Back in the day, video games were “just for kids”.
Sonic and Mario and their brightly-coloured counterparts ruled the way, and for the most part, adults only played video games if they were playing alongside their kids. Those days are long gone. Adults now make up the biggest audience of the video game market, and 18-rated AAA games such as Call of Duty, Grand Theft Auto and Assassin’s Creed make up the majority of sales. But what about the kids? Don’t worry: there are still plenty of games for kids out there, and we’re here to talk about the best on Xbox.
The leading consoles might not be marketed towards them anymore, but that doesn’t mean the younger generation is any less interested in playing. There are plenty of family-friendly games available, but they just aren’t advertised as heavily as whatever violence-fuelled bloodbath of a game has recently been released.
With that in mind, look no further than our list of the best Xbox games for kids. Peruse this list and you might find some great games to keep your kids entertained with without exposing them to sex, violence or bad language. Surely that’s a win?
Want to support GameSpew? If you decide to try any of the games on this list, please consider buying them through our Amazon links, included below each entry. It won’t cost you anything extra, but we’ll get a small slice of the purchase.
More to read:
- The Best Games For Kids on Xbox Game Pass
- Best Xbox Game Pass Games for 3 to 4 Year Olds
- The Best PS4 Games for Kids
1. New Super Lucky’s Tale
3D platformers might be a bit old-fashioned these days, but there’s been something of a resurgence lately. New Super Lucky’s Tale is one of our favourites. And thanks to its cuter-than-words protagonist fox Lucky, it’s one that’ll appeal to children of all ages, too.
A rehashed version of Super Lucky’s Tale, New Super Lucky’s Tale has been redesigned to be easier to play, more fun and less frustrating. That means it’s even better for children to play.
On a quest to save his sister from an evil cat (what else?), Lucky must travel through a series of beautifully-designed levels, all filled with the usual stuff one would expect to find in a platformer. Secret areas to find? Check. Enemies to jump on? Check. Coins to collect? Check, check, check. It’s an easy-going, truly enjoyable journey – and it’s visuals are an absolute treat, too. Not only is it one of the best Xbox games for kids, if you’re a fan of 3D platformers, it’s excellent fun for adults, too.
2. Spongebob Squarepants: Battle for Bikini Bottom – Rehydrated
A remake of a game from the early 2000s, Spongebob Squarepants: Battle for Bikini Bottom – Rehydrated puts players in the shoes of Spongebob himself on a quest to save Bikini Bottom. Don’t let the long name put you off: this is a wonderful adventure filled with colourful locations, endless collectibles, and tonnes of Spongebob’s friends and foes.
For fans of the cartoon, Battle for Bikini Bottom is a no-brainer. It captures the spirit of Spongebob Squarepants perfectly. From the wacky humour to the wonderful character designs, it’s all here. Where else are you going to get the opportunity to poke around inside Squidward’s house? And even if your kids aren’t huge fans of the yellow sponge, there’s a lot to enjoy simply from a platform game point of view. Its inoffensive comedy, brightly-designed levels and catchy music make it one of the best Xbox games for kids there is.
3. Paw Patrol: On a Roll
Young kids love Paw Patrol. The ones we know are obsessed with it. And thanks to Paw Patrol: On a Roll, they can now get involved in the action rather than just watch it.
Just the fact that Paw Patrol: On a Roll features Ryder and all eight of the Paw Patrol pups is probably enough to get kids interested in it. That it lets them go on 16 adventures spread across eight Adventure Bay locations is just the icing on the cake. Each adventure allows multiple Paw Patrol pups to be used, and they all have their own special abilities that help get the job done. Needless to say, if your kids are avid Paw Patrol fans, this is one of the best kids’ games available on Xbox to keep them occupied.
4. Team Sonic Racing
With an emphasis on teamwork, Team Sonic Racing is brilliant if you have two or three kids you need to entertain. It’s very enjoyable as a single-player game, too.
Team Sonic Racing brings together all the Sonic characters your kids are likely to know and love, and pits them against each other in races spread across a wide range of environments. It features a sizeable story mode full of races and challenges, and has plenty of customisable parts to unlock for its many vehicles.
There’s a tonne of tracks to race around as Sonic, Tails, Knuckles and co, with every character having their own vehicle. Speeding around a track is exhilarating, and competing locally with friends or siblings makes its even more fun.
5. Dragons Dawn of New Riders
If your kids have enjoyed the DreamWorks Dragons movies, they’ll absolutely love Dragons Dawn of New Riders. A simple action RPG, Dragons Dawn of New Riders isn’t the biggest game in the world, but it’s very enjoyable. It combines adventure, puzzles and combat, which means it’s probably not suitable for very young children, but it’s ideal for those aged 7+.
The best thing about Dragons Dawn of New Riders is that it’s a good game first and then a movie tie-in. Anyone that likes a good adventure will enjoy it even if they’re not familiar with the films. We did, and we’re not even kids!
6. Spyro Reignited Trilogy
Spyro Reignited Trilogy, as its name suggests, is three games in one. It’s a remake of the first three Spyro games, first released on PlayStation One. And they look absolutely beautiful.
Putting players in control of the cute but ferocious dragon Spyro, each game packs in a tonne of levels and challenges, each filled with collectibles and enemies. Your kids are sure to love the bright and colourful visuals, and they’ll enjoy exploring each world they come across on their adventure.
There’s plenty of humour in the Spyro games, too, and gameplay variety. If your kids love 3D platformers and are old enough to solve basic puzzles, buy them Spyro Reignited Trilogy. It’s undoubtedly one of the best games for kids on Xbox.
7. LEGO Harry Potter Collection
All kids love LEGO, right? And many kids love the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, too. LEGO Harry Potter Collection combines both, which means it’s surely one of the best Xbox games for kids.
As it includes both LEGO Harry Potter games – Years 1-4 and 5-7 – LEGO Harry Potter Collection will keep your kids busy for a long, long time. And each game has been remastered, which means they both look better than ever on Xbox One or Xbox Series X/S. Players can explore all over Hogwarts and other famous locations, like Hogsmeade, Diagon Alley and more. With tonnes of collectibles to find, there’s plenty of replayability too.
Like all LEGO video games, LEGO Harry Potter Collection also supports local co-op play, so if you have two kids (or fancy playing yourself) another player can jump right in and have some fun. All LEGO games are excellent for children, but this is one of our favourites.
8. Starlink: Battle for Atlas
This toys-to-life game sees players head to the stars – quite literally. Starlink: Battle For Atlas from Ubisoft puts players at the helm of a ship, where they’ll head from planet to planet, uncovering new secrets and fighting against evil forces.
Unfortunately, you won’t find many of the toys in stores any more, but you don’t need them to play the full game. If you can find some, kids will get a huge kick out of mounting a physical space ship on their controller and flying it as they play. There’s a story to play through, but it’s just as fun to fly around planets, discovering crazy new species of animals and taking in the beautiful landscapes.
9. Sonic Mania
Most of us grew up on Sonic the Hedgehog, and now a whole new generation can. Sonic Mania redesigns classic levels from the original Sonic games as well as all-new worlds created in the same style. As a package, it’s wonderful: this is classic platforming at its best. And it’s without a doubt one of the best Xbox games for kids.
With brand new characters to play as alongside the likes Sonic and Tails, there’s so much to love in Sonic Mania. And co-op functionality means that kids can play together. Despite the pixelated graphics, Sonic’s charm is still undeniable, and the kids of today are bound to love it just as much as we did back in the 90s.
10. Crash Team Racing Nitro-Fueled
A PlayStation One classic remade for current gen consoles, Crash Team Racing Nitro-Fueled is fun for everyone. Its colourful visuals and larger-than-life characters make it very appealing to kids, but it can be rather challenging at times. There are multiple difficulty levels though, and a range of modes alongside the game’s campaign in which anyone can have fun.
Karting games are the perfect way to introduce younger children to racing games. Their bright colours, wacky characters and zany power-ups mean speeding around the track is a lot of fun. And, of course, Crash Team Racing is no different. There’s plenty of content to unlock, and since its release, lots of new content has been added for free.
11. Adventure Time: Pirates of the Enchiridion
Although its title is a bit of a mouthful, Adventure Time: Pirates of the Enchiridion is bound to be a hit with most kids. Especially if they’re already familiar with Cartoon Network’s Adventure Time.
Pirates of the Enchiridion takes kids on a journey with Finn, Jake and the rest of the gang through the Land of Ooo. Except this time, it’s flooded. With the use of a trusty boat, players can sail around the map at will, visiting several different lands. A mini open world RPG, there’s some turn-based combat involved, which might be a little tricky for the youngest of players. But the bright and bold environments, and Adventure Time‘s trademark humour, make this one of the best Xbox games for kids.
12. Overcooked! 2
Bright, bold and colourful, Overcooked! 2 definitely looks the part as one of the best games for kids on Xbox. But it doesn’t always play like one: it’s hard!
While younger kids will undoubtedly enjoy running around the kitchen as one of the humorous characters, only older children will be able to truly master the game. Just like its predecessor, Overcooked! 2 is all about managing a kitchen and serving customers, but in zany and dangerous situations.
It involves working together — it’s best played in multiplayer — around obstacles to serve up food to your hungry customers. Maybe there’s an earthquake, splitting the kitchen into two. Or maybe you’ll find yourself surrounded by zombies. Overcooked! 2 is fast-paced and frantic, but a lot of fun. More importantly though, it teaches children to work together and stay calm under pressure.
13. Rush: A Disney-Pixar Adventure
Originally released as a Kinect-only game for Xbox 360, Rush: A Disney-Pixar Adventure has been remastered, allowing you to play in the good old-fashioned way: with a regular controller.
Rush: A Disney-Pixar Adventure is a charming collection of action-platforming levels, set around six of Disney-Pixar’s biggest franchises. There’s a Toy Story world, alongside Ratatouille, Up, Finding Nemo, Cars and The Incredibles.
Each world tells its own little story and is filled with bright visuals, familiar and lovable characters, and very simple run-and-jump gameplay. It’s aimed at the younger audience, but that doesn’t mean you won’t want to steal the controller off your little one to play yourself!
14. Disneyland Adventures
A digital recreation of Disneyland, Disneyland Adventures is pretty much the perfect Xbox game for kids. Putting the player in control of a young girl or boy, they’re free to roam around Disneyland to their heart’s content. Along the way, there are popular characters to meet and greet, and you can even have a go on some of the rides.
There’s plenty to do in Disneyland Adventures, with mini quests to complete, hidden objects to find, characters’ autographs to collect, and minigames to play. But it allows the player to complete everything at their own pace. If children simply want to run around the park and look at everything, that’s absolutely fine!
Some of the minigames might be a little tricky for young players, but for the most part, it can be enjoyed by all. If you have kids and an Xbox console, Disneyland Adventures is pretty much a must-have.
Ah, Minecraft. Chances are, your kid already knows more about Minecraft than you do, but we still couldn’t leave it off the list. In fact, Minecraft is such a popular game with children that it’s now being used as an educational tool in some schools.
Minecraft is all about working together to build a world, encouraging and nurturing creativity alongside teamwork and co-operation. It’s a great introduction for children of any age to video games. It can be played with friends, or the action can be completely solo, with children using the game’s tools to build their own impressive structures. Basically, it’s a little like digital LEGO. Taking the action online, players can visit any number of worlds created by other players. The scope of Minecraft really is endless, and that’s what makes it one of the best Xbox games for kids.
16. Forza Horizon 4
Forza might not seem like the obvious choice for a kid’s game on Xbox, but frankly, you don’t get many more high quality family-friendly games than this. If your youngster’s into cars and racing, then Forza Horizon 4 is undoubtedly one of the best Xbox games for kids. It’s a massive game with plenty to do, and even if younger children don’t feel like competing in races, the massive (and beautiful) world offers a plethora of things to see and do just by driving around.
Forza Horizon 4 also comes with difficulty settings that can be finely tuned to suit anybody’s preference, so it can be turned down low for the kids – then ramped up a bit when it’s mum and dad’s turn to play later on! There’s one reason we’ve chosen Forza Horizon 4 over 5, too: there’s a LEGO expansion available for the game, allowing you and your children to race around a world filled with bricks.
17. Stardew Valley
Whatever age you are, it’s impossible not to love Stardew Valley. There’s plenty of depth for older players who want to fully immerse themselves. But without any violence or real danger, it’s the perfect game for younger children to wander around in.
The main aim of Stardew Valley is to grow and manage a farm. That means buying seeds, growing crops, and selling them in town. Then you’ll start the process all over again, expanding as you go along. There’s much more to the game to be discovered, though. There’s a whole town to explore, and plenty of characters to get to know. Social interaction and exploration is just as important as farming in Stardew Valley. It’s just lovely in every way, and would be impossible not to include as one of the best Xbox games for kids.
18. Zoo Tycoon: Ultimate Animal Collection
Yay, animals! What kid doesn’t love animals? Zoo Tycoon: Ultimate Animal Collection is the ultimate animal lover’s game. Play through a number of challenges, or simply create your own dream zoo with no limitations. This is a complete edition of Zoo Tycoon, including all the game’s previous DLC as well as a host of enhancements. It really is the best way to play.
Zoo Tycoon contains more animals than you can shake a stick at, and the game allows you to not only design your own zoo, but interact with some of the animals, too. Hose down an elephant, or feed a giraffe. Oh, and you can race buggies around the park too. It’s also packed with lots of facts about conservation and the species that appear in your zoo, so not only is it fun, it’s educational too. If your children are animal lovers, this is one of the best games for them on Xbox.
19. Plants vs Zombies: Battle for Neighborville
For kids who like to get involved in multiplayer shooting action, EA has the perfect antidote to the age-inappropriate Call of Duty franchise. It’s called Plants vs Zombies: Battle for Neighborville.
Playing as either a plant or a cartoon zombie, the objective is pretty simple: destroy the other team. Though your kids don’t have to play competitively: Plants vs Zombies: Battle for Neighborville also has a campaign that can be played solo or in co-op.
It’s chock-full of gorgeous environments and genuine humour that both adults and children alike will enjoy. The non-offensive gameplay is bolstered by tight shooting mechanics that makes this the perfect option for kids to get online and battle their friends.
20. Just Dance 2022
Newsflash: video games aren’t just about being sat still, getting square-eyed at the television any more. The annual Just Dance series encourages you to, well, just dance.
This yearly staple features a selection of the best chart toppers from the last year and is great fun for all the family to burn off some calories and have a giggle by showing off some premium dance moves on the
dancefloor living room floor.
The great thing about Just Dance 2022 is anybody can join in – it doesn’t matter your age or skill level; it’s all about moving about and having fun! Anything that encourages children to get up and move around is great in our book. And that’s why we think Just Dance 2022 is one of the best games for kids on Xbox.
21. LEGO Worlds
Yes, another LEGO game, but LEGO Worlds is slightly different from the usual brick-based games. Rather than being a platform-adventure game, LEGO Worlds takes a leaf out of Minecraft‘s book and encourages players to get creative and build their own worlds.
There are little missions to follow and levels to complete, but for the most part, LEGO Worlds offers players a giant sandbox to get creative with bricks. So kind of like real LEGO, but without the risk of standing on it and howling in pain. There are tonnes of characters to meet and various environments to explore, all teeming with secrets. The more you play, the more bricks you’ll unlock, allowing you to create extravagant models all of your own.
22. Unravel Two
EA might usually be known for its sports games and shooters, but Unravel was a welcome change for the publisher. It’s a gorgeous platforming game that follows Yarny, an adorable creature made out of wool as he goes on an emotional journey. Its sequel, Unravel Two is more of the same, but takes things to the next level by allowing the entire game to be enjoyed in co-op. This time, Yarny has a friend, and it makes for one of the best Xbox games for kids that can be played in co-op.
The visuals are the real showstopper of Unravel Two. Brilliantly vivid and photorealistic scenery is sure to capture even the youngest player’s attention. An excellent story bolsters the solid gameplay too, with plenty of important messages about love and loss along the way. It’s a must-play for children and adults alike.
23. Infinite Minigolf
Okay, golf might not sound like the most exciting thing for a kid, but hear us out. Infinite Minigolf is definitely worthy of being called one of the best Xbox games for kids.
There’s a number of excellent locations, like a teenager’s bedroom blown up to giant size and a spooky Halloween town. It takes standard golf and makes it so much more fun. There’s a tonne of cool obstacles and course features, such as drones that’ll carry your ball across the course. And there’s even a course designer, letting imaginations run free. Colourful and loud, kids are sure to love Infinite Minigolf, especially when played with friends.
24. Yooka-Laylee and The Impossible Lair
With its cute main characters and colourful levels, Yooka-Laylee and The Impossible Lair is sure to be a hit with kids of all ages. A 2D platformer at heart, Yooka-Laylee and The Impossible Lair has you traversing a 3D overworld in order to access its levels. When entering a level the view changes to give you a side-on view of the action. Your aim is to overcome a variety of obstacles in order to save bees. And of course, there are plenty of things to collect on the way.
With its witty humour and enjoyable gameplay, Yooka-Laylee and The Impossible Lair provides many hours of fun. When it comes to actually surviving The Impossible Lair, however, your kids’ patience for the game might just run out. It really is hard. But still, there’s a lot to get out of the game before that becomes an issue.
Minecraft set the precedent for a new generation of creation games, allowing players to build or do anything they want in an open sandbox. Inspired by its popularity, indie title Terraria was born. Letting players create their own 2D pixelated world, they’ll find new resources, build houses, protect their land from threat and find new treasures to constantly improve their character and expand their home.
Limited only by the player’s imagination, no two games of Terraria will ever be the same. The complicated controls and sheer amount of possibility may mean it’s not suitable for really young children. But anyone able to sit down and learn what the game has to offer will be rewarded with hours of enjoyment.