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Best Physically Active Games

Video games are often assumed to be sedentary pursuits. While it is true that their screen-bound nature means that many do not encourage exercise, there are some specific and popular examples that require players to engage in their physical environment.
 

Mario Kart Live: Home Circuit

Rating: PEGI 3+, ESRB EVERYONE

Release Date: 16/10/2020

Platforms: Nintendo Switch

Genres: Action, Creative, Physically Active, Racing and Sports

Developer: @VelanVentures

Players: You can play with 4 players in the same room

Mario Kart Live: Home Circuit (Mario Kart Live, Mario Kart 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...

Wii Sports (Series)

Rating: PEGI 7+, ESRB EVERYONE 10+

Release Date: 08/02/2006, updated in 2014

Platforms: Nintendo Wii and Nintendo Wii U

Genres: Action, Fighting, Physically Active, Racing and Sports

Developer: @Nintendo

Players: You can play with 4 players in the same room

Wii Sports, Wii Sports Resort and Wii Sports Club offer motion-controlled sports. Although these games are well known, the depth each of them offer is a best-kept secret. Games like bowling, tennis and boxing are easy to pick up but require considerable...

Pokemon Go!

Rating: PEGI 7+, ESRB TEEN

Release Date: 06/07/2016

Price: Free

Platforms: Android and iOS

Genres: Action, Adventure, Fighting, Open World, Physically Active and Turn-Based

Players: You can play with 2 players in the same room and up to 20 players online

Pokémon Go is a game you play by walking outside. You play on a smartphone so it can use the GPS to locate, capture, battle, and train virtual creatures, called Pokémon, which appear as if they are in the player's real-world location.

The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword

Rating: PEGI 12+, ESRB EVERYONE 10+

Release Date: 23/11/2011

Platforms: Nintendo Switch, Nintendo Wii and Nintendo Wii U

Genres: Action, Adventure, Narrative, Open World, Physically Active and Role-Playing

Developer: @Nintendo

Players: This is a single player game

The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword is an adventure game in the Zelda series. You play Link and navigate the floating island of Skyloft before diving down to the land below it. While the island locations and flight drew from Wind Waker, the combat and...

Just Dance 2021 (Series)

Rating: PEGI 3+, ESRB EVERYONE 10+

Release Date: 17/11/2009, updated in 2020

Platforms: Android, Nintendo Switch, Nintendo Wii, Nintendo Wii U, PC, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Stadia, Web Browser, Xbox, Xbox 360, Xbox One and iOS

Genres: Physically Active and Rhythm

Developer: @Ubisoft

Players: You can play with 6 players in the same room and up to 64 players online

Dancing in front of each other isn’t something we often do in families. Just Dance is released with new songs and features each year. It gets parents, carers, children and even grandparents off the couch and dancing along with the on-screen moves....

Runbit

Rating: PEGI 3+, ESRB EVERYONE

Release Date: 27/01/2018

Price: Free-to-start

Platforms: Android and iOS

Genres: Action, Open World and Physically Active

Players: This is a single player game

Runbit (and its sister app Map Hunt) is a treasure hunt game you play by running or walking in the real world. As you run a map is displayed of your area with stars to collect on pavements, moving monsters to outwit and avoid and moving animals to track...

Lego Super Mario

Rating: PEGI 3+, ESRB EVERYONE

Release Date: 01/08/2020

Platforms: Android and iOS

Genres: Physically Active and Platform

Developer: @Lego

Players: This is a single player game

Lego Super Mario is a running and jumping game you play in the real world with an electronic Mario toy. A series of Lego sets provide special bricks that the Mario toy can detect. The timer starts as you move the toy through the level and trigger...

Anki Overdrive

Rating: PEGI 3+, ESRB EVERYONE

Release Date: 28/05/2010

Platforms: Android and iOS

Genres: Physically Active and Racing

Developer: @DigitalDreamLab

Players: You can play with 4 players in the same room

Anki Overdrive is a physical slot-car racing game you control with your smartphone. The cars are intelligent and follow the track so you can focus on steering them round the best racing line and triggering virtual weapons. Although discontinued,...

Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games (Series)

Rating: PEGI 7+, ESRB EVERYONE 10+

Release Date: 06/11/2007, updated in 2019

Platforms: Nintendo 2DS|3DS, Nintendo DS, Nintendo Switch, Nintendo Wii and Nintendo Wii U

Genres: Action, Physically Active and Sports

Developer: @SEGA

Players: You can play with 4 players in the same room and up to 8 players online

Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games is a series of simple competitive sports games featuring characters from Nintendo and Sega. Each game in the series is themed around a different Olympic year and location.

Playne

Rating: PEGI 3+

Release Date: 22/06/2019

Platforms: Mac and PC

Genres: Creative, Physically Active and Simulation

Developer: @playne

Players: This is a single player game

Playne is a narrative-driven meditation game that helps you build daily meditation habits. With each meditation session, Playne's story begins to unfold and the life on your island begins to grow providing you with more environments to meditate in.

Joust Mania

Rating: PEGI 7+, ESRB EVERYONE 10+

Release Date: 11/06/2019

Price: Free

Platforms: Mac, PC, PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4

Genres: Action, Fighting and Physically Active

Developer: @AdAngert

Players: You can play with 16 players in the same room

This movement-sensitive game of tag is played in the real world, holding PlayStation Move motion controllers. First appearing as one of the games in the Sportsfriends pack, and then evolving as Joust Mania with more modes and up to 16 players, it’s an...

Spaceteam (Series)

Rating: PEGI 3+, ESRB EVERYONE

Release Date: 01/12/2012

Price: Free

Platforms: Android and iOS

Genres: Action, Physically Active, Puzzle and Strategy

Developer: @Hengineer

Players: You can play with 8 players in the same room

Players pilot a spaceship, each with their own control panel on their smartphone or tablet screen. The switches, dials, sliders and levers are labelled with randomly-generated peculiar names: ‘Astral Synth’, ‘Gripvent’, ‘Starmesh’,...

Bounden

Rating: PEGI 3+, ESRB EVERYONE

Release Date: 21/05/2014

Platforms: Android and iOS

Genres: Physically Active and Puzzle

Players: You can play with 2 players in the same room

Bounden is a smartphone dance game that gets players to use their bodies. Two people hold opposite ends of one smartphone then move together to keep a cursor over the ball.

Nintendo Labo

Rating: PEGI 7+, ESRB EVERYONE 10+

Release Date: 27/04/2018

Platforms: Nintendo Switch

Genres: Action, Creative, Physically Active and Puzzle

Players: This is a single player game

Nintendo Labo is another game themed around physical folding, colouring and cutting. Here, though, you get a cardboard pack with the game that folds up to make objects into which you slot the screen and controllers. Whether it’s cardboard steering...

Wii Fit (Series)

Rating: PEGI 3+, ESRB EVERYONE

Release Date: 25/04/2008

Platforms: Nintendo Wii and Nintendo Wii U

Genres: Action, Physically Active and Rhythm

Developer: @Nintendo

Players: This is a single player game

Wii Fit is a collection of games designed to help you exercise. They use the Wii Balance Board peripheral that works with both Wii Fit on the Wii and Wii Fit Plus on the Wii U. The Balance Board measures the pressure you place on it and enables a range...

Game image Orna

Orna

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PEGI Rating 12+ for OrnaESRB Rating TEEN for Orna

Orna

Rating: PEGI 12+, ESRB TEEN

Release Date: 17/06/2019

Price: Free-to-start

Platforms: Android and iOS

Genres: Adventure, Physically Active, Role-Playing, Simulation and Turn-Based

Players: You can play this with 6 players online

Orna: The GPS RPG, as its longer name suggests, is a combination of role-playing adventure and real-world (geocache-style) treasure hunt. You select a character at the start of the game, and head out on a walk. As you do you can encounter creatures,...

GPS Pong

Rating: Not rated by PEGI or ESRB

Release Date: 28/02/2015

Price: Free

Platforms: iOS

Genres: Action, Physically Active and Sports

Players: You can play with 2 players in the same room

GPS Pong is a game of retro pong played in the real world by running and walking to move your bat. Once you have set up the game on two smartphones you specify how much space you have and then move to position your bat to return the virtual ball to the...

Deep Time Walk

Rating: PEGI 3+, ESRB EVERYONE

Release Date: 09/12/2016

Price: Free

Platforms: Android and iOS

Genres: Narrative, Open World and Physically Active

Players: This is a single player game

Deep Time Walk is a game where you go for a walk as you listen to a history of the Earth that's tied to each step. The game calculates your speed and distance to match your real-world progress and translates it to a journey across 4.6bn years of time,...

Lego Hidden Side

Rating: PEGI 3+, ESRB EVERYONE

Release Date: 18/08/2019

Platforms: Android and iOS

Genres: Creative, Narrative, Physically Active, Puzzle and Shooting

Developer: @Lego

Players: You can play with 4 players in the same room

Lego Hidden side is an adventure game you play by building physical Lego kits and then interacting with them via an augmented reality app on your Smartphone. After building, when you put the kids on the camera they come to life on the screen, offering...

Zombie Run

Rating: PEGI 12+, ESRB TEEN

Release Date: 27/02/2012, updated in 2019

Price: Free-to-start

Platforms: Android and iOS

Genres: Action, Adventure, Narrative and Physically Active

Developer: @SixToStart

Players: This is a single player game

Zombie Run is a combination of fitness app, radio play and zombie game. You choose the distance on the app, run in the real world and the narrative plays in your headphones.

The Gunstringer

Rating: PEGI 12+, ESRB TEEN

Release Date: 13/11/2011

Platforms: Xbox 360

Genres: Action, Narrative, Physically Active, Platform, Puzzle and Shooting

Players: This is a single player game

The Gunstringer is an Xbox Kinect camera game where you use your body to control a cowboy puppet and shoot the villains by forming a gun with your fingers. You can play with two people working together, with one player controlling the character’s...

Ring Fit Adventure

Rating: PEGI 7+, ESRB EVERYONE 10+

Release Date: 18/10/2019

Platforms: Nintendo Switch

Genres: Action, Adventure, Fighting and Physically Active

Developer: @Nintendo

Players: You can play with 2 players in the same room

This is a running and jumping adventure game with a difference. You control your character with the circular plastic Ring-Con in your hands and Leg-Strap on your leg. The game can then tell how much you are moving and relate that to progress in the game.

Kinect Sports (Series)

Rating: PEGI 12+, ESRB TEEN

Release Date: 03/11/2010, updated in 2014

Platforms: Xbox One

Genres: Action, Physically Active, Racing and Sports

Developer: @RareLtd

Players: You can play with 4 players in the same room and up to 4 players online

Kinect Sports and Kinect Sports Rivals are a pair of games offering the Xbox equivalent of Wii Sports. Although these games use the Xbox Kinect camera so you simply move in front of the screen to control the different activities.

Here Kitty!

Rating: Not rated by PEGI or ESRB

Release Date: 04/05/2020

Price: Free

Platforms: iOS

Genres: Action, Physically Active and Puzzle

Players: This is a single player game

Here Kitty! is a real-world hide and seek game you play by hiding your phone. It's from the same team behind Heads Up. When the child calls out or gets near the phone makes cat noises to give them clues to find it. When it's...

Run An Empire

Rating: PEGI 3+, ESRB EVERYONE

Release Date: 22/08/2016

Price: Free-to-start

Platforms: Android and iOS

Genres: Action, Adventure, Physically Active and Strategy

Developer: @PAN_studio

Players: This is a single player game

Run an Empire is a combination of real-world running and a strategy game where you battle other players for land and resources. Once setup you run around your neighbourhood, which in the game is divided into small hexagons. As you encircle areas in the...

The Walk

Rating: PEGI 16+, ESRB TEEN

Release Date: 11/12/2013

Price: Free-to-start

Platforms: Android and iOS

Genres: Adventure, Narrative and Physically Active

Developer: @SixToStart

Players: This is a single player game

The Walk is an adventure you play by walking in the real world. A device detonates in Inverness station, and you have a package that could save the world. To stay alive, you’ll need to walk the length of the UK.

Run To My Heart

Rating: Not rated by PEGI or ESRB

Release Date: Coming soon

Platforms: Android and iOS

Genres: Adventure and Physically Active

Players: This is a single player game

Run To My Heart is an adventure game, where you run in the real world to collect potions from different locations. You work with friends to find and collect the most potions. Players become part of the Potato Rescue Squad, collecting potions and fight...

Champions of Shenga

Rating: PEGI 7+, ESRB EVERYONE 10+

Release Date: 18/07/2017

Platforms: Android and iOS

Genres: Fighting, Physically Active and Strategy

Developer: @BfB_Labs

Players: You can play this with 2 players online

Champions of Shenga is a fantasy card-battling game. You assemble a deck of creatures, equipment and spells in order to compete, but play is regulated via a special heart rate monitor designed to help players track and master their emotions while...

Tori

Rating: PEGI 3+, ESRB EVERYONE

Release Date: 08/11/2019

Platforms: Android and iOS

Genres: Action, Physically Active, Puzzle, Racing and Shooting

Developer: @BandaiNamcoUK

Players: This is a single player game

Tori combines physical and virtual play. The game comes with toys that you place on a play surface to control the game’s spaceships and catapults. Children can also create and colour their own cardboard versions of the toys and use them to control the...

Fru

Rating: PEGI 3+, ESRB EVERYONE

Release Date: 29/06/2016

Platforms: Xbox 360 and Xbox One

Genres: Physically Active and Platform

Players: You can play with 2 players in the same room

This is a platform game with a twist. One player uses a controller to run and jump around the level; a second player stands in front of the Xbox Kinect camera and appears on the screen in silhouette. This person must use the outline of their body to...

Beast of Balance

Rating: PEGI 3+, ESRB EVERYONE

Release Date: 01/11/2016

Platforms: Android and iOS

Genres: Physically Active and Puzzle

Players: You can play with 8 players in the same room

Beasts of Balance comes with beautifully sculpted physical toys that interact with your iPad to create and nurture creatures in a magical land. You place a toy creature on the plinth provided and it appears in the game. Balance another creature on top...

Child of Eden

Rating: PEGI 7+, ESRB EVERYONE 10+

Release Date: 17/06/2011

Platforms: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and Xbox One

Genres: Action, Physically Active, Rhythm and Shooting

Players: This is a single player game

Child of Eden is a dance and motion game that uses the Xbox Kinect camera. You use your body to shoot and move. Rather than fruit, however, here it’s beautiful firework-style visuals and music that are the challenge.

Disney Fantasia: Music Evolved

Rating: PEGI 3+, ESRB EVERYONE 10+

Release Date: 15/10/2014

Platforms: Xbox 360 and Xbox One

Genres: Action, Physically Active and Rhythm

Developer: @Harmonix

Players: You can play with 2 players in the same room

Fantasia is an Xbox Kinect camera dancing game using your whole body. Its narrative follows Disney’s Fantasia film as you take a musical journey to earn your sorcerer’s hat. Sweeping your arms to trigger the orchestra, pointing out high notes with...

Ingress Prime

Rating: PEGI 3+, ESRB EVERYONE

Release Date: 14/12/2013

Price: Free-to-start

Platforms: Android and iOS

Genres: Adventure, Physically Active, Role-Playing, Simulation and Strategy

Developer: @NianticLabs

Players: You can play this with 1000 players online

Ingress (also known as Ingress Prime) is an adventure game that uses your smartphone's GPS to locate you in a game world that correlates with reality. You interact with virtual "portals" located near statues, monuments, civic and historic buildings in...


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