GeekGold Bonus for All Supporters at year's end: 1000!
10,385 Supporters
$15 min for supporter badge & GeekGold bonus
14 Days Left

Support:

Recommend
4 
 Thumb up
 Hide
14 Posts

Arkham Horror» Forums » General

Subject: AH too scary for children? rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Shane Brewer
United States
Monticello
Utah
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Just picked this game up and I'm wondering if anyone has found the theme to be too scary for kids? If so, what age? I want to play it with the fam but don't want to cause any nightmares. angry
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Tibs
United States
Boston
Massachusetts
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I wouldn't count on it. It's more like a tough adventure. The two-sentence description of an eerie shadow falling across you really shouldn't invoke nightmares.

On the other hand, I have a creepy-as-hell playlist that I fully intend on playing for any and all AH players who come my way. Nightmares will be something you have to work for.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
John "Omega" Williams
United States
Kentwood
Michigan
flag msg tools
designer
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
If your kids like ghost stories, haunted house rides and/or monster movies then should be no problem. Especially if none of the adults in the group play up the scares.

If you have adult players in the mix you think might push the fear factor up then you need to take them aside and strongly warn them NOT to do so around your kids - or else.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Sean Allen
United States
Turlock
California
flag msg tools
designer
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Tough question to answer. What is your family threshold for a dark horror themed game? I have Arkham Horror and three young children (the oldest being 8). In my family, my oldest is not ready for this game. As an elementary age teacher, I've learned that many of the families of my students seem to have a much higher threshold for more mature media (movies, games, tv) If you want my opinion, as someone who has worked a number of years with kids ages 5-10, it's OK to wait for the more mature themes. Parents sometimes assume that things don't bother our kids, when in fact, at school I hear them express otherwise.

Great question, but one that can only be answered by you- the parent.

Enjoy the madness of Arkham!

-Sean
8 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Shane Brewer
United States
Monticello
Utah
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
anthropos95 wrote:
it's OK to wait for the more mature themes. Parents sometimes assume that things don't bother our kids, when in fact, at school I hear them express otherwise.

-Sean


That is a fantastic response containing a great deal of wisdom. It's not like we don't already have quite a few other games we can enjoy together. It's always amazing to me what an attentive teacher's perspective can bring.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Fabian
Switzerland
Bern
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I'd say it depends on the kid. I used to be scared to death by late night movies that I watched by crawling out of bed when my parents were to sleep. Like Aliens, for example. Arkham Horror though... a board game where you fight monsters together, that's not all that scary.

Here's a thought: Why don't you ask the kids?
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Rich Moore
United States
Oxford
Ohio
flag msg tools
badge
Gotcha!
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I cannot see the game itself inducing such feelings of horror that they will lead to nightmares in anyone (it's a cool adventure game, but in the end, it is a game...). That being said, I would think you need a child who is literate and patient enough to sit down through a 3+ hour game. My guess is you're looking at a minimum age of 10-12, probably more toward the 12 end of that scale.

While the actual gameplay may not be frightening/nightmare inducing, the images/art may. My kids (4-7) love monsters and are fascinated with the monster chits. But it can be awkward to explain, for example, why Ithaqua is holding a severed head. My guess (again guess!) is that if you're looking for someone to play the game, that the right 12 year old might be able to play and would not be horribly disturbed by the art.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Slumbrng Hok
United Kingdom
London
flag msg tools
Hi Drbrewhaha! I'm26, studied English Lit for my degree and am now a filmmaker. So I watch and read a lot of horror (among other stuff). I'm not easily shaken and didn't find AH frightening when I played it, just tense. HOWEVER! The week I bought the game I played it four times and had some really whacked out nightmares! Obviously it depends on the child but I would say 12 up. It's pretty graphic and colourful. Good luck!
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Brian Morris
United States
Raytown
Missouri
flag msg tools
2nd, 6th and 7th Wisconsin, 19th Indiana, 24th Michigan
badge
24th Michigan Monument Gettysburg Pa
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
While horror themed the game itself is not extremely graphic. I think the answer to the question however depends on your children and I think it's really only a question you can answer depending on their ages and how you think they might respond to the game.

Kudos to you for caring enough to ask the question. I think in the end if in doubt simply go for another game.

Welcome to the Geek by the way!
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Eric Jome
United States
Franklin
Wisconsin
flag msg tools
designer
badge
Avatar
mb
I talk to my very little son about serious or scary things all the time; kids learn these things exist very quickly. So, I try to manage it by explaining that its just pretend. And I tend to use simplistic, less severe terms - "so and so beats up the bad guy", "oh the bad guy hits hard; we'll get him next time!"... And children quickly understand winning and losing too.

My son is much too little to try AH, but as others have mentioned the nasty bits tend to be not too direct. I think with the right approach you could spin the game in a way that wasn't too intimidating or scary.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Bruce Moffatt
Australia
Ipswich
Queensland
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
An excellent and responsible question to ask. Some really great answers too.

My main concern with AH is that some of the card illustrations are quite nightmarish. You can soften the gameplay as others have mentioned but when a card pops up with the image of a Mi-Go wearing a human flesh mask... that's the sort of thing that will stay with an impressionable mind long after the game is over.

I elected to hold off playing AH with my children for this very reason. Some of the images were just a bit too OTT for them. I will have the game ready to go when they are old enough to understand that it is all just pretend. I have tried to make a policy of not rushing my kids to grow up, while not wrapping them in cotton wool either. It's a tricky balance but well worth the effort.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Freelance Police
United States
Palo Alto
California
flag msg tools
designer
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Since you already own the game, I'd recommend going through the monster chits and Ancient One cards and just setting aside the bits with the scary content (like the Terror track token!). You could also photocopy the backs of the monster chits onto thin card and make your own chits. Likewise, you can dispense with drawing out monster tokens from the bag entirely -- the game will be easier, but monster combat is one of the more complicated parts of the game. Estimating how many dice you need to take down a monster may be more number crunching than a kid (or some adults!) would want, anyway.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Colin Houghton
United Kingdom
London
London
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Very interesting and useful thread.

I'm afraid my only contribution is that as an (over)mature adult, nothing in the game scares me more than getting that getting one of the bad rumour cards... they're generally horrid..

...and at these times, attentive reader, I feel my skin crawl as though t'were covered by a loathesome swarm of alien insects, and my very soul does quiver and shake as a nightmarish vision of imminent investigator devouring swells to engulf me like a blasphemous nether-world constriction, accompanied by uncontrolled screams and howls of terror and anguish from my fellow investigators, as beer froth flies from the table and peanuts erupt from their bowls like some mega vesuvian eruption signalling the end of another game (and of the world).
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
John "Omega" Williams
United States
Kentwood
Michigan
flag msg tools
designer
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Indeed, the art may pose the real problem as has been pointed out above, theres some rather disturbing pieces in there.
(This said by a Horror artist no less. whistle )

I second the idea of screening out the cards with the more grotesque imagry like the aformentioned Mi-go.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.