Read next

Families are spending more time at home, and if you’re like us, it’s an uphill battle to find a way to spend quality time together. If your kids are on their Nintendo Switch or Sony Playstation a lot, why not get in on the fun? Schedule a family night, and see who’s the best driver, dancer or athlete. It’s a great way to bond with your children and show them you’re interested in what they’re doing. Here are our top picks for video games parents can play with their kids—we promise hours of family fun.

Gran Turismo

Any parent who played Gran Turismo as a child is going to want to relive the game while playing their own kids. A racing simulation game, Gran Turismo is known for its graphics and the realistic nature of the cars in the game. Players can upgrade cars based on their wins and also participate in time trials. Grand Turismo is rated 'E' and available for PlayStation systems. The latest edition, Gran Turismo 7, is scheduled to be released for PS5 in 2021.

LEGO The Incredibles

LEGO offers a variety of video games that are tied to kid-friendly movies. Since it's family game night, why not LEGO The Incredibles? Players choose to be superheroes or villains, and the game includes characters from other Pixar movies. LEGO The Incredibles includes puzzles and quests, leading them to a matchup with the game's biggest villain. The game was nominated for 'Fan Favorite Family-Friendly Multiplayer Game' at the 2018 Gamers' Choice Awards. LEGO The Incredibles is rated 'E10+' and is available for the Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.

Minecraft

Originally released in 2011, Minecraft has hundreds of millions of players, and those numbers continue to grow. A sandbox game, meaning that the characters have very few limitations and no set goals, Minecraft lets players mine blocks to construct different things. Families who enjoy being highly creative and having flexibility will love this game.

Minecraft is rated 'E10+' and is available for PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch and Xbox Series X/S.

FIFA International Soccer 21

Sports games are popular in the video game world and a great way for some friendly competition. Since soccer is a non-contact sport, FIFA International Soccer games have minimal aggression and physical hitting. Making it a great game for families. Released in 2020, FIFA 21 lets players play matches with soccer players from 30 official worldwide leagues. FIFA 21 is available for Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PS5 and Xbox One, Series S/X and is rated 'E.'

Super Mario 3D All-Stars

Super Mario is 35 years old, making it another game parents enjoyed as a child they can now play with their kids. A limited-edition game to celebrate Mario's anniversary, Super Mario 3D All-Stars puts three of Mario's greatest hits, Super Mario 64, Super Mario Sunshine and Super Mario Galaxy, all in one package. Super Mario 3D All-Stars is rated 'E' and is for the Nintendo Switch.

Overcooked!

Who doesn’t have family members who love to cook or eat? Overcooked! lets players become kitchen chefs while facing a bunch of issues. Chefs have a limited amount of time to prepare meals (which makes the game even more fun), and there's a chef collaboration involved to get orders out on time. You can even play the game as the Swedish Chef from The Muppets. Overcooked! is rated 'E,' and it's available on Xbox Series X/S and PlayStation 5.

Animal Crossing: New Horizons

Winner of the Best Family Game award at The Game Awards 2020, Animal Crossing: New Horizons is the fifth edition of the game. Players explore a deserted island while gathering food and items they need and eventually creating a community of human-acting animals. Younger children will find this not too hard to play, making it the perfect game for younger families. Animal Crossing is available on Nintendo Switch and is rated 'E.'

Fortnite Battle Royale

Remember how popular the Floss dance was a few years ago? The dance was made even more popular by Fortnite Battle Royale, where players land on an island and then forge for items to help them survive. The longer the game, the smaller the island gets. Fortnite Battle Royale is rated 'T' for Teen and is available for the Xbox Series X/S, Nintendo Switch and PlayStation 4 and PS5.

Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020

Just because the Olympics were postponed in 2020 doesn't mean your family can't get together to compete to be the best athlete in the world. Pairing Mario with fellow video character Sonic the Hedgehog, Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 lets players compete against each other in sports like swimming, gymnastics, karate and surfing. Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 is available for the Nintendo Switch and is rated 'E10+.'

Just Dance 2021

Any parent knows that their children think parents aren’t that exciting. Show your kids how cool your moves actually are with Just Dance 2021. Players imitate the dancer on the screen to one of the songs chosen and try to beat each other with the best score. It's a great way to interact with your kids and get everyone off the couch and moving. Available for PlayStation 4 and 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S and Nintendo Switch and rated 'E.'

Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s About Time

Trying to make their way through different levels, Crash Bandicoot and his sister Coco encounter crates, fruit and enemies while trying to achieve their end goal. Both characters roll their way to collecting gems and Quantum Masks to help overcome obstacles they encounter. There are two game modes to choose from, Retro Mode and Modern Mode, and there are competitive multiplayer modes. Crash Bandicoot 4 is rated ‘E10+’ and can be played on PlayStation, Xbox One and Xbox Series X/S.

—Marcea Cazel

Featured image: Jessica Lewis via Pexels

 

RELATED STORIES: 

10 Totally Free Online Games for Kids

The Very Best Online Educational Games for Kids

New Research Sheds Light on Video Games, Gender & Your Child’s Social Skills

13 Lost Skills to Teach Your Kids (& Yourself!)

Read next

Recent events have had parents searching for new ways to keep their kids busy. How about a few problem-solving skills that seemed lost to time? There are lots of activities from the past that teach life skills, help with math, teach time management, and are also fun! We’ve collected our favorites below—scroll down to re-discover engaging traditional life skills that your kids will love.

Don’t lose this list! Click here to save on Pinterest.

Woodworking

Kids will feel such a sense of accomplishment after building something with their own two hands. There are easy ways to get kids interested in woodworking from woodworking kits that have all the pieces you'll need to books with awesome inspiration and step-by-step instructions like Girls Who Build. Get your woodworker set up with a multi-tool like the Leatherman Curl that has tools like wire cutters, pliers and scissors. 

Knitting

Have an 18" doll that needs some accessories? Knit her a loop scarf! Needlepointers.com has directions on how to knit without having needles. Best part? You don't have to know how to knit to make it.

photo: Gustavo Fring via Pexels

Cooking

Cooking seems to be a lost skill with all of the options of take-out and fast food. But why not teach the importance of knowing how to cook while making it fun for kids? We've come up with some easy ideas for cooking with kids. And they won't even realize that you're teaching them time management, math skills and great techniques. 

Candle Making

Candle-making is one of those lost life skills that is very easy to learn, plus, your results make great gifts! The Spruce has an easy tutorial on how to make candles, see it here

Crochet

In fashion since the 1800s, crochet is the skill of looping yarn through a crochet hook to create a variety of items. Merry About Town has a whole series about learning how to crochet. Find out what tools you need, different yarns to use and how to read a pattern. 

Sewing

Big Crazy Life has been sewing since she was a child. And now, her daughter is sewing and has even started her own mask business. According to Cam, Learning to sew from her grandmother taught her to make her clothes and helped her gain both business and life skills. You don't have to a kid's sewing machine to get started; if you don't have one—kids can learn on a regular sewing machine or even by hand. 

Quilting

Once your kids learn how to sew, why not teach them to quilt? Swoodsonsays quilted with her five-year-old and said it's not as hard as you think. Her tips on what fabric to start with, tools to use, and the idea that it's fun will make it easier for everyone.  

Making Jam

Not quite ready to start the kids cooking just yet? Busy Creating Memories has a simple, tasty recipe for no-cook strawberry jam that is perfect for getting the kids helping in the kitchen. And it has all the benefits of cooking, without having to turn on the stove! 

Whittling

When's the last time you saw someone carving something out of wood? Usually, it's an older gentleman on a porch with a piece of wood and a knife. But Rachel McClary's girls have learned how to whittle, and she has tips on how your kids can safely whittle too. Rachel's info helps with everything from how to appropriately pick up a knife to ideas on what to start making. 

Making Soap

This is both a fun craft project and experiment for kids, plus, it's a lost life skill you can continue to use at home. This fun PBS tutorial was created with kids in mind, but we also love this Good Housekeeping tutorial that will have you making soap that'll you want to use to get clean! 

photo: Allison Sutcliffe

Origami

First invented in China in the 1st century, origami is a great way to develop fine motor skills. But there's more to origami than just making a paper fortune teller, so check out our list of origami paper crafts to get the kids making bracelets, bookmarks and more!

photo: Melick's Town Farm

Flower Arranging

A beautiful flower arrangement can always cheer someone up, but it's a lost art form for many. Rhythms of Play has come up with steps that even kindergartners can learn. While you might not think of flower arranging as a life skill, Rhythms of Play says that it teaches a variety of lessons including pouring, carrying, contributing to the household and more. It'll also brighten up your house! 

Pickling

Your hard work will pay off for months to come when you teach the kids how to pickle! There are lots of different veggies you can try, too, including cucumbers, onions, green beans and more. We've got an easy tutorial for pickles that's perfect for kids, click here to see it

 

—Marcea Cazel

 

RELATED STORIES:

Origami Paper Crafts for Kids

12 Bread Recipes You Can Make without Yeast