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10 Great Games Like Rivals

Rivals is a puzzle game where you piece together the story of Josh and Luke and the breakup of their band. Playing detective, similarly to Return of the Obra Dinn, but rather than murder it's musical betrayal you are sleuthing here. You inspect sources, documents, audio logs and records to solve puzzles and get to the bottom of why things went badly for the group.

Unfortunately, Rivals is not available on Android, Mac, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S or iOS. However, we recommend the following games that offer a similar experience or theme:

Expected Rating: PEGI 12+, ESRB EVERYONE 10+

Release Date: 21/09/2020

Platforms: PC

Genres: Narrative and Puzzle

Developer: @TimSheinman

Players: This is a single player game

Costs: Purchase cost

Maquette

Rating: Not rated by PEGI or ESRB

Release Date: Coming soon

Platforms: PC, PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5

Genres: Puzzle and Simulation

Players: This is a single player game

Maquette is a puzzle game played in a series of nested identical worlds. What you do in the larger world effects things in the smaller one, and so on. Every building, plant, and object are simultaneously tiny and staggeringly huge.


Game image Thousand ThreadsEditor's Choice

Thousand Threads

Thousand Threads

Rating: Not rated by PEGI or ESRB

Release Date: 30/07/2020

Platforms: Mac and PC

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

Developer: @ThreadsGame

Players: This is a single player game

Thousand Threads is an open world game of consequences. You are free to interact with the world, animals and people however you like, give, take, save, kill, inform, hide, befriend, betray. But how you do this will have ongoing and unavoidable...


Outer Wilds

Rating: PEGI 7+, ESRB EVERYONE 10+

Release Date: 11/12/2018, updated in 2018

Platforms: PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One

Genres: Open World and Simulation

Players: This is a single player game

Outer Wilds is an exploration space mystery about a solar system trapped in an endless time-loop. After 20 minutes of game time, you must start again – but each time brings a new opportunity to learn how you ended up on the planet and solve the...


Tangle Tower

Rating: PEGI 7+, ESRB EVERYONE 10+

Release Date: 19/09/2019

Platforms: Nintendo Switch, PC and iOS Apple Arcade

Genres: Narrative and Puzzle

Players: This is a single player game

Tangle Tower is a murder mystery game, from the same developer as Snipperclips, where you explore a grand old house and it’s intertwining families to solve a mysterious murder. You are given the events of the murder, each...


Ghost Trick

Rating: PEGI 12+, ESRB TEEN

Release Date: 19/06/2010

Platforms: Nintendo DS and iOS

Genres: Adventure, Narrative and Puzzle

Players: This is a single player game

Ghost Trick: Phantom Detective is a game where you play a ghost that can stop time to solve crimes and save lives. You can inhabit and control objects and possess corpses to alter what happens. His ultimate aim is to use his memories to find out how he...


Return of the Obra Dinn

Rating: PEGI 16+, ESRB MATURE 17+

Release Date: 18/10/2019

Platforms: Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One

Genres: Narrative and Puzzle

Players: This is a single player game

You play a shipping company agent assessing what happened on board a fictional East India Company ship where all the passengers have all mysteriously died. Exploring the ship, you can revisit the moment of death for each body in order to identify each...


Her Story

Rating: PEGI 16+, ESRB MATURE 17+

Release Date: 24/06/2015

Platforms: Android, Mac, PC and iOS

Genres: Narrative and Puzzle

Players: This is a single player game

Solve the 1994 mystery of a murdered man by searching an old police computer archive of interview videos of his wife. The game presents a retro computer interface but the interviews themselves are short films with real actors. Although there are only...


Telling Lies

Rating: PEGI 16+, ESRB MATURE 17+

Release Date: 31/07/2019

Platforms: Mac, Nintendo Switch, PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One

Genres: Narrative and Puzzle

Players: This is a single player game

Telling Lies is from the same developer as Her Story. It's named as an investigative thriller game with non-linear storytelling by the developer.


Gone Home

Rating: PEGI 16+, ESRB MATURE 17+

Release Date: 15/08/2013, updated in 2016

Platforms: Mac, Nintendo Switch, PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One

Genres: Narrative and Puzzle

Players: This is a single player game

Gone Home places you in the role of Katie, returning from overseas to her family home. But the house is deserted and by exploring the rooms you piece together what happened to her sister, Sam. It’s a mystery to solve, but a common one of family...


Lifeline (Series)

Rating: PEGI 16+, ESRB MATURE 17+

Release Date: 16/04/2015, updated in 2016

Platforms: Android, PC and iOS

Genres: Adventure and Narrative

Developer: @3MinuteGames

Players: This is a single player game

Lifeline is a narrative adventure where you interact with am astronaut, Taylor via text messages. You help him return home after crashing his aircraft on a foreign planet.


Rivals 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 Rivals in the following lists:

Get Children Talking

It can seem that all children do these days is stare at their screens and play video games. We worry about screen time and what the violence, addiction and gambling is doing to their brains.

However, along with screen time comes many other things we can celebrate. All kids do these days is talking to other. All kids do these days is learn the skills of rhetoric and debating. All kids do these days is develop their social confidence.

It sounds a little far fetched, but watching my kids play the new “hit” game Among Us I’ve realised these are exactly the sorts of things they are really developing when they are sat staring at their screens.

Here are some great examples where you need to talk, and talk intelligently and intelligibly, to do well in the game.
 

Get Children Reading

Image 221We have partnered with the National Literacy Trust to create this resource of video games that encourage and enable reading and writing skills.

The National Literacy Trust is a charity dedicated to improving the reading, writing, speaking and listening skills of children and young people who need it most, giving them the best possible chance of success in school, work and life.

Video games have significant benefits for children who are reluctant or struggling readers. They give them access to stories through interaction and world building which they may not have been able to read in print. Video games also have benefits for families where parents may not be confident readers, meaning that sharing stories as a family is still accessible to all. The rise of video games on smartphones and tablets, as well as more affordable game consoles has made the sharing of interactive stories easier.

Image 241There are different ways that video games create this kind of collateral reading and aid literacy:
  • Reading In Games: Video games offer all sorts of reading at all levels. This can be from simple narrative in a game like Florence to dialogue in a game like Mutazione or even just identifying useful items and game mechanics with in-game descriptions in a game like Zelda Breath of the Wild. Then there are games like Thousand Threads that help players think about the power and the consequence of words.
  • Reading Around Games: Video games create worlds that often spawn secondary texts. This can be official novels that expand the world or guide books that offer instructions and help. Knights and Bikes, for example, has spin off books, a cartoon series and recipes to read.
  • Routes Into Books: Many popular book series, such as Beast Quest, offer a range of video games as an easy first step into those worlds that lead to then reading the books themselves.
  • Communication Around Games: As well as reading, games encourage all sorts of creative output. This can be to contribute to the many online forums and message boards to talk about the game. This can also be to write fan-fiction after being inspired about a game world or character. The Sims, for example, has an avid community writing and creating all kinds of content online.

 

Solve a Mystery

Like a good crime drama or whodunnit novel, solving mysteries and puzzles is a good way to engage in a story. However, rather than just watching these mysteries while someone else does the heavy lifting, these video games place you firmly in the role of the detective. Gathering statements, sifting evidence and making intelligent leaps of deduction requires care and attention. These investigations makes these games slower than others, but it’s worth the effort each time you find the correct conclusion and move the story on.

These 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.
 


Image 242 Image 243 Thank you for using our resource, supported by AskAboutGames, ParentZone and PlayAbility Initiative. We are editorially independent, written by parents for parents, but welcome sponsorship, partnership and suggestions. Email our editor for details on these opportunities.

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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