We’ll admit, today’s app market has a ridiculous amount of freemium content for kids of all ages, plus there are interminable copies and versions of the same game.
However, there are some really amazing kids iPad games 2016 to be found, if you look though the app store. Hundreds of thousands of titles have been added over the years – after all, the iPhone has been around since 2007! When it was launched, it was a revolution in mobile communication. However, when people suggested the iPhone could also be a gaming platform they weren’t taken seriously.
There was no D-pad, or buttons of any kind. Limited by the capabilities of mobile devices, coupled with a lack of demand, mobile phone games were low-quality compared to their console brethren.
However, things didn’t turn out the way everyone expected. Talented developers turned things around for the iPhone - what it lost in tactile controls, it gained in new touch and tilt capabilities. Games became more and more immersive as we interacted directly with content, bringing in new experiences without having to rely on traditional controls.
And then the iPad came along with its larger screen and bigger battery – it was the perfect evolution of the gaming revolution! For most kids, it is a logical choice to use the iPad for everything, including games.
But who has the patience to wade through all the titles in the app store to find that fantastic game? We decided to make your day little bit easier and put together a list for you. This includes the very best premium and free titles the iPad has to offer, with MMOs, racers, arcade games and even some popular classics.
Please note that some of these games may be more appropriate for older kids.
- 20. Farm Heroes Super Saga
- 19. Gummy Drop
- 18. Hay Day
- 17. Cookie Jam
- 16. Minecraft: Pocket Edition
- 15. Panda Pop
- 14. 8 Ball Pool
- 13. Candy Crush Jelly Saga
- 12. CSR Racing 2
- 11. Summoners War - Sky Arena
- 10. Dragonball Z: Dokkan Battle
- 9. Star Wars Galaxy of Heroes
- 8. Toy Blast
- 7. Candy Crush Soda Saga
- 6. Madden NFL Mobile
- 5. Clash Royale
- 4. Marvel Contest of Champions
- 3. Clash of Clans
- 2. Candy Crush Saga
- 1. Pokémon Go
The Cropsies are back and they're big enough to make our list!Our favorite cartoon villain Rancid Raccoon is upsetting harmony of rural life by going all out to win Country Shows and claim the prize money for himself.
So sneaky! The Farm Heroes have figured out he's cheating, and they need your kids help. Join them in their mission to win the Country Show and stop Rancid Racoon from ruining the fun for everyone. Your little ones can advance through this Farmtastic saga game by collecting Cropsies, helping Fidget the squirrel gather his nuts and grow some Super Cropsies.
There are over 100 amazing new levels, new game modes and new super-sized Cropsies!This game is easy and fun to play, yet challenging to fully master. You can sync the game between mobile and tablet devices, and there are leaderboards for you and your kids to compare your scores.
19. Gummy Drop
Stop crushing & start squishing! Match your way around a candy world in this colorful puzzle-matching game.Itstarts easy enough, but increases in difficulty as you get better. It’s fun to watch the cities grow, as you add details and progress through the game.
What is unique about this game is the sheer number of levels. You can play 10,000 levels and travel across dozens of cities in the game. You earn travel vouchers to unlock the city of your choice.
The ones that are currently available are: Sydney, Tokyo, San Francisco, New York City, Paris, London, Rome, Berlin, New Orleans, Athens, Amsterdam, Hawaii, Hong Kong, Singapore, and New Delhi.If you or your children are fans of Candy Crush type games, you’ll love Gummy Drops, with its vibrant graphics and unique gameplay.
18. Hay Day
This has got to be one of the best kid’s games for iPad. Welcome to Hay Day, one of the most popular farming titles on mobiledevices. This game hit the number one spot on the appstore in 122 countries. So many people can’t be wrong!
Here’s how the gameplay works: You need to understand the kind of land you have, tend to your crops and grow and customize your farm. You can set up your very own roadside shop to trade crops and fresh goods with your neighbors and friends.
What sets it apart from the other farming games, is that crops or animals don’t die, even if you’ve been away from the game for a while. It’s a nice, no-pressure game that engages you with clean graphics, beautiful artwork and a fun vibe.
It’s jam time! This game is an interesting twist on the popular match-3 puzzle format. It’s fun and challenging at the same time.
The premise is that you have a travelling bakery, and explore delicious patisseries all over the world. You need to put jam on your cookies before they crumble as you work your way through dozens of addictively sweet levels. Solverecipe challenges by connecting scrumptious combos.
With over 1000 levels to beat, this game promises hours of fun for your kids. The ability to sync your game progress across devices is a big plus. Jam, jam, jam as fast as you can!
16. Minecraft: Pocket Edition
You and your kids can play Minecraft on the go! This game needs no introduction; the gameplay elements also stay true to its roots. You get to explore randomly generated worlds and build incredible things from simple homes to grand castles. You have to mine deep into the world in survival mode, crafting weapons and armor to fend off the dangerous mobs.
Your kids can play in creative mode with unlimited resources. One of the coolest updates is Realms.Thisis subscription service that lets you create your own always-online Minecraft world.
They’ve also added pistons, jungle temples and texture packs, making this one of the most highly rated games on the iOS platform
15. Panda Pop
From the developers who brought you Cookie Jam, comes a colorful puzzle match style game with a unique backstory, designed to appeal to kids. Anasty baboon has kidnapped panda pups and trapped them in the jungle.
Your kids will need to strategically burst matching bubbles to help beat him & return the cubs to their worried mother!
With over a 1000 levels to play through, and great graphics and animations, this game will keep your kids engrossed for hours.
You can sync the game across multiple devices as well – useful when you want to get your phone back from your first-born!It may be a new twist on a classic theme but hey, everyone loves baby pandas!
14. 8 Ball Pool
Developed by Miniclip, this is an addictive billiards app for iOS featuring colorful graphics and a robust online community.
It has a polished design, with accurate and responsive game physics, and is pretty easy to play even if your kids aren't pool players in real life.
Using your finger, you can adjust the angle of your cue stick, then pull back the power meter to determine the strength of your strike.
Whether you're an amateur or pro in real life, 8 Ball Pool is a clean billiards app with a lot of opponents to test your skills against and plenty of replay value. It’s an easy way to give your kids an opportunity to explore the digital version of a much-loved game.
The hits just keep on coming from King, the developer of sweet and sticky puzzle-match games.
Candy Crush Jelly Saga is title in the insanely famous Candy Crush series. Ithas a lot of delightful new game modes, quirky features and brand new boss battles featuring the Jelly Queen! Playing as Jenny, your kids will show off their Jellylicious moves and take turns switching Candies against the jiggling, wiggling Jelly Queen. They can go at it alone or play with friends to see who can get the highest score.
As with most titles from this developer, the game can be synced between devices, and players have access to Facebook leaderboards to see where they stand.
12. CSR Racing 2
This beautiful game, with its incredible visuals has all but obliterated the line between mobile and console graphics. This is the second chapter in a very successful franchise. CSR2 manages to deliver hyper-real drag racing right into to the palm of your hand.
If your kids are into cars, this is a great app for them. They can team up with their friends to form a crew, tune their rides for maximum speed and participate in global tournaments. There are endless options to customize every aspect of their cars, both from a cosmetic or performance perspective. CSR2 uses outstanding 3D rendering techniques and features the most beautiful and authentic supercars in a mobile device ever! Racing games do not get any more real than this. Did we say we love the graphics?
Free-to-play monster-collecting endeavors are a common sight in any app store, so how do you figure out which is the right one for you? In the case of Summoners War: Sky Arena, there are clear indicators that you've chosen a worthy title. The production values are glossy, the core mechanics are tight and there is addictive blend of monster summoning features, coupled with arena warfare. If you’ve downloaded this for your kids, it’s a good idea to go through the tutorial.
After that, the game places your players in the role of a Summoner, a being with the ability to call forth monsters to do their bidding. There's a limited amount of energy available for each day, arena battles, new equipment, and fusion in order to power up the minions they’ve managed to gather.
With so much to do, this game can keep your kids engrossed for hours. Perfect for those afternoons when you really need that nap!
If your kid is a Dragonball Z fan, they will thank you for downloading this iPad game for them. This game is an interesting mix of different genres - character / card collector, tapping game, and board game. There’s also a lot insane fight scenes that are typical of Dragon Ball Z. Players set up their teams, and then are welcomed by levels laid out in the form of a game board.
Dokkan Battle has a straightforward fighting system, but the scenes move blisteringly fast and are great fun to watch. Fans will also be pleased with the introduction of famous fighters like Yamcha, Krillin, and Tien on one hand, and well known villains like Frieza, Burter, and Vegeta on the other. For followers of the Dragonball Z franchise, this game is not to be missed!
The newest addition to the Star Wars franchise, this game lets your kids to choose from Light side or the Dark side of the Force. The primary objective of the game is to collect iconic Star Wars characters, like Luke Skywalker, General Grievous, and Darth Vader, then conquer their opponents in classic, RPG-style battles.
They will need to craft a strategy and build a strong team. They can send those teams on missions across the galaxy. This involves going to iconic planets like Tatooine, Hoth, and Coruscant. They can even create a band of friends (called Guilds)on Raids and jostle for position on the leaderboards. This game offers hours of gameplay for Star Wars fans.
8. Toy Blast
An interesting take of matching-puzzle style games, Toy Blast offers unique gameplay and a fun, colorful experience. Players have to match two or more blocks of the same color to clear the level and collect the stuck toys.
While this may seem simple, it’s not easy to save all the toys when you have limited moves! Like other games of the genre, Toy Blast can be super addictive, with a lot of different levels to, and exciting rewards and bonusesto be unlocked. The colorful, cartoon style graphics make this a great choice to keep younger children entertained.
7. Candy Crush Soda Saga
Another King game to make to our list, and this one also offers the ever popular switch-and-match puzzle format from the legendary Candy Crush Saga. Liberally peppered with new candies, even more mouth-watering combinations and challenging new game modes brimming with, you guessed it, purple soda! There are hundreds of levels to complete, offering hours of gameplay.
As Kimmie, your kids can undertake the saga themselves, or play with friends by using Facebook connect, and seeing who makes it to the top of the leaderboard. Most King games, like this one offer the ability to sync across devices, and unlock additional game features when connected to the internet.
Download this for your little one today. It’s not just one of the best free iPad games for kids, it's also Sodalicious!
Following its console brethren, EA Sports released a version for iOS. It seems like Madden NFL Mobile is the culmination of several years’ worth of fan feedback and tuning. Players can now choose to progress through the regular season of their team, or take on randomly-selected rivals. They can even challenge friends via social media.
In the case of games against other online players, the action takes place asynchronously, which means the player plays offensive possessions, and defines a defensive strategy to be used against the competition. Special Live Event challenges that refresh throughout the day are the stand out feature that make up this year’s upgrades to the franchise.
Graphics are once again top notch for a mobile game. Player models are crisp, animations are smooth, and the sound effects realistic as ever. Essentially, it is as close to the complete NFL experience as you can get on your iPad. It's absolutely worth a look if your kid is an NFL fan.
5. Clash Royale
This successor to the mega-hit Clash of Clans from Supercell promises to keep you just as entertained.At its core, Clash Royale continues to be a real-time strategy ‘Tower Defense’ style game in which the objective is to try to survive incoming waves of enemies using defensive towers.
However, it is also a competitive multiplayer game, which means players simultaneously send their own units to destroy their opponent's towers. The result of this gameplay is a surprisingly deep and complex mix, where there's an element of randomness to your card selection, and a lot of skill. The graphics are smooth and fast, and it's ideally suited to mobile devices.
The collection and upgrade systems are intertwined, and along with the quick matches and emphasis on player skills, make thisan addictive game. A quick five-minute session can expand and eat into hour with surprising ease. A great way to keep your kids occupied while you eat a peaceful meal
As in most fight games, the story in Marvel Contest of Champions serves as a backdrop against which superheroes and supervillains get into fisticuffs with each other.
There are standard elements from Marvels comic books, and the backstory also incorporate elements from such movies as Avengers: Age of Ultron. It offers a large catalog of characters, great graphics, and accessible controls. Players can choose from more than 40 characters, including such fan favorites as Thor, Deadpool, Daredevil, and all the Guardians of the Galaxy.
Using simple touchscreen controls to attack, dodge, and block, players get into one-on-one brawls, but there's no blood, gore, or broken bones, which makes this game suitable for kids of all ages.
Clash of Clans is a strategic action game that pits players against both AI characters and real-world online opponents. While there are frequent battles with explosions and general mayhem, there is no graphic violence. The core component on the fame is its multiplayer mode, where players can attack the villages of other players.
However, there is also strong solo campaignfor players who don't want to take part in player-versus-player combat, and prefer to progress in the game on their own. There are interesting characters, from barbarians to wizards, and the gameplay is smooth and optimized.
This is one of the more popular titles in the app store, and has consistently stayed near the top of sales charts.
Jiffi and Mr. Toffee are incredibly famous. As the playable characters in King games all-time hit Candy Crush Saga. While this game didn’t invent the puzzle-match genre, it sure took it to a whole new level. Candy Crush mania has spread all over the world.
The premise is deceptively simple. Just switch candy to match groups of three or more. But Candy Crush adds new and interesting twists to gameplay that keeps everyone hooked to it’s delicious sweetness!
There are four different game modes, hundreds of levels with new ones released every week, and unique Special Candies that can be used in creative ways to beat the levels. You can easily sync the game between your various devices, and there are leaderboards for you and your kids to compare your scores.
1. Pokémon Go
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve heard about Pokémon Go, the global phenomenon that is taking the world by storm. Without a doubt, this is one of the best iPad games for kids this year. It has a unique and fun AR implementation.
One of the biggest achievements of this game in our opinion us that is encourages kids (and adults!) to get up, get moving and take part in social interaction. The Gym battles can be addictive! A major social phenomenon and one of the most fun mobile games you can play, Pokémon Go is insanely popular.
If you don’t have this on your iPad (or other mobile device) already you need to download it now. You will earn the eternal gratitude of your kids!
We put this list together based on a lot of research, and included titles that we felt were popular. There are some games that were released a couple of years ago, but are still on the top grossing sales charts today (did someone say Candy Crush?), there are some that are just a few months old.
We tried to put together a selection of iPad games that can be played by kids of different ages, with or without parental supervision.
What do you think? Should we do a longer or shorter version? Is there a game you feel should have been on this list?
Leave us a comment below and tell us why!