Download some of the best free tablet and PC games for children, and keep your kids entertained… and educated. Not only are these games free so you can save that money on food, clothing and school supplies, but many of them are also just as educational as they are entertaining. This way, the learning never stops even when the fun starts.
There are a lot of best free tablet and PC games for children to choose from, from creative problem solving and critical thinking games to relaxing ones that are great to pass the time with. And, we wanted to shorten the list for you. After all, parents are already stretched thin as they are, and kids shouldn’t be spending all their free time gaming anyway.
So, we handpicked all the best free games for kids on both tablet and PC for you. Each title on this list is appropriate for all genders from ages 5 to 11, a complete as-is experience and violence-free. And, of course, guaranteed to give your kids a blast.
10 best games for kids on Android tablets and iPad
These days, kids are more likely to first experience computing and gaming on a tablet than a home computer. To that end, our tablet selection skews a little younger.
Everything on this list is rated 3+, according to Google, and should be safe for even very young children. However, Apple rates most of these games with a more conservative 4+, except for Super Stickman Golf and Spaceteam, which are 9+. The games are all simple to control, easy to get into, and fun to play.
A note on IAPs and ads: Unfortunately, it’s hard to find a free game that’s not out to make a buck somewhere, so several games listed here will offer in app purchases for in game currency. And, some others will feature ads. In the former case, you can disable IAPs at a system level on your device before handing it over to a kid. With the latter, you should play the game yourself to ensure the ads are OK to show to your kid.
1. Sago Mini Friends
This sweet-natured set of mini-games encourages creativity, dexterity, and puzzle solving. It starts with you selecting a colorful character, who then explores a neighborhood of cartoon houses.
Knock on a door and you’re invited inside for an animated, entertaining playdate. This might involve dress-up, hammering nails into a birdhouse, or enjoying a tasty snack.
Everything’s bright and cheerful, and the game promotes empathy, with one friend looking glum if spoils aren’t evenly shared.
2. Lego Creator Islands
In all honesty, we’re sure most parents would be happier seeing kids playing with real Lego rather than virtual bricks on a tablet. But when the real thing isn’t an option, this official game’s a nice substitute.
The game takes place on the Lego Creator Islands, where you’ll collect bricks in order to buy Lego sets that are constructed with a few taps. While playing, you’ll collect all kinds of houses, vehicles and even cute blocky critters that roam around. As an added bonus, there’s no chance of painfully stepping on a plastic brick.
3. Toca Kitchen 2
If your child regularly uses a tablet, you’ve likely already installed some Toca Boca games. They’re a smart mix of education and play, and Toca Kitchen 2 is no exception.
As you’d expect, Toca Kitchen 2 is all about cooking. This game invites you to create meals – however you prefer. Devise your own recipes and foist your creations on a colorful cast of characters, whether you’ve carefully constructed a burger, or decided to throw a watermelon into the microwave and cover it in sauce.
4. Llama Spit Spit
Llama Spit Spit is an oddball shoot ’em up, featuring a flying llama blasting crazy cartoon enemies with a mix of spittle and high-powered weaponry.
The controls are incredibly simple, meaning even younger players can get on board. Power-ups and collectable llamas (with their own background imagery) keep things interesting over the long term.
5. Disney Crossy Road
The original Crossy Road cleverly reworked Frogger, with blocky characters hopping across chunky endless landscapes, trying to avoid a dunk in a river or getting flattened by a train. But the masterstroke was a raft of unlockable characters.
Disney Crossy Road is much the same, but uses Disney characters that often radically overhaul the game’s visuals and gameplay mechanics. Over 100 figurines are there to be found, and although IAP lurks, playing and collecting coins in the in-game worlds is all you need to snag them all.
6. Frisbee Forever 2
You’d think flinging a plastic disc about would make for a rubbish video game. Fortunately, Frisbee Forever 2 is more akin to a set of rollercoasters, with you guiding your disc through gates, collecting stars along the way.
There’s a hint of Nintendo about this breezy arcade experience, with its vibrant visuals, smart level design, and a basic control system suitable for all. And although there are freemium underpinnings, you’re rewarded with in-game currency for every second played – even if an attempt at a level ends in failure.
7. Fruit Ninja
In the fast-paced Fruit Ninja, your digit becomes a virtual sword, hacking pieces of fruit lobbed on to the screen in two, and attempting to avoid cutting into game-ending bombs.
It’s ideal fodder for a tablet, since you can make pleasingly large swipes across the display. But also the game offers local multiplayer, so two kids can zealously pit their fruit-slicing skills against each other.
With its tiny isometric worlds you spin with a finger, and landscape-flipping mechanics, Mekorama brings to mind Monument Valley. But this game has no Escher-like optical illusions; instead, it concentrates on straightforward pathfinding as you help an ambling robot reach its goals.
It’s a charming, thoughtful, tactile experience, and on a tablet is suitable for parent/child play, with you working through the puzzles together. Once you’re done with the 50 built-in levels, you can download more from the internet, or make your own.
9. Super Stickman Golf 3
For many kids, golf won’t excite. But the Super Stickman universe doesn’t partake in normal golf. Instead, you’re thwacking balls across larger-than-life side-on courses – massive castles; laser-strewn bases; floating islands.
Even though it’s fun to play by yourself, and makes full use of bigger screens (by letting you see more of each course and therefore aim more precisely), it also has fantastic multiplayer game types. You can play turn-by-turn matches with friends, or try your hand at frenetic, madcap ‘race to the hole’ skirmishes.
If you’ve several kids with devices, Spaceteam’s a delightfully bonkers way to have them all yell at each other in a vaguely productive manner that in theory helps them work as a team. Specifically, a ‘spaceteam’ in a ship trying to outrun an exploding star, with control panels designed by a sadist.
Once devices are connected, instructions appear on your screen – but the controls may be on someone else’s. So you’ll have people yelling nonsense like “someone turn on the dangling shunter”, while figuring out if their own screen has a ‘spectrobolt’ slider. Just like in Star Trek.
PCs are naturally more complicated than tablets. Whereas even very young children can decipher a touchscreen, figuring out how mice, trackpads and keyboards may take longer.;
However, if your kid is old enough to take advantage of the best laptops for kids, our selection of the best free PC games for kids will skew a little older. This doesn’t mean there won’t be games for your five-year-old here, though. Note that several of these games are browser-based, though none require plug-ins. For these games, we’d recommend using the Google Chrome browser.
1. Cube Slam
Pong was one of the earliest home videogames. Cube Slam is Pong in your browser – only in 3D, and you get to play against a bear (or a friend – but the multiplayer option is flaky).
You face your furry opponent, moving the bat left or right to deflect the cuboid ‘ball’, aiming to smash the bear’s shields. Win enough times and the game introduces power-ups, invisible balls, and extra blocks on the table that make the ball bounce around unpredictably.
2. Quick, Draw
For children who enjoy doodling, Quick, Draw should prove fascinating. The idea is to sketch – against the clock – something recognizable enough for Google’s Neural Network to identify.
In each case, you’re told what to draw. But this game isn’t about drawing photorealistic objects. Instead, you must quickly figure out the key visual clues that describe something. Which is probably a good thing, unless you can scribble a realistic rhinoceros in 20 seconds.
3. World’s Biggest Pac-Man
Pac-Man’s one of the most recognizable gaming icons around, and the original game is simple enough that even young kids can get to grips with it. However, its single maze quickly becomes dull – hence our recommendation to instead play World’s Biggest Pac-Man.
This online effort has hundreds of thousands of mazes, which you venture between by sneaking out of exits. Other than that, the original game’s compelling mix of munching dots and avoiding a quartet of spectral pursuers remains intact.
This indie hit takes the basis of Pac-Man and a slew of other ancient arcade games, and then smashes them into an endless bout of modern neon craziness.
Again, the basics are simple enough for any kid to understand: march about mazes, grab a key, and make for the exit. But the game’s chaotic nature (the maze’s denizens appear as intent on blowing each other up as taking on the player) ensures it’s relentless raucous fun.
5. Little Alchemy 2
It would be a stretch to call Little Alchemy an educational game, but textbook smarts may help you crack the logic at the core of this match-and-discover puzzler.
You begin with a handful of building blocks, which when combined create new things. Sometimes, discoveries are obvious – add water to more water and you get a puddle. But some are more whimsical and funny, like when metal and a pigeon become a plane.
It’s ideal fodder when your kids want to play games, but you’d prefer them to relax and think for a bit.
6. Contre Jour
This lovely physics puzzler began life on mobile, but its landscape-warping nature works well in the browser.
The aim is to get trundling protagonist Petit to a glowing exit. This involves click-dragging malleable hills to influence Petit’s movements, or using catapults and dangling tentacles to fling him about.
Petit’s endearingly grumpy demeanor, combined with great-looking visuals and clever level design, makes for a family-friendly puzzler sure to have kids scratching their heads figuring out all the solutions.
Play Contre Jour online. The game is also available in paid form on various mobile platforms
7. Escape Goat
The clue’s in the title here – a leaping bovid wants to reach the exit. But doing so requires brainpower, plenty of dextrous jumping, and the occasional help of a friendly mouse.
Mostly, you’re aiming to reach and butt switches that shift rocks and create tunnels in cunningly designed single-screen challenges. But planning’s often required to collect keys, and not get squashed when walls start moving.
Oddly, when you send the mouse on a mission, you can teleport to its position. Quite why the goat can’t teleport straight to the exit, we’ve no idea. Goats never were the brightest creatures.
This side-scrolling dungeon crawler as a distinctly Indiana Jones feel, and this is probably why it became such a huge indie hit on handhelds – but it began on PC. These days, there are various ways to play early incarnations of the game for free.
Although this version is a bit rougher around the edges than modern variations, it remains compelling. You explore caves, jumping around, picking up bling and beating up monsters. Each game is unique – caves are randomly generated, and a single error can bring your quest to an abrupt end, with you impaled on spikes or killed by snakes. So tread lightly and look before you jump.
9. VVVVVV: Make and Play Edition
One for kids who are a bit older and twitchier of thumb, this take on gravity-flip platformer VVVVVV is a special free edition. Like the paid release, it features a little chap who darts about and can leap from ceiling to floor by tapping the jump button.
His aim is to escape from a maze comprising dozens of single screens full of spikes and roaming enemies. This free edition includes maps created by fans – and the means to build your own.
10. Super Crate Box
This one’s also in the twitchy thumbs category, and finds a little pixelated chap leaping about, trying to grab crates. All the while, he must blast creatures spilling into the screen, lest they hurl themselves into the flames below and emerge from the top furiously angry.
The game is fast-paced, entertaining, and has plenty of weapons and arenas to unlock. And although it’s a shooter, we can’t imagine many parents will be too concerned about their kid taking a cartoon bazooka to a conga of green monsters.