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My child wants a game console – What now?

3 minutes reading time
6-17 years
Bildquelle: unsplash.com/Venson Chou

On special occasions like birthdays or Christmas, many children’s wish list often includes a new game console. You may feel overwhelmed because there is not just the one console. What should you look for when buying a console for the family or your child?

What exactly are game consoles?

The right game console is the be-all and end-all for certain games. Meanwhile, there is a large offer and the question arises in what they differ.

A stationary console (e. B. PlayStation , XBOX , Nintendo Switch ) consists of the console itself (comparable to a mini-computer) and a control device (controller). The console is connected to a TV or monitor and you can start playing. Stationary devices are popular because there are games exclusively for certain consoles. In addition, they offer more functions than just gaming pleasure. With these devices you can also surf the Internet, listen to music or watch movies.

For portable consoles (e. B. Nintendo DS, Sony PlayStation Portable) everything is in one device, so you can also play on the go. On bus rides, the car ride to the grandparents and on longer trips can be played as long as the battery lasts. These so-called handheld consoles include models with pre-installed games and those for which the games have to be purchased separately. Portable consoles usually have weaker performance, but are cheaper to purchase compared to stationary consoles. Nintendo Switch combines the advantages of stationary and portable devices. This can be connected to a TV and has two controllers that can be played with. At the same time, the Nintendo Switch has its own screen, so it’s fully usable on the go.

What should parents pay attention to?

If you decide to buy a game console together with your child, there are some things to consider.

Familiarize yourself with the parental control settings of the respective console and use them. Many consoles also offer a “Parental Control” system. This is a type of parental control that allows only games suitable for the child’s age to be played and movies to be watched. If you are considering buying a game for your child, be sure to check the age rating and age recommendation of the game. On the USK website you can search specifically for the release of a particular game. Also consider connecting the console to the Internet. Some games can only be played online. Consider beforehand whether your child can already handle the communication risks involved. Since technical solutions do not offer one hundred percent protection, always discuss the gaming experience with your child as well. Let us show you some favorite games and play a round with us! Set rules for playing together.

Inquire about the cost of different consoles. Depending on the type and equipment, there are large differences in price. Depending on what and how much your child plays, you can often go for inexpensive or used models. Portable consoles are often not upgradeable. This may mean that when a newer version is released, your child will want it. Talk about it and consider whether cost-sharing would be a solution. Having a console and playing with peers can be important for your child to be part of a friend group.

Use the home WLAN for your child’s console. In this way, you avoid unnecessary costs when surfing via the cell phone network and have more opportunities to influence the times of use (however, this should always happen in consultation with your child and can never replace the accompaniment of media use).

More information about the individual game consoles and how to activate the parental control settings can be found here:

What you should basically pay attention to when you want to give your child a media gift, you can learn at webhelm.

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