To reflect the changes in the market , while we still LOVE our Xbox, we also have a new gaming console:
A Nintendo Switch- and we discuss what 7 reasons make the Nintendo Switch the must have family gaming console.
Over the years we’ve been considering buying a gaming console, but neither me nor Dadonthebrink are avid gamers, so have been putting off the decision. We enjoy the odd game once in a while, mostly on our mobiles. We’ve always looked at a console with active gaming in mind, so initially the Nintendo Wii was our first preference. However, now that the children are of an age (3 and 5 years old) where they can take part as well and the consoles have improved with active controllers available for all the major brands it wasn’t an easy decision.
We wanted something that encourages active gaming for the children as well as us adults. We narrowed our choice to Xbox 360 with Kinect or Nintendo Wii and then still spent ages trying to decide between them. Both fit the bill, but had different pros and cons (I detailed these a couple of months back, when we making our decision).
…Finally, we took the plunge and bought an Xbox 360 with Kinect.
By now we’ve had a couple of months to put it to the test, especially these past weeks with all the rain, rain and rain we had. It has helped me find an active outlet for two active youngsters while I have been confined to relative inactivity due to pregnancy niggles.
As non-natural gamers getting used to the interface, the start up times and settings have taken a bit to master. We quickly learnt that we have to get the game started before we let Little Miss (now 5) and Little Man (3.5 years old) know that we are going to be playing games. It often takes a good 5-10 minutes to get a game started. (Are we missing a trick here?)
The Kinect sensor has taken some effort to position and calibrate to recognise both a 3 year old and Dadonthebrink who is nearly 6 feet. The facial recognition works perfectly for 3 of us, but is a hit and miss for Little Man.
The playroom needed a bit of reconfiguring, so we can play safely – the chandelier needed to be lifted, as it was the first victim of Dadonthebrink’s enthusiastic jumps; we’ve put a rug down to indicate the rough sensor area of the Kinect (this helps greatly for the kids to know where to stand) and we know where the by-standers and cheerleaders need to be without being picked up by the sensor. Oh and it helps if the dog is banished to the other room so he doesn’t walk across the room and disrupt the sensor.
The effort is well worth it though!
We have so many giggles playing games as a family (me, at the moment, for obvious bump-related reasons, cheering from the side-lines)! The Kinect is a very clever device and I love how it makes you do the moves fully… there’s no cheating! It is excellent for developing body coordination for children and adults alike, as well as giving you a full work-out without you actually noticing it… till next day that is when the muscle ache strikes.
The Xbox has proven extremely useful when I’m trying to prepare dinner and kids have their “witching hour”- a game on and they use up any excess energy before we sit down to eat. The console also often comes out when we have guests. Even my parents – who are in their 60s and not active at all – have been sucked in by the fun of it.
We still have to master voice control, the Live! features and lots more that the Xbox 360 has to offer. In the meantime we will be enjoying lots of fun, active family time.
Do you have any practical hints and tips for us to get more out of our console?