- Overview: A short overview written to explain the game to parents and carers without jargon or assumed knowledge and with an eye on why the game is interesting or unusual.
- Duration: The amount of time it will take to play the game and how long sessions are likely to be. These times are adjusted for family players who may have more interruptions and not race through games as quickly.
- Players: How many people you need to be able to play the game. Including notes on multiplayer modes that let you play together and how many controllers you might need.
- Cost: We add details on in-game purchases, "loot boxes" and battle/season passes. We also note how the in-game purchases work and how to save money buying special editions or up-front packs. We get this information by checking all the digital stores and publisher websites for the game.
- Ratings: You will notice other video game database sites may have inconsistent or missing PEGI ratings. We spend considerable time on each of the entries in our database to find the right PEGI ratings from a number of official places. PEGI app and VSC Game Ratings website are brilliant. For digital-only games initially rated by a developer questionnaire rather than an examiner (via the IARC system), we find those via the Google Play Store, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation or Xbox store. If a game is only digital and on PC or on the iOS App Store it doesn’t have a rating so we leave it blank.
- Accessibility: Details on how hard and how much reading the game has for new or young gamers, along with details on how it is designed to enable access for deaf, hard of hearing, partially sighted, blind or motor-impaired people. This is divided into Difficulty, Reading, Controls, Image calibration and Audio calibration.
- Similar Games: Every game is listed with 10 or so other games you might want to try next. Unlike other database sites where these are automatically matched for a game, we hand pick every suggestion to ensure it has a similar theme or interaction. As well as another game to play next, these selections are designed to provide a list of games of a younger rating that can offer an alternative for younger players.
You can search the games in the database by PEGI or ESRB rating, duration, genre, theme, platforms, number of players or even those that don’t have in-app purchases. You can also select any game and get a list of 10 or so other games that are similar in their theme or interactions.
All the games in the database are recommended. We only include games that have worked well without testers. This may be children and families for younger rated games, but also include games for older teenagers, young adults and grown-ups where they offer valuable experiences. This means we include the full range of PEGI and ESRB rated games.
The games are organised in lists to help you discover games to play. Rather than focusing on the usual genres like shooters, platformers or role-play, we've found that families find games from the kind of experience they offer: Solving a mystery, Walking in someone else's shoes, Competing on the couch, laughing together, make music while you play.
This information here is designed to complement and expand on my video game advice book for parents, Taming Gamin. Along with that publication, it is the result of 15 years writing about video games for families online, in newspapers and magazines, and broadcast appearances. As with that work, it reflects my desire to offer parents practical advice and insight, rather than to critique or defend video games.
We are a small dedicated team of parents and carers and will continue to improve and update it over the coming weeks. You can a email any questions or request new lists or games.