The Aetherlight game is designed for pre-teen age players. Of course, older kids might enjoy it but the game is geared more toward pre-teen age kids. Younger kids would need the ability to read to fully enjoy this game. Currently only Episode 1 is available for game play but Episode 2 will be releasing in August and you can pre-order it now. This game is supported by Windows, OSX, Android, and iOS.
As a parent, I loved what this games goal is. When asked "What are you trying to teach in this game?" check out the game studio's response: "The Bible is one complete story from Genesis to Revelation (not a random collection of unrelated stories). Despite the many different stories and types of literature in the Bible, there is a definite narrative thread that tells a purposeful story — the presence and activity of God in the world to work through his people to redeem creation. Jesus is the high-point of this Story – it is all about him, it all only makes sense with him. Humanity has a part to play in this story, by partnering with God in his redemption of his people and creation." Then asked "Why is this important?" they responded: Pre-teens today grow up in a world with many competing stories on which they can base their lives. Will it be the story of consumerism? Or perhaps the story of Hedonism? Or even the story of Nihilism? None of these stories are sustainable, and to the Christian, we know that the best story to base your life on is the story of a loving God who created the world good, and despite humanity’s sin, has enacted a plan to redeem and restore that which he created. Pre-teens are caught up in various "life stories" at a young age, and we believe that these stories need to be subverted at a young age with the story of the gospel, so that pre-teens (and teens!) can begin to live an alternative story with confidence. Knowing the story of the Bible will give tweens and teens a vocabulary and a “set of lenses” to view the world and culture as they transition from childhood into adulthood." This is a game that wants to partner with us as parents to help our children in some of their most challenging and formative years to have a solid foundation on which to base their lives and choices. Being able to accomplish that in a game form that the kids will probably not even realize how much they are learning is even better!
One of the things our kids enjoyed about this game is the online gaming community you can play with. They can play with their friends or make new friends in the game. The Aetherlight adheres to KidSafe guidelines as well as COPPA compliance and they have a moderation team to ensure online gaming safety and a bully-free zone during game play. There is also a Parents Dashboard where you can set your own personal controls for your child's game play and even set a timer of how long they can play!
The storyline of The Aetherlight is that the world of Aethasia is under the control of the bad emperor Lucky. He rules the land, literally “with an iron fist”, by his Automatons and a fog, that holds the land captive. The player joins the Resistance to help the mysterious Scarlet Man back on the throne as great engineer. On his way, he meets others, solves puzzles and quests and becomes an engineer be himself. The game is allegorical and is closely linked to the Biblical narrative, however does not use Biblical names, places, and language that may confuse or alienate some players. The player will have the opportunity to partake in exercises that link the game story of Aethasia with the Bible text and their own lives through what we call the Resistance Academy.
Our kids really enjoyed playing this game too. They found the storyline to be intriguing and the game play to be challenging yet fun. Our kids have all read C.S. Lewis' "Chronicles of Narnia" book series and they found some similarities to this story throughout the game play. Our kids also like the colorful characters and unique costumes too. Our 11 year old is excited for Episode 2 to come out and already looking forward to continuing his quest when it is released. If you're looking for a very kid-friendly game that also reinforces and teaches Biblical concepts, The Aetherlight is a game for you!
Disclaimer: I was given the opportunity to review The Aetherlight Episode 1 for free from Ravu Collective. No monetary compensation was received for this blog post and the opinions expressed here reflect my personal thoughts and opinions. Your results and opinions may vary from mine.