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Online games are great because you have a world of opponents to take on and defeat (or be defeated by). But beyond the competitive element of these games are often a strong sense of community and camaraderie. We’re supporting the Every Mind Matters campaign from NHS and bringing you some games that help you connect with friends and family while you look after your mental health. Players enjoy making new connections in these games, as well as connecting with wider family and friends. Listen to the chatter while children play these games, and you hear as much talk about homework, television, YouTube or what's happening in the world as much as how to win the next race in Mario Kart. This list includes 325 games from the last 30 years, with 6,888 likes. They come from a range of different genres and play-styles and are all good games if you want to connect and challenge friends.
Release Date: 16/11/2018, updated in 2020
Out Now: Android, PC, Switch, Xbox One, Xbox X|S and iOS
Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds
Components: 2D Overhead and Hand-Made
Among Us is a strategy game where crew-mates prepare their spaceship for launch by completing tasks. However, one of the players is an impostor intent on sabotaging the ship and killing the crew. As the game progresses in real-time the impostor...
Release Date: 28/04/2017, updated in 2022
Out Now: Switch
Skill Rating: 5+ year-olds
Components: 3D Third-Person and Cartoon
Mario Kart 8 Deluxe is a go-kart racing game where you race against Nintendo characters around different circuits, picking up power-ups, attacks and speed boosts. It is frantic and chaotic but still requires skills to do well.
Release Date: 20/03/2018, updated in 2023
Out Now: PC, Xbox One and Xbox X|S
Skill Rating: 11+ year-olds
Components: 3D First-Person, Day and Night, Open World, Persistant World and Weather
Sea of Thieves is an online game where you play a pirate searching for treasure and adventure. Cast into a large open sea you work with other online players to crew your ship and find treasure. The game has a main story but really focuses on creating...
Release Date: 28/08/2018
Out Now: Mac, PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One
Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds
Components: 3D Third-Person
Rocket League is a sports action game where you drive futuristic cars to score goals with an oversized football. It's a game that sounds ridiculous but is actually a huge amount of fun to play and requires a lot of expertise. What's not obvious from the...
Release Date: 10/06/2021, updated in 2021
Out Now: Mac, PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox X|S
Components: 3D Third-Person and Hand-Made
Chicory: A Colorful Tale is an adventure where you play an everyday dog thrust into the role of wielding a magic brush. The world starts black and white but you colour it in with your paintbrush to solve puzzles and help your animal friends. It looks...
Release Date: 13/08/2020
Out Now: PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One
Skill Rating: 9+ year-olds
Components: 2D Overhead and Cartoon
Boomerang Fu is a fighting game where you control small food-like characters. Using your boomerang the aim is to slice the other players with ranged or melee attacks. You can use a large range of power-ups such as explosive boomerangs, disguises and...
Release Date: 04/07/2017
Out Now: PS4
Components: 2D Side-On
That's You! is a family quiz game played on the PlayStation using Android or iOS phones/tablets as controllers. The game displays a challenge on the main TV screen that each player tries to complete on the device in their hand.
Release Date: 02/12/2014, updated in 2018
Out Now: PC, PS4, Stadia and Xbox One
Components: 3D Third-Person, Day and Night and Open World
The Crew 2 is the latest in a series of open-world racing and exploration games set in a scaled-down version of the United States. The emphasis is on enjoyable and exciting driving more than realism. It's a lot like Forza Horizon, although can be played...
Release Date: 20/10/2023
Components: 2D Side-On and Cartoon
Super Mario Bros Wonder is a running and jumping game that evolves the classic 2D Mario genre in weird and dream-like directions. You play with up to four friends, each picking from Mario, Luigi, Toad, Princess Peach, Princess Daisy, Yoshi and other...
Release Date: 20/12/2021
Out Now: Web
Components: 2D Overhead, Grid and Text
Wordle is a daily puzzle game where you (and anyone else playing that day) try and guess the secret word. You get six guesses that must be real words. Each letter is then coloured to provide clues: green for the right letter in the right place, yellow...
Release Date: 06/09/2016, updated in 2022
Out Now: PS4 and PS5
Components: 3D Third-Person, Day and Night, Open World, Persistant World and Weather
The Tomorrow Children is an online strategy game where you collaborate with other players to build, explore and develop communities. Unusually, it uses social economics and a Soviet Union-themed post-apocalyptic dystopia as the setting. You play a clone...
Release Date: 05/07/2016, updated in 2017
Tricky Towers is a battle puzzle that uses shapes but instead of creating lines, you must balance them in towers that mustn’t fall over. Real-world physics applies, along with wind and attacks from other players to make your stack topple. Up to four...
Release Date: 14/09/2021
Out Now: Switch and Wii
Cruis’n Blast is a brash over-the-top racing game based on a series of big arcade machines. Competing with games like Ridge Racer, OutRun and Daytona USA, it offers whacky racing with big and bombastic visuals and characters.
Release Date: Coming soon
Coming Soon: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One and Xbox X|S
Skill Rating: 7+ year-olds
Components: 3D Third-Person, Cartoon, Open World and Weather
Flock is a cooperative traversal and collecting game where you take on the role of a flying shepherd. To play you move around the world tending to your unique herd of flying creatures. It sounds complicated but really it's just a big wild place on the...
Release Date: 19/05/2023
Out Now: PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox X|S
Components: 3D Third-Person, Blocks, Cartoon and Open World
Lego 2K Drive is an open-world racing game made out of Lego. There are races, as you'd expect, but you can also freely explore each of the worlds, collect parts and upgrade your cars. It stands out for updating the popular Lego destruction and...
Release Date: 30/08/2021
Out Now: Mac and PC
Components: 3D Third-Person, Hand-Made and Open World
Book of Travels is a role-playing game. It's an unusual online game that focuses on the small rather than the massive. You explore an open world to find others to travel with, gather resources, craft items and learn abilities. It's a game that invites...
Release Date: 21/07/2023
Components: 3D Third-Person and Day and Night
Pikmin 4 is an action strategy game where you direct tiny, plant-like creatures to clean up the world and collect treasure. Different coloured Pikmins have different abilities, with several new types in this fourth game. The challenge is using the right...
Coming Soon: PC
Henry Halfhead is a traversal game where you move around by possessing and controlling any object within your reach. You move around the world freely, but to get where you need to go you need to become the objects around you to use their abilities. It...
Release Date: 21/06/2021, updated in 2022
Out Now: Mac, PC and Xbox X|S
Skill Rating: 12+ year-olds
Phantom Abyss is a running and jumping game where you charge through temples to get to the exit. Your only tool is a whip that interacts with objects and can propel you forward. Along the way are numerous traps and difficult jumps to avoid. There are...
Release Date: 06/12/2023
Out Now: Android, PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One and iOS
Skill Rating: 6+ year-olds
Components: 3D Third-Person, Blocks, Day and Night and Open World
Lego Fortnite is an adventure survival game that brings classic brick building to one of the Fortnite islands. Play is more like Minecraft than Fortnite (and perhaps could have been better named). Rather than shooting other players, you collaborate on...
Components: 3D First-Person, Day and Night and Open World
Big Walk is a traversal game where you head into a wide-open world with online friends. You decide where to go together by following your nose while taking on challenges, puzzles and making discoveries. It stands out for its focus on the journey and the...
Release Date: 09/07/2020
Out Now: PC, PS4, Xbox One and Xbox X|S
Components: Cartoon and Open World
Wobbly Life is a lively open-world game where you explore an island with your friends to find quests, mini-games and earn money. Play involves finding jobs to do, earning money and buying lots of everyday things - but the real play is around the edges...
Release Date: 21/09/2021
Out Now: PC
Components: 2D Overhead and Grid
Chessplosion is an action, puzzle game where you drop chess pieces on a board to trigger bombs in the shape of their related chess moves. Your aim is to use the different pieces (and bomb attacks) to trap opponents like Bomberman. No prior chess...
Release Date: 05/03/2021, updated in 2021
Circuit Superstars is a simple racing game viewed from above. Up to four players control a car and race around a complex track. You can see what's coming which makes it easier but must work with real car physics to get across the line first. What starts...
Release Date: 11/04/2017, updated in 2017
Components: 2D Overhead and Pixels
Crawl is a dungeon fighting game where your friends control the monsters and traps. The hero player moves around, break boxes and attack enemies while the ghost players try and stop him. Once the hero dies they become another ghost and the next player...
Release Date: 16/08/2021, updated in 2022
Out Now: PC, PS4, Stadia, Switch and Xbox One
Components: 2D Overhead
Young Souls is a side-on fighting game about two drop-out teenagers whose mentor disappears. Gameplay is divided into two distinct worlds: the modern human world and a dark, twisted world of goblins and monsters. You brawl and crunch your way through...
Release Date: 13/03/2023
Barotrauma is a cooperative space-submarine adventure set after humanity has fled to Jupiter's moon. You work with other players to steer your submarine, work the ageing machinery, fight monsters and fix the endless leaks. It's a game that revels in not...
Rekt 2 is a stunt racing game where your car works like a skateboard. Play brings the previous game's fast action jumps, tricks and battles to 16-player online matches. It stands out for the simple joys of landing jumps and bumping other players off...
Release Date: 04/02/2019
Components: 3D First-Person and Open World
Apex Legends is a shooting game where you team up with a few other players to survive the longest on the island. Play is. combination of shooting, moving around to get the advantage and searching for weapons and supplies. Your mission is to defeat the...
Release Date: 07/08/2018, updated in 2018
Overcooked! All You Can Eat is part of a series of collaborative cooking games for up to 4 players. You must keep talking to other players to coordinate the various elements of the dishes. It starts simply enough but soon gets more complicated as you...
Release Date: 30/08/2019, updated in 2023
Components: 3D First-Person and Cartoon
Risk of Rain 2 is a multiplayer adventure game where you have to fight to survive and escape a planet you've crash-landed on. It's formatted like a 'Roguelike' game: an iterative game that requires multiple goes to complete a level and where your...
Release Date: 17/11/2023
Skill Rating: 3+ year-olds
Bluey: The Videogame is a super-simple treasure hunt adventure with characters and locations from the show. You play by exploring familiar places like Heeler House, Playgrounds, and the Creek to collect stickers, unlock outfits and find secrets. It...
Release Date: 17/10/2023
Sonic Superstars is a running, jumping and zooming game that updates the classic platform action game for 4 players. You rush through levels, collecting rings and bouncing on enemies. It stands out for the frantic 4-player cooperative challenge that...
Release Date: 24/04/2013, updated in 2019
Out Now: Mac, PC, Switch and Xbox 360
Monaco: What's Yours Is Mine is a heist simulation game. You control a crew of robbers who escape from jail and take on a series of increasingly complex robberies. The novelty is the simple top-down view of proceedings that allow for complex strategies...
Release Date: 28/09/2023
EA Sports FC 24 is a sports game designed to simulate the players, tactics and crescendo moments of top-flight football. Play involves picking players and setting tactics before controlling each of your team in turn on the pitch. Its simulation is...
Release Date: 30/09/2021
Components: 2D Overhead and Open World
Unsighted is an action role-play game where you race against the clock to save your robot friends. You play a robot called Alma who has lost their memory and lives in a ruined world after the human war. The inhabitant robots are low on energy and will...
Release Date: 14/07/2017
Out Now: Android, Mac, PC, PS4, Xbox One and iOS
Components: 3D Third-Person, Cartoon, Day and Night and Open World
Adopt Me! is one of the most popular Roblox games. In a rudimentary way, it simulates daily life. You can build a home, look after pets and make friends. Like many Roblox games, it's the combination of an avid community of players...
Release Date: 25/07/2017, updated in 2018
Components: 3D Third-Person, Cartoon and Open World
Fortnite is an online multiplayer shooting game where 100 people compete to be the last player standing. You stealthily traverse the world to collect weapons, out-maneuvering and out-gunning your opponents, while a storm gradually shrinks the playable...
Release Date: 23/11/2017, updated in 2019
Out Now: 3DS and 2DS, Amazon Fire, Android, Mac, PC, PS Vita, PS3, PS4, Switch, Wii U, Xbox 360, Xbox One and iOS
Components: 3D First-Person, 3D Third-Person, Blocks, Day and Night, Open World, Persistant World and Weather
Minecraft is an open-world adventure where you collect, craft and construct structures and items. Play involves exploring the world to find resources and good locations to build. Some of the best aspects of the game are less well known; along with the...
Release Date: 23/02/2016
Out Now: Android, PC, Xbox One and iOS
MeepCity is a popular Roblox Game. It's a social game where you role-play a character to interact with other people and customise their looks. Like Toontown Online or the now-defunct Club Penguin, MeepCity is an evolving virtual space for players to...