Playing video games is brilliant fun – and playing responsibly keeps it that way. Follow the steps below to #SeizeTheControls and join us in our mission to use PEGI and parental controls to ensure video gameplay is always a happy, positive, rewarding experience for all.

#SeizetheControls is a public awareness campaign launched by the Interactive Software Federation of Europe (ISFE), the European trade association representing the video games industry.

"Millions of young people in Europe play video games, and we know that many parents are looking for information on how they can manage their children’s play. We're delighted to see initiatives such as these - to raise awareness, and encourage both players and parents to #SeizeTheControls – so that gameplay can be a safe, rewarding, enjoyable and positive experience.”

Hans Martens, Head of Digital Citizenship at European Schoolnet, leading the Better Internet for Kids project

How to engage in responsible gameplay:

Whether your children are playing for fun, to learn, to connect or to get fit, we want to you to have the support and confidence you need to manage their screen time, spend and access to age-appropriate content. So before or while they play, take a moment to #SeizeTheControls

Check the games’ PEGI ratings

PEGI, or Pan European Game Information, is the European video game content rating system that uses age recommendations and content descriptors to help you make informed decisions when purchasing video games, whether these are played on a console, a pc, a tablet or a mobile phone. At home or on the move, this information is just a click away either through the PEGI app or the PEGI website.

The rating considers the age suitability of a game, not the level of difficulty. A PEGI 3 game will not contain any inappropriate content, but can sometimes be too difficult to master for younger children. Reversely, there are PEGI 18 games that are very easy to play, yet they contain elements that make them inappropriate for a younger audience.

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What do the PEGI labels mean

PEGI website

Setup family settings or parental controls to help you set limits that work for you and your child.

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Parental control systems are available on all video game consoles, tablets, smartphones, and handheld devices, as well as PC and Mac operating systems, to assist parents in managing online interaction, playtime, spending, and access to age-appropriate video games. These are designed to be as simple to use as possible, from your smartphone via an app, that allows you to manage your child's gameplay. We recommend that you use these tools not only to control the gameplay but also as a starting point for conversation with your child in order to establish the rules that work best for you and your family.

Manage play by age rating and descriptors.

Select which games you are happy for your children to play (based on the PEGI age ratings).

Manage time spent playing

Manage and control the amount of time your children can spend playing games. More on weekends, less on weekdays?

Communicating with others

Some games allow players to interact with one another within the game. The parental control settings allow you to limit or even prevent your child from communicating with other players. You can control communications to friends only, friends of friends, anyone, or no one.

Control spending

Some video games may offer the opportunity to make purchases within the game but this will be indicated on the game by a PEGI in-game purchase descriptor so anyone purchasing the game will be made aware of this.

Parental controls at your fingertips

Play together, talk to your kids about their games  and discuss ground rules.

Video game players have long known what everyone else is only now figuring out: video gameplay is not only fun and entertaining, but also a learning experience. So why not join them, and use the game to discuss what limits to set, what to buy, who to befriend, and so on. Talking openly with your children will help you understand what all the excitement is about, and studies show that families who play together have fewer disagreements about playtime.

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Familiarise yourself with in-game reporting tools

Some video games allow players to interact with other players online. With parental control tools or family settings, you are in charge. You have the option of allowing your child to engage in online experiences and share conversations and content, or not.  In addition, games that allow for  online interaction possibilities are often designed with easy-to-use reporting tools to assist players and parents in reporting anything they are uncomfortable with. Make sure you talk to your child about inappropriate behaviour and content, ask them to tell a parent or an adult if they ever come across anything that makes them uncomfortable, and encourage them to use the reporting tools available

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Find out where to start in your local language.

Find out where to start in your local language.

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Download these resources and share them with your teacher, other parents, and people you may know