The 10 Best PlayStation 4 Kids' Games of 2019

Shop for the best PS4 kids' LEGO, old-school, music, creative games and more

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.

Our Top Picks

Best Game For Families: Rayman Legends at Amazon

"It’s a Pixar movie on a PS4."

Best LEGO Game: LEGO Worlds at Amazon

"Gives your child the opportunity to be a LEGO God by exploring a galaxy of worlds made of LEGOs."

Best Comeback Game: Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy at Amazon

"Offers a ton of gameplay with over 100 levels and two playable characters."

Best Game For Creative Kids: Minecraft at Amazon

"One of the greatest survival/crafting games ever made."

Best Arcade-Style: Lego Marvel Heroes 2 at Amazon

"This is a great way to get your superhero fix."

Best Action Game: Ratchet & Clank at Amazon

"The cartoony art style and silly tone are perfect for kids."

Best Music Game: Just Dance 2018 at Amazon

"Includes a variety of modern day and older songs, including 'Despacito' by Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee, 'Shape Of You' by Ed Sheeran."

Best Import: Rocket League at Amazon

"A physics-based sports game that’s best described as 'soccer with cars.'"

Best Remake: Spyro Reignited Trilogy at Amazon

"All three of Spyro’s original PlayStation adventures have been remade in beautiful HD for this collection."

Best 2D Platformer: Sonic Mania at Amazon

"A love letter to the glory days of Sonic."

Our Top Picks

Best Game For Families: Rayman Legends

Rayman Legends
Courtesy of Amazon.com
4.6

The best PS4 game for kids is one that excites 65-year-olds as much as it does 5-year-olds. Welcome to Ubisoft’s stunningly vibrant, funny and creative world of Rayman. The fifth main title in the Rayman series echoes old-fashioned platformers as far back as Super Mario Bros., but it has its own non-stop energy at the same time.

The “plot” isn’t as important (it rarely is in platformers) as the fact that you can collect different characters and items throughout the game, making it incredibly replayable just to unlock new elements of the experience. And Rayman is consistently surprising when it comes to its vibrant colors and unique level design.

You simply have to play it just for the musical levels, ones in which your movements are timed to covers of hit songs like “Black Betty” and “Eye of the Tiger.” What really makes Rayman Legends such a perfect game for the family is that it has entertainment value for kids of all ages. It’s the Pixar of the PS4.

Best LEGO Game: LEGO Worlds

3.8

Does your kid love LEGOs, but you hate the mess (or even worse, stepping on a block?) LEGO Worlds gives your child the opportunity to be a LEGO God by exploring a galaxy of worlds made of LEGOs. The open world environment game allows players to manipulate and alter the planets they visit by dynamically populating and building with LEGO blocks and models.

Similar to MineCraft, LEGO Worlds allows you to create anything you want, one brick at a time. The creatures and characters in these user-made worlds have a mind of their own and interact with one another and the player. Players can explore the worlds they make by riding in helicopters, on dragons and gorillas and driving motorbikes.

See more reviews of our favorite PlayStation 4 LEGO games available for purchase. 

Best Comeback Game: Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy

Parents who were original PlayStation 1 gamers can rejoice, as Crash Bandicoot has returned. The 90s PlayStation mascot returns with PS4 updated graphics and animations. Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy is three games in one, featuring modernized versions of the original Crash Bandicoot, Crash Bandicoot 2: Cortex Strikes Back and Crash Bandicoot Warped games.

Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy offers a ton of gameplay with over 100 levels and two playable characters. The difficult action adventure games includes time trial modes and leadership boards, so you can see where you stand with the competition. Parents who want to show their kids the games of yesteryear without the signs of aging should go for Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy.

Best Game For Creative Kids: Minecraft

4.9

Minecraft has been a massive phenomenon for the last decade now, and it shows no signs of slowing down. One of the greatest survival/crafting games ever made, Minecraft gives players the power to build almost anything they can imagine. There are endless possibilities with Minecraft’s enormous assortment of crafting materials. If you think of it, you can most likely build it, which makes it perfect for kids looking to stretch their creative muscles. 

Apart from the creation aspect, Minecraft also touts an incredibly deep survival mode. Dropped into the middle of nowhere with nothing but your wits, you’ll battle to stay alive in a dangerous world by building bases, mining precious metals to upgrade your weapons, and hunting for food to manage your hunger. Minecraft’s randomly generated worlds are always fun to explore thanks to the wide variety of enemies and elements you encounter along the way. Minecraft also has a robust multiplayer mode, so players can fight, build, and explore together on PS4.

Best Arcade-Style: Lego Marvel Heroes 2

To be fair, most of the console-compatible LEGO games out there are just as enjoyable for adults as they are kids. With tactile gameplay, a satisfying “break everything to get coins” technique and the nostalgia-inducing franchises they have access to, LEGO has released some of the most successful arcade-style games around, and Marvel Heroes 2 is no exception.

This time-traveling take on the Marvel Universe lets you play as the Guardians of the Galaxy, Spider-Man, Black Panther, Thor, Hulk, Captain Marvel, Dr. Strange, Green Goblin and what they promise are dozens more characters. You’ll fight through the adventurous, time-jumping world of Chronopolis where you can play both as heroes and villains, and you’ll visit different places including ancient Egypt, the Old West and NYC circa 2099. You can play with (or against) other people, or as a single-player adventure. If you’re a kid who simply can’t wait for the next MCU movie to come out, this is a great way to get your superhero fix.

Best Action Game: Ratchet & Clank

4.3

Like Spyro, Ratchet and Clank are pillars of PlayStation’s library, with a handful of memorable adventures on both PlayStation 2 and PlayStation 3. After a brief hiatus, the duo returned on PS4 with a reimagining of the original game in the series, appropriately titled Ratchet & Clank. The 2002 original isn’t very playable by modern standards, so the 2016 remake was a welcome installment for fans of the franchise. It updated the story, weapons, and gameplay to better suit a modern audience.

In Ratchet & Clank, you make your way through futuristic cities, leaping and blasting your way past colorful, charismatic enemies. Kid-friendly violence is a bit of a rare find on the PlayStation store, so Ratchet & Clank is a gem for parents looking for something they don’t have to worry about their kids playing. Players use guns, bombs, and blasters to take out enemies, but the cartoony art style and silly tone are perfect for kids.

Best Music Game: Just Dance 2018

Just Dance 2018 is considered to be one of the best music dance games for the PlayStation 4. It also happens to be one of the best PS4 games for kids, including a variety of modern-day and older songs, including "Despacito" by Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee, "Shape Of You" by Ed Sheeran. Users don’t need to rely on a PlayStation Camera to capture their movements, but instead, can use the free Dance Controller app on their smartphones.

Both parents and kids can enjoy this music game together in both cooperative and dance-off modes. The game includes a 48-hour trial of its on-demand dance streaming service as well, allowing users to access a library of over 300 songs.

If you need to entertain a group, check out our picks for the best PS4 party games.

Best Import: Rocket League

­­One of the most popular games on PCs today is Rocket League – a physics-based sports game that’s best described as “soccer with cars." Kids can enjoy all the aspects of the PC version with the PlayStation 4 port of Rocket League with its Collector’s Edition series.

The fast-paced game includes all the latest DLC content you’d find in its PC version, along with four new vehicles. Kids with a love of creativity and action will take joy in the game’s extensive battle-car customizations, eight-player online versus mode and up to four players offline split-screen modes. The game also comes with a Season Mode for a full single-player experience.

For PC options, read the reviews in our roundup of the best children's PC games.

Best Remake: Spyro Reignited Trilogy

4

Spyro the Dragon was one of the most iconic video game mascots on the original PlayStation, and his original outings are lovingly recaptured in the Spyro Reignited Trilogy on PS4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch. Following in the footsteps of Crash Bandicoot’s HD trilogy, all three of Spyro’s PlayStation adventures—Spyro the Dragon, Ripto’s Rage, and Year of the Dragon—have been remade in beautiful HD for this collection.

The first Spyro game helped pioneer the collectathon 3D platformer genre, and the gameplay largely holds up today. Using Spyro’s array of skills, including dashing, fire-breathing, and gliding, you’re tasked with hunting down lost dragons all across the world. Blasting enemies with fire always feels good, and smart world design keeps each level fresh. Spyro 2 and 3 open things up a bit, introducing more playable characters and collectibles across the more expansive levels. There’s plenty to do in each Spyro game, and apart from a few tough bosses, the difficulty won’t keep younger gamers from having a great time.

Best 2D Platformer: Sonic Mania

3.8

Sonic’s four main games on the Sega Genesis are seen by many as the pinnacle of the Sonic the Hedgehog franchise. Tight platforming, creative level design, and a true sense of speed defined these classic games, and Sega was able to recapture that charm in 2017’s Sonic Mania, a love letter to the glory days of Sonic. With multiple playable characters (each with unique playstyles) and the inclusion of a versus mode, the challenge continues even after you beat the game.

Sonic Mania takes players through sidescrolling Sonic zones, old and new, in a familiar quest to gather the Chaos Emeralds and stop Dr. Robotnik. Along the way, you’ll race through classic Sonic locales like Green Hill and Chemical Plant Zone, as well as new zones like the skyscraper-filled Studiopolis. Younger fans will get to experience the most iconic levels in franchise history with a fresh coat of HD pixelated paint. The new levels fit in so perfectly that they feel like lost levels straight from the ‘90s. Sonic Mania is the best place for kids to jump into the series because of how it honors Sonic’s past while also pushing the series forward.

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Our Process

Our writers spent 40 hours researching and testing the most popular Playstation 4 kids’ games on the market. All of this research adds up to recommendations you can trust.

What to Look for in a Playstation 4 Kids’ Game

Genre - From action games to arcade games, there’s a wide range of genres to choose from. This can be a matter of personal preference, but if your child is really into music, for instance, you can be sure he or she will enjoy a music dance game, whereas if he or she loves LEGO, you can’t go wrong with one of those worlds.

Activity - If you’re a parent who is constantly encouraging your kid to put down the controller and go play outside, an active video game might be a good compromise. Whether it’s through a virtual sport or a dancing game, it’s a great way to sneak some exercise into your child’s day.

Family friendly - Playing video games doesn’t have to be an anti-social activity. If you buy a multiplayer game with a storyline that entertains everyone, you can actually bond during screen time. Nostalgia games are also great for this, as they are new and exciting to kids, but fun and familiar to adults.

Test Results: Rayman Legends (Best Game For Families)

4.6
What We Like
  • Classic platforming gameplay

  • Straightforward controls

  • Entertaining challenges

What We Don’t Like
  • Can be a little slow

  • One-note story

This is a game that the whole family can have fun with. Rescue Teensies from the invading nightmares and set them free. Along the way, collect Lums (energy beings) to increase your score. “Even though this game is for children,” one tester remarked, “adults like me can really enjoy it.” The game reminded her of simple platform games from her childhood that featured Mario or Crash. “Similar to those games, this game is fairly easy to navigate,” she said. “It’s uniquely challenging for a curious mind, but not too difficult to master — the difficulty level is just right.”

From the level design to the art style, this game impressed everyone who played it. One person even said the graphics are “a notch above” games she’s played in the past. She added, “The graphics in the variety of settings (water, air, walls, etc.) are tied together seamlessly and transitions between levels — and even rooms in the same level — are not harsh or startling. From a visual and graphics perspective, developers do a nice job allowing the characters to easily transition between walking, running, swimming, jumping, and climbing.”

Test Results: LEGO Worlds (Best LEGO Game)

3.8
What We Like
  • Open world gameplay

  • Beautiful graphics

What We Don’t Like
  • Little diversity in gameplay

  • Finicky controls

If you know a kid that loves to be creative and build new worlds (any Minecraft fans out there?), then LEGO Worlds is the perfect game. “It's just like playing with real Legos, which is really cool,” one of our reviewers said. The graphics are “amazingly sharp,” according to one of our testers.

If you’re looking for something a little more involved, then consider other options. As fun as the open world gameplay can be, one Lifewire tester longed for a continuous storyline to give some of the action a little more meaning. She felt like the gameplay became a little repetitive after awhile. Each world follows the same formula: explore, find items, and complete short missions. She also mentioned that you needed to be pretty exact when placing bricks, so steer clear if you haven’t mastered your PS4 joystick yet.