This week’s What I’ve Been Reading is all about toys and games and games and toys and toys and games and games and toys…

  • Everybody who has ever played a game of Risk knows that it’s a soul-sucking death trap that ruins friendships. Tom Reimann of Cracked has a list of it and 5 other games that are perfect for turning your closest friends into mortal enemies.
  • The ESRB has taken great lengths to educate parents about the age-appropriateness of various video games, even going as far as to put content descriptors on the back of each retail box. The problem, though, according to an anonymous video game retail employee writing for Kotaku, is that parents often ignore the various rating labels and buy violent and/or sexual games for their children. At this point, I’m not sure what more the ESRB can do. If parents willfully ignore their warnings, then it’s their fault for exposing their kids to age-inappropriate content, not the ESRB’s.
  • Finally, two students at Olin College, Matt Donahoe and Jeff DeCew, built a calculator entirely out of K’Nex. Check it out. This is one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen.

Wasn’t that fun? Feel free to talk about toys and games in the comments.