You and your wallet may have survived the Skylander phenomenon that linked collectable characters with a video game. Well get ready for Mixels from Lego.
Lego Mixels are a range of unique characters that belong to one of nine tribes, each with a distinct colour and style to differentiate them. Made from Lego parts they can all be combined to create a mix (combining Mixels of different tribes), max (combining Mixels of the same tribe), and murp (when a mix goes horribly wrong).
Lego Mixels is a quite unique approach as the cartoon shorts (Cartoon Network) and the toys were developed in unison, with both debuting at the same time.
Supporting them on the video gaming front is the Lego Mixels App, “Calling All Mixels”, which allows you to play with your Mixels in a virtual environment as you mix, max and murp them together to defend against the evil Nixels.
Lego could have a huge hit on their hands with the Mixels; and at only £3 per character, they’re a little less of a hit for parents too!
We are often asked about the suitability of our video game birthday parties and entertainment for girls. My own daughter is a FIFA fanatic but also has grown up playing Jak & Daxter, Mario Kart, and Super Mario Bros on consoles and not just Singstar and dance mats. There is no doubt in my mind that girls love video games of all genre as much as the boys. We see them every week playing together and having an absolute blast.
However, it is interesting when you take a view from afar and start to consider what kind of female characters exist inside the games that she historically played. There is no doubt there is a huge bias towards male characters but we talked about it and it was not something she was really aware of, or that ruined her fun at the time.
Our friend Andy at Family Guy TV recently posed a similar point to Activision at the New York Toy fair. Skylanders has been an amazing phenomenon but the character set has been predominantly biased towards male characters. Although the development team felt they were gender neutral!
We have recently seen Angry Birds Stella announced, which is a version of the game targeted specifically at girls (judging from her colour and types of toys being sold). While boys will likely enjoy playing this as well it will be interesting to see if Skylanders goes a similar route.
With the Swap Force figures seemingly all being male, does Skylanders 4 need to re-address the balance? What video games do your daughters play? Do they have any favourite female video game characters?
We will take a close up look at some of the favourite female Skylanders in preparation for announcements on the new game. Here is Sky who packs a fiery punch.
Gamewagon Video Game Party Review for 9 Year Old Boys
“What an idea! Our Gamewagon video game party went fantastically well. All the boys had a great time, one boy wants to hold a gamewagon party for his party, my son wanted the van to come back and another friend said ‘awesome party!’.
From my perspective it was the most peaceful party I have held (well for the 90 minutes) before they bounced off my walls in excitement before being picked up. Everything went very smoothly, my son had a fantastic party and all the staff I dealt with from booking to the actual day were very friendly and professional. Thank you….:-)”
Mandy: Marlow, Bucks
8 Year Old Video Game Birthday Party
“We thought the service we received was excellent from start to finish. Our 8 & 10 year old sons absolutely loved the experience and we would highly recommend a game wagon party to friends.
For those parents that are new to this, the concept is simple but effective the boys loved the fun environment of sitting in the Gamewagon and the game choices were spot on. Great customer service as well, all round first class.”
Leilah: West Byfleet, Surrey
BAFTA has published the nominations for its awards for games in 2014. Of particular interest to us at Gamewagon are the family video game nominations shown below. Two of our huge favourite video game party titles are featured; Rayman Legends and Super Mario 3D World.
These awards are great, not only do they recognise the talent that is behind these incredible games but they also put games in the same context within the arts as film and television.
Video games have come a long way and it is important that parents understand this and appreciate why video games are rated in a similar way to films with regards to age appropriateness.
A full list of the nominations is available at BAFTA Games. In the category for “Family”, nominations are: Rayman Legends; Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons; Tearaway; Animal Crossing: New Leaf; Super Mario 3D World; and (unsurprisingly) Skylanders SWAP Force.
Below is a link to more news on the BAFTA Awards and other family gaming news from Andy Robertson of Family Gamer TV.