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36 Great Games Like Flower

Our experts have spent time searching for great games similar to Flower. We also offer games selected by matching genre and age rating.
 

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 flowing race, skimming the tops of grass blades as you master the motion- or touch-controls.

Unfortunately, Flower is not available on Android, Mac, PS5, Switch, Xbox One or Xbox Series X|S. However, we recommend the following games that offer a similar experience or theme:

DetailsGame Details

Content Rating: PEGI 3+

Skill Rating: 5-11 year-olds

Release Date: 12/02/2009

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

Genres: Open World, Racing and Simulation

Accessibility: 2 features

Developer: @ThatGameCompany

Players: This is a single player game

Costs: Purchase cost

Hand Picked Games Like Flower

These are our hand-picked games similar to Flower. We don't use automatic matching, instead, we identify games that are good to play if you have enjoyed Flower. These selections also include games that offer a different experience but address a similar theme or topic.
 

Alba: A Wildlife Adventure

Content Rating: PEGI 3+

Skill Rating: 6-10 year-olds

Release Date: 11/12/2020

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

Genres: Adventure, Narrative and Simulation

Accessibility: 31 features

Developer: @UsTwo

Players: This is a single player game

Alba: A Wildlife Adventure is an adventure game where you play as a young girl who starts a wildlife conservation club. When Alba visits her grandparents on a Mediterranean island, she is excited for a summer of exploring with her friend Ines. But when...

Moshi: Sleep and Mindfulnes‪s‬

Content Rating: PEGI 3+

Skill Rating: 2+ year-olds

Release Date: 14/02/2020

Platforms: Android and iOS

Genres: Narrative

Accessibility: 15 features

Players: This is a single player game

Moshi: Sleep and Mindfulnes‪s‬ is a narrative experience designed to aid sleep. Children can select stories, sounds, meditation or music and calm colours to help them drift off to sleep quickly. Once started the original stories and sounds play with...

Kingdom Hearts: Melody of Memory (Series)

Content Rating: PEGI 12+

Release Date: 11/11/2020

Platforms: PS4 and Switch

Genres: Action and Rhythm

Accessibility: 17 features

Developer: @SquareEnix

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

Kingdom Hearts: Melody of Memory is an action-rhythm game. You play through songs from the Kingdom Hearts series of video games by hitting enemies in time with the music with your staff. This makes for a nice blend of rhythm and combat.

Journey

Content Rating: PEGI 7+

Release Date: 14/03/2012, updated in 2019

Platforms: PC, PS3, PS4 and iOS

Genres: Adventure

Accessibility: 6 features

Developer: @ThatGameCompany

Players: This is a single player game. You can play with up to 2 players online

This is an adventure in a desert. Exploring the eerie sand-scape, you discover a world abandoned by the race that created it. The sense of space and scale evokes feelings of aloneness and being lost. But then the game pairs you with other players, one...

Seasons

Content Rating: PEGI 3+

Release Date: Coming soon

Platforms: PC and PS5

Genres: Adventure and Narrative

Developer: @ScavStudio

Players: This is a single player game

Seasons is a narrative adventure where you take a bicycle road trip game. You play as a young woman leaving a secluded community, exploring the world for the first time. Collect artefacts and memories as you explore because soon, a mysterious cataclysm...

LocoRoco

Content Rating: PEGI 3+

Skill Rating: 6+ year-olds

Release Date: 23/06/2006

Platforms: PS Vita, PS4 and PSP

Genres: Platform

Accessibility: 1 feature

Developer: @SonyJapanStudio

Players: This is a single player game

This creates a world of plants and creatures to investigate. The novelty, besides the character’s singing and cute aesthetic, is that you control the game with just two buttons, tilting and bumping your characters through each level.

Breath of Light

Content Rating: PEGI 3+

Release Date: 25/03/2015

Platforms: iOS

Genres: Puzzle

Developer: @BreathGame

Players: This is a single player game

Breath of Light is a meditative puzzle game where you guide the breath of light through sand and water. With no score or time-limits and with all levels unlocked from the start, the focus is on relaxation and breathing rather than the challenge and its...

Abzu
PEGI Rating 7+ for Abzu

Abzu

Content Rating: PEGI 7+

Release Date: 02/11/2016, updated in 2018

Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Genres: Adventure

Accessibility: 6 features

Developer: @GiantSquidology

Players: This is a single player game

Abzu is an adventure in a lush underwater world. You descend into the heart of the ocean to find ancient secrets and encounter majestic creatures. This combines the beautiful weightlessness of diving with an ancient story of meaning and place in the world.

Alto's Odyssey (Series)

Content Rating: PEGI 3+

Skill Rating: 4+ year-olds

Release Date: 19/02/2015, updated in 2018

Price: Free

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

Genres: Action, Platform and Racing

Accessibility: 13 features

Developer: @BuiltBySnowman

Players: This is a single player game

Descend beautiful mountains, dunes and canyons on a snowboarding journey full of serenity and secrets. All you have to worry about is tapping to jump to avoid chasms, rockfall and other hazards. It’s simple and moreish due to the stunning landscapes...

The Gecko Gods

Expected Content Rating: PEGI 3+

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Release Date: Coming soon

Platforms: PC and Switch

Genres: Adventure, Open World, Platform and Puzzle

Accessibility: 35 features

Developer: @Inresin

Players: This is a single player game

The Gecko Gods is a puzzle game where you control a small lizard reptile exploring a world and solving puzzles. You interact with the flora and fauna, catch insects and visit other animals. Because you have sticky feet you can climb any surface.

Feather

Content Rating: PEGI 3+

Skill Rating: 7+ year-olds

Release Date: 05/04/2019

Platforms: Mac, PC and Switch

Genres: Open World and Simulation

Accessibility: 3 features

Developer: @SamuraiPunk

Players: You can play this with 4 players online

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...

Eco
PEGI Rating 7+ for Eco

Eco

Content Rating: PEGI 7+

Skill Rating: 10-14 year-olds

Release Date: 06/02/2018

Platforms: Mac and PC

Genres: Creative, Open World, Simulation and Strategy

Developer: @StrangeLoopGame

Players: This is a single player game. You can play with up to 100 players online

Eco extends the resource-collecting and building of Minecraft by introducing environmental implications to your actions. Using resources like trees will erode the soil; mining might pollute the river; and each animal depends on another.

Lonely Mountains Downhill

Content Rating: PEGI 3+

Skill Rating: 10-16 year-olds

Release Date: 22/10/2019

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

Genres: Action, Open World, Racing and Sports

Accessibility: 17 features

Developer: @Megagon_inds

Players: This is a single player game

Race down a mountain on a bike. Make your way through thick forests, narrow trails and wild rivers. Race, jump, slide and try not to crash all the way from the peak to the valley. You choose your route to find the fastest way to the finish line.

Naiad

Content Rating: Not rated by PEGI

Release Date: Coming soon

Platforms: PC

Genres: Adventure and Puzzle

Developer: @HiWarp

Players: This is a single player game

Naiad is a gentle adventure game where exploration is fuelled not by extreme distances, dangers or enemies, but by the simple joy of floating in rivers and pools. As a story about nature unfolds you control a nymph-like character who swims through...

Need for Speed (Series)

Content Rating: PEGI 16+

Release Date: 08/11/2019

Price: 80% off

Platforms: PC, PS3, PS4 and Xbox One

Genres: Open World and Racing

Accessibility: 27 features

Developer: @GhostGamesEA

Players: This is a single player game. You can play with up to 16 players online

Need for Speed: Heat is an open-world racing game. Races during the day are legally sanctioned street competitions where you try to win cash prizes. Races at night are illegal races where you aim to build a reputation. When racing at night, you need to...

One Hand Clapping

Content Rating: PEGI 3+

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Release Date: 14/07/2020

Platforms: Stadia

Genres: Platform, Puzzle and Rhythm

Accessibility: 28 features

Developer: @BadDreamGames

Players: This is a single player game

One Hand Clapping is a running and jumping game where you sing into a microphone to interact with the world. The game acknowledges how challenging this idea may be, and gently leads you into using your voice to create platforms, adjust the wind and...

Sunlight

Expected Content Rating: PEGI 3+

Release Date: 14/01/2021

Platforms: PC

Genres: Narrative and Simulation

Developer: @Krillbite

Players: This is a single player game

Sunlight is a short adventure game where you explore an uncharted forest, guided by harmonised whispers. As you move from tree to tree you discover different voices, genders and dialects, speaking as one. Taking artistic inspiration from expressionist...

Koral

Content Rating: PEGI 3+

Skill Rating: 5+ year-olds

Release Date: 16/05/2019

Price: 90% off

Platforms: PC and Switch

Genres: Adventure, Open World and Simulation

Developer: @CarlosGameDev

Players: This is a single player game

Koral is a diving exploration game where you play the sea current. This sounds a little odd, playing a flow of energy, but works brilliantly.

Exo One

Content Rating: Not rated by PEGI

Release Date: Coming soon

Platforms: PC

Genres: Narrative, Open World and Simulation

Developer: @JayWeston

Players: This is a single player game

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,...

The Falconeer

Content Rating: PEGI 12+

Release Date: 10/11/2020

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

Genres: Action and Shooting

Accessibility: 6 features

Developer: @TheFalconeer

Players: This is a single player game

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...

SoundSelf: A Technodelic

Content Rating: Not rated by PEGI

Release Date: 22/04/2020

Platforms: PC

Genres: Simulation

Developer: @EnterAndromeda

Players: This is a single player game

SoundSelf is an interactive guided meditation. Using the microphone, and optionally enhanced by VR, the game leads you through a landscape that responds to the sounds of your breath. This encourages you to make the Ujjayi Pranayama sound on your...

Sequence Storm

Content Rating: Not rated by PEGI

Release Date: 21/12/2018

Platforms: PC

Genres: Action, Creative, Narrative, Racing, Rhythm and Sports

Accessibility: 15 features

Developer: @SEQUENCE_STORM

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

This is a rhythm game where you press buttons in time with the music to score points. It sounds simple, but similar to games like Guitar Hero, it soon gets more complex. Unusually the rhythm play has a futuristic racing story.

Absolute Drift

Content Rating: PEGI 3+

Release Date: 16/08/2016

Platforms: Android, PC, PS4, Switch, Xbox One and iOS

Genres: Racing, Simulation and Sports

Developer: @FunSelektor

Players: This is a single player game

Absolute Drift is a skill-based racing game where the focus is on accuracy and elegance rather than just speed. You aim is to use a controlled skid to get around corners with the perfect racing line and score more points.

Art Of Rally

Content Rating: Not rated by PEGI

Release Date: 23/09/2020

Platforms: Mac and PC

Genres: Action, Racing, Simulation and Sports

Accessibility: 29 features

Developer: @FunSelektor

Players: This is a single player game

Art of Rally is a racing game that focuses on stylised off road motion from the creator of Absolute Drift. Slide through the hand-crafted stages set in Finland, Japan and Spain with varying weather and time of day.

Yi and the Thousand Moons

Expected Content Rating: PEGI 3+

Release Date: 24/11/2017

Platforms: Mac and PS2

Genres: Adventure and Narrative

Accessibility: 21 features

Developer: @UsDivad

Players: This is a single player game

Yi and the Thousand Moons is an adventure game in the form of a musical. You follow Yi who is told by the gods to bring down the moons, but then has to try and save the people of her village from the unforeseen results.

Nour: Play With Your Food

Content Rating: PEGI 3+

Release Date: Coming soon

Platforms: Mac, PC and PS5

Genres: Puzzle, Rhythm and Simulation

Developer: @_Teejay5

Players: This is a single player game

Nour: Play With Your Food is an experimental music game where you create different dishes and plates of food. Unusually, the focus is on sound rather than just visuals. As you add ingredients and food elements they each add sounds.

SuperFlight

Expected Content Rating: PEGI 3+

Release Date: 09/11/2017

Platforms: PC

Genres: Action, Open World, Racing and Simulation

Accessibility: 12 features

Developer: @_GrizzlyGames

Players: This is a single player game

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...

Ynglet

Expected Content Rating: PEGI 3+

Release Date: 05/06/2021

Platforms: PC

Genres: Creative, Platform and Simulation

Developer: @Nifflas

Players: This is a single player game

Ynglet is an exploration game where you jump between bubbles that float in the sky making sounds as you interact with the doodled environment. Part platform game, part dynamic soundtrack, it's a game designed to let you flow through the world to...

Lifeslide

Expected Content Rating: PEGI 3+

Skill Rating: 9-14 year-olds

Release Date: 19/09/2019

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

Genres: Narrative, Open World, Racing and Simulation

Accessibility: 27 features

Developer: @DreamTeckStudio

Players: This is a single player game

Lifeslide is an adventure where you fly a paper place 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.

Fugl

Expected Content Rating: PEGI 3+

Release Date: 14/09/2017

Platforms: Mac and PC

Genres: Adventure, Open World and Simulation

Developer: @MeloDive

Players: This is a single player game

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...

AER Memories of Old

Content Rating: PEGI 7+

Release Date: 28/08/2019

Platforms: PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Genres: Narrative, Open World, Platform, Puzzle and Simulation

Developer: @ForgottenKeySE

Players: This is a single player game

AER Memories of Old is an exploration game where you transform from a woman to a golden eagle at will. As Auk, your quest is to save the world by finding the lost keys and restoring balance.

#SelfCare

Content Rating: PEGI 12+

Release Date: 29/07/2019

Price: Free

Platforms: Android and iOS

Genres: Simulation

Developer: @LuvTruLuv

Players: This is a single player game

#SelfCare is a companion game that aims to create space for your feelings. Unlike other apps that remind or incentivise you to take a break, breath or even just to stand up, #SelfCare offers interactions and narrative that create a context for you to...

Rudi Rainbow

Content Rating: PEGI 3+

Skill Rating: 4-6 year-olds

Release Date: 24/06/2017

Platforms: Android and iOS

Genres: Adventure and Puzzle

Developer: @_FoxAndSheep

Players: This is a single player game

Rudi Rainbow is an adventure game where you play a rainbow who has lost his colours. It's designed for really young players and offers a combination of story-book narrative and light puzzles. Along the way you learn about the weather and space.

Shine – Journey of Light

Content Rating: PEGI 3+

Skill Rating: 6-11 year-olds

Release Date: 17/11/2018

Platforms: Android and iOS

Genres: Adventure, Narrative, Platform and Puzzle

Developer: @_FoxAndSheep

Players: This is a single player game

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.

Plasticity

Expected Content Rating: PEGI 3+

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Release Date: 24/05/2019

Price: Free

Platforms: Mac and PC

Genres: Narrative, Platform and Puzzle

Developer: @PlasticityGame

Players: This is a single player game

Plasticity is a running and jumping puzzle game about a world overrun with plastic waste. You collect and recycle the plastic to transform your environment back to health. It's a short game designed to raise awareness of the long-lasting damage that...

Games Like Flower Based on Genre

These are games of a similar genre mix to Flower. This includes games from the Simulation, Racing and Open World genres. We pick out games of a similar PEGI rating to further hone these generated suggestions.
 

Flower 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 Flower in the following lists:

Inhabit Another World

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.
 
Shu
PEGI Rating 7+ for Shu
Fuel
PEGI Rating 7+ for Fuel
Hades
PEGI Rating 12+ for Hades
Haven
PEGI Rating 12+ for Haven
Ete
Pine
PEGI Rating 12+ for Pine
Fe
PEGI Rating 7+ for Fe

Unusual Locomotion

These games offer worlds you explore in unusual ways. Maybe it’s hard to put one foot in front of the other, or maybe you get a chance to climb and jump athletically. These games put you in touch what it’s like to move more easily or more difficulty than real life.
 
Shu
PEGI Rating 7+ for Shu
Ink
PEGI Rating 3+ for Ink
Kine
PEGI Rating 3+ for Kine
Fe
PEGI Rating 7+ for Fe
Abzu
PEGI Rating 7+ for Abzu

Find Calm From The Storm

These games offer ways to consciously step outside the day's stresses and pressures to create space for self-care. This may be to distract yourself with calming unpressured tasks or to visit a world that is tranquil and relaxing or maybe just spend time reflecting on your emotions in a safe space.
 
Eloh
PEGI Rating 3+ for Eloh
Hoa
Shu
PEGI Rating 7+ for Shu
Tint
Abzu
PEGI Rating 7+ for Abzu

Get Children Painting

Video games often create spaces like beautiful paintings. Designers and artists spend years crafting worlds that invite us to interact with realistic or stylised brushstrokes. The games in this list let the play take part in that painting process.

Some of the games here, like Okami or Concrete Genie, use painting as a way to solve puzzles to progress through the game. Other games in the list, like Splatoon, De Blob or Chicory, use painting as a way interact with the game world itself. Then there are games like The Unfinished Swan, that use painting as a way of revealing what is in front of you, giving the impression of limit faculties. Finally, there are games like Ete or Dordogne, that use painting in the game to express emotion.

Unlike the world of real painting, in video games anyone can create a masterpiece. The game Sloppy Forgeries, uses this idea as its main mechanic. You are presented with a classic painting and given a limited time to race other players to recreate it. In amongst the frantic silliness is something lovely. The usual barriers to creativity fall, as we all get stuck in and have a go. Another notable game is If Found where you are erasing your drawings and paintings in a powerful way that aligns with a narrative of rediscovered identity.
 

DualShock PlayStation 4 Games

After the Wii's success, PlayStation added motion controls to its PlayStation 3 controller. Although a novelty at first, this continued to mature in PlayStation 4 games and its Dual Shock 4 controller that included motion detection as well as a Touch Pad and speaker.

The games in this list make intelligent use of the motion controls and other interactive features of the Dual Shock PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 3 controller.

This ranges from games like Journey that lets you control the direction you are looking with controller motion, to Tearaway Unfolded that uses the gyroscope and touch pad to launch objects from the controller to the screen. Then there are games like Gravity Rush that use motion to direct movement.

Some of these games use motion controls to complement traditional use of sticks for aiming and movement. You can use the Motion Aiming accessibility search to find more of these games on the database.
 

Make Music While You Play

Many games use rhythm as a mechanic to involve the player. But this list is devoted to the games that go one step further, and make you feel like you are creating music while to interact with the game. This may be the singing to other characters in Wandersong or Fe, or be contributing to the orchestral soundtrack in games like Flower or LocoRoco.

These are games that almost feel like you are playing a music album. They invite you to spend time in a meditative musical state that leaves you with their songs and rhythms in your head for the rest of the day - Pata Pata Pata Pon.
 

Play The Seasons: Fall Into Autumn Tales

Video games create spaces for us to go and play. These spaces are sometimes an escape from the real world. Equally, games can help us revel and celebrate the real world.

Inspired by an article written by Keith Stuart about autumnal games, this is a list of games that are played while the leaves are falling.

These games offer, rather than escapism, unique ways to appreciate the season we are living in. They are an exercise in the present moment, where we find writ large, the joys of harvesting apples, warm fires, crisp walks and the breathing in before the long dark of winter.
 

Gaming Projects: Photography

The spaces and places that video games create are often designed with a particular interaction or way to progress through them. However, because games are open to the player, how you play, the direction you move and what you do in the game is up to you.

This means that you can often put video games to unusual uses. Photography is one aspect of this as Paul Buttle recently highlight on Twitter. All modern video game consoles enable you to capture an image of the screen. At a rudimentary level this allows you to take pictures of your adventures. Beyond this, many games offer a Photo mode that allows you to freeze the action and take control of the camera -- even letting you control effects, depth of field and shutter speed in some cases.

This means you can take really beautiful and engaging pictures in the games you play. Some families have tasked their expert players with capturing a certain type of photograph as they play:
  • Portraiture - capture images of the people you meet.
  • Photojournalism - create a photo diary of the events of the game to be annotated later.
  • Fashion - document the different outfits and wardrobe styles your character chooses.
  • Sports - capture sporting moments, including not only players, but the crowd and coaches.
  • Still Life - capture the inanimate, mundane and overlooked elements that make the game world what it is.
  • Architectural - find ways to photograph the buildings in various states of build, decay and renewal.

Some examples of these projects include:
 

Digital Nutrition

Jocelyn Brewer coined the phrase Digital Nutrition to introduce a way of thinking about technology that went beyond screen time worries, drug analogies and detoxes. Instead, she encourages us to think about the variety, context and patterns of digital consumption.

"Digital Nutrition is a guilt-free philosophy that guides you towards healthful technology habits and improving your digital literacy and wellbeing. Rather than digital detoxing and unplugging, Digital Nutrition is about intentional and intelligent use of devices and the conscious consumption of news, media and information."

I’ve worked with her on this list of games that provide particularly underserved aspects of our digital play diet. These are the vitamins of the gaming world. Essential to a healthy diet and easy to overlook if we just follow where video game advertising leads us.

Unlike the other lists on the site, it’s an eclectic collection of games. But this is for good reason. These are the games that supplement your digital diet with variety, fibre, vitamins and minerals. They are the “digital super-foods” as Jocelyn puts it.

Digital Nutrition is a brilliant antidote to the guilt, muddled advice and finger-pointing of screen time focus advice. Instead, we can consider what specific games have to offer our children and our family.

This leads to other questions about how, where and when we play. Grabbing a Pizza on the street isn’t the same as sitting down to share a slice around the meal table. Only eating Kale is as problematic disordered eating as eating too many sweets. The same is true with video games, so this list is here to offer a varied diet.
 

Winding Down

Children love to play exuberant and exciting video games with their friends. While these offer a wide range of benefits, it can be good to transition to something less energetic as the day draws to a close.

We have worked with Moshi Sleep on this list of games and apps that are a great way to help children wind down as they transition to night time. It creates mindfulness experiences for children to “enjoy calmer day times and quicker bedtimes”.

These are playful ways to calm the brain, ease anxiety and generally get little heads ready to rest. Some of them are ideal to play right before sleeping and even let you turn off the screen to listen along when you are finished interacting. Others, like Frost or Lifelike, offer gentle, tranquil interactions to still the mind and escape the world. Some, like Flower or Alto’s Adventure, create calm with simple repetition of tasks and process in a world where the sun slowly sets.

These games, together with some screen-free time in the lead up to sleep are a great way for children to develop healthy bedtime habits.
 

Find God in Video Games

Video games are not often used in mature cultural spaces. We expect to find them in bedrooms, living rooms, the chip shop and the motorway services. But we don't expect to find them in arts festivals, church services or park gatherings.

Over the years Andy Robertson (@GeekDadGamer) has worked to cross this line, brining video games to be a central part of aspects of culture usually reserved for more weighty or serious things.

This has sometimes been to great out-side video game experiences, with games like The Dragon Cancer, Passage and Jesus Run, at the Greenbelt arts festival. Other times he has set-up unusual video games like Joust Mania, in local parks. Then he has worked with the Church of England to run acts of worship in Exeter Cathedral where a video game like Flower, Journey or Abzu are a central element.

Video Resources

Church services integrated with video game:
Video game at Greenbelt art festival:
Video game devotions and discussions:
 

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.
 

Fidget Toys

Fidget spinners burst into the hands of children a number of years ago. While that initial trend subsided, the interest and enjoyment of tactile objects to fiddle with are very much with us.

Fidget toys are like the yo-yo or Rubik's cube but without the focus on skill. The enjoyment comes from doing something that isn't learning or achieving anything. It's no surprise that there are a number of video games that have picked up on this style of play.

Some games, like The Longing, Animal Crossing and Adopt Me, simple slow down the need to progress, so all you do is check-in, fiddle around with the game world and then leave. Then there are other games, like Townscaper and Pok Pok Playroom, that let you craft your own structures but with none of the usual video game emphasis on score and winning. Other games, like Everything and Proteus, offer a huge world to poke and prod without getting embroiled with progression.

Even games that do offer a strong sense of story and development often include post-game play or side-quest distractions that are simply there for you to spend time fiddling with rather than winning or losing. Games like A Short Hike, Alba A Wildlife Adventure or even No Man's Sky.
 

Games from Taming Gaming Book

When we wrote the Taming Gaming book we packed the second half with full colour game ‘recipes’ as a resource for parents and families. They are grouped in categories depending on the style of game you are looking for, whether you want to play on your own, or with your family and friends.

The Family Gaming Database grew out of the book. At first it was just going to be a way to search the 60 or so games in the book. With 1000’s of parents soon using the database it became clear we should grow it to cover more games. So, today we have 1306 games.

Here are all the games from the book:

Games for non-gaming grown-ups

These games are perfect if you have never played one before. They open the door to the gaming world for non-gaming parents and carers.

Nurture child-like imagination

These games are for children under seven years old who will, with some help, discover activities they want to try that will expand their imaginations, while establishing the role of your guidance and engagement as part of the gaming world as they grow up.

Nourish Youthful Ambition

As children get older, they develop stronger ideas of what they want to play. Friends at school and YouTube stars create popular gaming fabs for the latest titles. The games suggested here go beyond the usual suspects.

Laugh at Silliness

Video games have their roots in fun and play. This makes them an excellent way to forget the worries of the day and dive into some silly fun together. The games on this list have been selected because they get players doing absurd activities and chuckling together.

Inhabit Another World

The games in this list invite you to spend time in spaces that have a sense of place, life and character.

Compete on the Couch

Raucous, unbounded, exuberant all-age, competitive fun is something video games are known for. These games can play a bit-part in raising children to be magnanimous in victory and generous in defeat.

Work Together to Thrive

Play is more fun when it’s shared. Along with team work the games on this list use the fact that the players are all sitting next to each other. The fun is often as much about the conversations (and arguments) that happen in the room as what’s happening on the screen.

Walk in Someone Else’s Shoes

While many games include characters to interact with, some are specifically designed to make relationships a central element. These games offer a unique way to think deeply about how we relate to each other to the games people play.

Wake up Your Emotions

Video games are known for high-octane, adrenaline fuelled entertainment, but there are many that address the players emotions as much as their dexterity. The games in the following list create emotionally rich spaces in which to explore scenarios with feelings rather than facts.

Matinee Fisticuffs and Shoot-outs

Sometimes you just want to play the hero. These games are violent and include shooting but as with B-movies and 1980’s TV series, it’s as much about the quips, characters and fantasy settings as it is about the killing.

Face Tough Decisions

Games create virtual worlds where you can experience life from another perspective. This can be lighthearted but also presents ethical scenarios that require you to think carefully about consequences. These games each place you in a challenging situation to give you a first hand experience of what it’s like.

Solve a Mystery

Like a good crime drama or whodunnit, solving mysteries and puzzles is a good way to engage in a story. The following games present you with a mysterious scenario to be solved. Whether with direct puzzles, locations to investigate or crime scenarios to deduce, they offer a unique first-hand sleuthing challenge.

 

Get Children Into The Environment

It’s easy to assume that video games are all about building big cities or running successful economies. There are, however, many games that offer quite the reverse. These games encourage players to consider the impact of their actions on the environment, as well as their interconnectedness to the world in which they live.

The games in this list take inspiration from Alenda Chang’s Playing Nature book. They offer a chance to consider play from an ecological perspective. As she quotes, “games of environmental responsibility animate our capacity to respond, to affect and be affected, to engage with others: other species, other people, and the otherness of our own planet.”

This might be how a game like Terra Nil makes the land itself a character in the experience. Or it can be how a game like Eco establishes the connection between your actions and the other aspects of the environment. Other games, like The Wandering Village underline how our location in the world impacts on us and others. One family told us about Final Fantasy 7 Remake's commentary on corporations and ecology. Then there are games of dire warning that let us step into a future where humanity is all but disconnected from the wider environment and hangs on just by a thread.

Other games let us experience our connection to the environment by adventuring in it. From getting lost in Shadow of the Colossus to finding our way in Journey, games underline the importance of the spaces in which we play. Experiences like Cloud Gardens or Viva Pinata extend this by using play to put us in charge of tending to the natural world. Games like Eastshade or The Long Dark invite us to linger in these places and gain an understanding that is crucial to our survival.
 


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The information on this database is designed to support and complement the in-depth discussion and advice about video game "addiction", violence, spending and online safety in the Taming Gaming book. If you have any concerns or questions in these areas, email our editor who is quick to respond or can arrange for a one-to-one conversation.

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