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The W - Video Games - Question from a non-Gamer
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pieman
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Since: 11.12.01
From: China, Maine

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#1 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.30


We are thinking about getting a hand-held game system for the kids who are now 7, 9 and 10.

I see on Amazon that I can get a GameBoy Advance SP for $80 or a Nintendo DS Lite for $120.

Is one of these better than the other?

Are games expensive?

Is it going to break?

We've never had any game system at all in the house, so we have ZERO clue about what we should be looking for.

Please help me..........





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Since: 5.10.02

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#2 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.70
I haven't had a whole lot of time with the DS Lite(so someone correct me if I'm wrong) but I'd go with that. The Old DS anyone could play all the games on the GameBoy Advance and the new games. Essentially you'd be getting more bang for your back and the library of games you could buy for you kids is bigger. Portable games at their highest are running in the forty dollar range I believe.



RYDER FAKIN
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Since: 21.2.02
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#3 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.63
my advice - get them whatever ain't serious rape and / or murder and don't get suckered into playing whatever games they buy.

It hurts to lose - especially at some dumb ass Kung Fu game - or Driving.

You think DEAN teaches his kids to draw for no reason(*)?

(*) being drunk is no reason

FLEA



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Gugs
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Since: 9.7.02
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#4 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.39
Of those two choices, get the DS Lite. It can play all the games that the GBA can, and has plenty more to choose from. Just be careful, as the DS has a small part (the stylus) that can very easily get lost (I don't know if it is attached to the system in any way).





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drjayphd
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Since: 22.4.02
From: Long Island

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#5 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.10
You wanted the best, you got... Out of Context Quote of the Week.

"They're plump, ripe, and priced to move. Get your fat Samoan today!" (Packman V2)


    Originally posted by Gugs
    Of those two choices, get the DS Lite. It can play all the games that the GBA can, and has plenty more to choose from. Just be careful, as the DS has a small part (the stylus) that can very easily get lost (I don't know if it is attached to the system in any way).


Believe there's somewhere to slip it in, but even if there isn't, the replacements aren't too bad and should be readily available.

I'd say DS for the same reasons as everyone else. If it matters, Nintendo's products are pretty much bulletproof, so durability shouldn't be much of a concern (although I'm told there's been a few cases of Wiis curling up and dying, I've only seen references to that and not the actual stories).





KJames199
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Since: 10.12.01
From: #yqr

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#6 Posted on | Instant Rating: 6.70
I figure that the Game Boy Advance is probably dead after next Christmas. Go for the DS Lite, as it will be supported longer and it plays all GBA games anyway (with the exception of one Yoshi game that uses a motion sensor).

Neither system is likely to break - Nintendo builds handheld systems to take a reasonable amount of abuse.

Here in Canada, games range from $10 for cheap GBA games to $50 for the biggest and best DS titles. I think those DS games go for $40 in the US.

If you're looking for kid-safe DS games, I really like Wario Ware for the GBA or Wario Ware Touched for the DS. Mario Kart DS is a fun racing game. Nintendo also has a series of DS games with the Touch Generations logo on them - they're for non-gamers. It includes simpler puzzle games like Tetris DS, Magnetica, and Sudoku Gridmaster, and pseudo-educational "brain-training" games like Big Brain Academy and Brain Age (of those two, Big Brain Academy is far superior, in my opinion).



JK
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EddieBurkett
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Since: 3.1.02
From: GA in person, NJ in heart

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#7 Posted on | Instant Rating: 6.79
I agree with getting a DS lite, however, for the record, it does not play all the same games a GBA does. A GBA is backwards compatible all the way back to original gameboy games, including Tetris, which was released with the original Gameboy. The DS can play GBA games, but that's it; it cannot play anything for the Gameboy or Gameboy color. That said, unless your children are hardcore gamer completionists, there's probably no reason for you to be mining the original Gameboy catalog, so get a DS lite.



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Since: 20.6.02
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#8 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.71
Don't get the original DS: the screens are terribly dark and look foggy. the DS lite is an awesome, awesome system. You can pick up styluses for a really low price at Walmart or somewhere else if you need to. YOu can also get some screen protectors, as well. I'd recommend those for kids.

I read somewhere that there's a way to play GB and GBC games on DS...I just can't seem to find the link.



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El Nastio
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Since: 14.1.02
From: Ottawa Ontario, by way of Walkerton

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#9 Posted on | Instant Rating: 6.96
I'm going to go against the grain here and say get a GBA. But make sure it's an SP version. Built to withstand a nuclear winter, it'll last you quite awhile. Oh sure, they won't make games for it starting next year, but there's still a HUGE library of titles to play.

Your kids are young, and with the GBA SP if they lose them you won't worry too too much about it. ALso, there's no reason for them to touch the screen =)

As for games;

- ZELDA A LINK TO THE PAST.
- Anything (ANYTHING) from the Super Mario Advance series.
- TETRIS.
- Pokemon (yeah, I said it).



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pieman
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Since: 11.12.01
From: China, Maine

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#10 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.30


    Originally posted by KJames199
    If you're looking for kid-safe DS games, I really like Wario Ware for the GBA or Wario Ware Touched for the DS. Mario Kart DS is a fun racing game. Nintendo also has a series of DS games with the Touch Generations logo on them - they're for non-gamers. It includes simpler puzzle games like Tetris DS, Magnetica, and Sudoku Gridmaster, and pseudo-educational "brain-training" games like Big Brain Academy and Brain Age (of those two, Big Brain Academy is far superior, in my opinion).


So. let's say we get the DS Lite, besides these games that KJames recommends, what other kid-safe (no Doom-like games) would you suggest?

And Flea - can you imagine a little GameBoy in Dean's massive paws?





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Since: 2.1.02
From: Darkenwood

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#11 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.53

The Advance Wars series is really great and only has very cartoony slapstick violence.






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Alex
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Since: 24.2.02

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#12 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.03
Check the ESRB ratings! They do a good job of telling you about stuff you'd find objectionable. Not that there are really any games like that for the DS, aside from a remake of Resident Evil.
Elite Beat Agents is a fun musical game, there's a wide range of cartoon and movie tie-ins if that's what your kids are in to, and there's Nintendogs, which is basically a virtual puppy you get to take care of and teach tricks and such to, which is pretty nice.
As good as Brain Age is, I just can't see a 10 year old having the patience to do 100 math problems a day.
Basically, anything with Nintendo's own characters (Mario, Kirby, Zelda, Pokmon, Star Fox, etc.) will be a pretty safe bet. Cooking Mama is also pretty good from what I hear.

EDIT: http://www.gamerdad.com/ is a GREAT resource for exactly what you're looking for here.

(edited by Alex on 1.12.06 0957)


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KJames199
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Since: 10.12.01
From: #yqr

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#13 Posted on | Instant Rating: 6.70
    Originally posted by Alex
    Elite Beat Agents is a fun musical game, there's a wide range of cartoon and movie tie-ins if that's what your kids are in to, and there's Nintendogs, which is basically a virtual puppy you get to take care of [...] Cooking Mama is also pretty good from what I hear.
Good call on Nintendogs. I haven't played much of Elite Beat Agents, but I loved what I've played (if I don't get it for Christmas, I'll buy it right afterwards) and it seems like it would be a good choice too. Cooking Mama, though, I had it for a while and wound up trading it off - the game was very repetitive and the controls were unreliable.

Pieman: another one kids might like is Animal Crossing. You make a character and inhabit a town - you have to perform odd jobs, interact with other characters, catch fish and collect bugs and fossils... it's very family-friendly. Personally, I refuse to have that game in my house after I lost about three full months to the Gamecube version.

Clubhouse Games is a collection of 42 card games and parlour games (chess, checkers, Othello, darts, bowling). It has a selection of really simple card games that are perfect for kids. Personally, I spend all my time playing President (which should be called "Asshole" but for some reason Nintendo does not agree with me).

Also, the Game Boy Advance has lots of collections of classic games from older systems. The Activision collection has around 40 Atari 2600 games, including greats like River Read and Pitfall!. There are two Namco Museum collections - I prefer the first one. I also had the Konami collection which was great, but I traded it off recently in anticipation of the forthcoming Konami collection for the DS, which will hopefully have all the same games and more.

EDIT: "River Read?" River RAID. Me type good.

ALSO EDIT: Beware the really cheap Game Boy Advance games that have two classic arcade games or board games on one cartridge. Some GBA games are cheap, half-assed, and rushed to stores because people will buy recognizable names. I recommend reading a few reviews online before buying any specific game. Personally, I like the reviews on IGN.com, though a lot of people don't seem to. If anyone else likes specific review sites, I'm open to suggestions.

(edited by KJames199 on 1.12.06 1047)


JK
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pieman
As young as
he feels








Since: 11.12.01
From: China, Maine

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#14 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.30


    Originally posted by Alex
    As good as Brain Age is, I just can't see a 10 year old having the patience to do 100 math problems a day.


Ha! You never seen kids like mine! Two two oldest continue to attend advanced math classes a grade level above their current grade and they aren't very challenged. 100 a day might be the exact ticket for them!

Thanks so much for all the advice and I will be checking out the sites linked above.

I think I will be getting the DS Lite after all these ideas from you fine folks. It's threads like these that make this an awesome community of people willing to share their knowledge and experience. Makes an old guy all mushy around the holidays.

Thanks all!!





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Since: 14.5.04
From: right behind you

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#15 Posted on | Instant Rating: 1.10
I have two little cousins... they're twins, age 6.

THEY HAVE BROKEN IT ALL:
-Their Gamecube
-Their Brother's Xbox (now repaired)
-At LEAST 20 controllers from various consoles (including SNES)
-My copy of Smackdown v Raw 06

The list goes on.

THEY HAVE NOT BROKEN THEIR DS's

They have the old DS, and it's good cause sometimes you can get GBA games cheaper and still give them to the kids to play on their DS.

As for the stylus, you can secure it to the lanyard that's attached to every DS.

Hope that helps.



Amirite?!
pieman
As young as
he feels








Since: 11.12.01
From: China, Maine

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#16 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.30


Alright. Here's the breakdown of the purchase:


Nintendo DS Lite - Polar White

Brain Age

New Super Mario Brothers

Pokemon Mystery Dungeon Blue Rescue Team

Retro Atari Classics (I can play Pong).


Thanks again for all your assistance!






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cranlsn
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Since: 18.3.02
From: Sussex, WI

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#17 Posted on | Instant Rating: 6.83

Very nice setup! Our son is getting an "old" DS. The daughter saved her own $$ to buy hers and it wouldn't do for Santa to bring the new and improved model to her little brother free of charge.

He's getting Animal Crossing with it, and Super Monkey Ball-Touch & Roll separately. He's also getting the Slurpee maker he requested from the big red elf!

If your kids are anything like ours, they will be VERY happy.
rinberg
Boudin rouge








Since: 30.1.02
From: South Georgia

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#18 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.78
So, you're getting one DS Lite for three kids between the ages of 7 and 10 to share? I have *gots* to meet these kids, because mine would kill each other without an imposed schedule of ownership.



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Since: 24.2.02

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#19 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.03
pieman isn't made of money! sheesh!

ps. pieman buy a wii it is awesome



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pieman
As young as
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Since: 11.12.01
From: China, Maine

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#20 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.30


    Originally posted by rinberg
    So, you're getting one DS Lite for three kids between the ages of 7 and 10 to share? I have *gots* to meet these kids, because mine would kill each other without an imposed schedule of ownership.


Well, right now we have one computer that five of us share. They don't get a lot of screen time now and it is timed and monitored. I am sure we'll have a few disagreements, but there will be a strict schedule on use of the plaything. They'll get along or they'll find that I'm the only one using it to play Space Invaders!





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