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Best Puzzle Games

Puzzle games are a broad genre, as there is something puzzling, or something to solve in most games. The games we specify here focus on a puzzle or conundrum as the main interactive mechanic. They test many problem-solving skills, logic, pattern recognition, sequence solving, spatial recognition, and word completion.

Board game puzzles include those that focus on a traditional, self-contained, puzzle board with pieces to move, or more modern twists that still require pieces to be located next to each other to solve a scenario. Board games that are just a mystery to solve or a scenario that are puzzling we tag as Brain Games rather than Puzzles.

Video game puzzles can take this in more conceptual directions, offering conundrums that involve Action, Platforming, Shooting or even Role-Play relationships with other characters.

In this way, the puzzle can be used to communicate frustration, difficulty or tension as well as offer a sense of control, understanding and ease in or Adventure games. Most Puzzle video games are, by their nature, Turn Based but they can also be integrated into more pressured and time-limited Action game experiences.

DetailsGenre Details

Era: 1948 - 2024
Total Games: 1,033
Total Likes: 12,969
 

 

Tricky Towers

Release Date: 05/07/2016, updated in 2017

Out Now: PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Components: 2D Side-On

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...

Lego Builder's Journey

Release Date: 20/12/2019, updated in 2021

Out Now: Apple TV, Mac, PC, Switch, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S and iOS

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Components: 2D Overhead and Blocks

Lego Builder's Journey is a narrative puzzle game but isn't what you expect it to be. Rather than a brick-based puzzle for kids, it's more like a thoughtful and nostalgic work of art for adults. You work through abstract levels by following instructions...

Under Leaves

Release Date: 27/04/2017

Out Now: Android, Mac, PC and iOS

Skill Rating: 2+ year-olds

Components: 2D Side-On and Hand-Made

Under Leaves is a puzzle game where you search for colour-filled hidden objects in scenes made of flora and fauna. Each one is a hand-drawn watercolour illustration and is accompanied by a soothing soundscape. It's a game about observation and attention...

Unpacking

Release Date: 02/11/2021

Out Now: Android, Mac, PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One and iOS

Skill Rating: 9+ year-olds

Components: 2D Overhead, Blocks, Hand-Made and Pixels

Unpacking is a meditative puzzle game where you unpack belongings into a series of spaces, each representing a stage in life. You get to know the owner of the objects by their possessions and circumstances. To finish a level you need to work out where...

It Takes Two

Release Date: 26/03/2021, updated in 2022

Out Now: PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person and Cartoon

It Takes Two is a running, jumping and exploring game that tells the story of a young girl, Rose, whose parents are divorcing. The girl creates two dolls to represent her parents, which unexpectedly traps the clashing couple in them. You and a friend...

Bugsnax

Release Date: 12/11/2020, updated in 2022

Out Now: Mac, PC, PS4, PS5, Switch and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 6+ year-olds

Components: 3D First-Person, Cartoon and Day and Night

Bugsnax is a whimsical adventure where you track, trick, catch and eat anthropomorphic food in all shapes and sizes. But as you do, you literally become what you eat. It's silly puzzling fun from the creators of [link to game/Octodad+Dadliest+Catch...

Dorfromantik

Release Date: 25/03/2021, updated in 2022

Out Now: PC and Switch

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Components: 2D Overhead, Grid and Hand-Made

Dorfromantik is a peaceful village-building strategy puzzle game for one player inspired by tile-based board games like Carcassonne. You have a stack of hexagonal tiles and work to match their edges while creating areas of towns, forests and fields to...

The Touryst

Release Date: 21/11/2019, updated in 2023

Out Now: PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person, Blocks and Open World

The Touryst is a puzzle-based adventure, where you seek to unlock the mysteries of an archipelago of sun-drenched islands. That's if you want to of course, because the adventure can wait if you'd rather soak up the sun and make the most of your time...

The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker

Release Date: 24/03/2003, updated in 2013

Out Now: GameCube and Wii U

Skill Rating: 9+ year-olds

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

The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker is an adventure game in the Zelda series. This one is set on a group of islands in a vast sea and follows Link as he attempts to save his sister from the sorcerer Ganon. This soon develops into a struggle to find the...

Agent A: A Puzzle In Disguise

Release Date: 28/10/2015, updated in 2019

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

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person

Agent A: A Puzzle In Disguise is a puzzle game where you infiltrate a spy hideaway to stop an evil plan. Each location is full of retro futuristic contraptions, hidden gizmos, gadgets and clever logic-based puzzles.

Phoenix Wright Ace Attorney (Series)

Release Date: 12/12/2014, updated in 2019

Out Now: 3DS and 2DS, Android, GBA, PC, PS4, Switch, Xbox One and iOS

Skill Rating: 11+ year-olds

Components: 2D Side-On and Cartoon

Phoenix Wright Ace Attorney is a courtroom murder mystery series where you piece together clues to challenge testimonies and uncover the truth. It’s like a visual novel, although you must interact with characters and evidence to progress.

Supraland

Release Date: 09/03/2018, updated in 2020

Out Now: PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person

Supraland is an adventure game that involves exploring, running, jumping, solving puzzles, and fighting monsters. You play a member of the Red Village and you must discover why the Blue Village has sabotaged your water supply. Your character is a...

The Gardens Between

Release Date: 20/09/2018

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

Skill Rating: 9+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person

The Gardens Between is a puzzle game set in dreamlike island gardens where you play as best friends Arina and Frendt. You work around the island levels collecting balls of light in your lantern, manipulating time to solve puzzles and remove obstacles....

Ibb and Obb

Release Date: 01/08/2013, updated in 2020

Out Now: Mac, PC, PS3 and Switch

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Components: 2D Side-On and Hand-Made

Ibb and Obb is a puzzle game where you run, jump, land on enemies and solve momentum puzzles. The novelty is that it's a game designed for cooperation. One player controls the green creature, Ibb, and the other controls the pink creature, Obb. The world...

Spyder

Release Date: 21/03/2020, updated in 2021

Out Now: Apple TV, Mac and iOS

Skill Rating: 7+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person

Spyder is a puzzle adventure where you play as Agent 8, a small 6-legged spider-robot that was designed by a British spy agency for attempting to stop an evil organization. You explore the world and can use your sticky legs to walk over any surface or...

Threes

Release Date: 06/02/2014

Out Now: Amazon Fire, Android, Web and iOS

Skill Rating: 7+ year-olds

Components: 2D Side-On

Threes is a puzzle game where you slide numbered tiles on a grid. When they collide they combine their numbers, like Triple Town. You can match 1's and 2's with each other, the white tiles can match cards that are multiples of 3...

Tren (Dreams)

Release Date: 01/08/2023

Out Now: PS4 and PS5

Skill Rating: 6+ year-olds

Components: 2D Overhead and Hand-Made

Tren is a traversal-puzzle game set in a hand-crafted world as a wooden train, sailing boats and helicopters. You control points, shunt trucks around, operate cranes and generally move cargo from one location to the next. Like an escape room with toy...

Ico

Release Date: 24/09/2001, updated in 2011

Out Now: PS2 and PS3

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person

Ico is a running, jumping and exploring game where you rescue a princess from her evil mother. You take her hand to help her escape, guiding her along the pathways and protecting her from the hordes of enemies. Together, you jump chasms and scale walls...

Carcassonne

Release Date: 27/06/2007

Skill Rating: 9+ year-olds

Components: Bag, Figures, Placeables and Tokens

Carcassonne is a strategy game where you lay tiles to create a medieval landscape of farms, rivers and cities. Each new tile must match the roads, rivers, farms and cities of those around it. As you place it you can claim one of these elements that...

Pilgrims

Release Date: 07/10/2019, updated in 2022

Out Now: Apple TV, Mac, PC, Switch and iOS

Skill Rating: 7+ year-olds

Components: 2D Side-On, Cards, Cartoon and Hand-Made

Pilgrims is an adventure game where you collect cards to help the characters you meet. As you progress you assist them to complete their little stories by offering the right cards to the right people. It's a little like Scribblenauts but with less focus...

Hue

Release Date: 30/08/2016

Out Now: PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 9+ year-olds

Components: 2D Side-On and Hand-Made

Hue is a puzzle game where you run and jump through platforms. You explore a grey land while searching for your missing mother. The novelty is in the coloured pieces you uncover, which when matched against obstacles will cause them to disappear,...

Kingdomino

Release Date: 01/03/2017

Skill Rating: 6+ year-olds

Components: Figures and Placeables

Kingdomino is a kingdom-building game where you place domino tiles to match terrain types and score points. As you play, you build a territory in a grid that requires careful consideration of where dominoes are placed to maximise points. What makes this...

Blokus

Release Date: 01/01/2000

Skill Rating: 5+ year-olds

Components: Placeables

Blokus is a strategy game where you compete to have the fewest unplayed tiles. You add Tetris-shaped tiles to a shared board that is split into 400 small squares. It is a game about choosing to play the right tile at the right moment, be too slow to get...

Toodee and Topdee

Release Date: 04/08/2021, updated in 2023

Out Now: PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Components: 2D Overhead, 2D Side-On and Cartoon

Toodee and Topdee is a platform puzzle game where you control two characters to complete single-screen levels. The twist is that each character exists in a different plane. Toodee is a top-down block-pushing 3D world, while Topdee is side-on 2D...

Luigi's Mansion 2

Release Date: 20/03/2013, updated in 2024

Out Now: 3DS and 2DS and Switch

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Components: 2D Side-On and Cartoon

Luigi's Mansion 2, or Luigi's Mansion Dark Moon in the US, is an adventure game about investigating five haunted houses in a community overrun by ghosts. As Luigi, you use your flashlight and ghost trap in the mansions, capturing ghosts and collecting...

Luigi's Mansion 3

Release Date: 31/10/2019

Out Now: Switch

Skill Rating: 9+ year-olds

Components: 2D Side-On and Cartoon

Luigi's Mansion 3 is an adventure game where you explore the intricate rooms of a haunted hotel to find and capture ghosts. As in the first two games, you move through the rooms, finding secrets and treasures, and vacuuming up ghosts. It has the same...

Donut County

Release Date: 15/08/2018, updated in 2018

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

Skill Rating: 4+ year-olds

Components: 3D Third-Person and Cartoon

Donut County offers a simple style of play. You drag a hole around the screen; the more things you can make fall in, the bigger the hole gets. You start with bricks, road cones and bushes, but eventually you’re swallowing whole houses.

Metamorphabet

Release Date: 12/02/2015

Out Now: Android, Mac, PC and iOS

Skill Rating: 2+ year-olds

Components: 2D Side-On and Hand-Made

Metamorphabet is a puzzle game where you explore the alphabet by pushing and pulling the letters around to create different things beginning with that letter. It’s simply presented with sound effects and voiced words for each object. It excels at...

She Remembered Caterpillars

Release Date: 17/01/2017

Out Now: PC and Switch

Components: 2D Overhead

She Remembered Caterpillars is a colour-matching puzzle game with an unusual look and emotional story to tell. Through the unsettling fungi-punk aesthetic you work out how to get your characters to the endpoint of each stage. As you do you eavesdrop on...

Return of the Obra Dinn

Release Date: 18/10/2019

Out Now: PS4, Switch and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 13+ year-olds

Components: 3D First-Person and Pixels

Return of the Obra Dinn is a narrative puzzle game where you play a shipping company agent assessing what happened on board a fictional East India Company ship where all the passengers have mysteriously died. Exploring the ship, you can revisit the...

There Is No Game

Release Date: 06/10/2020

Out Now: Android, Mac, PC, Switch and iOS

Skill Rating: 9+ year-olds

Components: 2D Overhead and Pixels

There Is No Game is a comedic adventure with a strange twist. From the outset, the game’s narrator insists that there is no game to play. As you inevitably ignore his instruction you go on a journey through silly and unexpected video game universes.

Before I Forget

Release Date: 01/07/2020

Out Now: Mac and PC

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Components: 3D First-Person and Hand-Made

Before I Forget is an exploration adventure, where you play Sunita, a woman alone in a house with early-onset dementia. As you wander from room to room, you discover mysterious objects, each holding a fleeting, fragmented memory. Examine faded...

Papers, Please

Release Date: 08/08/2013, updated in 2017

Out Now: Mac, PC, PS Vita and iOS

Skill Rating: 12+ year-olds

Components: 2D Side-On and Pixels

Papers, Please is a narrative puzzle game where you play the role of a border-crossing immigration officer in the fictional dystopian Eastern Bloc-like country of Arstotzka. You review each immigrant’s and returning citizen’s passports and paperwork...

The Stanley Parable

Release Date: 31/07/2011, updated in 2022

Out Now: Mac, PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Components: 3D First-Person

The Stanley Parable is an interactive drama with no combat or action to speak of apart from walking around and interacting with everyday objects. You guide a silent protagonist, Stanley, while a discouraging narration plays in your ear. As you discover...

Baba is You

Release Date: 13/03/2019

Out Now: Mac, PC and Switch

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Components: 2D Side-On and Pixels

Baba is You requires some lateral thinking. Each level is controlled by rules written on the screen, such as ‘Lava is Hot’, ‘Wall is Stop’ and ‘Flag is Move’. By moving the words around with your pixelated character, you subvert the...

Maquette

Release Date: 02/03/2021, updated in 2023

Out Now: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Components: 3D First-Person

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

Invisible Inc

Release Date: 12/05/2015, updated in 2020

Out Now: Mac, PC, PS4, Switch and iOS

Components: 2D Overhead and Grid

Invisible Inc is a tactical adventure where you direct espionage agents in covert missions to acquire resources and support to relocate your agency's computer system to a safe haven within a limited amount of time.

Dragomino

Release Date: 01/01/2020

Skill Rating: 4+ year-olds

Components: Cards, Figures and Tokens

Dragomino is a matching and collecting tile game similar to Kingdomino but tuned for really young players. You take turns to pick and add a domino Land card to your growing grid, and earn dragon eggs. It works for youngsters with...

Opus Magnum

Release Date: 08/12/2017

Out Now: PC

Components: 2D Side-On

Opus Magnum is a puzzle game about assembling machines to convert spherical chemicals into different compounds. Each challenge can be tackled by creating different machine configurations, and each is awarded points on how compact, quick and efficient...

Cascadia

Release Date: 01/01/2021

Components: Cards, Placeables, Score Board and Tokens

Cascadia is a collecting world-building game where you create habitats for the wildlife of the Pacific Northwest. You balance building habitats and placing wildlife to score points. It's like Solitaire where you match habitats and wildlife, but with...

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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