Video Games to Play With Your Kids That Won’t Drive You Crazy

If your kids play Fortnite, in which 100 players battle until only one is left standing, you may find the game interesting to watch but you should have realistic expectations about actually playing with them. Fortnite certainly rewards teamwork, cooperation and strategic planning, but it also requires a level of reflexes, eye-hand coordination and manual dexterity beyond almost anyone who can remember the Clinton administration.

Roblox is not a single game but rather a platform for thousands of different mini-games created by users. Some of those mini-games are more manipulative in trying to extract real money from players than others. As with Fortnite, it is unlikely parents will have much fun with Roblox, though for a different reason: Much of Roblox is just simplistic.

Minecraft, however, probably has the broadest crossover appeal between adults and children of any video game, and for good reason. Minecraft’s basic formula — explore a newly created world, find materials, build structures — generates a cycle of discovery, creation and community stimulating enough for curious adults but accessible enough to captivate even grade-school children. If your kids already play Minecraft, you should give them the opportunity to introduce you to a new hobby, as long as you can stand the blocky graphics.

If none of these options are appealing, don’t give up. There are plenty of other choices that can engage both parents and children, both multi-user games played simultaneously and single-player games played as a team. And most are available for multiple systems.

One final piece of advice before the recommendations: Don’t let yourself be put off by cartoony graphics. Just as the best animated films are written to entertain both young children and their parents, games often use a similar sleight-of-hand: wrapping subtle play systems in simple images.

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