How easy is the game to play?
How easy is it to have a conversation with others to get help when you don’t understand how to do something within the game? Do you need to look it up or can you quickly ask someone to help you or tell you what to do? How easy is it within the game to ask for help about how to play it or how to solve that particular problem? Can you ask for help from bullies within the game or do you need to shut the game down, find the manufacturers website and email them? Sorry, do you have your own email address? How old are you?
Can microphones attached to a headset pick up any noise within the room? Can the others that you are playing with hear things about where you live, who your parents / carers are? Do you make comments about who is home with you because others can hear them in the background? How safe is that knowledge for others to have access to? Bullying can be highly prevalent as can scams where kids are asked to donate money for worthy causes.
Some kids play online games but use their mobiles to talk to their friends whilst they are playing so that no one else is present and its just a normal phone call.
The pressure to play online with friends at the time that ‘they’ need you to be there can often be about time management. Some families allow kids to play for long periods of time, others don’t. How many tantrums or periods of intense upset is because of the impact of others asking why you aren’t available to play online at the time and frequency that suits them, not you.
Alternatives involve looking at how many people can play a game at one time. Sometimes this is written on the back of the games when you look at them in the shops?