Best Kids Games for the PlayStation 4

Thursday, April 2nd, 2020 12:48 pm

A SuperParent guide to the best kids games on Sony's console.

While our Top 10 list contains some of the more recent PlayStation games that we love, these are the equally great games that we’ve previously featured in our Top 10, or those that just warrant your attention. These are still great options for kids and teens!

NBA 2K Series
Rated E10+ for Everyone 10+

This continually best-selling series also happens to be a gorgeous, fun, and deep simulation of NBA basketball. NBA 2K features every current team, player, and coach, along with a host of NBA legends. Over the years, the franchise has added story modes, the WNBA, and a whole online world that lets you hang out with others. Even a full-fledged esports league has sprouted up around the NBA 2K franchise.

PARENT’S NOTE: One thing to keep in mind for your kids is that there is an aggressive in-game purchase system in place in NBA 2K. Between stat boosting, clothing, accessories, and more, you could quickly feel the wallet drain. If you do plan to buy this game, make sure to toggle off in-game purchases through your system’s software.

Rocket League
Rated E for Everyone

If you haven’t heard of this game yet (REALLY?!?!), let’s sum it up quickly: It’s supercar soccer. The game has been around for ages – it’s readily available on PC and all consoles. You can play together on a couch, against others online…or, one fun suggestion for the family: Let your kid play (solo against AI is always an option) and you do a live shoutcast of the match in the living room like you’re the commentator. For more information about Rocket Leaguecheck out our guide.

Overcooked / Overcooked 2
Rated E for Everyone

Prepare for culinary chaos! The premise of the Overcooked games is to fill orders as quickly and accurately as you can. But it’s not like you can just drop off an order and pick it up. No, no. You need to chop vegetables, tenderize meat, make sure the soup doesn’t burn, and oh yeah — your kitchen is full of obstacles for you to deal with, like moving platforms. If you’ve ever played Diner Dash, you have a good idea of how intense the scramble can get. It’s an uproarious good time that teaches kids cooperation, leadership, and great communication skills. There’s very little reading, so this is appropriate for pre-reading kiddos, too.

Starlink: Battle for Atlas
Rated E10+ for Everyone 10+

We’re going to let you in on a little secret: this is the Star Fox game that you’ve always wanted. Yes, yes, we know that Star Fox is a Nintendo thing, but this planetary exploration action game really is fun for the whole family. When Starlink first came out, it was all about the plastic toy line that could snap together as you played. Turns out, if you buy the digital version, it skips all the peripherals and you can just enjoy playing an awesome game. Read our take on Starlink, here.

TowerFall Ascension
Rated E10+ for Everyone 10+

TowerFall is an oldie, but it’s definitely a goodie. It’s got a similar frenetic energy as Overcooked, and also supports up to four players, but TowerFall is all about slaying bad guys without accidentally killing your teammates. Players need to jump, climb, and teleport their way around a level in order to avoid baddies. TowerFall Ascension is old-school and levels are a single screen. As you and your kiddo make your way through the levels and worlds, the baddies ramp up in difficulty fairly quickly. So, if you’re looking to spend multiple sessions playing a wacky, action-heavy, retro-looking game, pick up TowerFall Ascension.

Rated E for Everyone

Originally released back in 2011, Minecraft lets players mine cubes, gather resources, craft items, and build pretty much whatever they can dream up. It’s available on every platform under the sun and has been spun off into several cool side projects, including an adventure game (Minecraft: Story Mode) and a classroom-ready educational tool (MinecraftEDU). Whether your kids are reconstructing Hogwarts, trying to take down the fearsome Ender Dragon, or glued to a Minecraft YouTuber like Stampy or CaptainSparklez, they’re probably thinking about Minecraft right now.

LittleBigPlanet 3
Rated E for Everyone

Amanda: The story of LittleBigPlanet 3 is fairly straightforward — Sackboy (the protagonist) is exploring his own world when he gets sucked into a portal to a world called Bunkum. He goes on a journey to free Bunkum’s heroes, OddSock, Toggle, and Swoop, so they can defeat the three evil Titans. My youngest son was enamored with LBP3 for a long, long time. It taught him incredible platforming proficiency, where now he’s able to pick up games like Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze and The Adventure Pals with relative ease. It gave him the opportunity to hone his skills and teach his younger sister some of the skills needed to manipulate the LBP3 world. LittleBigPlanet 3 supports up to four players for puzzle-platforming goodness.

Rated E for Everyone

Amanda: Journey is in my personal top-three games of all-time. I’ve played it through more times than I care to count. It’s made me weep with joy far more often than I care to admit. I introduced Journey to my youngest son in 2015. Initially, he was confused. What should he do? Where should he go? Journey is an experience, rather than a linear game. Part of the joy is in figuring out what to do and why it matters. It’s breathtaking, easy to pick up and play, and is just as much fun to watch as it is to play. Buckle up because there are Feelings here.

Trials Rising
Rated T for Teen

Trials Rising is a physics-based motorcycle racing game that challenges players to make it to the end of each course without crashing, which is much easier said than done. Tracks are full of obstacles to avoid and ramps to jump off of, and since the gameplay is physics-based, you’ll need to make your rider lean forward and backward to control their position as you ride. Trials Rising lets you race against other players online, as well as create your own courses to share with other racers.

Kingdom Hearts All in One Package
Rated E10+ for Everyone 10+

Editor’s note: The trailer above is for Kingdom Hearts -The Story So Far-. The All in One Package includes everything in -The Story So Far-, as well as Kingdom Hearts 3.

The Kingdom Hearts role-playing games let players travel to worlds inspired by Disney and Pixar films (everything from Tarzan and Tangled to Monsters, Inc. and beyond), where they’ll be challenged to defeat enemies known as Heartless. There are lots of different games in the Kingdom Hearts franchise (the newest game, Kingdom Hearts 3, launched in early 2019), and many different collections have been released to help newcomers get up to speed. If your family has never tried a Kingdom Hearts game, this All in One Package is the only thing you need. It contains all of the games and “HD remastered cinematics” releases that have been featured in previous collections, and it also includes Kingdom Hearts 3. The only thing you don’t get is the Re Mind downloadable content (DLC) for Kingdom Hearts 3. You’ll still have to purchase that DLC separately.

Editor’s note: The original version of this article was written by Amanda Farough.

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