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If you’re like me, you’re always on the lookout for new video games to play with your family. This September is a great month for family-friendly releases, and here’s a calendar of what’s coming out!

Stay busy this fall with these excellent family-friendly video game choices!

Ooblets 

  • Xbox Series X/S, Xbox One, Switch, PC
  • September 1

Ooblets has been in early access for a while, but is finally celebrating its 1.0 release on September 1st. The titular ooblets are little creatures that you can collect, train, and dance with. The game is set in the town of Badgeton where you’ll explore, make new ooblet friends, and upgrade your house. There are tons of different ooblets to collect, each with their own unique personalities.

LEGO Brawls 

  • PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Switch, PC
  • September 2

LEGO Brawls is a new game coming out on September 2 for PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Switch, and PC. In LEGO Brawls, you’ll build your own LEGO minifigure and go head-to-head with other players in multiplayer battles. There are a variety of modes to choose from, including Capture the Brick, King of the Hill, and Super Smash Bros.-inspired arenas. You can also customize your LEGO figure with different hats, weapons, and accessories. WithLEGO Brawls, you can play with up to four players locally or online. So round up your friends and get ready for some brick-smashing action!

Biomutant 

  • PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S
  • September 6

Biomutant is an open-world action RPG set in a post-apocalyptic world inhabited by anthropomorphic animals. The game was first announced in 2017, and was originally scheduled for release in 2018. However, it was delayed several times before finally releasing on September 6, 2020. Biomutant is available on PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, and PC. The game received mixed reviews upon release, with some praising its unique world and combat system, while others criticized its technical issues and lack of polish. Despite its mixed reception, Biomutant has sold well, and is one of the bestselling games of the year so far.

Temtem

  • PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, Switch, PC
  • September 6

It’s official – Temtem is coming to consoles and PC! The long-awaited creature-collection RPG will be released on September 6th for PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, Switch, and PC. From the developers at Crema, Temtem is a massively multiplayer adventure that lets you capture, train, and battle your way to becoming the ultimate Temtem tamer. With dozens of Temtem to collect, a vibrant world to explore, and intense battles to be had, Temtem is shaping up to be an awesome creature-collection game.

NBA 2K23

  • PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Switch, PC
  • September 9

It’s finally here! NBA 2k23 is set to release on September 9th and fans everywhere are eagerly anticipating its arrival. This year’s edition promises to be the most realistic and immersive basketball experience yet, with cutting-edge graphics and gameplay that will put you right in the middle of the action. Whether you’re a diehard fan or just looking for a fun and competitive multiplayer game, NBA 2k23 is sure to deliver. So mark your calendar and get ready for some serious hoops action!

Splatoon 3 

  • Switch
  • September 9

The Nintendo Switch is getting a brand new Splatoon game! Splatoon 3 is coming to the Nintendo Switch on Sept 9th and it looks like the ink-splatting action is only getting bigger and better. The third installment in the popular shooter series will feature new weapons, maps, and modes, as well as an all-new single-player campaign. The highlights include an ink bow and arrow and a windshield wiper “splatana blade.” We cannot WAIT to get our hands on this one.

Bear and Breakfast

  • Switch
  • September 15

Bear and Breakfast is a Nintendo Switch game that simulates the life of a bear running a bed and breakfast. You step into the bear’s shoes, find a plot of land, gather resources like wood and stone, and improve the building. Guests will visit the lodge and request various services, such as fishing or hiking. Providing high-quality service to your customers will net you money that you can use to improve the inn. This is such a wholesome-looking game and I can’t wait to play it!

Return to Monkey Island

  • Switch, PC
  • September 17

It’s been a long time since we’ve seen a new Monkey Island game, but it looks like the wait is finally over. Return to Monkey Island is coming to the Nintendo Switch on September 17, and we couldn’t be more excited. The last Monkey Island game was released way back in 2010, so it’s been quite a while since we’ve had a chance to explore the wacky world of piracy created by Ron Gilbert and Tim Schafer. From what we’ve seen so far, it looks like Return to Monkey Island will be everything we loved about the original games, with updated visuals and gameplay that are perfect for the Switch. We can’t wait to jump back into this classic adventure game and see what new adventures await us on Monkey Island.

Grounded

  • Xbox Series X/S, Xbox One, PC
  • September 27

Grounded is finally getting its 1.0 release after spending what felt like an eternity in the Xbox Game Preview program. This is a survival game where players are kids who have been shrunk down smaller than ants who have to survive in the wilds of their own backyard. Picture Honey, I Shrunk The Kids, but in video game form.

Hokko Life

  • PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Switch, PC
  • September 27

Hokko Life looks a LOT like an Animal Crossing: New Horizons clone. That isn’t a HUGE stretch. They share a lot of the same bones, but there are some pretty significant differences. This is a good thing though! We love that Animal Crossing has inspired other entries in the life sim genre and this one has the advantage of being available on multiple platforms!

The Legend of Heroes: Trails from Zero

  • PlayStation 4, Switch, PC
  • September 27

The Legend of Heroes: Trails from Zero was originally released back in 2011 for the PSVITA. It is now being updated and re-released on PS4, PC, and Nintendo Switch. This is a long-requested re-release from a long-running sci-fi/fantasy JRPG series. I would recommend that you look at more recent entries in the series if you want to play them, but if you have played a lot of the “Trails” RPGs then this is a great game to pick up. I would recommend against the PS4 version however as it is really just a rerelease of the PSVITA version with no updates or improvements as opposed to the Switch and PC versions.

Tunic

  • PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4
  • September 27  

If you’re looking for an adventure game that will take you back to the days of classic action-adventure titles like The Legend of Zelda, then you’ll want to check out Tunic. This charming little game puts you in the role of a cute fox who finds themselves stranded in a strange land. Armed with nothing but your wits and a few trusty weapons, you’ll set out to explore the massive world of Tunic, uncovering its many secrets along the way. While Tunic may not be as ambitious as some of the other games on this list, it more than makes up for it with its tight gameplay and gorgeous visuals. Plus, it’s just a lot of fun. If you’re looking for an adventure game to play on your PlayStation 5 or PlayStation 4, Tunic should definitely be at the top of your list.

Dorfromantik

  • Switch
  • September 29

Dorfromantik is a unique puzzle game that will be released for the Nintendo Switch on September 29th. The game features a unique gameplay mechanic where players must match tiles of the same type in order to rotate them and change the landscape. The game also features a beautiful art style and calming music, making it perfect for players who want to relax and de-stress. While the game may initially seem easy, it quickly becomes challenging and addictive. Whether you’re looking for a new way to unwind or simply want to test your problem-solving skills, Dorfromantik is definitely worth checking out.


What do you think? are you picking any of these up?

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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PlayStation Now has been retired. The benefits (most of them listed below) have been rolled into the newly updated PlayStation Plus service. Head over to our guide if you want to see what PlayStation is offering as part of its premium subscription service.

We’ll leave the content up for archival purposes though so people can see what PlayStation Now WAS.


It seems like everyone is starting their own premium gaming service these days. It can be tough for parents to be able to tell the difference between Xbox Live, PlayStation Plus, and all the others. We can’t let that stand here at EFG so we wrote up a big ol’ guide for all of the premium services so our readers can tell them all apart and understand the costs and benefits of each one.

Take a look below for our guide to PlayStation Now!

The Pitch

PlayStation Now (PSNow) is a Netflix-esque streaming service for PlayStation 4 and PC. Subscribers have unlimited access to stream a collection of PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4 games over the internet on their PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, or PC.

How Does it Work?

Subscribers have access to the massive catalog of games for as long as their membership lasts. The majority of the games are streamed online like the shows we watch on Netflix or Disney +. There is a selection of around 300 games available for download through the service.

How Much Does it Cost?

PlayStation Now (PSNow) can be purchased in 12-month, 3-month, or 1-month increments.

12 Month Subscription – $99.99

3 Month Subscription – $44.99

1 Month Subscription – $19.99

Advice

Some of the value of PlayStation Now (PSNow) is dependent upon the strength of your internet connection. The games are streamed over the internet so they will run poorly if you can’t get a good enough connection. Sony customer support recommends that your internet service has a download speed of at least 5mbps (megabytes per second) to use the service. Tests performed by other sites like ArsTechnica have shown that it takes closer to 9 mbps to really take advantage of it.

There is a collection of games you can download. You can even play them in up to 4k resolution if you play it on your PS5 or PC.

Troubleshooting

Sony technical support has provided a few tips for folks who have the recommended download speed and are still experiencing issues with the service:

Use a Wired Connection

Many homes have their consoles hooked up to the internet via a wireless connection (wifi). This does hamper the quality of the connection between your PS4 and the modem. One way to correct this is by using an ethernet cable to connect your PS4 to the modem directly. This may not be possible for everyone, but it is at least worth mentioning.

Reduce the Number of Applications Using the Network

Your home network only has so much data that it can download from the internet at once. Applications that are sharing that download speed and can hinder each other’s performance. Its like traffic coming into your house. We’d get everywhere faster if we were the only car on the road.

Some applications you might consider shutting down are:

  • Streaming video applications (Netflix, Hulu, YouTube)
  • Cloud backup or sync applications (Dropbox, Google Drive, iCloud)
  • Content downloads (BitTorrent, software, games, movies, or music)
  • Video/audio communication apps (FaceTime, Skype)

Try Off-Peak Hours

Your download speed can also be hurt if you try to use a shared (or public) connection during the busiest hours of the day. Try using the service during off-peak hours like evenings and weekends so there may be fewer people using the service.

Other Guides

There are a ton of other premium video game services out there so we wrote guides for all of them.  Take a look below:

A Parent’s Guide to EA Access

A Parent’s Guide to Xbox Live Gold

A Parent’s Guide to Xbox Game Pass

A Parent’s Guide to PlayStation Plus

A Parent’s Guide to EA Origin’s Access


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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Updated 08/14/2022

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Sony has released an upgrade to the PlayStation Plus program. The new version of the program offers a number of features and benefits that are sure to appeal to parents and gamers alike. In this article, we will discuss all the details of the new PlayStation Plus program so that you can decide if it is right for your family. We will cover topics such as price, content, and how the program works. So whether you are already a PlayStation Plus member or are just considering signing up, read on for all the information you need!

PS+ has been around since 2010. During that time it has delivered a ton of free games and discounts to subscribers.

The program has always been optional, but it was a requirement for anyone who wants to play online multiplayer games on their PlayStation console. The vast majority of PS+ members are happy with the service and don’t mind paying $60/year for it, but there are some that feel like they’re being forced into it. Forced or not… PS+ is a key part of the PlayStation ecosystem so you need to know how it works in order to make the most out of your console.

  • Classics Catalog
  • Game Trials
  • Cloud Streaming

PlayStation Plus is divided into three tiers: Essential, Extra, and Premium.

PlayStation Plus EssentialPlayStation Plus ExtraPlayStation Plus Premium
Monthly Games Monthly Games Monthly Games
Online Multiplayer Online Multiplayer Online Multiplayer
Exclusive Discounts Exclusive Discounts Exclusive Discounts
Exclusive Content Exclusive Content Exclusive Content
Cloud Storage Cloud Storage Cloud Storage
Share Play Share Play Share Play
PlayStation Plus Collection PlayStation Plus Collection PlayStation Plus Collection
Game Help Game Help Game Help
Game Catalog Game Catalog
Ubisoft Classics Ubisoft Classics
Classics Catalog
Game Trials
Cloud Streaming
This chart shows a quick view of the benefits of each tier.

PlayStation Plus Essential

“Enjoy all the core PlayStation Plus benefits: join your friends in online multiplayer, add new games to your collection every month, get incredible deals from PlayStation Store, and more.”

  • Monthly Games
  • Online Multiplayer
  • Exclusive Discounts

PlayStation Plus Essential also includes:

  • The PlayStation Plus Collection*
  • Share Play
  • Game Help*
  • Cloud Storage
  • Exclusive Content

PlayStation Plus Extra

“Get all the great benefits included in the PlayStation Plus Essential plan, as well as access to the Game Catalog, featuring hundreds of games from genre-defining blockbusters to innovative indies, with new titles added regularly.”

  • Game Catalog
  • Ubisoft+ Classics

PlayStation Plus Extra also includes:

  • Monthly Games
  • Online Multiplayer
  • Exclusive Discounts
  • The PlayStation Plus Collection*
  • Share Play
  • Game Help*
  • Cloud Storage
  • Exclusive Content

PlayStation Plus Premium

“Enjoy all the core PlayStation Plus benefits, hundreds of games in the Game Catalog, as well as exclusive benefits like game trials, cloud streaming, and the Classics Catalog.”

PlayStation Plus Premium also includes:

  • Game Catalog
  • Ubisoft+ Classics
  • Monthly Games
  • Online Multiplayer
  • Exclusive Discounts
  • The PlayStation Plus Collection*
  • Share Play
  • Game Help*
  • Cloud Storage
  • Exclusive Content

How Much Does PlayStation Plus Cost?

1 Month3 Month12 Month
PlayStation Plus Essential$9.99$24.99$59.99
PlayStation Plus Extra$14.99$39.99$99.99
PlayStation Plus Premium$17.99$49.99$119.99
This table shows the subscription price for each tier of PlayStation Plus.

Advice

If you own a PlayStation 5 and want to play games online (with a few exceptions like Fortnite), then you’ll need to buy one of the plans to do so.

At that point, it is just a matter of choosing which of the three plans you want to buy into. The Essential plan works just like the PSPlus did at launch. It grants access to online play, discounts, two free games a month (determined by Sony), the PlayStation Plus Collection, and a few other minor benefits.

The Extra plan is an extra $5 a month (or $40/year). That extra cost gives you everything from the Essential package but includes access to a catalog of PS4 and PS5 games at no extra charge.

The Plus Premium plan is only a few dollars more a month and adds access to the classics catalog. This is a collection of older PlayStation titles like Dark Cloud and Ape Escape. This is a great move if you have nostalgia for these older PlayStation titles, but have gotten rid of your older PlayStation consoles.

Other Guides

There are a ton of other premium video game services out there so we wrote guides for all of them.  Take a look below:

A Parent’s Guide to Xbox Live Gold

A Parent’s Guide to Xbox Game Pass

A Parent’s Guide to PlayStation Now


The new PlayStation Plus program is definitely worth a look if you are in the market for a gaming subscription service. With its low price and wealth of content, there is something for everyone in this program. Not to mention, the added features make it an even more appealing option for families. Be sure to check out all the details on Sony’s website so that you can decide if PlayStation Plus is right for you! And don’t forget to let us know what you think about the new program in the comments below.

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Update – 08/14/2022

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In another life, this week would have been E3 2020 at the Los Angeles Convention Centre. The glitz, the hubbub — all of it would be laid out to reveal what to expect from the hotly anticipated fall releases of the Xbox Series X and the PlayStation 5. Xbox gave us a nibble of third-party games in its previous showcase, y’know, as a treat. Unfortunately, the vast majority of what Xbox put on display was rated M.

But Sony gave us the whole (mostly kid-friendly) meal.

The console’s design, mostly shown standing upright but it will be able to lay flat, while being subject to some rather hilarious memes, is sleek and beautiful in white, black, and blue, reminiscent of Mass Effect’s aesthetic. The new DualShock controller will match. The PlayStation 5’s additional peripherals (not seeing a PlayStation VR headset yet) will also be in white, including controller chargers, a 3D audio headset to take advantage of the PS5’s built-in 3D audio, and a new PlayStation camera.

Sony revealed that there will be two PlayStation 5’s available at launch, one with disc-drive and one without. Microsoft has yet to confirm whether or not an all-digital edition (much like the Xbox One S All Digital) will be available at launch, meaning that Sony’s ahead of the game there. 

Sadly, there is no word on pricing for either flavor of the PS5, meaning that we can’t even pre-order the darn thing just yet. 

But! It wasn’t just a day for the console’s form factor or how much it may cost at launch. It was also a day about games.

In case you didn’t catch the stream, here’s what we can anticipate for kid-friendly and teen games on PlayStation 5. 

For Teens

Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales

We’re finally seeing Miles Morales firmly taking the reins in the follow-up to 2018’s Marvel’s Spider-Man. Insomniac’s interpretation of Spidey brought in some serious accolades (and certainly stoked our infinite hype train). Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales will be coming out this holiday season, although we don’t know if it will be considered a launch title or will be released shortly thereafter. 

Miles Morales, the Spider-Man from Earth-1610 in the Marvel Comic Universe, is primed to take over for Peter Parker in the video game space, especially after his exceptional appearance in the much beloved animated film, Into the Spiderverse. We’re looking forward to taking to New York City with Miles’ new powerset at our fingertips.

Note: Sony has clarified that Miles’ new game is a stand alone expansion similar in scope to Uncharted: Lost Legacy.

Horizon: Forbidden West

Believe it or not, Horizon Zero Dawn, released in 2017 on PlayStation 4, is rated T. Yes, Aloy’s treacherous journey through the beautiful tech-infested wilderness, is a T-rated game. Sony revealed today that Aloy’s next adventure, Horizon: Forbidden West, will be coming to PlayStation 5. Aloy will be facing even more arduous challenges in unforgiving terrain. There’s currently no release date for Forbidden West, but if you haven’t had a chance to play Zero Dawn, now is the time. The first game, Horizon Zero Dawn, will be coming to Steam sometime this summer and is currently available on PlayStation 4. 

Gran Turismo 7

Gran Turismo has long been a PlayStation staple — much longer than Forza has been the racing game for Xbox. But there hasn’t been a numbered Gran Turismo game since Gran Turismo 6 on the PlayStation 3. (We got Gran Turismo Sport on PlayStation 4.) Gran Turismo 7 appears to be an homage to the most beloved, in this writer’s opinion anyway, entry in the series: Gran Turismo 3, which came out for the PlayStation 2. 

Gran Turismo 7 is, much like its predecessors, breathtaking. It’s certainly putting the ray-tracing capabilities of the PlayStation 5 through its paces. As of the June showcase, there is no release date available for Gran Turismo 7

Goodbye Volcano High

Who doesn’t love a coming-of-age story about anthropomorphic dinosaurs? Goodbye Volcano High, a game from Ko_op Mode, is a “cinematic narrative game” and, of course, a love story. And no teen love story is complete without a great soundtrack, which Goodbye Volcano High will have. The game will be available on PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, and Steam in 2021. Want more? Check out their website

Destruction Allstars

Vehicular mayhem sans visceral violence means that Destruction Allstars, from Lucid Games, is likely going to be a T-rated game, even if it’s on the more mature end of the T-range. (We’re looking at you, Final Fantasy VII Remake). With a future-tech Mad Max vibe and Burnout levels of carnage, Destruction Allstars is definitely going on our wishlist as a must-play high-intensity romp. 

For Kids

Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart

We knew that the PlayStation 5 would have to bring us some Ratchet & Clank, but we weren’t sure if it would be a launch title or if we would be getting it somewhere down the line. Well, Insomniac’s beloved anthropomorphic-robot buddy action-adventure platformer doesn’t have a release date yet, but the next installment in the series, Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart, does look beautiful. 

Rift Apart follows in the narrative footsteps of 2016’s Ratchet & Clank, so if you were a little lost on what’s going on with the story, you can pick that game up today on PlayStation 4. 

Sackboy: A Big Adventure

Sackboy is back! Who knew that we would miss the little guy so much? We’ve been hanging out in Sackboy’s world since 2008’s debut title, LittleBigPlanet, for the PlayStation 3. But this next adventure looks a little different than any of the previous installments in the series — it’s a full 3D platformer now! (Remember that LBP is a mostly 2D side-scrolling platformer.) 

Sackboy: A Big Adventure will still allow you to play with up to three of our friends (or family), but we don’t know much more than that at the moment. There is no release date announced as of the conference.

Kena: Bridge of Spirits

There is something so wholesome and welcoming about a lush green forest, magic, and furry puffball friends to keep safe. Kena: Bridge of Spirits is exactly the kind of game that we love to see geared towards kids, too. Kena is a story-driven action-adventure game. According to the developers, Ember Labs, the main protagonist (Kena) needs to “find and grow a team of tiny spirit companions called the Rot, enhancing their abilities and creating new ways to manipulate the environment.”

It’s a breathtaking game that will definitely tug on our collective heartstrings. No release date is available, but we’re crossing our fingers for 2021.

Astro’s Playroom

There is almost nothing we can say about this game, other than Astro’s Playroom is building on the utter adorableness of Astro Bot Rescue Mission, a PlayStation VR game that came out in 2018. Astro’s Playroom trailer is light on gameplay and what the game is actually about, but it definitely got us excited about the return of Astro Bot! 

Bugsnax

This is probably one of the weirdest games included in the PlayStation 5 stream, but don’t let that deter you. Bugsnax, from the studio that made Octodad, is achingly cute… albeit odd. Who knew that half-snack, half-animal creatures could cause one woman to squeak in sheer delight? Well, not this writer. Not until after the trailer, anyway. 

According to Sony’s blog, Bugsnax is all about investigating the “mysterious Snacktooth Island, home of the legendary half-bug, half-snack creatures.” Bugsnax will be available this holiday season, but it’s unclear as to whether or not it will be a launch title or just within the launch window.


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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