Speak your kid’s lingo - Parents’ guide to gaming terms

Likable Inspiration_Parents' guide to gaming terms and slang

Have you ever sat at the dinner table and your kids start telling you about the newest game they're playing? You hear words coming out of their little mouth but there's just one too many words that you can't quite make sense of!

“I’m such a noob”
“Do you know how to find the Easter Egg?”

If you’re not sure what the above two sentences mean, or you’re thinking it’s months till Easter, don’t worry, you’re not alone.

In a recent study (late 2020) by connectivity provider TalkTalk, they found 72% of British parents with children aged seven or older admit to not understanding gaming jargon being used by their children.

Almost half of the parents (45%) rated their gaming knowledge as either poor or terrible, while over a quarter (28%) said they are intrigued and wish they understood what the phrases meant. One in ten (11%) admitted to trying to use gaming language with their kids to look cool.

So, if you’re a parent/grandparent trying to impress, here’s what you need to know.


Noob is derived from newbie (newb) referring to a new or inexperienced player. The word usually carries a somewhat derogatory tone.

Easter Egg

Easter Eggs are hidden message/features in a game. It may be unauthorised modifications made by the developers or more commonly deliberately included to make the game more fun. They are strategically placed in games and requires insider information to uncover/unlock.


Spawning refers to the creation of a character or item in a game. Think of it as “give birth”.


Refers to the recreation of an entity (character) after its death or destruction. Think of it as “regenerate”.


Buff is an improvement in effectiveness or desirability made to an existing element such as health, range, damage. A beneficial effect on a target.


No, this is not referring to the popular Nerf toy guns. A Nerf is a change to a game that downgrades the power of a particular item, tactic, ability, or character. Nerf is the opposite of Buff.


Camping refers to the tactic of staying in one spot on a map in a game for an extended period of time to gain an advantage or ambush other players.


This term was created from a typo since the letters P and O and next to each other on a standard keyboard. It means owned or truly beaten. Indicating a player has suffered a humiliating defeat. Next time when your kid tells you they were totally PWNED, it just means they got defeated in the game!

In-Game Chat

Likable Inspiration_Parents' guide to gaming terms
Teaching your child basic cyber safety is crucial.

A lot of online games these days have in-game chat functions that are text or voice-based. Players can type messages through the game to other people in the game who may be complete strangers, and they could be talking about anything.

Teaching your child basic cyber safety is crucial because chances are you won’t be watching over them constantly. Simple things like not sharing private information publicly such as full name, address, date of birth to name a few but cyber safety is another topic altogether which we’ll save for another time.

If you read the chat content, you may come across a lot of chat slang or abbreviations. Here are some of the more common ones:

  • AFK – Away from keyboard

  • BRB – Be right back

  • BTW – By the Way

  • EZ – Easy

  • GG – Good game

  • IDK – I don’t know

  • IIRC – If I recall/remember correctly

  • ILY – I love you

  • LOL – Laughing out loud

  • OFC – Of course

  • ROFL – Rolling on the Floor Laughing

  • SMH – Shaking my head (to indicate disapproval)

  • TH – Short for the heck/hell (used when something crazy happens)

  • TYSM/TYVM – Thank you so much / Thank very much

  • WYD – What are you doing?

Just like over 1,000 words can be added to Dictionaries each year, the same goes for gaming and chat slang too. Have fun learning all these new words/slangs/abbreviations/acronyms…learning is truly a lifelong journey.

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