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Picking out a game for someone else can be a difficult task. When that someone else happens to be a kid things get even trickier. You have to worry not only about the personal style of the player, but also the appropriateness of the content. After all you want to give them a game that their parents will actually let them play. You do not want to hand and eight year old a game with explicitly, violence or full frontal nudity. That is why today we are going to look at three great titles that you can give to kids of any age.
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Spore is a game that allows kids to create their own creatures and explore alien worlds. They can progress from the level of a single celled organism to tribes to an intergalactic race of explorers. The species are fully customizable and they have multiple worlds so a child can make a whole bunch of creatures.
Do not despair if your target child already has the main Spore game. Spore has a few expansion packs that you can snag to enhance the options for critter creation, such as new feet, tails mouths and color schemes.
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If the child in question is more into puzzles then consider one of the titles in the Luxor family. The simple premise of shooting colored balls into a chain, is simple enough for even the youngest of kids to grasp. Higher levels provide the requisite challenge for older kids. Luxor has the kind of addictive appeal that many a previous generations Tetris fans (or even Dr. Mario) will understand.
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Rollercoaster Tycoon 2 or 3
If you are dealing with a multitasking ball of energy then try one of these titles. They will enjoy bouncing from creating new rides to laying out the park to managing staff and concessions. This one is great for teaching kids about money too, because decisions have fiscal consequences.
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LEGO Star Wars II: The Original Trilogy for PC
The classic Star Wars with a lego twist. This game has a very long play time, so expect this one to keep kids going for at least 10 hours. It is also completely bloodless. When a player dies his lego's just fall apart. The game also has a plethora of bonus achievements (and cheats) for the little ones to try for, extending things even farther if you have a diligent player.
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Any Harry Potter
This set of childhood stories that has created a community of obsessive fandom has one more outlet in the form of a series of games for the PC. There is one game for every movie, as well as a few stand alone games. You may want to advoid the Quiddich World Cup title, because the flight mechanics can be a bit too much for younger kids.
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Now you can shop this holiday season with the confidence that comes from knowing your choices will be kid friendly.
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About ESRB Ratings
The ESRB is a ratings body that decides what games are appropriate for which age level. Each of the games in this piece are rated E, for everyone, which is the most child friendly rating possible.
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A Note of Systems
If you are shopping for someone else's child then you need to ask what system they have. Your main points are:
* Operating system
* Amount of memory space free that can be devoted to the game
* The graphics card in the system
* The processor type
PC games have a very specific set of minimum standards with almost no wiggle room, be alert.