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Reader Mail: How can I control how long my child plays Valorant?

Each week we get loads of questions from parents and carers about all different aspects of family gaming.

This week we have this question from a parent of a keen Valorant fan. "How can I control how long my child plays Valorant?"

The first thing to say is that this is a common question, and not to feel alone in the challenge of negotiating play time with your child. Particularly when they find a new game they love, it can consume more time than you are comfortable with.

An excellent first step is to talk with them about the game. Start by watching them play so you can see how the game works. You can check the PEGI rating for the game before doing this to get some context. Valorant is rated PEGI 16 for strong violence.

Then aim to agree together on how long they should be playing each day. If they are playing on a console you can use the Parental Controls to set automatic reminders and restrictions on playtime. If, as here, they are playing on a PC then you can use the Windows App and Game limits app. Ensure you do this together with your child, so they can buy into the pattern of play.

Once it's set up you can turn on the PIN so they need to ask you for more time if they need this. When this happens it's a great moment to engage with them about their game. How are they progressing, and what do they need more time for?

Taking these steps not only puts you in control but creates an open conversation with your offspring about their hobby.

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Andrew Robertson
Andy Robertson is the editor of AskAboutGames and has written for national press and broadcast about video games and families for over 15 years. He has just published the Taming Gaming book with its Family Video Game Database.