Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the best products; you can learn more about our review process here. We may receive commissions on purchases made from our chosen links.
The best Xbox One games for kids are engaging, high-quality examples of how Microsoft’s popular console can keep everyone in the family entertained. Even with the newer-generation Xbox Series X and Series S systems freshly launched, these titles are proof that players of all ages can still find much to enjoy on their Xbox One (or One X or One S) consoles.
Parents and caretakers can best judge what’s appropriate for each particular child, but most kids should be able to handle many of these games on their own. Some may call for adult guidance depending on the young player’s maturity and skill level. Some feature familiar faces like Marvel superheroes, while others introduce colorful new characters. Some, like Minecraft, have genuine educational value. Others, like Plants vs. Zombies, lets kids experience the typically “grownup” multiplayer shooter genre, but without the violence and intensity of Halo and other mature Xbox mainstays.
There’s an Xbox One game for just about any kid’s interests, and—with overall outstanding options like those in the list below—there’s plenty to keep adults interested for a long time, too.
Minecraft is a modern classic for young gamers, and for good reason. Its blocky sandbox gameplay fosters creativity and innovation in ways few other Xbox One games can. For more kid-centric fun, co-op titles like Rayman Legends and the Overcooked! 2 can have the whole family working together, while Rocket League and Plants vs. Zombies inspire some friendly competition.
Anton Galang has been working as a writer and editor in the fields of tech and education since 2007. He has reviewed several Xbox One kids’ games for Lifewire and has spent countless hours on others with his family just for fun.
Andrew Hayward is a Lifewire writer and product tester with a background in journalism. He has covered video games and technology since 2006, contributing to publications like TechRadar, Polygon, and Macworld.
Kelsey Simon is a writer and librarian who reviews video games and books for local blogs. She has tested many excellent family-friendly games for Lifewire, including a number of titles for the Xbox One.
Thomas Hindmarch has worked in video game journalism for almost 20 years. He was a founding editor for Hardcore Gamer and has contributed to numerous gaming publications, including reviews of several kids’ games for Lifewire.
Taylor Clemons has written game reviews for online publications, including IndieHangover and GameSkinny, as well as for her own website: Steam Shovelers.
Are Xbox One kids’ games appropriate for any age?
Video games are assigned a rating by the Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) as an indicator of their content. An E (Everyone) rating means the game should be suitable for most kids, with E10+ (Everyone 10+) rating given for some mild violence or suggestive themes. Games with T (Teen) ratings should generally be reserved for kids 13 and up. In all cases, caretakers should use their own judgment based on the individual child’s maturity level.
What parental controls are available on the Xbox One?
Parents can monitor and adjust parental control settings for any Xbox console by adding children to a Microsoft family group account. That provides activity reports and controls for limits on screen time and online spending. There is also an Xbox Family Settings mobile app for quick access to settings and notifications.
How much violence is in Xbox One kids’ games?
While shooters, fighting games, and action games for teens and adults on Xbox One may depict more realistic violence and blood, the games on this list avoid any type of graphic content. There may be degrees of action, thrills, combat, and conflict, but it would be presented in a way that’s cartoony or with elements of fantasy.
Activity level – Some games are more active than others. A few will even work up as much of a sweat as playing a game of tag outside. To help your child get adequate exercise, look for a game that keeps him or her moving, such as Dance Dance Revolution.
Educational level – Video games don’t have to be purely recreational. Some can supplement math and science subjects that your child is learning in school or even delve into an entirely new topic that he or she might not have explored otherwise.
Creativity level – Sometimes, educational games teach a child to think in a new way or solve puzzles with abstract thinking. Plenty of games, such as Minecraft, offer a more creative spin than those with more traditional approaches such as times tables and science experiments.