Game Genres.Given the vastness of games on the market, the need was felt to catalog a video game according to its structure. For example, in a game where I play a football match I can define it as a football game.This is called Game Genres.
The gaming world can appear to us as an endless jungle, full of pitfalls and traps. Role-playing games, jump’n run, action games and the discussed “shooter” video games are just the tip of the iceberg. Behind these video games are hidden mechanics and scenarios that are difficult to understand at first glance, especially if you do not have the appropriate tools available. Everything is made even more difficult by the many gaming platforms that have invaded the Internet in recent years: in addition to the classic consoles, we must not forget video games on smartphones and tablets. Find out what the effects of video games and online games can be on children and adolescents, and learn more about the genres of play that could be dangerous for their development.
Console or online games – Platforms and gaming opportunities
The first major difference when it comes to video game devices is between mobile and stationary . The first category includes portable consoles and smartphones, which allow children to play wherever they are. Fixed media are PCs, laptops and desk consoles.
Fixed platforms compared And Game Genres List 2021
|Platform||Computer||Fixed video game console|
|Dealers||PCs and laptops from different brands||Nintendo Switch (hybrid between landline and mobile)
Going for a PC or a fixed console largely depends on personal tastes. Computer games tend to perform better, but are also more expensive than consoles . On the other hand, many of the best sellers of recent years require a console, because not all games can be adapted to any type of platform. 
In recent years, mobile gaming has joined the one with PC and table console. In fact, 42% of gamers say they prefer the smartphone as a gaming device. 
Mobile platforms compared
|Platform||Portable consoles||Smartphone / tablet|
|Dealers||Nintendo Switch (hybrid between fixed and mobile
console ) Nintendo 3DS / 2DS
|Devices with Android or iOS (possibly Windows) operating systems|
Smartphones and tablets are now present in all Italian families and it will therefore not be necessary to face a new expense . Handheld consoles usually offer better gaming experiences, thanks to the latest hardware, but smartphones are more practical and avoid adding extra bulk in bags and backpacks.
Safety for young gamers – All the necessary precautions
The choice of the type of platform is not limited to the evaluation of the gaming experience that children can have. The protection of young gamers and the need to define reliable security settings remain the number one property. Before purchasing, carefully inform yourself about the requirements, risks and opportunities offered by the different platforms.
Share doubts and concerns with other parents, friends and acquaintances who have already faced this choice. Some of them might lend you a console to test before making a final decision. The budget you have available, and that you are willing to invest, also plays a not inconsiderable role. Many consoles are easily found used, often already on sale with games.
The rules for the use of media and those relating to playing time must be clarified before purchasing any gaming platform. If you have opted for a fixed one, you must first find a space in the house where to place the PC or console. Especially if they are young children, the living room (or a common room) is recommended , where it will be easier for parents to keep control over what is happening. 
Games on smartphones and portable consoles obviously do not present this type of problem. Mobile phones have now become ubiquitous and are available to children at any time and place of the day. In almost all social situations they are now accepted and considered an integral part of our daily routine, making parental control very difficult, if not impossible. For this reason, it is essential to provide clear safety rules for children, such as age restrictions or rules shared and explained in a clear and unambiguous way.
Game extensions (“Downloadable Content” DLCs) and online subscriptions are offered following precise strategies aimed at deceiving young gamers. It is up to parents to pay attention and prevent their children from falling into some trap. Blocking or limiting online payment features can eliminate the problem at source.
A look at the genres of video games
The term videogame is too generic and is certainly not able to give a fair representation of the current panorama. Mechanics, scenarios, contents and atmospheres change significantly from game to game. Here you will find a brief overview of the most popular video games divided by genre.
Action-adventure video games
The fun of this kind of videogame is guaranteed by the possibility of entering a magical and adventurous world, and being able to make your digital alter ego perform an infinite number of actions. During the game you have to solve puzzles, face decisions and pass tests. In action games, exciting game mechanics are mixed with content that develops the ability to face challenges and battles to the death. Ingenuity, dexterity and ability to react are the real stars of action games.
Popular adventure games: Machinarium, Deponia, Sekiro, Life is Strange
Popular action games: The Legend of Zelda, Assassin’s Creed, Tomb Raider, Uncharted
Action games should not automatically be regarded as violent or dangerous games. Many are set in fantastic places, with atmospheres far from the real world, and are therefore also suitable for children under the age of 12. Even video games dedicated to sports or racing do not generally present risks for novice gamers.
The gamer “moves” his figure in a colorful and exciting game environment. As the name suggests, the protagonist of video games moves by jumping and running. To increase the fun, the player must face increasingly difficult obstacles and learn to make precise jumps in order to continue to the next level. The so-called jump’n run games require dexterity and patience. Although many titles of this genre do not feature content based on real challenges, elements typical of adventure video games are often found.
Popular jump’n run games: Super Mario, Donkey Kong, Sonic the Hedgehog, Crash Bandicoot
Role play games
Offline RPGs (often referred to as “Role Playing (Video) Game” RPG video games) are often based on an epic and dramatic story. In a complex world the player has a central role, and is often represented by a heroic, mythological figure, sometimes condemned by an unfair fate to face challenges and struggles for survival. These games allow children to identify with their character or otherwise to make their digital counterpart perform various types of actions.
Popular RPGs: Kingdom Hearts, Pokémon, Final Fantasy
Racing and sports games
Games dedicated to sport allow young gamers to let the protagonists of the videogame play, train and face exciting competitions. In racing games, it is often a question of learning to control your vehicle by making it reach higher and higher speeds and thus crossing the finish line first. In this type of video game it is possible to compete against the computer or a real friend.
Popular sports games: FIFA, Wii Sports, Mario Kart, Need for Speed
Most games offer a choice between download and disc version. Both have strengths and weaknesses: the disc version saves download times and allows you to resell the game. The download, on the other hand, does not take up space and avoids unnecessary packaging.
Shooter – Shooter games
In the so-called shooter videogames the main objective is to face and win a fight. It is therefore a rather controversial and delicate area, since the game focuses on the use of weapons. The protagonists of the videogame, realistic or belonging to an imaginary world, must carry out a certain mission and, to do so, they have weapons with which to shoot at the enemy. The skill therefore lies in being able to get to the end of the game without being killed by the opponent.
- First person shooter: the game is experienced in the first person, protagonist and gamer coincide
- Third person shooter: the player is at a slight distance from the protagonist of the video game, usually behind him
Popular shooter games: Fortnite, Valorant, Overwatch
Simulation video games
In simulation games, real-life situations and events are transferred to the digital plane. In some video games, gamers are required to build and manage the entire life of fictional figures (life simulations), while others focus on a particular aspect of human existence, such as work, economics or the automotive world.
Popular simulation games: The Sims, Harvest Moon, Animal Crossing, Stardew Valley, Nintendogs
All online games have one thing in common: they need an Internet connection. For the rest, it is an infinite category that includes strategy games and real-time games, up to role-playing games, multiplayer and shooting games. Gamers often don’t find themselves playing with virtual opponents, but real players like them. This macro-category of videogames is mainly divided into:
- Massively Multiplayer Online Games (MMOGs):These are games with a very high number of players. Gamers move in the same virtual world, work together to achieve a goal or fight against each other. Among the most popular are role-playing games („Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing-Game“, MMORPG), involving thousands of players, or real-time games with an infinite number of gamers.
- Online shooter:players battle each other in predefined and limited levels; when it comes to team activities, communication between gamers becomes crucial.
- Multiplayer Online Battle Arena (MOBA):A minimum of two players fight in a kind of arena represented by a map. The aim is to destroy the opposing bases or defeat the enemy team.
- Battle-Royale Games:These are mostly survival games within a limited environment.
Popular games: League of Legends, World of Warcraft, The Elder Scrolls Online
Game mechanisms and possible risks
Parents of children who are passionate about video games want to be 100% sure that the content offered to their children is suitable for their age . When looking for the right video game it is important to take into consideration several factors, such as the complexity of the plot, the degree of difficulty, but also some characteristics of the different genres.
A genre for every age
Some genres of video games, such as jump’n run or simulation ones, entertain and thrill children even without the presence of elements that could impact with their sensitivity and maturity. On the other hand, there are other genres which, by their nature, are reserved for teenagers over the age of 16 or even for adults only. Most shooter games, but also strategy and military simulation ones, fall into this group.
Tip: Many sites offer the ability to filter games by gender, age and platform type. In this way you can carry out a targeted search, immediately identifying the games that correspond to your child’s interest and age.
It is not always that easy to draw a clear dividing line between the different types of video games. Some action and adventure games have elements taken from the shooter genre, starring a third figure, and are therefore suitable for an audience of teenagers and adults (PEGI 16). In reality, even within the same genre, very different audiences can be identified : some adventure video games have graphics and atmospheres designed for children and families, while others offer plots and contents closer to horror and are therefore more suitable for an adult audience. If you are trying to select a game of one or more genres, then you will have to take into account many factors and carefully consider several aspects.
Potential risk factors for children
The inclusion of certain game elements or specific plots arises from the need of videogame producers to create a fun product able to keep the interest of the players alive even over the years. The goal is to win over gamers, pushing them to devote time and money to their video game rather than to one of the competition. Some mechanisms exert an irresistible charm on children and adults, creating expectations and leading gamers to invest money in the purchase of the new chapter of the series . These are some of the characteristics that could turn into dangers for your children: 
- Online multiplayer:Playing in a team can generate pressure from other members and push players to invest more time than they would like. In addition to this, your child may befriend strangers or people who want to take advantage of him.
- Online functions:without the appropriate settings, children can have access to portals where they are invited to purchase products or come into contact with content that is not suitable for their age.
- Reward and Reward Systems:In some games, the ability to advance to the next level is not just due to skill and ability, but also the time invested. If you perform certain tasks, your personal loot is enriched and the protagonist of the game acquires new functions and skills. Some games also reward the fact that you log in every day. This is a ploy to encourage players to devote more and more time to the game.
- Payment systems or in-game purchases:Additional functions and other elements of the game are activated only for a fee. It is a very strong temptation for children who, in this way, can take advantage of their opponents.
Children and teenagers see video games as moments of fun and entertainment. For parents, however, it is a minefield in which to move with due precautions. To reduce the possible risks to zero, carefully inform yourself about the elements contained in your child’s favorite video games and exclude from your selection those that do not respect his real development. He identifies his favorite genres and then analyzes, from time to time, if the game he would like to buy really respects his maturity. Security settings can help you limit the dangers, while the type of platform you choose can make it easier for you to control. Make sure your child experiences the gaming world with peace of mind and safe from dangers.