If you do console gaming in your schools or libraries then Playstation Plus and Xbox’s Games with Gold can be an amazing way of adding new games to your collection each month. However, not every free game may be appropriate for your space. We’ll be going over all the Xbox One titles this month so that you can decide what works for your space.
ESRB: M for Sexual Themes, Drug Reference, Strong Language
Gone Home is more of an interactive story. It’s about Katie returning home after spending a year traveling Europe. She returns to the house her family has moved into. Gameplay is focused on investigating what has happened by searching through the house, picking things up, and looking them over. The empty house sets up a creepy atmosphere, but it’s really about Katie’s sister discovering that she’s in love with one of her classmates, Yolonda, and how her parents aren’t okay with this new discovery. The game is mature, not because there’s any nudity, but because it discusses sexuality openly, such as a character talking about her self discovery, love, and sex to SexEd assignments you find lying around. There’s also music that plays and has language like b**ch, sh*t, and so on. If you have a collection of M rated games and think your gamers can handle this mature game, go for it. But if you’re in a space where dealing with sexuality isn’t appropriate or you cater to younger gamers then this may not be one for you.
ESRB: T for Violence, Sexual Themes, Drug Reference, Language, Use of Alcohol and Tobacco
Oxenfree is another adventure story driven game about teenagers. This game is about choices and how those choices affect the storyline. You play as Alex who brings her friend and step brother to an island where there’s a party going on, which is where the drug and alcohol references are. But the game is mostly about exploring the island, solving puzzles, and discovering it’s dark past. As far as language goes it’s mostly things like crap and hell. If you want an spooky mystery for your teens to unravel, this one’s a good fit.
XB1 & XB360: Rayman 3 HD
ESRB: E for Fantasy Violence, Crude Humor, Mild Suggestive Themes
Rayman 3 HD is a platformer. It follows Rayman as he tries to stop an evil lum from taking over the world with his army of sack-like soldiers called Hoodlums. Lums usually being these cute and helpful fairies. Rayman is always a fun, cartoony series. If your gamers like platformers and you’ve got the free space to do it, I’d go for it.
The Turing Test
ESRB: T for Violence, Mild Language
The Turing Test is a puzzle adventure game. You play as Ava, an engineer tasked with discovering what has happened to the crew stationed on Jupiter’s moon, Europa. As you explore you find that the AI have gotten bored and made some logic puzzles.You’ll have to solve their puzzles if you want to figure out what’s happened. It’s a thinky puzzler with some philosophical existential questions. It’s a good fit for your teen games collection. It will be available 10/16.
XB1& XB360: Medal of Honor: Airbourne
ESRB: T for Blood, Mild Language, Violence
Medal of Honor: Airbourne is a first person shooter that takes place during World War II. It follows Boyd Travers, a fictional paratrooper in the US 82nd Airborne Division. You play through a variety of missions taking you through areas like Italy, France, Netherlands, and Germany. Gamplay consists of completing objectives such as destroying anti-aircraft nests or repelling an enemy attack, while shooting enemy soldiers that come between you and the objective. If you’re looking for a T rated shooter to keep your teens happy without it being super graphic, yes. If you have a space where humans shooting other humans down isn’t appropriate, no. It will be available 10/16.
Games in Schools and Libraries is produced in association with Inverse Genius and the Georgetown County Library System.
Games in Schools and Libraries Guild at Board Game Geek
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