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Get Children Into Flying Things

The dream of being able to fly seems to be a universal human desire. It's not surprising then, that many video games are popular because they grant the player the ability to soar through the air.

These games can range from novel superpowers that let you swing, boost or bounce your way into the sky like Marvel's Spider-Man, to serious experiences that simulate the complexities of flying a jumbo jet in Microsoft Flight Simulator. Along with games where flying is front and centre, many other games offer nuanced flight as part of their experience, like Rocket League. There are other examples that use trajectory to get to hard platforms, like Ibb and Obb and other games like Slime Rancher where you can unlock a jetpack.

The games we have collected together in this list, enable you to experience flight in some way. Educationally, this isn't only a novelty to inspire other learning but offers an embodied appreciation of gravity, air currents, g-force, pitching, yawing and how materials respond at high speed.

This list includes 57 games from the last 27 years, with 1,152 likes. They come from a range of different genres and play-styles and are all good games if you want to learn about aeronautics.


 

Vane

Release Date: 15/01/2019, updated in 2019

Platforms: PC and PS4

Skill Rating: 12+ year-olds

Vane is an ethereal adventure in a ruined desert where strange golden dust transforms a free-spirited bird into a determined young child. The premise is not all that uncommon, but Vane stands out for how you soar over the dessert and climb your way...

Flower

Release Date: 12/02/2009

Platforms: PC, PS Vita, PS3, PS4 and iOS

Skill Rating: 5+ year-olds

Control the breeze blowing across fields of grass and blow petals into other flowers to make them bloom. Flower is simple and single-purpose in evoking the feeling of the wind. What starts as an awkward struggle to control the breeze soon turns into a...

Rocket League

Release Date: 28/08/2018

Platforms: Mac, PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 12+ year-olds

Drive futuristic cars to score goals with an oversized football. It’s another game that sounds ridiculous but is actually a huge amount of fun to play and requires a lot of expertise. What’s not obvious from the start is the level of control that...

Fe

Release Date: 16/02/2018

Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 7+ year-olds

You play a fox in a magical fairy tale forest. The world extends in front of you in stylised form, with trees, mountains and streams glistening with sparkles of life. You run, jump, climb and dip your paws in every aspect of the world. But it’s the...

The Falconeer

Release Date: 10/11/2020

Platforms: PC, PS4, Stadia and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 12+ year-olds

The Falconeer is an action game where you play a pilot who flies a weaponised falcon through dramatic locations. You battle the rivalling factions to uncover the secrets of long-forgotten gods and ancestors. Although the game-play is all flying and...

Haven

Release Date: 03/12/2020

Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Haven is an adventure about companionship and exploration in space. As star-crossed lovers Yu and Kay, you escape to a forgotten planet to stay together and set up home against the odds. You explore the world around you, able to glide over the plains,...

Sky Children of the Light

Release Date: 18/07/2019

Platforms: Android, Switch and iOS

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Sky Children of the Light (Sky Children of Light) is a huge open-world online game designed to create altruism between players. From the developer of Flower and Journey, it takes you on a social adventure in an ever-expanding world with up to 8 other...

A Short Hike

Release Date: 05/04/2019, updated in 2021

Platforms: Mac, PC, PS4, PS5, Switch and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 7+ year-olds

In A Short Hike you play penguin-like character Claire, who needs to climb a mountain in a beautiful national park to receive an important phone call. Presented in cute pixel graphics, the game invites you to explore the park, help other animals, find...

Trailmakers

Release Date: 28/02/2020

Platforms: PC and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 9+ year-olds

In Trailmakers, you explore an open world in vehicles you have made from Lego-like blocks. Build a car, a plane, a boat or a combination of these, a carplaneboat. The game's physics encourage players to imaginatively combine propulsion, floatation,...

Slime Rancher (Series)

Release Date: 14/10/2016

Platforms: Mac, PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 7+ year-olds

Slime Rancher is a farming simulation with a difference. Rather than chickens, sheep or cows, you farm slimes. You explore the open world from a first-person perspective to find and collect slimes. As you develop your farm in numerous ways you generate...

Microsoft Flight Simulator

Release Date: 18/08/2020

Platforms: PC and Xbox Series X|S

Skill Rating: 14+ year-olds

Microsoft Flight Simulator (Microsoft Flight Sim 2020) is the latest flight simulator game in the long running series. Along with a huge range of aircraft you can learn to fly, the game recreates the entire Earth using textures and data from data maps...

The Pathless

Release Date: 12/11/2020, updated in 2022

Platforms: Mac, PC, PS4, PS5, Switch and iPhone, iPad

Skill Rating: 12+ year-olds

The Pathless is a mythic adventure about an archer and an eagle in a vast forest. You use timed button presses to use your bow and discover the open world, and unlock a mystical island and dispel a curse of darkness that grips the world.

Feather

Release Date: 05/04/2019

Platforms: Mac, PC, PS4, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Skill Rating: 7+ year-olds

This game brings you, as a bird, to a beautiful island. You can explore freely, collecting items and soaring on the breeze. Often, other players will join you to create a flock of birds to fly together, making music on the wind. Communication is kept to...

Ibb and Obb

Release Date: 01/08/2013, updated in 2020

Platforms: Mac, PC, PS3 and Switch

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Ibb & Obb is a puzzle game where you run, jump, land on enemies and solve momentum puzzles. The novelty is that it's a game designed for co-operation. One player controls the green creature, Ibb, and the other controls the pink creature, Obb. The world...

Omno

Release Date: 29/07/2021

Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Omno is a running, jumping and surfing game where you explore an ancient fantastical world. As you explore you meet all manner of strange and wonderful lifeforms, from cute critters to enigmatic giants.

Fugl

Release Date: 14/09/2017

Platforms: Mac and PC

Fugl is a game that simulates flying. You play a bird and launch yourself into the sky to explore a vast world. Rather than search for things, fight, or take on challenges, all you have to do is wend your way through the air currents and glide your way...

Exo One

Release Date: 18/11/2021

Platforms: PC, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Skill Rating: 9+ year-olds

Exo One is a surreal exploration game where you guide a small transforming object to drift, flow and soar across enigmatic landscapes with a gravity based movement system. The game aims to create an out of body other-worldly experience with atmospheric,...

Super Monkey Ball (Series)

Release Date: 23/06/2001, updated in 2021

Platforms: 3DS and 2DS, Android, DS, PS Vita, PS4, PS5, Switch, Wii, Xbox, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S and iOS

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Super Monkey Ball is a rolling and balancing game where you tilt platforms to control the path of a hamster ball containing a monkey. The peculiar premise is matched with accurate challenging gameplay and some great multiplayer modes (like Monkey...

Kerbal Space Program

Release Date: 31/03/2016, updated in 2021

Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Skill Rating: 9+ year-olds

Kerbal Space Program is a space flight simulation game. You direct a space program, staffed and crewed by aliens. It looks like a cute game for kids, but under its comic exterior is a hugely complex and engaging space simulation.

Super Mario Sunshine

Release Date: 26/08/2002, updated in 2020

Platforms: Switch and Wii

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Super Mario Sunshine is a running, jumping and water-shooting game. It follows Super Mario 64 as the second 3D Mario game. You play Mario, who is marooned on Isle Delfin, convicted of vandalism and graphite. You explore the island to visit other...

Lifeslide

Release Date: 19/09/2019

Platforms: Apple TV, PC, iOS and iPhone, iPad

Skill Rating: 9+ year-olds

Lifeslide is an adventure where you fly a paper plane through an ever-changing landscape. It's a metaphorical journey through the stages of life as you learn to use eddies and up-drafts to soar higher and further.

Shine – Journey of Light

Release Date: 17/11/2018

Platforms: Android and iOS

Skill Rating: 6+ year-olds

Shine – Journey of Light is an adventure puzzle game where you guide a ball of light through a world of light and shadow. As you delve deep into the world you discover a lost civilisation and piece together the stories of the past.

Bonito Days

Release Date: 14/10/2021

Platforms: Switch

Skill Rating: 5+ year-olds

Bonito Days is a pastel-retro rolling, jumping and gliding game. You roll down a slope to launch yourself into the air and then glide around before landing. It's a simple challenge that combines with the breezy summer aesthetic with lite touch...

Fly Together

Release Date: 29/04/2021

Platforms: Switch

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Fly Together is a strategy puzzle game where you need to direct planes to different airports so passengers can get to their destinations. You do this against the clock, by drawing flight paths and avoiding collisions in increasingly challenging...

Gravity Rush

Release Date: 09/02/2012, updated in 2017

Platforms: PS Vita and PS4

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Gravity Rush is a running, jumping and exploration adventure game. You play as Kat, an amnesiac with the power to manipulate gravity. She uses this ability to help her community and uncover the mystery of her past.

Lego Bricktales

Release Date: 12/10/2022

Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Lego Bricktales is a physics-based puzzle where you work to help your grandfather relaunch his rundown amusement park. You explore a series of jungle, desert, city, castle and island dioramas to help people by building things. Unlike other Lego games...

Rescue: Mayday

Release Date: 15/09/2021

Platforms: Mac and PC

Skill Rating: 9+ year-olds

Rescue: Mayday is a helicopter adventure where you are putting out fires and rescuing civilians. You play the game in a team of two, each on your own device. The Pilot player flies the helicopter but has no visibility and must use information from the...

SuperFlight

Release Date: 09/11/2017

Platforms: PC

Superflight is a game where you control a risk-taking man in a flight suit. You control your flight with the aim of buzzing the landscape. The closer you come without crashing the more points you get. If you can do this a few times in a row you get...

Lost Winds (Series)

Release Date: 12/05/2008, updated in 2016

Platforms: PC, Wii and iOS

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

LostWinds is a running and jumping video game with a difference. As well as controlling a young boy named Toku you also control the wind. On the Wii you do this by gesturing with the Wii Remote controller, on iOS you draw the direction on the screen. A...

Rescue: Under Pressure

Release Date: 15/09/2020

Platforms: Mac and PC

Skill Rating: 9+ year-olds

Rescue: Under Pressure is an adventure exploration game. Your task is to explore the sea and find treasure in the dark. But to do this you need the help of another player on the sonar to guide you. It's a game designed to work for players with mixed...

Stonefly

Release Date: 02/06/2021

Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Skill Rating: 7+ year-olds

Stonefly is a tranquil adventure game where you play the pilot of insect-like mechanical craft. Tiny and living in an outsized world, you use your vehicle to harness the wind and explore the wilderness. As you meet inhabitants, collect resources and...

Halo Infinite

Release Date: 15/11/2021

Platforms: PC, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Skill Rating: 13+ year-olds

Halo Infinite is the latest release in the longstanding Halo series of first-person shooting games. This latest entry continues the story, while adding new abilities, such as the grapple and weapons, differentiating it from the other...

Jet Lancer

Release Date: 12/05/2020

Platforms: Mac, PC and Switch

Jet Lancer is a high-speed air combat game, similar to Luftrausers (and much older inertia shooting games like Virus/Zarch), where you pilot giant robots to deal with Sky Pirates. The novelty here is the nuanced and instinctive control of the craft. The...

Mario Golf: Super Rush (Series)

Release Date: 11/06/1999, updated in 2021

Platforms: 3DS and 2DS, GameCube and Switch

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Mario Golf: Super Rush is a sports game that combines running and jumping with golfing skills. It's a proper recreation of golf, but with novelties, modes and characters to make it more entertaining for younger players.

Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown (Series)

Release Date: 30/06/1995, updated in 2019

Platforms: 3DS and 2DS, Android, PC, PS2, PS3, PS4, PSP, Xbox 360, Xbox One and iOS

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown is the latest flying and shooting game in the Ace Combat series of games. It features lots of real-life aircraft to master and weather conditions that impact gameplay and controls, while still retaining a fast-paced...

Air Traffic Controller (Airport Hero)

Release Date: 01/01/1998, updated in 2020

Platforms: 3DS and 2DS, DS, PC and PSP

Skill Rating: 14+ year-olds

Air Traffic Controller (Airport Hero) is a series of games where you take charge of an airport. You deal with landing planes, directing them to runways and gates while ensuring things run on time and without accidents. Each session is a unique set of...

Blackbird

Release Date: 21/04/2020

Platforms: Mac, PC and Web

Skill Rating: 9+ year-olds

Blackbird is a strategy game where you are a blackbird collecting food for your young. You need to scour the forest to find enough insects to keep them alive and them fly the nest (or die trying).

Drone The Game

Release Date: 02/08/2020

Platforms: PC

Drone The Game is a shooting battle with a highly controllable drone against other online players in arenas like maps. It's unusual because you build and customize your drone by dragging and dropping functional blocks that affect how the drone will fly....

Fledgling Heroes

Release Date: 07/05/2020

Platforms: Switch and iPhone, iPad

Skill Rating: 3+ year-olds

Fledgeling Heroes is a fun flying game where you tap or press to guide a part through landscapes and collect coins. You can swim, sprint and soar, defeat dastardly dragons, unlock wondrous new worlds, and explore limitless levels in the Lab.

Gibbon: Beyond The Trees

Release Date: 25/02/2022

Platforms: iPhone, iPad

Gibbon: Beyond The Trees is a swinging, sliding and somersaulting adventure that tells an ecological story about freedom and survival. You explore hand-painted jungle in a parkour style and slowly uncover the story of a lost gibbon searching for home...

Taming Gaming Book Written by parents for parents, the database complements the in-depth discussion about video game addiction, violence, spending and online safety in the Taming Gaming book. We are an editorially independent, free resource without adverts that is supported by partnerships.

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