At the dawn of the current gaming console generation, the Nintendo Wii became a family favorite for its motion gaming capabilities. With the help of the Wiimote, you could play sports, dance or do other forms of exercise while playing video games. Take that, childhood obesity groups! Though previous consoles like the PlayStation also offered motion and rhythm games such as Dance Dance Revolution, the Wii was the first to really harness the power of motion gaming.
Fast forward a few years later, and the Nintendo Wii’s main competitors now also offer motion gaming for their consoles. The PS3 has the Playstation Move, and the Xbox 360 launched its Kinect motion gaming experience just in time for the 2010 holiday season. Each of the 3 consoles caters to a slightly different type of gamer, leaving parents wondering which motion gaming console is best for their kids.
The Playstation Move is probably the least kid-friendly of the 3 motion gaming platforms. So far, it’s the only motion platform to feature “hardcore” games (like the upcoming Killzone 3). M-rated and violent games aren’t a good fit for young children, especially not games that require mimicking shooting and other violent behavior. Since this behavior could be misunderstood or repeated, it’s a good idea to keep children away from adult-rated games.
The Xbox Kinect is geared primarily towards kids and families, but its connection to the Xbox 360 makes it less than ideal for kids. Though the Xbox 360 features the widest range of games available for this console generation, it’s also home to hardcore and M-rated games like Call of Duty 4 and Halo:Reach. Even if you don’t buy these games for your children, chances are their friends or classmates have access to them.
Connection to the system’s Xbox Live online chat platform also puts kids in the same games as adults, which can be troubling for some parents. Between the games and the online play, kids are bound to see violent themes and hear some pretty strong language. Though parents can help keep kids safe by keeping them off of Xbox Live, it’s often easier to avoid the Xbox 360 altogether rather than having to worry about monitoring a child’s use of it.
That just leaves the Nintendo Wii. Despite its graphics and motion system not being as cutting-edge as its competitors, the Wii still offers the most family-friendly gaming experience. Most of the games available on the Wii are appropriate for kids, featuring beloved characters like Mario instead of tough guys like Master Chief.
With the Wii, kids will still get the fun experience of “being the controller,” without being tempted by mature games or exposed to rough language. This helps cement its status as the best motion gaming console for kids and families.