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11-22-2011 @ 8:11AM
By not letting them play it.Back when I was a kid (starting at 11 or 12, I think) I did a lot of games and such online. Most of my biggest regrets are from that time, and I know very well just how foolish and unthinking kids that age often are. I applaud you for setting yours up in such a way it works out, but my own personal experience has made my policy just to keep kids far away from online gaming.
11-22-2011 @ 8:16AM
11-22-2011 @ 9:14AM
I remember my online interactions when I was around 12: I was such a rude, selfish terror. For some 12-year-olds, it'd be a lot of fun to, say, interfere with a world boss kill, or steal people's mats when offering to craft, or park your mammoth on top of a mailbox all day long. (So I don't know what's the excuse of anyone who's actually of proper age to do all these things...)Having said that, perhaps an online game like WoW can be a safe place to teach young teens that actions have consequences, and it's better to be a good person than not?
11-22-2011 @ 9:55AM
Seconding this. A computer game that never ends full of pottymouthed strangers? No way!
11-22-2011 @ 11:00AM
While it's not necessarily applicable to online gaming, I think that sheltering your kids from something that you still have regrets about could end up leaving them not learning some important lessons.Is it possible that you could use your bad experience to help guide your kids' own experiences? That way hopefuly they'd be able to learn the lessons that you learned the hard way the easy way...
11-22-2011 @ 11:10AM
DO ABSOLUTELY NOTHING!*Still* not a clever answer.If we want the next generation of gamer geeks to grow up technology literate and net-savvy they must be taught these skills, and from a relatively young age. Sheltering children from something they're likely to experience until that experience is entirely out of your power to shape and guide is a pretty good way to insure that their experiences will be bad ones that they won't want to tell you about or talk to you about.
11-22-2011 @ 12:12PM
I don't have kids, but if I did, 16 or 18 would seem more reasonable. 11-12? Totally out of the question. There are a ton of games they could play out there. MMO to me = socialization. If you don't want a social setting, play something else. I don't mean that in a bad way. You could totally play it isolated or in a family only guild, heavily supervised I guess. Limit them to maybe 1-2 hours a night.
11-22-2011 @ 12:20PM
It's not about "sheltering" or mollycoddling a kid, not at all. Young kids cannot handle certain things. You might with the same argument ("don't shelter them from reality") send them into war, let them watch porn, and expect them to get an M.A. or doctorate at 12.There's a reason WoW is recommended from age 12 upwards. Now keep in mind that Blizz is making money from subscriptions, so 12 is probably rather optimistic. I know for a fact that I couldn't have handled something this addictive at 12. It depends on the individual child of course, but they won't have a "disadvantage dealing with technology" just cause they're not playing MMORPGs this young.Heck, I got my first computer at 26 and started gaming at 37, and I'm doing just fine, lol.
11-22-2011 @ 1:04PM
I agree in theory. Kids that young still have plenty to do without subjecting them to possible asshats and douche bags.But mostly, just don't let them play at such an age. As someone noted above..it's rated for teens. I'm not even positive that all teens are mature enough but you gotta make the break somewhere.If I had my druthers, only those above age 30 would be allowed to play. Or anyone who can write 140 characters without using "can I haz" or similar annoying shit.
11-22-2011 @ 3:19PM
I started playing EverQuest when I was 10, and soon with even more dedication, EverQuest Online Adventures for the PS2.I was probably a lot brighter than most kids, however. Back then, I typed like I do today; with proper capitalization and punctuation. I started doing this because I had a few interactions with GM's at Croc Isle and other key training locations. I really liked how they presented themselves in-game and people really listened to what they had to say. I'm pretty sure voice chat wasn't around yet so my first impressions were in text. I knew that other kids my age were hard to deal with online. They were rude, had no manners, and really supported the developing stereotype of young gamers.I made a point of being as adult as I could be so that, if I knew someone well enough to tell them my actual age, they would be surprised. I was in a guild full of adults (age 25-40) that spoke of adult things. I was mature enough to know what was appropriate and what was not for someone my age, but I did not ask them to stop; I simply did not repeat it! :) I wasn't like this newer generation of younger gamers yelling "get raped" and otherwise trying to be both shocking and cool. These people were as good of friends to me as any of my real life friends; they were people I looked forward to talking to and playing with.Sure, when I was with friends my age, I probably found different things funny- because my friends did. As soon as I went home and hopped on to play with my adult friends in Norrath, I immediately reverted to my adult kid self.I read that some of you regret some of the things you said, did, and played at younger ages. For me, this was a critical part of my life. Guilds in EverQuest and voice chat on SOCOM: US Navy Seals for the PS2 helped me open up socially and I was probably one of the more popular kids in high school because of it; I literally knew hundreds of people in my school of 3000ish students. At my elementary school I only had about 3 close friends.Let your kids play online games, but impress upon them the idea that they're playing in a real world with real people. You treat them as you would any fellow man.
11-22-2011 @ 5:37PM
At 12 a kid is ceasing to be a kid.At 12 they've probably hit puberty and have been telling dirty jokes on the playground since they were 10.At 12 they've had 4-9 years of experience on a computer (at least the ones these days. But I know that I wasn't the only one who had a computer in the house at 3, even if it was an Apple2C)At 12 they've been taught how to be polite, right from wrong, how to type, etc. The ones who have issues then, are often the ones still saying broski and griefing when they're 20.At 12, the ones who've been gaming since they were small may well have better reflexes and be better than You at learning/playing the game.At 12 none of these things may be true. So the real answer is to base your decisions on the kid in question, and not some blanket rule put out by people with different experiences than you.
11-22-2011 @ 9:28PM
I started playing this game at around 11, maybe 12, during the summer. I'm 15 right now, so this is still in recent memory too. I was polite, and well-adjusted, and I'm a little mature for my age, so I didn't really pay attention to Trade Chat and all that, even if I was a little disgusted. But I have to agree with Revnah when saying that the game is too addictive to give to an 11 or 12 year old. I remember playing hours on end every day because while I could do something else, I really didn't want to. At this point, homework and friends manage to keep me off most of the time, so I've cut my playing time drastically, but its still something I try to stop because it was really unhealthy for me to be doing this. So, yeah, base it on the kid, but definitely limit their playing time with something so addictive if you do decide to go ahead with it.
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