12 year old wanting to play 18 rated XBox game

(119 Posts)
Wordsmith Sun 02-Sep-12 11:52:56

My 12 year old son is obsessed with getting the new Black Ops 2 video game out soon. It's an 18 rated game and I'm determined he's not having it. He nagged for ages to get Modern Warfare 3 and we eventually caved in, much to my regret, and I've told him he's not having another 18 rated game until he's much older. His argument is that literally ALL of his friends will be getting it and playing online with each other, and he'll be left out. I've explained all the reasons why he shouldn't have 18 rated games. I know we shouldn't have let him have MW3 and am determined not to start a trend. I do understand how he feels re his friends, but would really appreciate some cogent arguments we could offer him which might help him understand that we're not just horrible parents who are being too strict. I've tried everything I can think of.

He's a typical pre-teenager, glued to a screen most of the time, and I'm trying to get him to have a bit more of a life - and I know that if he did get this game, it would make it even harder for me to do so.

Any advice gratefully received.

ChuffMuffin Tue 04-Sep-12 13:17:58

If your DS has xbox live I can absolutely guarantee he will be abused by most other players, like this

valiumredhead Tue 04-Sep-12 13:28:19

You can have family settings on x box live and we have ours in the front room where I can monitor what's going on.

bonhomiee Tue 04-Sep-12 14:53:13

Explaining why he can't have it is fine.. but don't expect him to agree with you

I presume he is your eldest otherwise you would be a seasoned"No" er from previous experience...you need to be a lot firmer I think it all seems so drawn out.

Wordsmith Tue 04-Sep-12 15:28:59

Hi Bonhomiee yes he is the eldest - how can you tell grin? It's not drawn out from my side, I just keep saying no! He'll give in one day then I'll get it again in November, when the game is released.

I'll have to check the family settings on XBox, thanks Valiumred.

ChuffMuffin, that's vile. Yes he is on XBox Live. He mainly links up with his friends on there.

He makes videos of his Minecraft builds and puts them up on YouTube - at the moment he's interested in getting into that sort of business when he leaves school (he'll probably change his mind by then) so I don't mind him doing that.

It is true that most of his friends will have it. And you are right, most parents seem not to care about age ratings on games. Certainly most of the ones that ever came into my shop didn't. It's worrying. A lot of parents don't seem to think that games warrant the same concern as films. A worrying amount seem to think that age ratings are difficulty ratings.

At 12, I would not be allowing Xbox live, to be honest. That's just me. And you should be vetting games carefully. The staff in your local games shop can help you with this. They probably wish more parents would ask such questions.

I think you just have to accept that it may impact their social lives, just like until he is an adult, some decisions that you make will do so. Teenagers are united in what their parents will not allow. It's just one of those things.

If I was dealing with this issue, I wouldn't be going down the road of research and damage to children. You have your evidence. It's ratings. a board has decided that some games are not suitable for under 18s. The reasons are x,y and z (and you can find PEGI and BBFC criteria on their websites). Tell him at what point you will reevaluate your decision, and that you will be vetting all future games.

mathanxiety Tue 04-Sep-12 15:54:42

'...and I just need to say 'No' (I am saying no, I thought I had made that clear).'

If you had made it clear then your DS wouldn't have any hope of having the game and would not be keeping on asking you. You wouldn't be looking for arguments to use with him. Nor would you be dithering about his social life.

He has found your achilles heel -- you are worried he will be left out. That is going to trump every other consideration. He is going to work on that. He doesn't care about the impact of 18 rated games. It is always going to come back to the social life, the fear of him being bullied or excluded.

mathanxiety Tue 04-Sep-12 15:59:37

It's not that tricky parenting boys. They respect authority much more than girls do I have found. You have to harness your inner authority. He will understand no if you say it with conviction.

Wordsmith Tue 04-Sep-12 16:07:06

That's probably very true Mathanxiety. I think he's still trying because he thinks my DH will talk me into it. And because he plans to pay for it with his own money (which we tell him is 'to spend on stuff he wants including video games'). I don't seem to be able to get it through to him that it's not about money. he really thinks playing an 18 rated game won't affect him.

And it's true Pfft... he used to think the age ratings reflected the difficulty levels of the games, until we put him right. It's scary that many parents still think that. Comments from his friends' parents on age-inappropriate games have included: "Well you've got to let them have what their friends have, don't you," "There's no harm is there," and "I can't see why you're worried about it". And most of these kids play the game alone, in their bedrooms behind closed doors. I do have to bite my tongue sometimes.

PropositionJoe Tue 04-Sep-12 17:01:30

Well my two seem to understand pretty well that they won't be getting any 18 games and that even when they are 18 they won't be bringing anything I regard as offensive into our house (Grand Theft Auto springs to mind).

I have also allowed Halo which is 15. It is a first person game but shooting aliens. Assassins creed is third person. It is the realistic first person shooters I don't like because I firmly believe they mess with your head and teenage brains are far from fully formed. Interestingly when they first got Halo they found it made them quite stressed and tense so they only play it when they have friends round.

ladybird4 Thu 08-Nov-12 19:22:44

give up cos you won't win this war - you're deluded if you think that he's not going to play it at friends houses so I wouldnt waste my energy fighting this one. Just put him on a timer and that way you're stopping him from becoming addicted and you are showing him who's boss. I wasted too much time deliberating over whether to allow my 10 year old COD for Christmas cos all of his friends really did have it and it was their sole topic of conversation for that month anyway! Listen, the only worry you should have concerning the xbox is if he becomes addicted - to ANY game (Minefield included) - then your problems are real. In other words don't sweat the small stuff.

LynetteScavo Thu 08-Nov-12 19:32:23

As a mother of a 13yo who has presented their intelligent DS with every argument against playing 18 games, I can tell you the easiest is; "I don't want you witnessing violence, (insert your personal argument against violence if you wish...but really just save your breath) so I'm not letting you have it. Even if that makes me think I'm a mean, miserable old cow." Repeat endlessly for several months, and they might get the message. There maybe times when you need to say "BECAUSE I'M YOUR MOTHER AND I'VE SAID NO!" By the age of 12 he will have already figured violence = bad, so no need to elaborate too much.

winkle2 Thu 08-Nov-12 20:41:33

I know someone who let their two year old play these games!!

LynetteScavo Thu 08-Nov-12 20:52:28

Well, that someone is very stupid.

Does she give them beer and a cigarette too?

winkle2 Thu 08-Nov-12 21:00:21

No cause she doesn't smoke or drink. The same kid said wanker in front if me the other day! He's 5 now. She announced once that she allows swearing in front of her kids. I was like shock

slipslider Mon 12-Nov-12 23:27:21

For those who wonder if any 18 game is appropriate or not for their underage child just consider how a whole class of 9/10 year olds in my school know what 'tea bagging' is now because of COD! You can teabag your enemies in this game and our class this is it something hilarious to copy during playtimes. It is not just the violence but I think adult behaviours such as this are not appropriate for children!

Theas18 Mon 12-Nov-12 23:37:33

Umm nope, not in this house!

But Then again we don't have an x box or ps3 anyway lol. We have wii that's not been used for ages ( since ds finished skyward sword in his pst GCSE games feet) and a ps2 that he bought with his savings and at 16 still plays some football on! I think when he was 12/13 he was too busy to worry too much about gaming really.

Hell cope with " being left out". It won't be the first or last time hell be different o his mates.

Childsveiwsmatter Thu 15-Nov-12 21:38:41

I'm sorry I'm going to have to disagree. I think you should Jugde on how mature they are because everyone reacts differently to games. I can understand that it can be hard to judge but if you are there mum or dad you will probably be able to make a fair decision. And be confident in you decision! Also I would like to add that it makes you look very small and weak if you bullshit about kids on a mums website(kids lie) what shit is that!!!! I hope this has helped you see clearly through your parents are always right crap

bakedbeanqueen Sun 09-Dec-12 19:11:12

My son is 9, nearly 10 and is desperate for Call of Duty. He looks longingly at it every time he sees it in the shop. My technique is simple. I just say NO!! He won't be having 18 rated games for many years yet.

TheNebulousBoojum Sun 09-Dec-12 19:34:26

Why answer a zombie thread?
Unless you are buying him Resident Evil for Christmas.

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