30 December 2015

Top Family-Fun Xbox One Games

Now time for a top Family-Fun list with a modern generation console, the weirdly named: Xbox One. If you just got this console, these are some games to check out. But please don't go out and buy this console for these games, as they may be available on other systems (Wii, WiiU, PS3, PS4, or Xbox 360)

Honorable Mention. Star Wars Battlefront
If your a Star Wars house like mine is, any Star Wars game is a favourite. But there is something about the detail and the maps in this game that "feels" real. There is a split screen option where you can battle against each other or you can fight the Empire together in a survival mode.

5. Minecraft
Minecraft is a bottomless pit, even in the split screen option. There are new skins and mods being released all the time. This allows for complete creativity in building your own world together, or even just exploring the world together.

4. Lego Marvel Super Heroes
An open Marvel world to explore as little lego figurines. Complete the main conquest together or do side missions, or just spend your time exploring, it's up to you and your family.

3. Disney Infinity 3.0
This is Disney's version of Minecraft, with figurines. While 2.0 is an excellent option in place of 3.0, 3.0 is better for two reasons: Star Wars (of course), and better toy box and mission play. What they were trying to do in 2.0 is done better in 3.0. Not to mention figurines from 1.0 and 2.0 work in 3.0. If I may issue a warning, that's where this game gets very costly. Each new character runs from $10-17.

2. Just Dance
I think this one is self explanatory, just dance with your family. Record what you do, add silly faces, and so on. Again, 2016 is shared here, 2015 or earlier do the exact same, just different songs.

1. Kinect Sports Rivals
There is just something about using your whole body with the kinect to control the player on the screen. You can create your family using the scan feature and then play games together, or you can use the preset characters. Bowling and rock climbing are popular in our house.

Have fun!

29 December 2015

Top Family-Fun Nintendo 64 Games

The past "Top" posts (Christmas albums and Super Nintendo) have had five items, but this one has seven because I had a tough time narrowing down my picks for the Top Family-Fun N64 Games.

7. 1080 Snowboarding
If you live somewhere where it is too cold to be outside or there isn't snow, you can strap on the snowboard boots and race each other down different slopes. Compete to finish first or who ever can do the fanciest tricks.

6. Mario Kart
Shifting from two players on SNES to four on N64 adds more family competition with a lot more fun in the battle and race modes.

5. Bomber Man 64
While you can have fun in the story, this game is best played as a multi-player. While the competition will always be four players, made up of AI's or humans, it is a lot of fun to be able to figure out the right patterns to drop or throw bombs to be able to win the match.

4. Super Smash Bros
Choose your favourite Nintendo franchise character and duke it out with your family who has picked their fav character.

3. Star Fox
Take your family rivalry into the air or in space and battle each other as one of the Star Fox characters. No point in being bound by ground when you can soar in the skies!

2. Golden Eye 007
Take game rating into account with this one as blood does ooze down the screen when you die. However, this game is alone responsible for the multiplayer shoot 'em up games, it is so revolutionary. Battle each other or in groups of 3 or 4. Set the style of the game, secret weapon, choose a map, and attack away.

1. Mario Party
Any of the Mario Party games would do, some say Mario Party 2 is better than the first because Nintendo built on it. This board game like game with mini challenges is an excellent leveling field for those who game a lot to those who don't at all, as the game is a combo of board game and mini-game strategy. Choose one of your fav Super Mario characters and roll away.

***Note: Again as with the Super Nintendo recommendations, I recommend these games and the console as overall they would be cheaper than buying a current generation console.***

28 December 2015

Top Family-Fun Super Nintendo Games

While I do enjoy playing video games on my own, it is much more enjoyable playing with my kids. And there is some research showing that the parent-child relationship can be enhanced when gaming together. Plus, gaming together can help teach gaming in moderation.

So with that in mind, I wanted to share the Top 5 SNES Games that families can play together (or against each other):

5. NHL 96
Any of the NHL series on SNES is a good pick. NHL 96 is when they started getting the create-a-player and roster moves done right. So create yourself, grab a couple of favourite players, put them on one team and play against each other.

4. Mario All-Stars
While Super Mario World is a great game, there is just something about playing the amped up NES Mario Bros. games on the SNES. Take turns in Mario Bros. or battle together in Mario Bros. 3.

3. NBA Jam
Instead of playing basketball formally, liven up the fun with arcade dunks and moves as you battle two-on-two. The graphics and the creativity make for a family fun rivalry.

2. Turtles in Time
If you have the controller expansion you can have to four playing. If not, two of you work together as the Ninja Turtles fight their way to save April. It's a great Co-op game.

1. Super Mario Kart
Race against each other in time trials or in one of the three cups. Or to increase the intensity, battle it out. Or do what I do with my kids, hold down the fort in 2nd place so they can get first and we can finish 1-2 in the races.

***Note: While new gaming consoles are $500+ with new games. With the proper shopping you could pick up a SNES console with controllers and a couple of the above games for $200 or less. Much more affordable family fun***

25 December 2015

My Top 5 Favourite Christmas Albums

Happy/Merry Christmas!

One of mine and my wife's goals over our marriage was to increase our Christmas music library selection. - We have, and I'd like to share my favourite Christmas albums that we have accumulated.

In no particular order. Here they are: