Even though we'd rather always see our kids outside interacting in and with the environment instead of sitting inside playing videos games, at least there are several video games available on the market today with an environmental and socially responsible focus. These video games with an environmental focus will show kids ways in which we have impacted our environment and what can happen if we choose to change our ways. Some games teach about different eco systems, problem solving, preservation of our natural resources and even encourage kids to slow down and reflect. Read on to learn about six video games with an environmental focus that you won't mind seeing your child play every once in while.
1. Star Wars: Episode I: The Gungan Frontier
If your child is into Star Wars like mine, he will love seeing ecological principles come alive in Star Wars: Episode I: The Gungan Frontier. As children try to create a balanced ecosystem on a barren moon, this video game shows how real world population dynamics, ecosystems, life cycles, regulations and behaviors have an overall impact on the environment. It uses different interactive tools to teach kids how small changes can have a huge impact on the environment over time. For ages 9 and up, available for PC or Mac.
2. Sim Animals
Sim Animals gives your little one creative control over all of the animals and plants that live in the forest. Your child will help animals find appropriate food, clean up polluted areas, and decide what areas are best for planting trees and other greenery. Sim Animals is a highly tactile game that seems alive – giving your child access to the forest throughout the seasons and at different times of the day. For example, if your child plays the game in autumn, they will see and plant pumpkins – at night, there will be a full moon with packs of wolves roaming the forest. For all ages, available for Nintendo Wii and DS.
3. PlanIt Green
National Geographic’s PlanIt Green video game gives players the opportunity to transform a city into a thriving eco-community. Your child has the ability to complete several eco-friendly projects that will improve the quality of life for the residents, animals and agriculture in the game. This game would be perfect for the family to play together, while learning at the same time. For all ages, available for PC and Mac.
4. Chibi-Robo: Park Patrol
In Chibi-Robo: Park Patrol, your child plays Chibi-Robo, a little robot trying to transform the local park from a contaminated wasteland into a green wonderland. This is a highly tactile game that encourages the player to water flowers, defeat polluters and bring the park back to blooming life. With fun graphics and a cute theme, kids will enjoy this video game. For all ages, available for Nintendo DS.
Flower is a Sony Playstation 3 game with nature as the only focus. The player of Flower plays as the wind, which guides and grows pedals by interacting with the surrounding environment. This game is relaxing and will take players on a personal experience, allowing them to reflect and connect with nature. There is no time limit or score keeping, making it perfect for children of all ages. This game gives children the opportunity to explore different landscapes at their own speed – finding balance while they are there. For all ages, available as a digital download for Sony Playstation 3.
6. Fate of the World
Fate of the World is a strategy game geared towards older children and gives the player complete control of the future of the Earth. The player is responsible for protecting our planet’s resources and climate. This game covers all 12 regions of our planet and shows more than 1,000 impacts on the environment giving you the technology to make world-changing events and watching them happen right before your eyes. For ages 12 and older, available for PC and Mac.