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Best Child Plays Independently (Independent Play) Games

The child plays the game under their own steam. They may be keen to talk about the game with parents, and call them in to show progress, but the main aspect of play is independent.

DetailsList Details

Genres: Action, Adventure, Battle, Collecting, Communication, Creative, Fighting, Narrative, Platform, Puzzle, Race, Role-Play, Sequencing, Shooting, Simulation, Sports, Stealth, Strategy, Traversal and World Building
Era: 1986 - 2023
Total Games: 23
Total Likes: 2,403
 

 

Animal Crossing: New Horizons

Release Date: 25/04/2020

Out Now: Switch

Skill Rating: 9+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person, Cartoon, Day and Night, Open World, Persistant World and Weather

Animal Crossing: New Horizons is a role-play collecting game where you live on a small island teeming with life. Insects, fish, trees, vegetation and fossils are represented with cute cartoon visuals. Rather than the scale or grandeur of other game...

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of The Wild

Release Date: 03/03/2017

Out Now: Switch and Wii U

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person, Cartoon, Day and Night, Open World and Weather

The Legend of Zelda: Breath Of The Wild departs from the previous Zelda formula with the scale and depth of its world. You walk, fly, ride and climb your way through a landscape that varies in climate, terrain, inhabitants and vegetation. Weather and...

Stardew Valley

Release Date: 26/02/2016, updated in 2018

Out Now: Amazon Fire, Android, Mac, PC, PS Vita, PS4, Switch, Xbox One and iOS

Skill Rating: 9+ year-olds

Components: 2D Overhead, Day and Night, Grid, Open World and Pixels

Stardew Valley looks like a farming simulator. That’s partly what it is, but you also develop relationships with the other townsfolk and delve deep into the mines. Its quirky labyrinthine attention to detail is inviting for young players to try their...

Pokémon (Series)

Release Date: 27/02/1996, updated in 2019

Out Now: 3DS and 2DS, DS, GBA, Game Boy and Switch

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person and Cartoon

Pokémon Sword and Shield are role-playing games where you explore a fictional world and collect different creatures called Pokémon. You progress through the game by exploring the world, talking to characters and winning turn-based battles with the...

Nintendo Land

Release Date: 30/11/2012

Out Now: Wii U

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Components: 3D First-Person and 3D Third-Person

Nintendo Land is a collection of Nintendo games that was created for the Nintendo Wii U launch. It uses the console’s tablet screen to create specific roles for different players. In Mario Chase, the hiding player uses the tablet controller screen...

Uncharted 4: A Thief's End

Release Date: 19/11/2016, updated in 2017

Out Now: PS3 and PS4

Skill Rating: 13+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person

Uncharted 4: A Thief's End is an action-adventure game set several years after the events of Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception. You play Nathan Drake, a happily married former treasure hunter coaxed out of retirement by his brother. This leads into another...

Uncharted 2: Among Thieves

Release Date: 13/10/2009, updated in 2015

Out Now: PS3 and PS4

Skill Rating: 13+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person

Uncharted 2: Among Thieves is an action-adventure game that puts you in the role of treasure hunter Nathan Drake. You head to Nepal looking for the lost city of Shambala, unfortunately, you're not the only one looking for it. On your journey, you'll...

Paradise Marsh

Release Date: 03/02/2022, updated in 2023

Out Now: Mac, PC, Switch and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 6+ year-olds

Components: 3D First-Person, Cartoon, Day and Night, Hand-Made, Open World and Weather

Paradise Marsh is an open-world collecting game where you explore a varied marsh to find insects to put their stars back in the night sky. You wander an endless wetland and collect creatures, skim stones and eat mushrooms as the weather and seasons...

The Last Of Us

Release Date: 14/06/2013

Out Now: PS3 and PS4

Skill Rating: 16+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person and Weather

The Last Of Us is an action-adventure where You play a father, Joel, whose daughter was killed during the early stages of a deadly fungal outbreak. It’s now 20 years later, and he has clearly suffered from the loss. When Joel is given charge of a...

Sid Meier's Civilization (Series)

Release Date: 21/10/2016, updated in 2019

Out Now: PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Components: 2D Overhead, Day and Night, Grid and Open World

Sid Meier's Civilization is a long-running strategy game where you develop a society from hunter-gatherer to space travel. There are many ways to approach this challenge; socially, militarily, politically or perhaps by building wonders to impress other...

Adopt Me! (Roblox)

Release Date: 14/07/2017

Out Now: Android, Mac, PC, PS4, Xbox One and iOS

Skill Rating: 6+ year-olds

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...

Minecraft

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

Skill Rating: 6+ year-olds

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...

Sonic the Hedgehog (Series)

Release Date: 23/06/1991, updated in 2017

Out Now: 3DS and 2DS, Android, DS, GameCube, Mac, Megadrive, PC, PS Vita, PS2, PS3, PS4, Switch, Wii, Wii U, Xbox 360, Xbox One and iOS

Skill Rating: 7+ year-olds

Components: 2D Side-On and Pixels

Sonic the Hedgehog is a series of games starring an athletic blue hedgehog who runs, jumps and bounces his way around platform levels. Created as Sega's answer to Mario, Sonic is now on all modern video game platforms.

Microsoft Flight Simulator

Release Date: 18/08/2020

Out Now: PC and Xbox X|S

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Components: 3D First-Person, 3D Third-Person, Day and Night, Open World and Weather

Microsoft Flight Simulator (Microsoft Flight Sim 2020) is a flight simulator game in the long-running series. Along with a huge range of aircraft, you can learn to fly, the game recreates the entire Earth using textures and data from maps and...

Moonglow Bay

Release Date: 07/10/2021

Out Now: PC, Xbox One and Xbox X|S

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person, Blocks, Cartoon and Day and Night

Moonglow Bay is a role play game where you play a rookie angler. Unlike other slice-of-life games, fishing isn't tucked away as a side quest here, it's front and centre. Set along the Canadian coastline in the 1980's, you live in a fishing town that has...

FIFA (Series)

Release Date: 15/12/1993, updated in 2021

Out Now: 3DS and 2DS, Android, DS, Mac, Megadrive, PC, PS Vita, PS2, PS3, PS4, Stadia, Switch, Wii, Wii U, Xbox, Xbox 360, Xbox One, Xbox X|S and iOS

Skill Rating: 7+ year-olds

Components: 2D Overhead, 3D Third-Person and Cards

FIFA, now superseded by EA Sports FC 24, was one of the two main football video games (the other being Pro Evolution). Each year its released with improved visuals, more realistic physics and enhanced competitive play. For those who follow the game...

Valheim

Release Date: 02/02/2021

Out Now: PC

Skill Rating: 12+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person, Day and Night, Open World, Persistant World and Weather

Valheim is a Viking inspired strategy game for up to 10 players. You build, survive, conquer, and explore the world. It's popular because it combines strategy of building your town stronghold with tough adventures and encounters with the enemies of the...

Tomb Raider (Series)

Release Date: 09/11/2015, updated in 2019

Out Now: GameCube, Mac, PC, PS1, PS2, PS3, PS4, PSP, Wii, Xbox 360 and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 14+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person, Day and Night, Open World and Weather

Tomb Raider is a longstanding series that has been rebooted in recent years. This means it not only gets a fresh coat of paint like a re-release but is built from the ground up. All the games feature Lara Croft as the titular hero. She shoots, runs,...

Feather

Release Date: 05/04/2019

Out Now: Mac, PC, PS4, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox X|S

Skill Rating: 7+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person and Open World

Feather is an adventure traversal game that 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...

Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception

Release Date: 01/11/2011

Out Now: PS3 and PS4

Skill Rating: 13+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person

Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception is an action-adventure game and the third entry in the Uncharted series. In Uncharted 3 you once again take the role of Nathan Drake, treasure hunter, in the hunt for the lost city Ubar (also known as Atlantis of the...

Air Traffic Controller (Airport Hero)

Release Date: 01/01/1998, updated in 2020

Out Now: 3DS and 2DS, DS, PC and PSP

Skill Rating: 14+ year-olds

Components: 2D Overhead, Day and Night and Weather

Air Traffic Controller (Airport Hero) is a series of games where you take charge of an airport. You deal with landing planes, directing them to runways and gates while ensuring things run on time and without accidents. Each session is a unique set of...

Metroid

Release Date: 06/08/1986, updated in 2017

Out Now: 3DS and 2DS, DS, GBA, GameCube, Switch, Wii and Wii U

Components: 3D First-Person

Metroid is a series of running, jumping and exploration games where you play bounty hunter Samus Aran who protects the galaxy from the Space Pirates. It includes the platforming of a Mario game, but the focus is more on fighting enemies, finding new...

Pharaoh

Release Date: 01/01/1999, updated in 2016

Out Now: PC

Components: 2D Overhead, Grid, Open World and Pixels

Pharaoh (and expansion pack Cleopatra: Queen of the Nile) took the Caesar real-time strategy games to Ancient Egypt. It's a strategy game where you make decisions about a particular city and scenario. The combination of planning and real historical...

Taming Gaming Book Written by parents for parents, the database complements the in-depth discussion about video game addiction, violence, spending and online safety in the Taming Gaming book. We are an editorially independent, free resource without adverts that is supported by partnerships.

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