These games are great for kids to get into, and older gamers may find something to like about it too.
Wizard101 is the game for the Harry Potter fan in your family. Train as a young wizard and face multiple threats to the wizarding world to save your homeworld of Spiral. You get RPG style progression and easy to understand turn based combat, similar to playing cards on a CCG. Wizard101 offers both subscription and microtransactions, and has safeguards for player interaction, in terms of the name generator, menu chat system, and more. Buy Here Now
Wizard101’s sister game eschews the world of magic for that of scalawags. Acquire your ship, recruit and train your crew, and sail off for adventure. Pirate101 offers the same flexible payment options and player interaction safeguards. It also has turn based combat, this time based around playing on a board. Depending on how you look at it, this is great news (solid gameplay) or bad (boring). Either way, there are no nasty surprises waiting for parents for this one.
Roblox is best described as a Lego MMO. Yes, it looks like Minecraft on the surface, but it is actually closer in line to The Simes. Where Mojang added in Creepers to compel the construction of refuges, as well as defenses, Roblox instead encourages players to build their characters and buildings freely, and to interact with and share your creations with others. Roblox is also heavily moderated to ensure younger players are safe anywhere they go and anytime they play. Roblox also allows for premium membership or microtransactions. Buy Here Now
Lego Legends of Chima Online
You may have been wondering about this, and the answer is yes, Lego does have their own MMO. This one is based on The Legends of Chima, their popular toyline and cartoon IP. You play a custom anthropomorphic character in Chima, between the Lion, Eagle, Gorilla, and Bear, and join the battle against the Crocodiles. You destroy Legos to find hidden items, make your own gadgets, build defensible Outposts, beat enemies using Chi, and more. If you are a parent, you probably know if your child is a Chima fan. Between this and the TV show, you can save yourself money on the figures and let them indulge in this free to play game.
Club Penguin is Disney’s sole surviving virtual world, and they picked the right one to keep around. The game has a burgeoning active community, with as many as 200 million registered users as of July of last year. You are literally a penguin, starting out with your own igloo, and with the ability to visit other igloos and areas. Club Penguin is filled with the events found in most virtual world games, including upgrading igloos, holding online parties, buying online merchandise, etc. Club Penguin remains one of the safest places for children to play for free, although if you can spare it, you may want to get your child paid membership, as the community has built castes between paid and unpaid members.
Whyville is another virtual world with a focus on educational interaction. The game is filled with games and activities meant to encourage learning and exploration. Whyville’s partnerships with public and private entities have led to a lot of educational sponsored content, including customizable Scion automobiles, and a virtual representation of the Getty Museum. There have also been targeted activities and games, by entities like Texas’s nutritition association and workforce commission. Whyville is completely free, although some players can purchase Pearls, a virtual currency that allows them to buy unique items.
Dreamworks: School of Dragons
Surprisingly enough, the licensed School of Dragons, based on the How To Train Your Dragon CG franchise, is not just a free to play MMO, but an educational game to boot. Enter the village of Berk and become a dragon trainer, with minigames, puzzles, even quests. Underneath the veneer of a licensed game is the hand of educational game maker JumpStart, which has been around since 1994. The game’s puzzles and quests are designed to teach children use of the scientific method, and it boasts seamless gameplay across PC and mobile. School of Dragons has premium subscription and limited free play options.
While Poptropica is getting its first spinoff console game on the 3DS, the original game remains an endearing handcrafted experience. Visit 40 islands to explore, interact with fun characters, and go on quests. The puzzles you will be compelled to solve are genuine brainteasers, that will help develop thinking and logical skills in players. The sheer number of content alone, including licenses from Peanuts and Diary of a Wimpy Kid, as well as holiday themed islands, is more than enough of a draw to the game.
If you have been online for some time you probably already know what NeoPets is. Now owned by Knowledge Adventure, the venerable virtual online pet game has been greatly expanded, from a limited Tamagotchi-like sim, to a full fledged MMO with a sprawling virtual world, virtual currency, and even interactive storylines. At its core, however, NeoPets is still a pet sim, so you can choose to just raise your pet to whatever he or she becomes, at your behest. NeoPets remains one of the most addictive sites on the web for children, so if you want to introduce this to your kid, caveat emptor.
Moshi Monsters is not substantially very different from NeoPets, although it boasts its own cartoony, colorful aesthetic. You choose and customize a pet to raise, as well as make their own customizable private rooms. Bringing them to Monstro City, you can play minigames, including a daily puzzle that rewards you with virtual currency. Last 2013, Moshi Monsters had 80 million user accounts, across 150 territories. While not particularly original or unique, the game is popular, child friendly, and free. Moshi Monsters continues to expand in spinoff games and transmedia works (film, album, toys), but the original game is still free, with an active global community.