Parental Controls in Online Gaming

Table of Contents:

What are Parental Controls in Online Gaming?

Parental controls in online gaming are software and tools that allow parents to set controls on their children’s online gaming platforms like Microsoft, Sony, Nintendo, etc. They are designed to help protect children from such kind of content, which is not suitable for their mental health. These controls can be used in many ways, e.g. to help ensure that your children access only age-appropriate games, to set usage times, and to monitor activity, etc. It allows the parents to have an eye on their children’s online gaming activities like where they are spending their money and time.

How Microsoft Helps in Parental Controls

Microsoft helps the parents in Parental Controls in different ways. It not only has a family plan about it but also provides some different controls on every game it offers. It has many parental control plans for child health care. Microsoft owns the XBOX brand.  Some of the major Microsoft family features are as follows:

  • Set screen time limits
  • Set app and game limits
  • Require kids to ask a parent before buying any stuff
  • Set age limits
  • View child’s activity report
  • Have a fund account for your child

How Sony Helps in Parental Controls

Sony offers parents Parental Controls in different ways. It also has a family management tools where you can assign roles to yourself, other adult family members and child family members under the age of 18.

Sony’s Parental Controls allows you to:

  • Restrict your child’s access to the PlayStation web browser
  • You can set monthly spending limits to specify how much children can spend at the PlayStation store each month
  • Set up layers of pass code protection, allowing you to disable guest logins and prevent changes to parental control settings.
  • Set age restrictions for Games, Blu-Ray Discs and DVDs
  • Disable Chat, messaging and content sharing

How Fortnite helps in Parental Controls

Fortnite is one of the highly-rated games in the world and a huge part of its massive fan base are children. To let your kids enjoy their childhood with these amazing games without inappropriate content, Fortnite also provides parental controls. Fortnite is a multiplayer game, which implies your children may wind up playing with complete outsiders notwithstanding their companions.

You can disable all in-application buys on your kid’s iPhone and iPad* through its settings. You can even keep unknown individuals from seeing your kid’s in-game name. In addition to controls designed to prevent your child from interacting with unknown people, parental control likewise allows you to view time spent playing on a daily or weekly basis to monitor how much time your child is sinking into the game.

* Please note that as of August 2020, Fortnite isn’t available via iOS. View more details here:  https://www.epicgames.com/site/en-US/free-fortnite-faq

How Roblox helps in Parental Controls

Roblox is an online video game that energizes inventiveness and correspondence between players, of all ages. There is no age limit for playing Roblox, which implies that gamers will conceivably be connecting with others in various age gatherings and witness content that might not be appropriate for their mental health. Roblox offers various extraordinary highlights that permit guardians to restrict who their children cooperate with while yet giving them an opportunity on the stage. In this screen-centered world, kids love gaming and guardians should attempt to make a solid screen time balance as video gaming has both advantages and disadvantages.

As a feature of Family Zone’s numerous useful highlights, they can block Roblox from your youngsters’ gadgets, without obstructing different games they might be permitted to play. The absence of control (despite language filters) in the visit highlight and transferred client content leaves kids in danger of openness to a stressful scope of unseemly grown-up substance, harassing, and misuse.

I also have my own avatar in Roblox and will join in my childs gaming sessions. This is a good way to monitor their activity in Roblox and to also spend time with them playing the many games that Roblox has to offer.

How Nintendo helps in Parental Controls

Just like the Nintendo 3DS parental controls before it, the Nintendo Switch’s parental controls empower a parent to limit their youngster’s time or primarily screen what they have been utilizing it for. Here area unit a little of its elementary highlights:

  • Keep a watch on playtime – set screen limits
  • Decide that game they will play – you will set custom choices based upon the age of your child
  • Customize online options – Limit sharing of in-game text or pictures per game, limit the flexibility to post screenshots to social media

Microsoft Family Plan

The Microsoft family plan is the best plan for parental control. It not only ensures the children’s mental health but also finds the location of children if they are apart from their family by Microsoft family map. It also filters out all the appropriate games according to the age of users so that they can play the games that are relevant for their growing health. It limits the screen time of device usage. It also provides the weekly report of children’s activity and shows the screen time of their device usage.

  • Set screen limits

Learn how to set screen time limits on your child or family member’s Xbox and Windows devices. See how much time they have left for the day, give them more time, or decide time’s up. You can set limits on https://family.microsoft.com or the Family Safety app.

  • Set app and game limits

On the off chance that your child is investing an excess of energy in certain applications or games, you can draw certain lines on that application or game to assist them with accomplishing a good arrangement. Application and game cutoff points are accessible on Windows 10 and Xbox gadgets, alongside Android gadgets with Microsoft Family Safety, introduced.

When you set a boundary, that cutoff will work across the entirety of their gadgets. (For example, if you give them two hours on YouTube, they can spend a total of two hours on YouTube across Windows 10, Xbox, and Android.) Always allowed games will appear in the apps and games card. If you get a request for your kid or relative to download an application or game that is over their age limit, it will show up in the allowed section.

  • Require kids to ask a parent before buying any stuff

You can set up a family member’s account to require adult approval for the things they want to buy in the Microsoft Store—except for what they get with gift cards or money in their Microsoft account. Only organizers will be able to approve. Parents should get an email or any message whenever the child tries to buy any stuff from online gaming websites or apps. Therefore, parents should know that what kind of stuff their children are using or buying to use. This will help the parents to be updated about their children’s activities and will know what their children are currently doing.

  • Set age limits

XBOX also provides an age limit for everyone to play by setting the age limits and other settings on the family settings group, it will provide its users a more comfortable and reliable platform. The user will only be able to see the games according to his/her age. Other games will be filtered out. This will help the parents to be more satisfied with the health of their child and do not have to keep a parent’s control on their children every time they use it.

  • View Child’s activity report

When you add your child to your family group and turn on activity reporting, you will get weekly activity report emails that show you a summary of their activity on Microsoft Edge and Windows 10, Xbox, and Android devices that have Microsoft Family Safety installed. The reports include games and apps they used websites they visited, terms they searched for on search engines like Bing, and how much screen time they had.

You can also view activity reports and turn the setting on or off from the web or in the Microsoft Family Safety app. Along with the activity report, you will also be able to see the screen time of your child’s devices. For a breakdown of your child’s overall time spent on each of their devices, the Screen time section indicates when and for how long your child used their devices throughout the week. You will see a list of how much time they spent on their devices overall by each day, and how much time they spent on each device during the entire week.

  • Have a fund account for your child

Microsoft allows you to fund an account for your child, avoiding the need to store a credit card. You can share the benefits of a single Xbox Live Gold subscription with anyone who uses your Xbox One or Xbox Series X|S console. This feature does not allow others to buy content while using the credit card that’s linked to your subscription. If you are concerned about access to your profile and billing information, ensure that, everyone who uses your console signs in with their own Xbox profile. Following are ways to prevent unauthorized purchases and changes to your Xbox profile and Microsoft account:

  1. Create and manage a passkey for your XBOX Console
  2. Require a passkey for purchases on your XBOX One Console
  3. Make a profile for everyone who uses your console
  4. Control your payment info
  5. Add money to your child’s Microsoft account
  6. Manage kids in your Microsoft family group by using the Xbox Family Settings app and set limits on how much kids can spend in the Microsoft store
  7. Turn on Ask a parent
  8. Sign out when you’re done using your console. 
  9. Add a guest account.

How to activate Microsoft family safety parental control in Windows 10

To set the most recent Windows Parental Controls and Microsoft Family Safety features, both parent and child need to have a Microsoft Account.

The following steps are only applicable if the child logs into the Microsoft account:

  • Select Start and choose Settings to launch the Windows Settings app.
  • Select Accounts.
  • In the left pane, select Family & Other Users.
  • Select Add a Family Member if your child does not have a separate account on your device. This step launches a Microsoft Account wizard.
  • Select Add a Child the either enter your child’s email address or select The Person I Want To Add Doesn’t Have An Email Address.
  • Read the information offered (what you see here depends on what you selected in Step 5), and choose Close.

Conclusion

Families have responsibilities and duties of taking precautions for their children to balance their physical as well as mental health. The Parental Control feature in online gaming effectively prevents children’s attempts to access unwanted content of games that are inappropriate for their age and can cause serious mental issues. Of course, only parents can decide which categories of games are off-limits to their children.

Online gaming is here to stay, but it has a lot of disadvantages. Parents should set up parental controls and monitor their children’s online behavior. As a parent, I make sure my child’s online experience is monitored closely. I have enabled the following parental controls on my child’s devices and I figured other people would find this information to be helpful.

Happy Gaming!
– Demetrius

 

Author: Demetrius Pinder

Owner and Project Manager of Nuts and Bolts Web Design. Computing Support Specialist II and Adjunct Professor at the University of Delaware. Proud Husband, Father and dog owner!