Welcome Back to ESRB’s Family Gaming Guide

November 22, 2022

Just in time for the holidays – the ESRB Family Gaming Guide is getting an upgrade! The seemingly endless selection of great video games and the interactive features that come with online play can make managing kids’ video game experiences a challenge, which is where the ESRB Family Gaming Guide can help.

The Family Gaming Guide was created to be a user-friendly, digestible tool for parents and caregivers to quickly find information about the games their kids are playing and asking about. Today, we’re launching a new, streamlined interface to help parents and caregivers find what they’re looking for quickly. Paired with updated information to help parents address key concerns around video games, screen time, online game play, privacy, and more, the updated Family Gaming Guide is a go-to resource.

The new guide can help parents and caregivers with:

  • Selecting Appropriate Video Games
    • Learn the steps you can take as a parent to understand the content of a video game before downloading or buying it for your kids. This section provides advice on everything from checking the ESRB-assigned rating information, to the benefits of trying a game before making a purchase.
  • Establishing Household Rules
    • Household rules are an important step to help ensure video game play has a positive, balanced place in a child’s day-to-day life. This section has guidance around appropriate games, screen time, online play, and more.
  • Setting Up a Child Account and Using Parental Controls
    • Back up household rules with parental controls, which are available on virtually every device that can play video games. The guide explains the ins and outs of how parental controls can help manage what kids play, with whom, for how long, and whether they can spend money on new games and/or in-game purchases. Be sure to visit ParentalTools.org for in-depth, step-by-step instructions for most video game devices.
  • Playing Multiplayer Games Online
    • Online gameplay is a great way for kids to socialize and keep in touch with friends, classmates, and family members. From group chats on Discord to round after round of Among Us, there are resources to help children have a safe, positive experience online, such as reviewing community guidelines and showing them how to block, mute and report other players.
  • Managing Screen Time
    • Kids depend on screens and devices for schoolwork, entertainment, and socialization, so it’s no surprise that managing screen time spent is a priority for parents. Beyond setting household rules, there are tools to help set boundaries around screen time. Learn more about how to navigate these features, set up timers and other tips.
  • Privacy Tips for Parents
    • Whether children are using their parents’ device or their own, there are tools and options to help parents maintain their kids’ privacy while playing their favorite games. While there are laws that govern the collection and use of online information, reviewing settings and features are key to making sure that kids’ personal information is protected online.

Along with the updated Family Gaming Guide, we’re launching a series of videos highlighting each of the six sections. Narrated by Kinda Funny’s Greg Miller, the videos cast parents as the household hero, making sure their kids’ video game experiences are fun and appropriate.

With the new, enhanced Family Gaming Guide, parents can enjoy the peace of mind that comes with knowledge and information, while kids get to benefit from the best of what video games have to offer.