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Engaged Family Gaming Holiday

The holiday season is fast approaching and that means it’s time to start finding gifts for the gamers in your family! The EFG staff has ranked the video game consoles available today. Take a look below!

(Full disclosure: These Amazon links are affiliate links. Purchases made using these links will help us earn revenue.)

Nintendo Switch


We are all in on the Nintendo Switch this year. It is the console to own for families.

We have had a Switch in our house since (almost) launch day and it has been well loved ever since. It has seen use in both of its hybrid forms throughout its life. It feels like every member of our family uses it differently. I use it almost exclusively docked, for example, whereas our middle son Jake almost never plays with it that way unless he is playing multiplayer.

I can’t understate how valuable that versatility has been in our house. We have multiple consoles, five people, and only one real gaming space. Being able to play console games on the Switch in handheld mode has been a godsend. This is especially true because of Fortnite. I don’t even want to think about how stressful our life would be if Fortnite was competing for our main television time as well.

The biggest strike against the Switch last year was the lack of Fortnite. That issue was resolved over the summer when it was announced during E3. It joins Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, and Super Mario Odyssey to form the best library of family friendly titles out there.

Looking for some Switch games to give? Here’s our list of Switch games for this holiday!


PlayStation 4

Price: $253.00
Was: $299.99


The PlayStation 4 is our second choice this year. It doesn’t have the strongest lineup of exclusive games, with the exception of Spider-Man, but it is home to all of the major third party games like Destiny 2. You shouldn’t have any problems finding games to play with your family here. The catalog is full of great games.

The biggest decision that new PlayStation owners will have to make when shopping for a PS4 is whether to purchase a base model or to spend a little bit extra for a PS4 Pro. The main difference between those two systems is going to be the graphics performance. Both of them will play the same games, but the PS4 Pro will make them look better if your family owns a 4k television.

Looking for some PS4 games to give? Here’s our list of PS4 games for this holiday!


Xbox One


The Xbox One is a great console on its own, but it is hard for us to recommend it this year when compared to the Switch or the PS4.

2018 has been a challenging year for Xbox fans. The exclusives have been in short supply. There is, however, hope on the horizon. Microsoft announced that they have purchased five new studios to help produce exclusive games.

There is a ray of hope though. The Xbox One X has been announced and it looks like a great console for families looking for a powerful console to help show off their new 4k television.

Looking for some Xbox One games to give? Here’s our list of Xbox One games for this holiday!

What do you think? Sound off in the comments and let us know your thoughts!

Make sure to keep your eyes on Engaged Family Gaming for all of the latest news and reviews you need to Get Your Family Game On!

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EA announced that they were releasing Elder Scrolls: Legends on PS4 and Switch at their EA Play Media Briefing during E3 week this year. They also confirmed that the game would have cross-play between all of the platforms it is available on.  This is a serious advantage over Hearthstone, which has not expanded much since its initial offerings to mobile devices and PC gaming.

Elder Scrolls Legends is a digital collectible card game that pulls its influences from one of Bethesda’s longest running and popular settings. What separates it from other free to play online card games is just how well integrated the Elder Scrolls lore and feel is integrated into both its single and multiplayer content. Legends offers both competitive and casual multiplayer modes, but also offers single player story modes along with a single player arena mode (Their version of a limited card deckbuilding format).

Elder Scrolls features cards and deck construction that encourages multiple styles of play. Most card games limit you deck construction to cards of a single playable class and a set of neutral cards. Legends treats your deck and your personal avatar as two separate things to be customized. 

First and most pleasantly, the cards allow for multicolor deck construction as well as full support for multicolor cards. Each color of cards in Elder Scrolls Legends represents one the themes with the world of Elder Scrolls: White is the color of order and armies, Red is the color of rage and fury, Blue is the color of sorcery and knowledge, Purple is the color of control and ancient (undead) power, and green is color of nature and hidden threats. The races of the Elder Scrolls series often appear in multiple colors: Imperial forces are white and purple, Argothian lizardfolk are green and purple, and Khajiit Catfolk appearing in both green and white. These races, of which I only named a few, are often featured in Legends multicolored cards. While Legends limits deck construction to a maximum of two colors, it allows for more diverse design with each color as themes not only work within their own color, but with other colors as well. It also allows for more cards to be relevant as the same color can be played in different ways, even more so when paired with another color.

Your personal avatar will also serve you well in the free to play progression system within the game. The game rewards both single player and multiplayer content with gold (to buy packs, arena passes, and stories), Soul Gems (the common resource among card gam11es to craft individual cards, as well as a random cards. The cards you will receive after multiple played games will be based on your in-game avatar, and since races are connected to multiple colors, this gives you control to the type of rewards you receive as you play.

I would recommend Elder Scrolls Legend as a digital card game to family gamers who are invested in the lore of Elder Scrolls, and are looking for solid single and multiplayer content. With its Teen rating to the ESRB, Elder Scrolls Legends is also a playable alternative to younger gamers who want to experience the Elder Scrolls series without the more mature content that is a mainstay of the Bethesda Series.

What do you think? Sound off in the comments and let us know your thoughts!

Make sure to keep your eyes on Engaged Family Gaming for all of the latest news and reviews you need to Get Your Family Game On!

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Bethesda held their E3 2018 Press conference on Sunday, June 10th at 6:30 pm PT.

Fallout 76 
Rage 2 
Elder Scrolls Online Wolf Hunter 
Doom Eternal
Quake Champions
Prey: Mooncrash
Wolfenstein: Youngblood
Skyrim Alexa edition Its Real 
Skyrim Blades 
Skyrim Blades VR
Elder Scrolls Legends
Starfield 
Elder Scrolls 6

What do you think? Sound off in the comments and let us know your thoughts!

Make sure to keep your eyes on Engaged Family Gaming for all of the latest news and reviews you need to Get Your Family Game On!

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E3 2018 is nearly upon us and with it comes a stacked slate of press conferences from major publishers. Its the most exciting time of the year for gamers and almost all of the hype is concentrated in this handful of hours. Take a look below for the schedule of events that will lead up to the opening of the E3 show floor.

 

Saturday, June 9th

Electronic Arts

11 AM Pacific / 2 PM Eastern

Press Conference

 

I have a very strong feeling that we will be very busy after the EA press event. They are going to make announcements regarding Madden 2019, FIFA 19, and NBA Live 19. But, it is also entirely possible that they will announce further content for Star Wars: Battlefront II, or even another Star Wars game entirely. They could also announce a new Plants Vs Zombies or Sims game and it wouldn’t surprise me either.

The unknown element in their conference is Anthem. We don’t know what their targeted ESRB rating is. If it ends up being rated T for Teen then it will end up being on our radar.

Sunday, June 10th

Microsoft

1 PM Pacific / 4 PM Eastern

Press Conference

 

Microsoft is undoubtedly going to announce a new Forza Horizon game. I also think that it is likely that they will announce something to do with Minecraft (they always do). But, aside from that, I have no idea what they will talk about and whether or not any of that will mean anything to us. It will be interesting to watch either way.

Bethesda

6:30 PM Pacific / 9:30 PM Eastern

Press Conference

 

I don’t expect that we’ll see anything for families from Bethesda. They focus on games for the mature crowd. The grown-ups in the house, however, might be interested in tuning into the news. The only game that we KNOW that they will be showing is a first-person shooter called Rage. They have a lot of games in the works though (many of which are unannounced) so we could see all kinds of cool stuff.

Monday, June 11th

Square Enix

10 AM Pacific / 1 PM Eastern

Livestream

Square Enix hasn’t held a major event at an E3 for years. This leads me to believe that they have big plans. I would expect that a good chunk of their live stream will be taken up by Kingdom Hearts 3. I know I’ll be excited to see more info, but I am REALLY hoping that they announce a release date. We should also see more information about the upcoming Tomb Raider game (not for the kids sadly) and more information about the next season of Final Fantasy XV DLC. The wildcard is Crystal Dynamics. They are working on an Avengers game that we haven’t seen anything meaningful about. I would think that a trailer would do very well considering the success of the recent Avengers movie, but I have no idea if it is ready or not.

Ubisoft

1 PM Pacific / 4 PM Eastern

Press Conference

 

Ubisoft has already tipped their hand and revealed a good portion of their press conference. We can expect to see, per the Ubisoft Website, “Tom Clancy’s The Division 2, Beyond Good & Evil 2, Skull and Bones, Starlink: Battle for Atlas and Transference, along with content for For Honor.” The only family-friendly game on that list is the toys to life game Starlink: Battle for Atlus. They didn’t tell us, but I can’t imagine that they won’t have a goofy dance number to help announce Just Dance 2019. We can also count on them for a surprise or two. Last year they announced Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle out of nowhere and blew us away.

PC Gaming Show

3 PM Pacific / 6 PM Eastern

Press Conference

 

This event is not likely to give us much to talk about. It’s never done so before. The PC Gaming show has a very specific audience (who I am sure will be very excited), but it isn’t really us. This biggest reason being that there is no one company that will be making announcements.

Sony

6 PM Pacific / 9 PM Eastern

Press Conference

 

Sony has already come out and said that the bulk of their conference will be dedicated to Spider-Man, Days Gone, Ghosts of Tsushima, and Death Stranding. Spider-Man is a big deal as it looks like it will be one of the best family-friendly games to come out this year (assuming it lives up to the hype). The other three are all games for grownups. Sony did mention that they would have third-party announcements and indie games in their show, so there is still hope there.

Tuesday, June 12th

Nintendo

9 AM Pacific / 12 PM Eastern

E3 Digital Presentation

 

Nintendo closes out the major E3 events with their annual Digital Presentation. They have already announced that they will be focusing on games coming out this year. There will be a special focus on Super Smash Brothers for Switch. They announced it already, but I’m very excited to hear more details. All we know is that it exists. I would love to see a title, a release date, and a big portion of the roster as well.

Smash isn’t the only game Nintendo will be talking about though. They already told us that a new Yoshi game will be coming later this year so I expect more details about that. There have also been rumors that a new Pokemon announcement is incoming. We’ll have to see though because Pokemon games can be difficult to predict.


What do you think? Sound off in the comments and let us know your thoughts!

Make sure to keep your eyes on Engaged Family Gaming for all of the latest news and reviews you need to Get Your Family Game On!

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There is a saying that says if you know one person with a disability, then you know exactly one person with a disability. Each person’s needs are unique and this created a special challenge for engineers who are making adaptive equipment to help them overcome challenges and participate in activities that many of us take for granted. The video game space has been particularly challenging in that regard. No one really thinks about how complex the controls in our games have gotten over the years. The Xbox One controller, for example, has over 17 buttons spread out over its surface. Some of them being face buttons that are intended to be pressed using a thumb, while others are triggers that need to be pulled using a pointer finger. The input variety is a potential problem for folks who may lack the use of all of their digits. But the challenges go beyond that. Controllers are heavy so it can be incredibly challenging for some someone with weak arm muscles due to injury or a degenerative illness to hold them for long periods.

There are some groups that have sprung up to help overcome these challenges for some people. The Able Gamers is one such organization. They formed to help build custom solutions for gamers with disabilities and to advocate on behalf of them with game publishers and console manufacturers. Unfortunately, their reach is limited. Custom setups can be incredibly expensive and require complex technical skills to build and maintain. This prevents them from helping as many people as they would like to.

Microsoft has stepped up to the plate to give organizations like theirs a wonderful tool. They have officially announced the Xbox Adaptive Controller. It’s a remarkable device that will open up the wide world of video games to a population that has desperately wanted to play but has been held back by unwieldy controllers and hesitant manufacturers.

It was partially leaked a few days ahead of its official announcement and when I saw the images out of context I was very concerned. How useful could this device be? It was a white box with a D-pad and two giant buttons. I had no idea how it would be useful to people with disabilities. The official announcement clear all of that up for me. The Adaptive Controller is more of an adapter/hub for additional control devices than it is a standalone controller. The back of the device is a long line of jacks to attach different devices like buttons, pedals, joysticks, and all manner of other mechanisms. The idea is to facilitate whatever kinda of custom setup a disables gamer might need without having to manufacture something specifically for them.

We can’t forget that this controller is being manufactured by Microsoft. Say what you will about them, but they are experts at designing, manufacturing, and delivering high-quality consumer electronics at scale. I have a hard time believing that a small company with less leverage would be able to produce a piece of equipment like this and sell it for $99.99.

Microsoft wasn’t alone either. They worked with several other Third Party developers like Logitech and Quadstick.

This aligns perfectly with Microsofts Gaming For Everyone initiatives. Microsoft’s CEO Jenny Lay-Flurrie wrote a blog post to help announce the device. In it she wrote, “In the long term, we believe that designing with and for people with disabilities will lead to innovations in ubiquitous inclusive computing. In the short term, it’s about ensuring that accessibility is woven into the fabric of how we design and build. Accessibility isn’t optional.”

Accessibility. Isn’t. Optional.

These words should be a call to action to all hardware manufacturers to step their respective games up.

Its rather fitting that this was announced on Global Accessibility Awareness Day. This is a day that is intended to encourage everyone to think about how we can reach a future where people of all abilities are able to enjoy our increasingly digital world together. Microsoft took a big step today. Here’s hoping that others will follow them.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Wizard of Legend

Release Date: 05/15/2018

Available on PC, Xbox One, PS4, Nintendo Switch

Price: $15.99

Developer: Contingent99

Publisher: Humble Bundle


If I took all of the best parts of Gauntlet and mashed them up perfectly with Avatar: The Last Air Bender I still don’t think I would have a game that is as good as Wizard of Legend.

I spent a lot of time playing cooperative games with my brother when we were kids. One of our favorites was Gauntlet. Neither of us were particularly good at games (he has since gotten much better than me) so we needed to work very hard to even clear a few maps. It was a challenge for us, and it was frustrating, but we would talk and plan for hours about how we would try to work together. The local cooperative play in Wizard of Legend evoked so many of those same feelings. I was terrible, and so was my oldest son. But, we both desperately wanted to be better, and, eventually, we did just that. It was a wonderful experience that we’ll both remember for a long time.

It may have been hard to succeed, but it wasn’t hard to play. We were both able to weave our basic spells into powerful routines that crushed our enemies as we whirled around the screen. Over time it became more like a dance than anything else. This dance became more complex as we earned more chaos gems during our runs through the game and used them to buy newer, more interesting, and more powerful spells.

There is no real story per se. You play as a wizard, or pair of wizards, who is completing a set of trials. These trials consist of a set of procedurally generated levels that follow a pattern of two basic stages attuned to an element (fire, ice, or earth) followed by a grand wizard boss. This pattern repeats three times. The key is that you don’t get a chance to recover health or save your progress in between stages. If you die, then your run is over and you have to start over. The only things you can keep are the chaos gems that you earn for defeating enemies.  The spells you buy each fit into an element which helps determine their behavior and the type of damage they deal. Balancing the spells in your load out to make sure that they match both your play style and the types of enemies you expect to be facing is critical. This is especially true because many of the spells in the game affect your movement.

Each of these procedurally generated levels is populated by monsters that appear in patterns depending on the shape of the room. Some of the enemy groups can be brutally unfair, but skillful play and the appropriate spell selection will usually help bail you out. The enemy variety is lacking though. Many of them look like the same monster with a very small variation in powers.

At some point I have to talk about the name though right? I’ve been avoiding it, but I can’t just ignore it.”Wizard of Legend” is, as a title, about as inspired as soggy toast. It does a terrible job of cluing players in to the game that they will be playing. Here’s hoping that enough players can look past the name to get to the great game that lies behind it.

Family Gaming Assessment

Wizard of Legend is rated E 10+ by the ESRB for Fantasy Violence.

It was rated PEGI 7 “because it contains violence that lacks any apparent harm or injury to fantasy or mythical beings and creatures and non-realistic looking violence towards characters which although human are not very detailed.”

I think these ratings are accurate. There is no doubt that it is a violent game, but all of the action is directed at inhuman monsters.

Playability

Wizard of Legend is accessible. It doesn’t require complicated button combinations to move around the map and attack enemies. It is, however, very hard and will likely be frustrating to younger gamers (or older ones for that matter) who are easily frustrated.

There is a fair amount of text to read. You need it to help understand what your spells do. But, it isn’t essential. Younger gamers could get by with help from a more experienced reader.

Conclusion

I would recommend Wizard of Legend to a family that is looking for a challenge to take on together. Its ideal for siblings or a parent-child combo that enjoy playing games together and coordinating strategies. I truly enjoyed my time with my son while playing this game.

Buy it on the Humble Bundle website here.

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Subatomic Genius Games

Subatomic by Genius Games is our Kickstarter campaign of the week! Genius Games focuses on designing and publishing strategy games based on hard science concepts. They create learning tools that are genuinely fun. Subatomic is a deck building game themed around the intersection between particle physics and chemistry.

Players start with a basic hand of Up Quarks, Down Quarks, and Particle/Wave Duality cards. Players will spend their turns combining those cards to form protons, neutrons, and electrons. They can then use THOSE resources to create elements or buy more powerful cards for their deck to help later in the game.

The feature about this game that attracts me to it the most is the art. The Neutrons, Protons, and Electrons are all bursting with personality and all of the different cards use bright colors that help keep players engaged.

Genius Games has been at this for a while. We interviewed John Coveyou (the lead designer and founder Genius Games on our podcast during the campaign for their last game Cytosis.

It was awesome listening to the passion in John’s voice as he talked about the intersection between game design, hard science, and fun.

 

The campaign video is below:

The game will have an MSRP of $40, but backing the Kickstarter will net you an $11 discount. The campaign has already funded (at the time of this writing the campaign has $170,000 in funding on a $12,500 goal) so this amounts to a pre-order, but if it looks like a game you might be interested in, then be sure to back it. The campaign is coming to a close soon!

 

What do you think? Sound off in the comments and let us know your thoughts!

Make sure to keep your eyes on Engaged Family Gaming for all of the latest news and reviews you need to Get Your Family Game On!

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Engaged Family Gaming Holiday

The Holidays are a great time for families to get new home consoles. They make great gifts for the whole family and can be responsible for a lot of great memories. Take a look below for our recommendations for home consoles this year.

Nintendo Switch


The Nintendo Switch launched in March of this year and has been a wild success for Nintendo. It is, without question, the best console for families on the market right now and it isn’t close. The console/tablet hybrid has just passed its 6 month anniversary and it is already home a better lineup of family games that either of its main competitors.

The main attraction for the Nintendo Switch is that it serves two purposes. It is both a home console that you can play on the family TV and a handheld console that you can take on the go. This can be a godsend for families that have multiple siblings because you can use it in “tabletop mode” to play multiplayer games like Mario Kart 8 Deluxe Edition anywhere!

Looking for some Switch games to give? Heres our list of Switch Games!

Sony PlayStation 4



The PlayStation 4 is another great console option. It doesn’t have the strongest lineup of exclusive games, but it is home to all of the major third party games like Destiny 2. You shouldn’t have any problems finding games to play with your family here. The catalog is already full of great games already and the future is bright since Spider Man will come out next year.

The biggest decision that new PlayStation owners will have to make when shopping for a PS4 is whether to purchase a base model or to spend a little bit extra for a PS4 Pro. The main difference between those two systems is going to be the graphics performance. Both of them will play the same games, but the PS4 Pro will make them look better if your family owns a 4k television.

Looking for some PS4 games to give? Here’s our list of PS4 games for this holiday!

Microsoft Xbox One


2017 has been a challenging year for Xbox fans. The exclusives have been in short supply and several high profile games have been delayed or cancelled.

There is a ray of hope though. The Xbox One X has been announced and it looks like a great console for families looking for a powerful console to help show off their new 4k television.

Looking for some Xbox One games to give? Here’s our list of Xbox One games for this holiday!

Last Generation Consoles



Families that aren’t interested in standing on the bleeding edge of console gaming technology still have plenty of reasons to pick up older consoles like the PS3, Xbox 360, and, to a lesser extent, the Wii U. These consoles should be relatively easy to find used from places like GameStop and have huge catalogs of games just waiting to be plucked from bargain bins.

In the worst case scenario a uses Xbox 360 will be a serviceable Minecraft machine for families that want to let their children play, but don’t want them using the family PC or laptop.

3DS Family of Hardware


The Nintendo Switch is the most exciting thing that Nintendo has on the market right now, but the 3DS handheld systems are still useful. They will be great purchases for families that want to introduce gaming to their children, but want something sturdier. The handheld may be entering the sunset of its life, but it has a library with hundreds of games that your children will love.

The only real problem with the 3DS family of systems is that there are so many versions that it can be hard to keep track of them. Fortunately, EFG published a handy guide to help sort all those details! You can read it here.

SNES Classic

The SNES Classic isn’t a traditional console, but it is such a big deal that I had to include it somewhere. It is a bite-sized console that includes twenty of the best games ever made. Its going to be in high demand though, so keep that in mind if you are adding it to your shopping lists.


Thats it for the consoles, but make sure to check out the rest of our 2017 Holiday Gift Guide!

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For Avatar fans, the Legend of Korra series was a wonderful addition to the Avatar world.  The Legend of Korra television series introduced a competition to the story, Pro-bending, and now it is a game!  IDW Games has a Kickstarter for a two player sports game of Pro-Bending with miniatures based on the first season of the show.  The game was created by Sen Foong-Lim and Jessey Wright.

 

Gameplay

Each player controls a team with three benders: earth, fire, and water elements.  The players are either the Fire Ferrets or the White Falls Wolfbats which are teams from season one of the show. The miniatures are highly detailed and add great flavor to the Avatar world.  The game play includes elements of deck crafting and building and team customization.

The objective of the game is to be on the other team’s side of the arena when the game ends or pushing all opponent’s benders off the back of the arena, which ends the end the game immediately.

Each player has a strategy deck with different actions their characters can take. The deck is divided into three groups based on the element.  Players can craft their strategy decks to customize plays during the course of the game. The strategy deck also includes two types of trick cards; very powerful moves that can be used once per game, and less powerful moves which may be used multiple times.  However, with these less powerful moves require players to roll a referee die with each use. If you roll a fan you get a yellow fan token for “cheating”.  If a bender receives 2 yellow fans they are out of the game.  

The Campaign

The Kickstarter is wrapping up and ends Friday, September 29th.  Currently, the project is 720% funded and has 2,353 backers.  There are a few Kickstarter exclusives:

  • Exclusive, Limited Deluxe Edition Packaging.
  • A limited edition championship promo-poster.
  • 7 mystery expansion teams, totaling an additional 15 miniatures.
  • 30 trick cards separated into 5 themed packs. Tricks are usable by all teams in the game.
  • 30 punch-to-plastic upgrade components
  • There is an Amon Expansion for an additional $30.

The Legend of Korra: Pro-Bending Arena looks great for any fans of the Avatar universe. Act fast and check of the Kickstarter if you want the exclusives!

 

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The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, in my opinion, is the best video game that Nintendo has ever made. I also think that it is on the short list for one of the best games ever made. Longtime readers often accuse me of speaking in hyperbole a lot, but this is no joke. Breath of the Wild is just that darn good. This is the game by which all open world games will be judged moving forward.

The Legend of Zelda is one of the longest running franchises in game history. Each game in the franchise, up until now, has taken a very regimented formula and built upon it. . Link wakes up. He goes to a dungeon. He gets a tool within that dungeon that helps him complete it. He then uses that tool to get to the next dungeon. He finds another tool there. He rinses and repeats until he eventually encounters and defeats some version of Ganon.

Breath of the Wild is a game that was built on one single core principle: nothing is set in stone. Nintendo set out with the purpose of stripping away as many parts of that regimented formula as they could while still maintaining its “Zelda”-ness. I don’t know how they created such a unique game and new feeling game while still regularly reminding players that they are playing a Zelda game. But, they definitely succeeded.

The biggest different between BoTW and other games in the franchise is that (aside from a brief stint on the Great Plateau) players can do as they please. Players are given all of the basic tools they need within the first few hours of the game and are then set free to run off to do… whatever.

This freedom was not only liberating, but it was also a creative force. Everyone playing this game was crafting their own narrative. Players had to come up with whole new ways of discussing their experiences because almost everything you said about the game was a spoiler in one way or another.

Another critical element to the experience in BoTW is its sense of discovery. It feels like every inch of that game was a meaningful encounter, a puzzle, or a signpost sending you on your way to further adventure. There was always something exciting on the horizon for me as I played. In fact, it was easy to find myself distracted that I would set off on a grand mission only to stop halfway through to literally pick flowers.

The days where Link could, on death’s door, slash at some bushes to get a few hearts are gone. Instead, you have to combine ingredients like apples, meat, mushrooms, and other food items to cook healing items. Combining the right ingredients can even result in food that provides stat buffs. You can even combine monster parts to create elixirs. Mastering this system is crucial for anyone who wants to be able to progress through the game. Fortunately, experimentation is almost painless. Ingredients are everywhere and there is a cooking station at every stable.

Nintendo went out of their way to craft Breath of the Wild carefully. Their artistry is visible in every aspect of this game and I cannot wait to see what comes next.

Is it a kids’ game?

Breath of the Wild is rated T for Teen. It does include some mild violence that players can’t really escape. Almost all of the conflict resolution in the game is done at the point of a sword, or club, or arrow.

There are some slightly mature themes and costuming choices running throughout the game, but there is nothing overtly sexual going on.

Can kids play it?

The most important thing to note with Breath of the Wild is that this game is incredibly challenging. The world is not a forgiving one and players will have to contend with armies of monstrous enemies as well as the elements. It is very important that you monitor your child’s frustration level while playing. There is no “easy mode” in this game. Young players can, however, move at their own pace throughout the world. The game is designed so  that players will not be constantly under siege from the enemies.

There is some voice acting, but the vast majority of the story and the quest clues are all delivered via text. Players will need to be adept readers to be able to succeed at this game. A lot of the clues depend on subtle word play that might be lost on early readers.

Conclusion

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is the best video game that Nintendo has ever made. I would comfortably recommend this game to anyone who owns either a Nintendo Switch or Wii U. It is a remarkable value when you consider all of the secrets that players can slowly pry out of this massive world. Do yourself a favor and play this game. The reality is that we don’t score games here at EFG, but if we did I have a hard time imagining that we would give it less than a perfect score.

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