Game Review: Black Ops 3

Black Ops 3 parent review

Parents Need to Know: Black Ops 3 Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 is a professional caliber First Person Shooter designed as a platform for competitive gamers to try their hand in tournament play. Yes, anyone can play it, but that is not the goal. The game developers dumped tons of cash into graphics, development, a fancy online store called “The Black Market” and a worldwide tournament mode that is live every Tuesday and Wednesday. This is a well made game, but the heart of it  elevates a viewpoint that laughs at suffering, idolizes those who can establish power over others,…

Addiction and Gaming: 13 Signs

Parents, friends, and loved ones often ask great questions: Is my gamer addicted? What does addiction look like? Can I really be addicted to gaming? This list includes thirteen signs that a gamer is struggling with unhealthy gaming behavior. Since practice makes permanent, these signs tell us that they are headed in the wrong direction on their journey to who God has called them to be. It is important to remember that addiction, at its core, makes us captive to behaviors we know aren’t good for us, and we know we can’t stop on our own. Jesus promised that he…

Husbands: the danger of “if only”

Husbands, there are a lot of lies in life. One of the most powerful I’ve run into is a simple statement: “if only”. I’m a couple weeks into having another little boy in my house I’m reminded how tempting it can be step back from the daily battle of fighting for families and take a couple plays off. I find that I begin to dwell on an “if only” mindset. Life would be good…if only… This mindset is poison. It’s a lie that eats away at your heart until you begin to resent the very things God has called you into…

Gaming Addiction: Practice Makes…

Practice doesn’t make perfect: Practice makes permanent.  In gaming this means our gaming habits become ingrained in us. They become part of who we are, how we think, what we do. In science this is partly explained by neural plasticity; basically your brain works hard to specialize in whatever you make it do the most. Want to be great at running? Run well, and a lot! Want to be great at piano? Practice well, and a lot! Want to be great at gaming? You get the idea. It’s important to note: Practicing something a lot doesn’t mean you’ll be good at it! You…

Halo 5: Game Review

Parents Need to Know Halo 5 is all about player combat. In the story line of the game use a range of weapons (pistols, machine guns, grenade launchers, laser swords) to kill both human and alien enemies.  This game is graphically appealing, includes tons of gunfire, explosions, futuristic war machines, and death. The designers did remove blood from the game, yet the sheer body count still takes its toll. This game is not appropriate for younger gamers. Parents should be active in helping their gamer decide if and when online play is appropriate. Appropriate For: 16+            …

Game Review: Call of Duty – Black Ops II

Each game review is intended to answer the question: “Is this game safe for my child to play?” My goal is to bring the gospel of Jesus Christ into the world of gaming and gaming addiction. If you want more info on how we go about grading games, you can check out our Game Review Scoring Guide. Games are scored 1 (the worst) to 4 (the best). The Overall Grade is based on the average of the six categories below. Overall Grade:  1.7 (deeply concerning) Grade Summary: The predecessor to the newly released Black Ops III deserves some attention. This game contains an…

Game Review: Heroes of the Storm

Overall Grade: 2.2 (Concerning) Grade Summary:  This game takes a HUGE amount of time to play. There is also a large focus on paying in order to advance. This game is free to play and encourages you to pay to win. In addition, Heroes of the Storm focuses on a dark premise – players will battle to the death and the total extermination of the other side. Some people play as “good” guys, others as “bad”, but at the end of the day the goal is complete extermination of enemies. Each heroic character is drawn from an already existing game series…

Crash Course FPS: Part 2 – Powerful Narrative

Okay, it’s been a couple weeks, but I’m returning to our conversation about why FPS (First Person Shooters) hold such a place in the gaming community. If this is the first entry you’ve read you can catch up here: The Games Parent’s Fear Crash Course FPS: Part 1 – Epic Heroes Contrary to popular belief, FPS games can have storylines! It seems like they should be more like an Arnold Schwarzenegger movie: Dude with huge muscles Blow up everything Kill everything you see Mind-numbing one-liners In fairness this describes probably half the FPS out there. However, as you saw in the…

Competitive Gaming is Here: MOBA

The world of competitive gaming is coming to the main stage.  Leading the charge are Massive Online Battle Arenas (MOBAs). These competitions feature big-name players, highly-trained players and BIG money prizes. MOBAs focus on fast-paced gameplay, intricate strategy, and expert team work. Team: For the Win You join a team of 3-5 players and go against another team of live players. You compete for victory by advancing your characters skill levels, gaining new abilities and weapons, and destroying your opponent’s base. The base rules are simple enough and the quick play time allows gamers continual practice and improvement. The Big Three Three…

The Lie of Variety

Being a nerd I’m going to give myself license to make the occasional Star Trek reference. There is a Next Generation episode titled “The Game” (ep. 106) where the crew of the Enterprise is introduced to a game that creates a euphoric sense of ecstasy for players when they complete a level. It doesn’t take long until the entire crew is addicted to this game, leaving all of their other responsibilities to wait while they get just one more level, one more hit. Much like any other addict, the crew falls dangerously close to disaster before being saved by those…