Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Christian Video Games for Young Children


Axel 1 and 2 (Good)
Purchase
 
Platform: PC
Publisher: Breakthrough Gaming, 2006

Axel the robot wants to start an arcade in the church, and you get to play these mini-games! Each game has 16 or 17 game modes that you can play solo or against any player. While not the best graphics, the mini-games are fun, and I appreciate the variety of each volume. It should make a good past time for kids and families.


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Bible Memory Game (Fair)
 
Play for free!


Platform: Android
Publisher: i-stih, 2016

This matching game has a couple of things going for it. First, it tells an abbreviated version of the Biblical story before each set of puzzles. Second, the original artwork is very appealing to a young audience. I also appreciate the challenge of the timer. One detraction from the game is that the pictures aren't labeled, so it's easy to tell what who some of the people being depicted are, but you're left to guess who the others are. It would be better if so many stories weren't mixed in to one puzzle. Adam, for instance, could be in a puzzle with Noah.


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Bible Memory Game Children (Fair)
Play for free!
  
Platform: Android
Publisher: RDB Mobile, 2015

This matching game works well enough, but I wouldn't recommend it for children. Some of the terminology isn't very kid-friendly. What child uses the words fidelity or longsuffering? The number of cards on the board also makes it difficult for small ones. Finally, the art on the cards consists of a few different styles, detracting from the overall look of the game.


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Bounce  (Fair)
Purchase
 Platform: PC
Publisher: Breakthrough Gaming, 2006

This is a fun pinball-type game with all the Breakthrough Gaming characters, though the mechanic does get a little repetitive after a few levels. It's good to play a couple of levels at a time, though, and there is brief Christian teaching throughout.



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Buzby: Breakin' All the Rules  (Good)
Purchase


Platform: PC, Mac
Publisher: Digital Praise, 2005

This is an edutainment game with a variety of activities for early elementary kids. Kids can practice spelling, math, coordination, and others while experiencing the story of the arrogant "King of the Bees" and learning some very practical Christian teaching.


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Camping the Bug-A-Boo Way (Excellent)
Purchase

Platforms: PC, Mac
Publisher: Digital Praise, 2006

Based on the series by Max Lucado, this is a very educational game for young children with Christian teaching woven into the gameplay.



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Charlie the Church Mouse 3D Adventures (Excellent)

Purchase

Platforms: PC
Publisher: Left Behind Games, 2015

This massively underrated game combines both 3D platforming and educational mini-games, all while telling 9 Bible stories. 



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Charlie Church Mouse 
Preschool, Kindergarten, and Early Elementary (Excellent)
(Also known as Charlie Church Mouse Bible Adventures)
Platforms: PC
Publisher: Inspired Media, Left Behind Games, 2005

These games came out in a number of editions. They were even briefly called Charlie Church Mouse Bible Adventures 1, 2, and 3. No matter which edition you buy, the games are essentially the same within their different volumes.

Each of these games tells 6 Bible stories along with offering educational mini-games. The graphics are still up to par with today's standards, and the games are fun and engaging for young kids. Because they include different Bible stories and activities within such a close age range, it would definitely be worth buying all three and letting your kids explore each one.

Purchase
Preschool Bible stories: Creation, Noah’s Ark, Jonah, 3 Wisemen, Parable of the Lost Coin, Fishes and Loaves

Purchase
Kindergarten Bible stories: Elisha & the Jars of Oil, Nehemiah Rebuilds the Wall, The Story of Queen Esther, The Birth of a Savior, The Prodigal Son, Zaccheus & the Big Tree

Purchase
Early Elementary Bible stories: Walls of Jericho, Ruth, David & Goliath, Daniel, Pearl of Great Price, Paul’s Journey to Rome.


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Children's Bible Puzzles for Kids & Toddlers (Excellent)  
Play for free!

Platform: Android
Publisher: NutBolt Games, 2018

I'm very impressed with this game. Younger kids can enjoy a couple of different puzzle types and "spot the difference" game while older kids can play the variety of trivia games. The music is also very upbeat and catchy. The one problem I have with the app is that there a lot of ads that pop up when switching from screen to screen.


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Flo: Return of the Water Beetles  (Good)
Purchase
 
Platform: PC
Publisher: Digital Praise, 2005

The Water Beetles band is coming back into town, and Flo is their number one fan. Help her and the Friends get ready with 5 educational games, including matching, sequencing, and, of course, making music.


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Jonah: A VeggieTales Game  (Good)
Purchase
 Platform: PC
Publisher: Big Idea, 2002

The graphics are great, the voice acting is on par with the cartoon, and following the storyline of the movie, you'll learn the (VeggieTales version) story of Jonah. The game is composed of mini-games, though, which might be a nice touch of variety for some people but lacks a cohesion of gameplay for me. I don't think many children will mind that, though!



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Match 1 and 2  (Good)
Purchase

Platform: PC
Publisher: Breakthrough Gaming, 2006

I like the different categories these games offer: a couple of Bible-based, lots of different educational games, or just fun. There's also a story mode to each game in which the hosts, Nit and Kit or Zippy, learn a valuable Christian lesson. Within the match games themselves, you can play with someone else on Turn Mode or increase the challenge in Timed Mode.


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My Place with Jesus (Poor)
Platforms: Android
Publisher: It Is Written, 2018

This game has appealing graphics, but the wording of the teaching goes high above children's heads. There are other things to do, but the meat of the gameplay consists of filling in missing words in the Bible verses.

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Nik & Kit 1 and 2  (Fair)
Purchase for Kindle or visit the website to purchase for PC
Platform: PC, Kindle
Publisher: Breakthrough Gaming, 2006

This very retro-style platformer has you trying to find your stolen Bible. The games are well-done if you like the style, but I'd like to see more of a story in the game.




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Noah's Ark: 2 by 2  (Excellent)
Play for free on Kindle!
Platform: Kindle
Publisher: Truth Gaming LLC, 2013

This memory match game presents the story of Noah's Ark with the challenge of a timer to complete the round. You can also use power-ups to help you get a peek at the cards and complete the round faster. 

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The Noah's Ark Game  (Good)
Play for free!

  

Platform: Android
Publisher: The city of apps, 2016

The theme of the map is Noah's Ark, and the player gathers two of each animal in this memory game, but the ties to Noah's Ark end there. There's no teaching in this game. It's simply level after level of matching animals. And with that, it does quite well. There is a lot of variety in the animals as well as how many cards are on the board, so the challenge does increase the further you go.


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Noah's Bunny Problem  (Fair)
Play for free on Android or iOS!

 

Platform: Android, iOS
Publisher: Salvation's Story, 2015

This game is well-done for a simple app, but it favors humor more than content. Your goal is to keep the rabbits from kissing and making more rabbits, while also keeping the existing rabbits from falling off the Ark. As an added bonus, you can dress Noah in different outfits, such as this Santa outfit (which, yes, is problematic for some Christians).



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Park the Ark  (Good)
Play for free on Kindle!
Platform: Kindle
Publisher: Truth Gaming LLC, 2015

Kids will tilt their device to steer the Ark into the correct sight words. They'll learn their words and the story of Noah's Ark at the same time. The gameplay isn't very exciting or challenging, though, so kids might not stick with it for very long. Fortunately, it's free, so it's worth letting them play with as long as interest lasts. 




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The Story of Noah's Ark  (Good)
Purchase

Platform: Nintendo DS
Publisher: SouthPeak Games, 2011

Listen to the story of and play a variety of mini and educational games based on Noah's Ark.



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VeggieTales Dance, Dance, Dance (Excellent)
Purchase
  
Platforms: PC, Mac
Publisher: Digital Praise, 2006

Dance to all your favorite VeggieTales songs! This game comes with its own dance pad and a CD to play on any computer.


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VeggieTales: The Mystery of Veggie Island (Fair)
Purchase
 Platform: PC
Publisher: Big Idea, 2002

The cartoon graphics and gameplay hold up well, considering the game's from 2002. It relies completely on mini-games, however, without much of a story.



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Zippy the Circle (Fair)
Purchase for Kindle or visit the website to purchase for PC
  
Platforms: PC, Kindle
Publisher: Breakthrough Gaming, 2006

This is a cute, fun story-based game with Christian principles. It's not particularly challenging to progress in the game, but it does offer you a challenge if you want to get the most points that you can. Children do need to be able to read to play this game, though, as it's not voice-acted.

Play the demo!


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ZJ the Ball 1 and 2 (Good)
Purchase for Kindle or visit the website to purchase for PC
  
Platforms: PC, Kindle
Publisher: Breakthrough Gaming, 2005, 2006

These platformer games are simple but fun. They have an evangelistic message too, as ZJ and his friend Axel the Robot share the Good News with others.

Play the demo!



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Zoey's Pinball Game (Good)
Purchase
  
Platforms: PC
Publisher: Breakthrough Gaming, 2006

God teaches Zoey a lesson about being a sore loser when He puts her inside of her pinball game. It's a short but fun game and definitely has a Christian message for kids.


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