Video games for young players and learners
Updated: November 19, 2012 1:18PM
Have you looked at the video games in Oak Park Public Library’s children’s area lately?
We’ve added a lot of new titles this autumn. These days, there is always a number available in each of the formats. Just stop by and ask us what’s here today.
One new game is “Wii Music.” There are more than 60 types of instruments (from cowbells and trumpets to shamisen and sitars) to play alone or in a jam band, using only the wiimote and nunchuk. Unlike “Guitar Hero” or “Rock Band,” players are not graded on how well they play. Instead, this is a game to foster music creativity.
Take one of the 50 songs, choose your instrument, choose your music genre and start making your own arrangement. Save your song for posterity, and even create one-man jam bands by layering different instrument versions of the same song together.
For kids who like a little competition (and parents who like a little learning) there are three mini-game options. “Mii Maestro” has kids conduct an orchestra with the wiimote as baton, finding and matching the proper tempo.
In “Handbell Harmony,” kids try to match notes played on screen.
“Pitch Perfect” practices discriminating between pitches, putting them in order and recreating songs by ear.
These games can be challenging for novices, but rewarding as skill improves. This game is best for ages 8 and up.
Hidden mystery games are great to check out from the library because they often only take a few hours to complete and don’t stand up to repeat plays.
One of the many hidden adventure games we offer is “Hidden Mysteries Titanic: The Fateful Voyage.” This game puts the player on board the doomed ship, giving the opportunity to explore all over the ship from engine room to wheel room. The story follows Margie, who discovers a hidden passage from her stateroom down a long hallway that houses a mummy’s sarcophagus.
There are more than 100 puzzles to solve, with a wide variety of styles. There are card games, mazes, iceberg shuffleboard, hidden objects and scavenger hunts. Overheard conversations of other guests can sometimes offer clues as to where to go next.
Every game has an easily accessed hint screen and games can be skipped for any reason without penalty. One choice near the end of the game splits the story line into one of two possible endings. This game is best for kids ages 10 and up.
Visit us in person or at oppl.org with your Oak Park Public Library card to place a request on these and other games in our collection.~.