I don’t like violence in video games. It usually makes me anxious and panicky, so I tend to gravitate towards kids games. The violence is more cartoony than gory, and something about it makes me feel like I’m playing a game rather than acting out a sci-fi thriller or steampunk adventure. (Don’t get me wrong, those are fun too! In doses.) It’s usually really difficult to find games that walk the line between “made for kids” and “enjoyable for adults.” Here’s a few that I really enjoyed playing:
In this kabuki play styled game, you’re a wooden puppet playing across a stage. And you’re in need of your head! Your puppet heads are your lives, and they each have powers. If you have the right head at the right spot in the game, you can use the power to gain access to bonus levels! You wield a pair of magic golden scissors and you use the scissors to cut through materials to move forward in the game. Plus you get a companion who is a playable Player 2 if you want to play with a buddy!
This game was fun, challenging, and genuinely beautiful. The levels and animation were playful and colourful, each world having its own theme. I’ve beaten the game but I still go back to play levels with low scores because it’s great to kick back with.
Little Big Planet
I swear, I am a grown up. The LBP franchise is big with kids and families, but I’ve played it in a group of fellow grown ups and we all have a great time. I will say this game is more fun when you play with 2+ players. Even my brother whose tastes run more towards Call of Duty and Need for Speed enjoyed creating his sackboy and making him run around with a dinosaur head on. There is no lack of whimsy! And in the third game, as you can see above, you get more characters to play with! (And yes, they all get costume options. My OddSock was usually an elephant). Each character has their own style of moving, so they all get their own style of puzzles and obstacles in the levels. My fav is Toggle, who can switch between a big or bitty body.
Like Puppeteer, this is a game you can re-play to find goodies you’ve missed!
Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two
I’m going to get one thing out in the open about this game. If you thought Donald was useless in Kingdom Hearts, you have not yet met Oswald the Lucky Rabbit. This game is definitely better played with a Player 2 because Oswald’s autopilot is an idiot. Aside from that, though, this game is a fun adventure to get the wholesome Disney town back in shape from being in shambles. I definitely beat the game but I’m not sure I beat it correctly because it was still in shambles when I was finished. I’ve played other Mickey Mouse games and they were mind-numbingly boring. The Epic Mickey games are challenging enough to keep me entertained. Though I will say the game takes very little time to run through!