“Power Up” at the Science Museum – 19/10/17

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Last year we went to Power Up. You might know this not just from reading this blog but also the way that Reuben’s “concentrating” face has popped up all over social media and even the print media to promote the exhibition reopening. In case you missed it, here’s the photo:

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So naturally we were keen to revisit this year. There were some complicated plans to get there, which I explained to Nathan using four different colour pens to represent the four members of the family, a teenage babysitter and Uncle Wiley, our other child. All of which plans were almost scuppered by a cancelled train at Highams Park. The boys went on ahead and I made some time by running up escalators and down exhibition road, pausing only to take in the pretty lights of the Natural History Museum.

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I got there to find all three boys plugged into the 16-player halo console, all wearing identical vacant expressions. Roo acknowledged me with a vague wave and then went back to shooting em up. I went to get some drinks and then persuaded him to have a bit more of a look around. We only got as far as the Minecraft area before he settled in again. That’s the “problem” with Power Up. ..it’s hard to get too far around the exhibition without getting drawn in. I suspect most people wouldn’t see that as a problem at all.

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Nathan was off playing Nintendo and Roo and I went over to the Lego games, where we spent a long time trying to get C3PO picked up by a magnet so that he could open the door that R2D2 couldn’t. Roo sighed in frustration at Mummy’s complete lack of gaming skills and ended up wrestling the controller off me so he could control both. We never did open that door and even Uncle Wiley couldn’t figure it out.

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Time to try something different. And the drumming games seemed to be the change we were looking for. I may not have gaming skills but I think I have a fair sense of rhythm. The scoring system for the game may not have agreed but I think we did a pretty good version of Carmen.

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Before we left, I wanted to introduce Roo to a game I could play – Sonic the Hedgehog. Those hours of gaming in the 90s were not wasted as I zipped through the Green Hill Zone and he said “Wow Mum you’re really good at this” in a tone that was only mildly condescending. No matter that when I tried the versions of either side of the mega drive I did nothing but get stuck. And I’d never have passed the marble zone. But Act 1 of GHZ on the mega drive….aced it!

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Nathan meanwhile was lost in his own world. …I suspect he retreated into the VR headset to avoid having to go home with me and Reuben. He would have been wise as Reuben was crazy-bouncy on the way out of the museum and then swiftly crashed on the Piccadilly Line. Ah well, it was an evening well spent. Power Up opens today and is on till 31st October. More information here.

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