging gamers to think while they play. And some .io games are focused completely on strategy. The point is, ‘.io’ represents just about any modern multiplayer game, with one key feature: they’re free to play!

Brutes.io is a brand-new game on Poki. Like other .io titles, it loads in the browser, without downloading any special apps or making purchases. But, Brutes.io takes a little bit longer to load than other games. That’s because it has rich, 3D graphics. Very old computers might not be able to handle Brutes.io, but any modern device will have no problems at all.

Inspiring Sights and Sounds
I’ve never seen such pretty graphics in a free game. The first level in Brutes.io is called Grimm Graveyard, which is a haunted mountain region. There are spooky cliffs, tiny caves, and narrow bridges abound. The environment feels alive, as ominous thunder and flashes of lightning strike the ground. Old, bare trees sway and creak in the wind. All the while, high-energy music plays in the background. The soundtrack at Grimm Graveyard is reminiscent of children’s Halloween music. It’s playfully dark, goofy, and fun!
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Color Switch: Challenges

free apps

My kids and their friends are gamers. And by that, I mean they enjoy playing all sorts of video games. From chatting with other parents, I’ve realized that older children tend to prefer console games. If you’ve spent $60 a pop on too many PS4 or Xbox titles, then you know what I’m talking about. Thankfully, it seems that most younger kids are into free games. While we may not enjoy in-game purchases and/or advertisements, free-to-play is a welcome idea. Color Switch: Challenges is a free game, and there are actually no purchases necessary (or even available, for that matter). Better yet, there are no in-game ads, either.

Color Switch: Challenges is a uniquely fantastic game for several reasons. Firstly, it truly appeals to all ages. The objective is easy to understand, the controls are enjoyably basic, and the game looks good, too. Secondly, Color Switch: Challenges is different every time you play. Here’s how it works:

Each gamer controls a colored ball. Clicking the mouse or tapping the screen moves the ball upwards. If untouched, the ball falls realistically, as if pulled down by gravity. Players must keep bouncing the ball upwards to avoid falling out of sight. But, several obstacles stand in between the start and finish lines.
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New Games and Gaming Devices You Will Love

Looking for some fun games to play with the kids? We have some suggestions.

Mario Kart is one of those games which turn a room full of strangers into a room full of new buddies- or at least rowdy racers.  With equal parts skill, luck, and know how, Mario Kart has consistently been a gem of this gaming’s generation.  The latest in the franchise, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, dare I say may be the brightest gem so far.  With almost all characters unlocked to begin with, this game is built for multiplayer.  As the new Switch will show you, it is easy to grab a controller and play.  Each player takes the mini controller for their racer and plays.

With tons of characters to choose from, everyone can pick their favorite without arguments.  Characters of different wights and sizes act differently and effect your controls, as do the type of vehicle and even the tires selected.  The game also includes support for amiibo’s and amiibo cards, which unlock more content in game, allowing for even more customization. Mario Kart Deluxe 8 is available no for $59.99 from retail locations of via download fro the eShop.

 

We have two indie titles-  one for the 3DS and one for the Playstation 4. Fun, inexpensive, and most gamers will enjoy them and be able to play (no master skill sets required).

This is the third Box Boy game in the line, Bye Bye Box Boy , is a game where players use the power of boxes to solve various puzzles as Qbby.  This game is an enjoyable puzzle game which is simple to get into, but difficult to put down.  My 9 year old has loved every Box Boy game and this is no different, but now with a few additions like 4 new powers, baby boxes to rescue, and new environmental issues to contend with (like water, wind, and scales) there is more to do.  He enjoys the Box Boy series- it’s tough but not too tough for him to figure out after thinking about it and trying a few things, or in some cases, with some help from Dad.  Bye By Box Boy is available now on the eShop on the Nintendo 3DS and retails for $4.99.
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Bye Bye Box Boy and Aaero #VideoGames

Check out these two indie titles-  one for the 3DS, Bye Bye box Boy and one for the Playstation 4, Aaero. Fun, inexpensive, and good for most gamers.

box boy

This is the third Box Boy game in the line, Bye Bye Box Boy , is a game where players use the power of boxes to solve various puzzles as Qbby.  This game is an enjoyable puzzle game which is simple to get into, but difficult to put down.  My 9 year old has loved every Box Boy game and this is no different, but now with a few additions like 4 new powers, baby boxes to rescue, and new environmental issues to contend with (like water, wind, and scales) there is more to do.  He enjoys the Box Boy series- it’s tough but not too tough for him to figure out after thinking about it and trying a few things, or in some cases, with some help from Dad.  Bye By Box Boy is available now on the eShop on the Nintendo 3DS and retails for $4.99.
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Mario Kart 8 Deluxe for the Nintendo Switch

mario kart 8

Mario Kart is one of those games which turn a room full of strangers into a room full of new buddies- or at least rowdy racers.  With equal parts skill, luck, and know how, Mario Kart has consistently been a gem of this gaming’s generation.  The latest in the franchise, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, dare I say may be the brightest gem so far.  With almost all characters unlocked to begin with, this game is built for multiplayer.  As the Switch will show you, it is easy to grab a controller and play.  Each player takes the mini controller for their racer and plays.

The game runs at 1080p, and the graphics are spot on- levels pop with textures and colors, with characters smoothly running along the tracks.  Every track from the Wii U version of the game is included, including DLC, which makes a glorious return. Plus, the Inklings appear as all-new guest characters, along with returning favorites, such as King Boo, Dry Bones, and Bowser Jr.  My personal favorite is green Shy guy, because he reminds me of Christmas., followed very closely by Dry Bones.  My son favors likes Link or Yoshi.
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Nintendo Selects – the perfect basket stuffer

This Easter, instead of filling the kiddo’s Easter baskets with candy and small plastic trinkets, why not fill it with something they will enjoy for hours and that they really want.  Check out the games from the Nintendo Select line, which include some of the most fun 3DS games at a great price.  Some of the titles include Kirby Triple Deluxe, Mario and Luigi Dream Team, Animal Crossing New Leaf, Luigi’s Mansion, The Legend of Zelda Ocarina of Time, and Yoshi’s New Island.  These games and many more can now be purchased for $19.99.  These are the same fun games which are well loved by all at a wallet-friendly price.

Kirby Triple Deluxe is all about the cute pink hero who must defeat King Dedede by traveling through many worlds.  Kirby’s chief move is the ability to suck up enemies and borrow their powers, until spitting them out and grabbing new ones.  What we really like about Kirby Triple Deluxe is the amount of content in it.  There are a total of 3 additional games included.  The first is Dedede’s Drum Dash, which is a rhythm based time trial game. Next is Dedede Tour, which lets you time attack through levels from the main story as Kind Dedede instead of Kirby, and last but not least the Arena, which is a continuous battle mode with bosses from the main story.  This game is a great way to get to know Kirby and all is about personality and powers.
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Dragon Quest VIII for the 3DS

Dragon Quest has been a long standing classic series, and one of the most memorable of them is Dragon Quest 8. This game was originally released for the PS2 and is now available for the Nintendo 3DS.  Dragon Quest sports characters and environments (which are beautifully designed) as well as enemies with unique oddities including slimes, Drackies, bone barons, and sabercats are all included.  Not only is it a portable version, but there are also quite a few extras packed in as well.  Now you can defeat monsters and add them as backup for your own battles, adding a new dimension.

There are also 2 new characters, monster arena owner Morrie and Red the bandit.  You can now save anywhere during the game, which is fantastic, and a very important update is the fact there are no more random encounters.   So if you are searching for some health, no need to get as nervous as you make your way about, just be quick and stealthy.  The alchemy pot is another addition, where items are added and new items are made- (such as potions or weapons) there are many possibilities.  There are also new weapons, new side missions, a whole new ending available, and a new dungeon as well.  You also now have the ability to take pictures in game and share via StreetPass with your friends on the 3DS.
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