5 tips for parents to manage video gameplay

Video gameplay is a playful part of our lives. Video games provide entertainment, education, fitness and, importantly, a means of connecting and socialising with friends.

So for parents and guardians who have ever wondered, “How do I set rules?” “Where do I start?”, “How can I manage my child’s gameplay or in-game communication?”, we have got you covered.

Knowledge is power!

These tools can be tailored in the best interest of a child.

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1. Check the PEGI rating

PEGI (Pan European Game Information) system provides age labelling and content descriptors that alert parents to in-game purchases, bad language, violence, frightening content, drugs, sex or discrimination, for example. All major video games and platforms have PEGI ratings as an integral part of their parental controls systems.

You can also use the PEGI App to check the ratings. It allows you to search through the PEGI database for up-to-date video game and app rating classifications. You can filter results by age rating, genre and platform to find your perfect game and get detailed instructions on how to set up parental controls on a range of devices.

The app is also available in 9 languages: English, French, Polish, Dutch, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, German and Swedish. You can download the app here: Google PlayApple Store

NB: The PEGI age rating considers the age suitability of a game’s content, not the level of difficulty.

2. Use parental controls and smartphone apps

All video games consoles, handheld devices and operating systems for PC and Mac are equipped with parental control systems and there are also apps available to make it as easy as possible for parents to manage online interaction, playtime, spending and access to age-appropriate video games:

  • Select which games your children are allowed to play (based on the PEGI age ratings)
  • Control and monitor the use of digital purchases
  • Limit access to internet browsing by applying a filter
  • Control the amount of time that children can spend playing games
  • Control the level of online interaction (chat) and exchange of data (text messages, user-generated content)

Check out parental control tools and apps made possible by Xbox, PlayStation and Nintendo below or check out the PEGI website for more.

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How the Xbox Family Settings App Works

Play Time Controls On PS4 Systems

Nintendo Switch Parental Controls

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3. Why not play games together and enjoy their hobby with them?

Video game players have known for a long time something that everyone else is just figuring out – that video games are not only fun and entertaining but also provide a social connection with those on the other side of a screen. So why not join in!

Why not play with them, use gameplay to discuss what limits to set, what to buy, whom to be friends with, etc. All of our research shows that families that play together have the fewest arguments about playtime and is stress reliever too.

 

4. Be fully informed in your local language

Use the resources provided by the national video games trade associations and their partners to be fully informed about safe and responsible gameplay, to learn about popular video games, what games to play as a family and tips and guidance.

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5. Enjoy the benefits of playing video games!

Well-managed gameplay brings huge benefits. Video games don’t only provide entertainment, players also benefit from practising motor skills, problem-solving, team playing, improved memory, attention and concentration, multi-tasking and social skills.

Recent research shows that video game playing girls are three times more likely to enrol in STEM programmes than girls who don’t play. Also, the use of video games in schools has been shown to increase student engagement and learning outcomes and helps students with difficulties to reconnect with school when more traditional approaches have failed.

Knowledge is power

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