How to play Skyrim with small children

Over at Brainy Gamer, Michael Abbott teaches how to play Skyrim with the under-7 crowd by sharing his experience in playing the high-fantasy game with his 4-year-old daughter Zoe. Unsurprisingly, it’s a constantly-supervised activity, but with the right guidance an open-world RPG can be a great teaching tool:

Thanks to Skyrim, Zoe knows North from South and East from West. She’s learning how to read a map, choose a destination, and chart a course. Fast travel is out of the question. 

I spared Zoe the Fellglow Keep gore, but let her face The Caller boss at the end of the quest for a reason. We were given the choice of fighting her or negotiating with her, but we found a third option we liked better. We cast an Invisibility spell, grabbed the stolen books, picked her pocket for the exit key, and escaped the dungeon. “We were smarter than her, Daddy!” You bet we were.

With the right setup, many grown-up games can become kids’ games.