Alba: A Wildlife Adventure is in These Lists
In addition to the similar games listed above, which have been linked to this game specifically in the database, you may find games with a similar theme to Alba: A Wildlife Adventure in the following lists:
Games that embed a sense of hope by playing them. Sometimes a hopeful story, sometimes a hopeful interaction, and sometimes just an uplifting aesthetic to spend time in. These are games that leave you with an uplifted spirit, maybe not immediately (like Horizon Zero Dawn
) but by the time you have finished them.
There is something innocent and childlike in play, and video games each have a slice of that in different ways. Sometimes simple and sometimes complex, games can help us return to the hope we had as children, or call us on to the wisdom and perspective of older years.
Family gaming has been a “thing” since I started writing about games around the time of the Wii. We all know about Minecraft
. However, these are just the tip of the iceberg of games perfectly poised for you to enjoy with your family.
We’ve worked with video game website Kotaku
and one of its writers, John Walker, who runs the Buried Treasure
site, to unearth some games you may have overlooked for your family. Kotaku (a made-up word combining "ko" meaning small and "otaku" meaning geek) has covered specialist video news since 2005. Buried Treasure exists to highlight great, interesting, bizarre or downright silly games that you’d otherwise likely miss.
This list highlights games you may have not discovered or considered as good for your family:
Weird: Games like Chuchel and Nuts offer a peculiar and intriguing way to discover an unusual world and story.
Collaboration: Games like Minecraft Dungeons, Ibb and Obb, Wilmot’s Warehouse and It Takes Two offer different ways to work together to progress by playing and talking together.
Mechanics: Games like Lonely Mountains Downhill and Boomerang X are experiences driven by learning intuitive controls. They are designed to let the player become one with the game, while also ensuring they are approachable for the newcomer.
Emotions: Games like Alba: A Wildlife Adventure and Rainbow Billy offer new ways to share the emotional landscape of characters. These head into identity territory at the player’s pace, without being heavy-handed.
False Start: Games like Vane or No Man’s Sky had a troubled initial release, but were either enhanced or fixed soon after. They are worth revisiting for the polished experience.
Older Rated: Games like Overboard or Spelunky 2 are rated higher in some territories because of gambling content. These are great games to play together as a family that you may have ruled out because of the ratings.
Impenetrable: Games like Sea of Thieves, Kingdom Two Crowns or Terraria can seem confusing and complex when you first start, but persevere and you discover expansive experiences that your family will love playing together.
The British Academy Games Awards are presented annually to recognise, honour and reward outstanding creative achievement in Games. The awards categories reflect the wealth and diversity of the games sector.
The awards started in 2004 and are presented by the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA). For parents, they are a great way of discovering brilliant games to play in their family. The games included here are from these categories:
The Family Games Award highlights games that will work really well for parents and children. These often include multiplayer features and feature a cast of family-friendly characters.
The Games Beyond Entertainment award is also of interest as this highlights more unusual games with an emphasis on storytelling that addresses topics that parents may find appealing themselves.
Growing up playing video games has taught us that controllers with two sticks are a good way to move around a game. One controls looking and the other controls movement. Or maybe you prefer a mouse and keyboard?
However, the prevalence of these somewhat awkward schemes (similar to the prevalent but inefficient QUERTY keyboard layout) means that motion controls are often overlooked. This was made worse when the Wii failed to offer many high-end games and made motion synonymous with kid’s games.
The reality of well-implemented motion controls for aiming can make a profound difference to how approachable and accessible the experience is -- especially if two sticks don’t work for you or are unfamiliar.
We’ve worked with Jibb Smart
on this list of games that offer motion controls that work as a viable (and often enhanced) replacement for stick control. He is pioneering well-executed motion controls and has created open-source tools JoyShockLibrary and JoyShockMapper to help explore the potential offered by the gyroscopes in these controllers. His website GyroWiki
teaches developers how to implement these features well. In this list, we highlight games that put motion controls to good use in a way that is effective and well-executed.
Much of Jibb’s work focuses on the potential of gyro aiming. “It replaces the mouse with gyro controls. And since mouse control is a core pillar of PC gaming, it bridges a significant gap between PC and console players.” But motion controls is a very broad category. It’s worth breaking it down into more specific types of control that can help players in different ways:
Motion Aiming: Can use small movements of the gamepad to fine-tune aiming or as the main aiming mechanism. This is sometimes known as Gyro-Aiming. Games like The Last of Us Part II and Rogue Company provide this ability to replace one of the sticks or mouse with gyro controls. This usually requires the ability to calibrate these controls to taste. Search database for Motion Aiming games.
Motion Pointing: Can use the direction of the gamepad to move a cursor-target around the screen like a mouse. Games like Ghost Squad, World of Goo and Boom Blox use this to offer a light-gun experience. Search database for Motion Pointing games.
Motion Tilting: Can use movements of the gamepad to replace steering or left/right movement with sticks. Games like Forza, Mario Kart and Wipeout offer this to enable you to steer left or right by tilting the controller. Search database for Motion Tilting games.
Motion Gesture: Can motion with the controller to direct an in-game action. This can be a nuanced one-to-one motion for analogue sword (Zelda Skyward Sword) or bat movement (Wii Sports Resort). It can also be a simple shake to trigger a one-off action, like in Super Mario Galaxy. Search database for Motion Gesture games.
Flick Stick: Enables you control the direction you are facing in a game by pressing the controller stick in that direction, rather than a left or right relative motion. Once you are facing a direction, rotating the stick moves the camera by the same degree. The result is a quicker and simpler way to control your orientation in a game world.
There are 2,277 active games companies in the UK employing 20,430 people. The biggest concentration spread through the country in cities and towns like London, Manchester, Brighton, Guildford, Aldershot, Bristol, Sheffield, Glasgow and Liverpool. The UK market for video games reached a record £7bn in 2020.
Many of the biggest video game franchises have been created in the UK. Grand Theft Auto
, Tomb Raider
, Football Manager
, Elite Beat Agents
and Batman: Arkham Asylum
. But along with these well-known titles are some amazing games for families and children.
There are some amazing (and huge) series of games made in the UK that are perfect for families. Forza Horizon
, Lego Games
, Fall Guys
and Viva Pinata
. Then there are games from smaller and independent UK game studios: Overcooked
, Wilmot’s Warehouse
, Snake Pass
to name a few.
Of the different senses, it's easy to overlook the importance of hearing. We encourage children to read, watch and observe. But just as important is to develop more than just cursory listening.
Despite their name, i video games use sounds just as much as visuals to create their worlds. As well as this, audio is often a crucial aspect of interactions and clues for puzzle solving.
Because of this, video games (like walking in nature) are a powerful way to learn to notice and use the sounds around us. Playing a game with headphones helps the player focus on the sound. Doing this intentionally can help younger players discover a new world of sound in the games they play.
There are games like Limbo
and Super Mario Odyssey
that use sound to set the mood and aesthetic of the play. This is more than just background music as it reacts and integrates with the sounds the player is making while they play.
Then there are games like Uncharted
and Sea of Thieves
that use audio to indicate things happening in the game. Not only what is happening, like the sound of someone boarding your ship, but where that is happening in relation to your character with spatial audio.
There are games where you create the audio with your actions. Touching petals in Flower
adds notes to the classical music. In Mini Metro
you add to the ambient sounds as you place stations and new tube lines.
Finally, there are games where sound is your main way of navigating the world. Games like The Vale
and Frequency Missing
can be played with just sound. This not only offers an accessible experience to those without sight but a chance to engage with a virtual world using just our hearing.
In this series, we are learning how different aspects of video games work by playing games that offer an easy introduction to this one concept. This is designed for people new to gaming, and aims to identify games with the least barriers. In this entry we are looking at Shooting games
Video games have had a long history of including shooting play. Like the instinct of children to pick up sticks for imaginary gun-play, this offers players a chance to step into dangerous situations that raise the adrenaline and require high levels of skill and precision.
Often called shooter games, or shooters, they test the player's spatial awareness, reflexes, and speed against computer characters and human other players in online games. They usually offer players a range of weapons, each of which behaves differently and require practice to use efficiently.
While the main aim of most of these games is to shoot enemies in the head to kill them, there are many other things also going on. Players need to consider their environment, other opponents, team-mates, mission objectives, which weapon to use and how much health they have got. This level of systems work extends beyond quick reflexes to social understanding, layered decision making, long term strategic thinking and rigorous practice.
Whether it’s a simple puzzle grid, a battlefield or a universe of planets to visit, all games create virtual spaces in which to play. Some of these are simply the background to a campaign - the game’s unfolding drama, missions or challenge. But others invite you to invest in the worlds they create, move in, tend to and inhabit in fantastical ways.
The games in this section invite you to spend time in spaces that have a sense of place, life and character. Worlds that hold history and lore in their landscapes, flora, fauna and inhabitants; environments that respond to your presence and invite you to restore them to their former glory.
We are running the Family Gaming Area at MCM Comic Con (October 18th
2022) with AskAboutGames
and the VSC Ratings Board
. We'll be there to answer questions on console settings, PEGI ratings, keeping costs sensible, and helping you find amazing games.
Come and find us in the Sidequest area and try out some of the great family games we'll have to play. You can also use the database Game Finder to search for games that are the perfect match for your family. We can also help you find games that match your families particular accessibility requirements and cognitive needs.
Success in video games is often framed at the personal level: the last person standing in Fortnite
, achieving high viewership on a Twitch stream, the best player in Rocket League
. However, many video games choose to focus players on a wider view, on working for the greater good of the world in which they live.
Games can develop a deep sense of civic identity. Civics is the study of the rights and obligations of citizens in society. Our civic identity comes from situating oneself within a larger group, often committing oneself to public action. Games give children a chance to try out taking public action within society for the greater good.
This list of games offers space for players to develop a sense of civic identity. We put it together with Barry Joseph
, who has worked in many contexts to empower children to achieve this. Whether at Global Kids, Inc, where he helped youth to acquire leadership skills and engage in efforts to address global issues through the production of digital media, in founding Games For Change, where he worked with video games as a form of youth media, or at Girl Scouts of the U.S.A, where he piloted digital engagement for girls around the country.
There are many mainstream games, not created specifically for education, that are a great way to engage with civic identity. This includes games that invite players to take control of civic space, like Alba
, One Hour, One Life
, Sim City
, Thousand Threads
Then there are games where civic space is presented as dysfunctional and in need of repair, like Papers Please
, Not For Broadcast
, Do Not Feed The Monkeys
. Other games let you take civic space in questionable or futile directions, like Headliner: NoviNews
, Bad News
and Photographs Puzzle Stories
Finally, there are some games specifically created to teach children about civics. The always-growing collection of games from iCivics explore U.S. Government functions, including Argument Wars
, Branches of Power
and Immigration Nation
. There is the novel Civics! An American Musical
that teaches US History through creating a Hamilton-style musical. Digital Compass
teaches digital citizenship through an interactive story and MP For A Week
that teaches children about being an MP in UK Parliament. Finally, the Democratic Socialism Simulator
is a puzzle game where you run for office and then run a country.
Video games are a great way for children to play. However, they are also contested spaces often created with profit as well as play in mind. How do we empower children to play, break the rules and self-determination in light of other pressures and owners of these digital spaces?
We worked with Sara Grimes on this list of games that offer new and emergent ways to provide play possibilities to children. Her book, Digital Playgrounds
explores the key developments, trends, debates, and controversies that have shaped children’s commercial digital play spaces over the past two decades.
The politics of children’s play aren’t something we often talk about. This is more than decrying big business muscling in on childhood. It’s about understanding digital play in a holistic sense so it can be all it needs to be in the life of a child. Sara describes this as an embrace of the complexity of children’s online playgrounds, virtual worlds, and connected games.
It comes down to something at the heart of our database: seeing games more than mere sources of fun and diversion. “Games serve as the sites of complex negotiations of power between children, parents, developers, politicians, and other actors with a stake in determining what, how, and where children’s play unfolds.”
We’re excited about games in this list as they are not only digital spaces where these things meet, but that children use them in ways they weren’t intended. These games can be places where children push back at the powers-that-be and take ownership of these digital public spheres in unexpected ways.
Metaverse rule making and breaking in games like Roblox and Fortnite, where the context offers more than competition. Children often invent their own rules and ways to play not instigated by the developer.
Citizenship their own way in games like Alba, Cozy Grove or Unpacking where children have agency to influence and contribute (or not) to public spaces. Then there's games like and Please Touch The Artwork and Sloppy Forgeries that invite usually discouraged behaviour.
Undirected play can lead to unintended scenarios in games like Pok Pok Playroom, Kids, A Short Hike or Townscaper where play isn’t directed or capitalised upon, but left alone to be an end in its own right.
Purposeless Exploration in games like , Proteus and Ynglet can be used as a way to waste time, not progress and refuse direction.
Misbehave in games like Untitled Goose Game, Donut County, Carrion, Fable, Scribblenauts and Beholder is expected. But how children stretch and reinvent (or refuse to partake in) this usually frowned on behaviour opens unexpected possibilities.
The Let's Game It Out
YouTube channel is a great example of games you can play in ways (very) unexpected by the developers. These aren't all child friendly, but are fascinating examples of play transgressing intended rules.
Many video games let children try outside activities and sports. This can be a great way to not only find something new to do outside, but also start to gain some expertease that you can then try in the real world.
The games in this list, are not only set in the wild but let you get your hands dirty (so to speak). They cover outside activities as varied as fishing, gardening, bird watching, swimming, landscape painting, walking, scuba diving, wilderness exploring, wild survival and sailing.
This can be a nice way to see what sorts of activity click with your child. Also, being a video game means that children are often more willing to give things a go in this way.
In this list, provided by the LTN
(Love Thy Nerd) editors, we bring together video games that have the potential to offer more than entertainment. It starts with 12 with a challenge us to be a good neighbour, and follows with others added over time. LTN exists to be the love of Jesus to nerds and nerd culture, you can read more about them on their website
"What if video games have more to offer than just an exciting diversion into a digital battlefield, fantasy war, or alien invasion? While these types of games are certainly the loudest and most financially successful, there are a growing number of games asking important questions about life, the human condition, and even God."
"Our list is not 'Christian' games, but rather a list of games that pose important spiritual questions to those who play them. These are games that provide us with the opportunity to consider what a truly 'spiritual' life looks like by encouraging us to have empathy for the suffering, love for our neighbours and our enemies, and an imagination vivid enough to contemplate a better world."Journey's
understated yet deep mythology, lack of guidance and mysterious ways it brings players together will have players thinking about the course of their own lives. Dropsy
is, on the surface, a silly point-and-click adventure game about a creepy but misunderstood clown, dig deeper and you’ll see this a game that challenges players to love everyone, even their enemies. Kentucky Route Zero
is at its core, about rediscovery, of adventure-game mechanics and modernist aesthetics, of a more spiritual outlook on the physical world.Gris
is a platformer about the stages of grief that highlights the indelible impact of our most sacred relationships. That Dragon, Cancer
is a game where Ryan and Amy Green share their grief and their hope by drawing us not only into their lives but into the common grace of the Christian faith. Myst
, one of the best selling titles of all time, is a puzzle game about the beauty and mystery of creation. Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons
is a game about the spiritual impact our most precious relationships have on us. Wandersong
is a game about transforming the world with music. Heroism isn’t measured in bulk or recognition but in the melodic tones of compassion and kindness. The Last Guardian
confronts us with our own self-centredness and challenges us to give rather than merely take.Pyre
is a game about mercy that deconstructs player’s perceptions of winning and losing, encouraging them to see and meet the needs of those who are oppressed. My Child Lebensborn
is a game that challenges players to care for a child born into a fascist regime--this is a game about the power of empathy. Celeste
strikes at the centre of what it means to be a person in all of our messy humanity a wonderful reminder that even when we fall, we are lifted up again through redemptive love, forgiveness, and grace—both for ourselves and for one another.