SpellTower 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 SpellTower in the following lists:
We 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.
There 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.
There are many reasons, stages of life and circumstances that can leave us feeling isolated and lonely. Being unable to be in the same place as loved ones. Not understanding the modern world. Barriers of mobility or impairments. Social anxiety and other mental health issues.
Video games are one way that we can reconnect with each other, without needing to be in the same place. Finding games to play online with grandparents and carers is not only a good way to keep in touch but a lot of fun.
The games on this page are part of the PLAY&TALK Weekend
, which has launched in time for National Loneliness Awareness Week, aims to reduce feelings of isolation by getting people to talk with friends or family safely online. Backed by over 30 companies in the games industry, the Play&Talk weekend hopes to initiate 10,000 extra conversations across the UK through the power of games.
Co-operative: Some of the games are good ways to connect and play co-operatively online (like Feather, Overcooked 2, Ibb and Obb, Skylanders Children of Light).
Competitive: With some practice there are easy and fun online competitive games (like Tricky Towers, Videoball)
Asynchronous: Other games are a way to connect and play without being online at the same time (like Horizon Chase Turbo, Worms, Words With Friends, Wargroove, Animal Crossing).
Community: Then there are games that connect you with a wider player community in a gentle non-invasive way (like The First Tree, Journey, Lost Words, The Endless Forrest).
All the games have been select to be easy to play for new gamers and many of them have been used in a broad range of cultural settings, being incorporated into Cathedral services, arts festivals, well-being retreats and educational contexts.
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
, 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
Things don’t stay put. You’re the only one keeping the ship afloat. You can’t get people to do what you tell them. The effort you spend doesn’t produce the results it deserves. Well, in these video games you get to wield complete control over people, things, situations or even whole worlds.
If games offer an escape from chaos, these games are particularly good at granting a sense of satisfying agency and power as they do that. Whether it’s ordering the perfect stock room in Wilmot’s Warehouse
, organising your island in Animal Crossing
, perfectly controlling the flow of traffic in Mini Motorways
or even build civilisation just the way you want it in Civilization
the sense of satisfaction and calm from the achievement is second to none.
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
, 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.
These games, compiled by Christy Smith
, have graphics styles or options that make the games easier to see for people with impaired vision. Many of these games include
Fonts: Larger, scalable font sizes and bold fonts, like Moving Out.
Zoom: Ability to increase the size of all objects on the screen such as in Untitled Goose Game's zoom feature.
Contrast: Settings to adjust contrast and brightness, as well as distinct colours with good lighting, like Splatoon.
Non-Visual Cues: Sounds and haptic feedback that help direct the player, like Lego games.
Colourblind: Modes that invert colours or change colours to accommodate different types of colourblindness, such as in Hue.
Screen Readers: Functions that read text and menus as they are highlighted and appear on the screen, such as in Eagle Island.
In addition, there are other ways to make games easier for people with low vision to play. Some offer modes that lower the difficulty, like the Assist Mode in Super Mario Odyssey. Playing with a sighted friend or family member can make things much easier.
Some platforms provide system-wide accessibility features
that help. The Nintendo Switch offers a built-in zoom function, while the Xbox offers co-pilot mode that allows two people to play as a single player. Such features create necessary flexibility for players.
There are many different types of visual impairments, and no two people ever see things the exact same way. Because of this, games that are accessible for one person may not be accessible to all low vision gamers. For gamers who find visual games too cumbersome, audio-only games may provide a solution.
It may be difficult for parents and caregivers who are fully sighted to understand which games will be easier to see. The best way to learn about what works and what doesn’t is hearing from people with impaired vision themselves. Can I Play That?
has a variety of reviews discussing accessibility of games for people with disabilities, by people with disabilities.
Growing up playing video games creates a strong sentimental connection to the sounds, sights and feeling those experiences gave you. Returning to these games in adulthood is a un diversion, but often the experience doesn't live up to the memory.
The games in this list have been recreated (sometimes officially and sometimes unofficially) by developers who love and respect the original while also wanting to update it for modern technology and players.
These games have an educational element to them, but also offer experiences that are good games in their own right. This isn't busywork to trick you into learning, but clever and innovative ways to encounter history, physics, engineering, maths, geography and language subjects without feeling like you are in school. They also teach softer, deeper skills like long term strategy, planning, balancing systems, emotional intelligence, compassion, team-work and self-care.
Some of these games are aimed at younger players to play on their own, but others (as indicated by their PEGI ratings) are better for teenagers or played together in a family. Find some games that pique your interest, read through the details and decide how your child might benefit from playing them.
You can aid the happiness of your brain by taking on activities that generate key experiences and chemicals:
Dopamine for motivation, learning and pleasure.
Oxytocin for trust and building relationships.
Serotonin for significance and importance.
Endorphins for euphoria and elation.
Without serotonin you can feel unstable and find your mood changing rapidly. It's a chemical that helps us with routines where we accept ourselves and find calm. With low serotonin it is hard to feel confident in who we are. This can mean that we worry more and find it harder to learn and remember things.
Along with getting outside for exercise, eating well and nurturing conversations, video games can also help. Games that generate serotonin are those that give to regular simple activities you can complete each day. Games that help build routine are helpful. We may not play these games for long, but they help structure other things around them. Fitness games also complement this, particularly those games that give us a reason to get outside.