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View Full Version : Parental timer coming in the Fall Update?


Spot2009
09-06-2007, 02:49 AM
Right off Kotaku:

http://kotaku.com/gaming/rumor/xbox-360-fall-update-to-bring-parental-timer-296340.php


Rumor has it that the bi-annual Xbox 360 firmware update set to hit this fall will bring with it a number of interesting updates, chief among them a new Parental Timer.
Sources tell me that the update will allow people to set a password protected usage timer on their Xbox 360s. In other words, parents or loved ones will be able to limit the amount of time someone can game on the system during a given time period.
Personally, I think this is a brilliant idea and I can't figure why no console has done this before (that I know of). I'm fairly on top of things when it comes to my 6-year-old and his gaming habits. In fact I set up his 360 on the television in my loft office, so typically I'm right next to him when he plays. But, it's easy for me to lose track of time and even easier for him to. We use a system that requires him to do math, reading or writing homework to earn television time and video game time. Now I can just add this little timer to the formula and allow it to track just how much time he has left.
Brilliant, simply brilliant.

Me™
09-06-2007, 03:11 AM
Wow thats kinda lame...

Tussell
09-06-2007, 03:14 AM
No gaming past 8:30 for me. :(

Naht! But I guess it's good, maybe some parents will take this in to effect, and we can finally play Gears of War with someone that has more than .02 brain matter.

Mr Hey
09-06-2007, 03:21 AM
Don't tell my mom please.

Tiamat66
09-06-2007, 04:02 AM
I'm just glad that they didn't have this shit when I was a kid. Between this and the V chip, kids have it pretty bad these days...

Kaens
09-06-2007, 05:04 AM
I'm just glad that they didn't have this shit when I was a kid. Between this and the V chip, kids have it pretty bad these days... Yeah it must be rough having so many great games, cartoons on at least four different channels all day long, internet and cable tv in every home. I cherished my Intellivision and played whatever crappy stick figure skiing game came out for a month because there was nothing else to play OR that we could afford. I remember smacking the tv hoping somehow that would miraculously cause better reception than the aluminum foil on the rabbit ears. What's a remote? I had to get off my ass and turn the big fat knob to one of the 12 channels! And I remember when Saturday morning cartoons was the ONLY time you could see cartoons and then only until noon. You ever stay up all night long coding Basic into your Tandy Color Computer so you could watch a 2 second stick figure dive into water? Doubtful.

Go watch an Andy Griffith Show marathon on TLC or something and tell me how rough kids have it that parents can automatically limit their playtime instead of having to yell at them. Any tools that make a parents life easier are a good thing because most kids these days need a lot more discipline. Kids have it rough, you have got to be kidding me!

Fonkey Monkey
09-06-2007, 05:09 AM
its pretty cool if you ask me.
i wish they had it for the xbox. i swear all my little brother does is play xbox and hes only 5, if he keeps it up hes going to be overweight by the time hes 10.

Scotian Bred
09-06-2007, 05:16 AM
DUMB DUMB DUMB ... if this is the Major part of the update then what does that say about parents .. can't they have the upperhand in tearing thier kid away from the game box .. or is it like trying to take a crack pipe away from a crackhead. stupid stupid stupid .. they should be fixing the achievement notification .. does anyone else still open the guide when you see that pop up just to se what pic you get with it .. i know i do and i would like to see the picture pop up along with the description and GS worth .. this idea is totally dumb .. and i hope whoever got the scoop is dead wrong !

RedstaR
09-06-2007, 05:35 AM
I'm glad I control the parental stuff on my account ;).

Stinkyf1re
09-06-2007, 05:45 AM
I'm glad I control the parental stuff on my account ;).

I hear that! My 360 only turns off when i TURN it off :) And here's to staying that way for a while :drunk

M7.Ninja
09-06-2007, 08:25 AM
It's just another BS attempt to get parents to supress their children's fun time. Just you wait for 20 years, and you'll see who uses this crappy feature anymore.

When I have kids, I'll raise them on The Legend of Zelda and, when they get it, Halo and Gears of War. It'll be open ended everyday once they're done with homework. Eat that, Jack Thompson!

P1NSEEKER
09-06-2007, 08:30 AM
I hope it warns the kid before it just turns off so they have a cahnce to save their game!

PerpetualHeaven
09-06-2007, 01:07 PM
I find it funny the ones that say it's a stupid/dumb idea are the younger ones ;) I personally think it's an excellent feature for any parent. To be honest, our youth isn't in the best shape ever. They need to indulge into other things then just video games.

codedigital
09-06-2007, 01:17 PM
I hope it warns the kid before it just turns off so they have a cahnce to save their game!

Hahaha...that was my first thought. I couldn't imagine being a little kid and playing 2 hours of a game and forgetting to save before it turns off the console. That'd piss me off.

I find it funny the ones that say it's a stupid/dumb idea are the younger ones ;) I personally think it's an excellent feature for any parent. To be honest, our youth isn't in the best shape ever. They need to indulge into other things then just video games.

Exactly! It's a wonderful feature simply because parents are too lazy as it is. You children need to stop whining. It's probably your parents that need this the most.

My two daughters game all the time...but they are smart enough to do it in moderation. Heavyn can play her DS for 1 hour then go outside and play for the rest of the day...then come in at night and pick it up for an hour before she reads. She's an avid gamer...and in my mind a perfect example what a child gamer should be.



And Kaens...your post really cracked me up. I did all of that and more :)

Apocobring
09-06-2007, 01:50 PM
I really do think this is a good thing. This was put into world of warcraft just about the time I went to college, or at least right about then is when I started using it. When being forced to limit things because you can't, you will start to get dicipline. After a while, the parental controls won't even be needed because you understand the other obligations you have. I know this sucks for the younger people out there, but trust me, it is useful.

Crash
09-06-2007, 01:50 PM
Yeah it must be rough having so many great games, cartoons on at least four different channels all day long, internet and cable tv in every home. I cherished my Intellivision and played whatever crappy stick figure skiing game came out for a month because there was nothing else to play OR that we could afford. I remember smacking the tv hoping somehow that would miraculously cause better reception than the aluminum foil on the rabbit ears. What's a remote? I had to get off my ass and turn the big fat knob to one of the 12 channels! And I remember when Saturday morning cartoons was the ONLY time you could see cartoons and then only until noon. You ever stay up all night long coding Basic into your Tandy Color Computer so you could watch a 2 second stick figure dive into water? Doubtful.

Go watch an Andy Griffith Show marathon on TLC or something and tell me how rough kids have it that parents can automatically limit their playtime instead of having to yell at them. Any tools that make a parents life easier are a good thing because most kids these days need a lot more discipline. Kids have it rough, you have got to be kidding me!

haha. Amazing how times have changed isn't it. It was much different when I was growing up. We had a tv with no cable, only rabbit ears, and as you said cartoons only on Saturday mornings at first and eventually a couple around the time school got out. Even then there were 10 kids in the house (my parents did foster care) and so it was rare that anything was on you wanted to watch anyways. I got an Atari 2600 on my 7th birthday, but it was hooked to a small b&w tv and with only a couple games, wasn't played too much. We didn't have an AC, dishwasher, cell phone, internet... heck we didn't even have a cpu. Most of the day was spent outside playing games, doing chores, or exploring (we had 70+ acres of woodland on our property). I know all too many kids that would never be able to handle living like that today :(



I find it funny the ones that say it's a stupid/dumb idea are the younger ones ;) I personally think it's an excellent feature for any parent. To be honest, our youth isn't in the best shape ever. They need to indulge into other things then just video games.

Yep exercise is something that many kids need and don't get enough of anymore. I am not agianst kids playing games.. but it needs to be done in small portions and after more important things are done. My oldest daughter sometimes gets mad at me because I tell her she needs to turn off the tv, cpu, or game and go outside to play for awhile :p

Flea
09-06-2007, 01:55 PM
I can see it now,
your kids playing a game and just about to save when poof,
the 360 turns itself off.

Timers are for lazy parents,
when i tell my son he can play for a set period of time on his 360,
i go and tell him when his times almost up so he knows to save his game,
if he doesnt save it within his 20 minute warning it goes off,
That way no kid annoyed he didnt save his game.

teh x3nomorph
09-06-2007, 03:23 PM
They should have the treadmill attachment for kids instead of a timer.


You can keep on playing as long as you can keep running on this treadmill.


2 birds with 1 stone.

Vampire x360a
09-06-2007, 04:01 PM
Don't tell my mom please.
dito that, no my parents know about my gaming habits they have given up on stoping them, they know when they are defeated :)

thagame
09-07-2007, 04:45 AM
I can see it now,
your kids playing a game and just about to save when poof,
the 360 turns itself off.

Timers are for lazy parents,
when i tell my son he can play for a set period of time on his 360,
i go and tell him when his times almost up so he knows to save his game,
if he doesnt save it within his 20 minute warning it goes off,
That way no kid annoyed he didnt save his game.

Well then use the timer and remind him when he has 20 min left. If he dont save then it goes off.

PerpetualHeaven
09-07-2007, 05:12 AM
Yep exercise is something that many kids need and don't get enough of anymore. I am not agianst kids playing games.. but it needs to be done in small portions and after more important things are done. My oldest daughter sometimes gets mad at me because I tell her she needs to turn off the tv, cpu, or game and go outside to play for awhile :p

Definitely. My little brother has become such a lazy bastard. I've been trying to get him more into reading some literature too. I remember when I was younger, I was in every single sport. My brother is the total opposite. But he's slowly changing though. He's just one of those poor fools that was sucked in by MMOs (Diablo 2 and Guild Wars).

I can see it now,
your kids playing a game and just about to save when poof,
the 360 turns itself off.

Timers are for lazy parents,
when i tell my son he can play for a set period of time on his 360,
i go and tell him when his times almost up so he knows to save his game,
if he doesnt save it within his 20 minute warning it goes off,
That way no kid annoyed he didnt save his game.

I wouldn't say lazy but more time restricted parents. It's hard to always watch a kid and keep track of everything they're doing. The timer is a helpful tool. It's unfortunate if they lose their save but thats the consequences for playing excessively according to the parents standards. Eventually you won't need the timer.

Exactly! It's a wonderful feature simply because parents are too lazy as it is. You children need to stop whining. It's probably your parents that need this the most.

My two daughters game all the time...but they are smart enough to do it in moderation. Heavyn can play her DS for 1 hour then go outside and play for the rest of the day...then come in at night and pick it up for an hour before she reads. She's an avid gamer...and in my mind a perfect example what a child gamer should be.



And Kaens...your post really cracked me up. I did all of that and more

Not all parents are lazy ;) It really depends but like I said before, kids are hectic and sometimes you have a lot of stuff to do like laundry, cook dinner, work, work after work, getting kids to do homework, not getting them to fight, etc etc etc. It's a big dish definitely. Some parents may be lucky with really obedient and calm children but I think that's rare. Having to constantly fight with them and pester them about playing too many video games is just another thing on the plate. I don't know what it's like but I can sympathize for my mom because my brother and I were and are crazy still and hell I'm 19. I remember when my sister used to live at home also and we were all younger. A parent can only take care of so much.

Honkymagoo
09-07-2007, 08:32 AM
This is awful. The reason kids these days are screwed up is because of shitty parents who either don't watch their kids at all or parents who shelter their kids from the world. On one hand you have kids who are given Xbox and Live as a way for the parents to not have to have a relationship with them. Now I'm all for letting a child learn on his own but not everything! and not from your average dirtbag on xbox live.

On the other hand you have these overbearing parents who don't let their kids have a childhood and they don't let them play T rated games when they're 12 and a half like there's really a difference but the parents don't really care quite enough to try and do research and see it from a realistic point of view.

Now you have M$ adding features to help ruin kids lives even more. Doing this is doing two things. Breeding punks who want to rebel against everything and breeding more overbearing parents. What it comes down to is my main thing in life.

Moderation. Moderation is the best thing you can ever teach your child. Self control is beyond important no matter what you do. If you can have the self control to say hey I love to play video games but I do have homework to do or I also like to maintain a healthy social life in the real world then you're set. Then you wouldn't need stupid features like this that are made to be a punishment instead of a life lesson. /rant

Cyrex
09-07-2007, 10:40 AM
while i am going to make sure that my parents don't see this because they will limit my time to 30 minutes a day because thats what they think is good for a school day

PerpetualHeaven
09-07-2007, 01:59 PM
This is awful. The reason kids these days are screwed up is because of shitty parents who either don't watch their kids at all or parents who shelter their kids from the world. On one hand you have kids who are given Xbox and Live as a way for the parents to not have to have a relationship with them. Now I'm all for letting a child learn on his own but not everything! and not from your average dirtbag on xbox live.

On the other hand you have these overbearing parents who don't let their kids have a childhood and they don't let them play T rated games when they're 12 and a half like there's really a difference but the parents don't really care quite enough to try and do research and see it from a realistic point of view.

Now you have M$ adding features to help ruin kids lives even more. Doing this is doing two things. Breeding punks who want to rebel against everything and breeding more overbearing parents. What it comes down to is my main thing in life.

Moderation. Moderation is the best thing you can ever teach your child. Self control is beyond important no matter what you do. If you can have the self control to say hey I love to play video games but I do have homework to do or I also like to maintain a healthy social life in the real world then you're set. Then you wouldn't need stupid features like this that are made to be a punishment instead of a life lesson. /rant

I think you're overreacting. Are you afraid your parents might use this feature against you? I'm sure there's some sort of loop hole around this and every kid will figure it out. It is not a bad feature at all.

You mention self-control. What's the difference between a timer doing the job and you? You tell your kid to stop playing after 60 minutes, chances are you're going to get into some pointless fight that will probably result in them getting a little more playing time. The timer will turn the 360 off most definitely. The kid has almost no control over that factor. If they want an increase in time, they work for it like anything else in the world or negotiate like real life. Eventually, you won't need the timer anymore. No one would be LAZY or a BAD parent for using it.

And how is this going to ruin kids lives? HAVE YOU SEEN THE KIDS THESE DAYS? Man oh man. When my brother was 11, his friends were talking about drinking and there were girls who already were "putting out". Come on. At 11, I was playing four squares, playing sports, and what not. Now all that kids do is dabble in mindless media, don't manage their time properly. Oh my god, that guy from the OC died *weep* or I'm going to get so hammered!!

Ruining kids lives.. ha. It's sad when kids around my age and lower (I'm 19 by the way) are considered one of the least intelligent. That the intelligence of our society is declining because of us. To be honest, I don't know how many times I've heard that. Do you think anyone can even tell me who Homer is? I guarantee many will say from the guy from the Simpsons. Not even that, the fact that many kids argued with my brother at the age of 14 that Russia isn't the biggest country in the world. A simple geographical fact like that. Russia is almost double the size of Canada.

teh x3nomorph
09-07-2007, 03:18 PM
Total off topic .. but .. 4 squares is THE SHIT!

Skillet
09-07-2007, 06:21 PM
Well, it comes right down to how many of our parents actually care enough to even notice such a feature? I don't have to worry about it simply because I'm old enough and my parents really can't do anything about how long I play anyway. Short of saying "I want the tv to watch Law and Order!" or "That thing's going to fry your brain!" (after watching me play Gears of War for a while)

Of course, back when I was maybe...15? If there was a feature like this on the old Xbox...my parents simply didn't care enough to notice. Let alone use it. I don't think they even know that you can save music to the Hard Drive.

Congrats to the parents who know and use this feature. It's a good thing they care enough about their kids to check things like ESRB ratings...because I'm 99% sure that only the parents that check ESRB ratings to make sure that ten year olds aren't playing Gears of War will use this feature.