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The Crew 2 (Series)

Release Date: 02/12/2014, updated in 2018

Platforms: PC, PS4, Stadia and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 11+ year-olds

The Crew is a series of open-world racing and exploration games set in a scaled down version of the United States. The emphasis is on enjoyable and exciting driving more than realism. It's a lot like Forza Horizon, although can be played on PlayStation...

My Time At Portia

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

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

Skill Rating: 7+ year-olds

This game is set after civilization has been destroyed, and humans are emerging from underground to rebuilding society. By gathering resources, crafting and building you slowly gain the tools to collect food, store grain, chop trees and build dwellings....

Graveyard Keeper

Release Date: 15/08/2018

Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Graveyard Keeper is a funeral-themed role-playing game where you are the caretaker of a local cemetery. You make choices about how to lay out the plot, what services to offer and generally how to make money from your unusual enterprise. The pixilated...

Immortals Fenyx Rising

Release Date: 03/12/2020

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

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Immortals Fenyx Rising is a mythical adventure game where you play Fenyx, exploring the huge open world, solving puzzles and fighting evil fantasy creatures. Fenyx is a newly winged demigod, who was prophesied to be the one to save the Greek Gods' home...

Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order

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

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

Skill Rating: 12+ year-olds

Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order is a fighting-adventure game set five years after Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith and 14 years before Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope. Young Jedi Padawan Cal Kestis is hunted through the galaxy by the...

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

Release Date: 19/05/2015

Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

In this game you play monster-hunter Geralt in a vast open world as he searches for his missing adopted daughter. The game responds to your actions and has dynamic environments, weather and day–night cycles that affect the creatures you hunt. It’s a...

Super Mario Odyssey

Release Date: 27/10/2017

Platforms: Switch

Skill Rating: 7+ year-olds

Mario has stared in running and jumping Super Mario games on Nintendo hardware since the Nintendo Entertainment System in the 80's. The formula remains unchanged. Explore a level, jump on enemies, collect coins and get to the flag at the end to inch...

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe (Series)

Release Date: 27/08/1992, updated in 2018

Platforms: 3DS and 2DS, DS, GameCube, Switch and iOS

Skill Rating: 5+ year-olds

Mario Kart is a go-kart racing game on Nintendo systems. You race against other Nintendo characters around different circuits, picking up power ups, attacks and speed boosts. It is frantic and chaotic, but still requires skills to do well at.

Lake

Release Date: 01/09/2021

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

Lake is a narrative adventure where you play Meredith Weiss on a career break in 1986 while she returns to her hometown and ends up delivering the mail. As you talk to locals, meet up with old school friends and even fan a few romantic flames from your...

Rainbow Billy

Release Date: 05/10/2021

Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Rainbow Billy: The Curse of the Leviathan is a role-play adventure where you save the world from a colourless darkness. Unusually, battles are won through listening and conversation rather than traditional attacks. It combines the excitement and...

Subnautica (Series)

Release Date: 11/04/2016, updated in 2018

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

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Subnautica is an open-world adventure where you explore the ocean on an alien planet after crashlanding. You collect resources and fight creatures to survive. This enables you to establish an underwater base, gain new craft and equipment and explore...

Hello Neighbor (Series)

Release Date: 08/12/2017

Platforms: Amazon Fire, Android, Mac, PC, PS4, Stadia, Switch and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 11+ year-olds

Hello Neighbor is a stealth survival game with a horror feel. You try and sneak into the basement of their neighbour’s house to uncover a "horrible secret". The game responds to your strategy by setting traps along paths the player followed in...

Dorfromantik

Release Date: 25/03/2021, updated in 2022

Platforms: PC and Switch

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Dorfromantik is a peaceful village-building strategy puzzle game for one player. It's inspired by tile-based board-games like Carcassonne and Tantrix.

Everything

Release Date: 21/03/2017, updated in 2019

Platforms: Mac, PC, PS4 and Switch

Skill Rating: 3+ year-olds

This is an unusual game that simulates a world where you can become any object. It sounds strange and not much fun, but the enjoyment is in discovering how small or how big a thing you can become. From tiny atoms to whole planets and everything in between.

The Long Dark

Release Date: 22/09/2014

Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 11+ year-olds

The Long Dark is a thoughtful exploration-survival game where you have crash-landed in the icy Canadian wilderness after a global disaster and must find a way to survive. Through exploring, crafting and fighting you must look after your body...

The Last Of Us Part II

Release Date: 19/06/2020

Platforms: PS4

Skill Rating: 16+ year-olds

The Last of Us Part II is an action-adventure game set five years after The Last of Us. You control two characters in a post-apocalyptic United States. Ellie is out for revenge after suffering a tragedy, and Abby is a...

Marvel's Spider-Man (Series)

Release Date: 07/09/2018

Platforms: PS4 and PS5

Skill Rating: 12+ year-olds

Marvel's Spider-Man is a series of superhero adventures where you swing through an open-world city fighting crime and advancing a film-like story. There are also many side quests and missions you can take along the way.

Animal Crossing (Series)

Release Date: 14/12/2001, updated in 2020

Platforms: 3DS and 2DS, DS, GameCube, Switch and Wii

Skill Rating: 9+ year-olds

You live on a small island teeming with life. Insects, fish, trees, vegetation and fossils are represented with cute cartoon visuals. Rather than the scale or grandeur of other game worlds, it’s the interconnected drama of the world and characters...

No Man's Sky

Release Date: 10/08/2016, updated in 2018

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

Skill Rating: 12+ year-olds

No Man's Sky is a space simulation about exploring endless planets and galaxies. It invites you to take your spaceship to explore and colonise a universe rich with diverse planets, creatures and fauna. Facing so vast a space is daunting at first, but a...

Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales

Release Date: 12/11/2020

Platforms: PS4 and PS5

Skill Rating: 12+ year-olds

Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales is an action-adventure game based on the Marvel Comics superhero Miles Morales. It is similar to the first Marvel's Spider-Man game in mechanics although Miles Morales extends this...

Mario Kart Live: Home Circuit

Release Date: 16/10/2020

Platforms: Switch

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Mario Kart Live: Home Circuit (Mario Kart Live, MarioKart Home Circuit) is a kart racing game with a difference. You play on the Switch but use it to control a real life Mario kart that races around...

Townscaper

Release Date: 30/06/2020, updated in 2021

Platforms: Android, Mac, PC, Switch, Web, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S and iOS

Skill Rating: 6+ year-olds

Townscaper is a town building toy. You pick colours from the range available and click to put down a house in the sea. As you continue to add houses of different colours the game automatically orientates the architecture for you.

Ark: Survival Evolved

Release Date: 08/08/2017, updated in 2018

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

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

This game offers hunting-and-harvesting gameplay in a primal setting. Although not as polished or streamlined as a game like Horizon Zero Dawn, this is a more ambitiously open world where you can choose your own way to survive. With crafting and...

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate (Series)

Release Date: 21/01/1999, updated in 2018

Platforms: DS, GameCube, Switch and Wii U

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Super Smash Bros. in its various versions offers real-time brawling battles. The tens of characters are drawn from other video games and each has bespoke moves to learn and perfect.

Assassin's Creed Valhalla

Release Date: 10/11/2020

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

Assassin's Creed Valhalla is the twelfth game in the Assassins Creed Series, an open world action-adventure that takes place over several main story quests as well as many optional side missions.

Race with Ryan

Release Date: 09/11/2020

Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 3+ year-olds

Race with Ryan is a kart racing game staring Ryan from the Ryan’s World YouTube channel. Along with the racing you need to collect the Mystery Eggs scattered across each track. Each one then gives you a power up to help you win.

Pikmin 3

Release Date: 26/10/2013, updated in 2020

Platforms: Switch and Wii U

Skill Rating: 6+ year-olds

Pikmin 3 Deluxe is the latest in a series of puzzle games where you direct hordes of titular plant-like creatures to navigate garden locations. Different colour Pikmins have different abilities so the challenge is to get enough of the right ones to...

Grand Theft Auto V (Series)

Release Date: 01/01/1997, updated in 2019

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

Skill Rating: 15+ year-olds

Grand Theft Auto is a series of action-adventure game where you travel around one large location taking part in different criminal activities: pulling off heists, with lots of shooting and stealing and driving a variety of cars and other vehicles.

Freddy Spaghetti

Release Date: 15/12/2020

Platforms: PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Freddy Spaghetti is a running and jumping game. But you play a piece of spaghetti rather than a person. The game simulates the pasta’s physics as you use two trigger-buttons and a joystick to steer the main character across a wide variety of levels,...

Cars 3: Driven to Win

Release Date: 13/06/2017

Platforms: PS3, PS4, Switch, Wii U, Xbox 360 and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 6+ year-olds

Cars 3: Driven to Win is a racing adventure game based on the 2017 film. You explore the world of Radiator Springs and other locations from the film. As you do, you meet the other cars, collect items and unlock new areas.

Lego Worlds

Release Date: 26/10/2016, updated in 2017

Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 6+ year-olds

Lego Worlds takes virtual building back to the classic bricks with familiar figures, buildings and challenges from other Lego video games in an open world where your imagination can go wild in a bottomless bucket of bricks.

The Red Lantern

Release Date: 22/10/2020

Platforms: PC, Switch and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 11+ year-olds

The Red Lantern is a personal adventure about making something of your life. You and a team of sled dogs head into the wilderness and must navigate the ever-changing events of the Alaskan bush to find your way home.

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War (Series)

Release Date: 13/11/2020

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

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War is a shooting game. It's a direct sequel to the original Call of Duty: Black Ops. Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War will have a Campaign, Multiplayer, Zombies, and integration into Call of Duty: Warzone. It's a game that...

Human Fall Flat

Release Date: 07/12/2017, updated in 2017

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

Skill Rating: 7+ year-olds

Human: Fall Flat takes the idea of rag-doll characters and movement in the direction of a platform game. You run, jump and solve puzzles with your elastic character, either on your own or with another player. Get it wrong and you fall flat on your face,...

Riders Republic

Release Date: 25/02/2021

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

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Riders Republic is an extreme sports game. You can mountain bike, ski, snowboard, fly in a wingsuit and rocket-suit. This builds on other spots games with tens of online players competing at once in each event.

Star Wars Battlefront II (Series)

Release Date: 17/11/2017

Platforms: PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 13+ year-olds

Star Wars Battlefront II is a shooting game based on the Star Wars films. There have been four games in the series and is similar to the main Battlefield series. The latest version is Star Wars Battlefront II that features...

Ni no Kuni (Series)

Release Date: 09/12/2010, updated in 2018

Platforms: DS, PC, PS3, PS4 and Switch

Skill Rating: 11+ year-olds

Ni no Kuni is a series of adventure video games where you play a young character with an important mission. The first games follow Oliver, and his journey to another world to save his mother. The sequel, Revenant Kingdom, follows Evan Pettiwhisker...

Paper Mario: The Origami King (Series)

Release Date: 11/08/2000, updated in 2020

Platforms: 3DS and 2DS, DS, GameCube, Switch, Wii and Wii U

Skill Rating: 9+ year-olds

Paper Mario is a role-play game featuring Mario and other Nintendo characters. Although cute and cartoon-like in appearance, these games are known for the quality of writing and the well balanced and enjoyable turn-based combat.

FIFA (Series)

Release Date: 15/12/1993, updated in 2021

Platforms: 3DS and 2DS, Android, DS, Mac, Megadrive, PC, PS Vita, PS2, PS3, PS4, Stadia, Switch, Wii, Wii U, Xbox, Xbox 360, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S and iOS

Skill Rating: 9+ year-olds

Pieces: Cards

FIFA is one of the two main football video games (the other being Pro Evolution). Each year it's released with improved visuals, more realistic physics and enhanced competitive play. For those that follow the game closely and play it a lot, it offers a...

Two Point Hospital

Release Date: 25/02/2020

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

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Two Point Hospital is a light-hearted healthcare simulator. You take charge of a hospital, similar to Theme Hospital, where you must construct and maintain wards, machines and staff.

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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