Here’s my view on what’s best for those younger gamers this Christmas:
Sesame Street: Once Upon A Monster (Xbox 360): I was lucky enough to chat with the developers about this game when I was at Gamescom last summer. They where quick to point out that they wanted a game that expressed the ‘cool’ of Sesame Street. They also wanted to make the game appeal to both adults and children. They were truly passionate about creating a game that will be a shared family experience.
Sesame Street: Once Upon A Monster is a story book experience designed to engage the child in both storytelling and action. They do this by using the virtual book as a framework for countless mini games that allow your child (or you) to dive in and out of the Sesame Street world through dancing, jumping, flying and more. Elmo, Cookie Monster, Grover, Oscar the Grouch and other characters join your child as they meet friendly new monsters and help them overcome their problems.
I LOVE this game.
Lego Harry Potter Years 5-7 (Xbox 360):
Every since Lego Star Wars and the rather excellent Lego Batman, I have always had a soft spot for this genre. Their mixture of easy gaming and multi-player gameplay have made them a family gaming staple.
Based on the last three Harry Potter books and final four films, LEGO Harry Potter: Years 5-7 takes players through Harry Potter’s heroic adventures in the Muggle and wizarding worlds. From Privet Drive in Little Whinging to Diagon Alley, Hogsmeade and Hogwarts – plus new locations including Grimmauld Place, the Ministry of Magic, and Godric’s Hollow – players will encounter new faces, new challenges and new magic, preparing them for the ultimate face-off against Lord Voldemort.
The visuals have developed considerably since the first Lego games, with impressive cinematic effects.
A must for all Harry Potter games.
Happy Feet 2: This is a musical, fun game for all the family to enjoy (especially if you loved the film, as the game beats quite closely to that narrative). Littlest adored this game.
Help save the penguins from the threats and dangers to their penguin world. This mainly involves dancing which, in fact, has to be the MOST perfect way ever to prevent extinction. Gamers use dance moves to recruit penguins with their own special skills that help to defeat enemies. Littlest especially liked that she could tap to the beat of the music, compete in penguin dance showdowns and belly sliding races.
A definite for lovers of cute, dancing and gentle gaming narratives.