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15 games for kids on Apple Arcade

Kid-friendly doesn’t have to mean boring.

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Steven Universe: Unleash the Light is one of my favorite games for kids on Apple Arcade.

Apple/Screenshot by Shelby Brown/CNET

Apple Arcade's catalog of games is family friendly, offering over 220 games across multiple genres. If you're looking for something fun for younger kids, Apple Arcade has dedicated sections for families and beginning gamers, as well as age ratings on every title. New Apple Arcade games are added almost every week.

Here are a few of my favorites.

Way of the Turtle 

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Apple

Way of the Turtle is a cute, colorful, single-player platform game. Navigate a beach obstacle course and gather coins while avoiding traps. As you continue, you'll earn shells that give you more abilities. The only trouble is Mr. Turtle never stops moving, which can make him difficult to maneuver sometimes. 

Fledgling Heroes 

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Apple

Take to the skies as Biscuit the Brave, a young macaw, in this tropical platform game. Tapping the screen makes Biscuit fly. Too much tapping sends the macaw too high, not enough tapping drops it too low. You must maintain the right altitude to avoid enemies and obstacles while collecting coins. As you explore more islands, you'll learn tricks and meet different characters like Penny the Penguin, who wants to be a pirate. 

Dodo Peak 

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Apple

In this upbeat game, you play as a dodo bird who has to save its eggs when they roll out of the nest. Get them home safely in under 30 seconds while collecting coins, avoiding obstacles like monkeys and snakes and unlocking more dodos. 

Lego Brawls 

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Apple

The Lego brand has stood the test of time, making the jump from plastic blocks to the silver screen to video games. Lego Brawls is a mobile fighting game that's easy to start playing. The game offers countless ways to create your Lego character in a fast-paced 4v4 multiplayer game. Every stage of the game brings new challenges, goals and quirky power-ups, like a pie launcher, a cactus suit, a snake car or a hot dog stand. Jump into a party or a brawl, or keep training.

Frogger in Toytown 

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Apple

Embark on a quest inside a human's house to rescue lost "froglets" after they're blown away in a storm. You'll navigate a toy-filled terrain -- avoid toy cars, climb block buildings and collect jelly beans to save the froglets. When you rescue a froglet, it hops on Frogger's back (which is just as cute as it sounds). Carrying the froglets adds an extra challenge during the obstacle courses because they can fall off. If you liked the old-school Frogger, this game's worth a look. 

The Enchanted World 

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Apple

The Enchanted World is about a young fairy whose world is wrecked by dark forces. You'll help her on a journey to repair and heal what's been damaged. With guidance from a red songbird along the way, you'll get help from a web-spinning spider, quirky robots, a hungry frog and others. Through sliding block-style gameplay, you'll redirect rivers, mend tree roots, rearrange gears on a factory floor, and save your world from the darkness. 

Sonic Racing 

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Sonic Stadium

Sonic is a classic '90s game. There's a good chance you know who the speedy little hedgehog is, even if you've never played the games. Maneuver your car to grab as many rings as possible, avoid traps and win. The game is fun and the controls aren't hard to pick up. You'll race on teams with Sonic, Tails and Knuckles at the start, and you can change your team to other characters like Shadow, Amy and others as you level up.

Sneaky Sasquatch 

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Apple

In Sneaky Sasquatch, you'll play just that: A sneaky sasquatch. But you also get help from a clever raccoon. Sneak into the campsite and fill your backpack with snacks. Sometimes other animals, like the snoozing bear, are willing to pay for some picnic leftovers. You can use the money at the raccoon's shop. Just make sure you tip-toe so you don't get caught by the surly park ranger or scare any campers. 

Rayman Mini 

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Apple

Rayman Mini, based on the classic '90s game franchise, is set in a magical world in need of saving. You'll jump, bounce off flowers and slide down streams of water as you gather lums (little firefly-type bugs), coins and other special prizes. The revamped platformer doesn't use a timer and lets you try as many times as you need to progress. 

Alba: A Wildlife Adventure

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Apple

In Alba, the titular character travels to a Mediterranean island to spend the summer with her grandparents. But once she starts exploring, she realizes that there's a litter problem putting local animals at risk. With the help of her bird-nerd grandfather and Ines, Alba starts a grassroots campaign to clean up the island. As you play, the more volunteers you gather, the more luck your movement will have, so you must try to convince the islanders to join the cause. 

Spongebob: Patty Pursuit

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Apple

Spongebob: Patty Pursuit is a fun platformer that takes you through the Spongebob universe. Jump on trampolines, speed down ziplines, avoid jellyfish, and collect coins and spatulas along the way to foil the infamous mini-villain Plankton's plans to steal the Krabby Patty secret formula. It's up to SpongeBob and his friends -- Patrick, Sandy, Squidward, Gary the Snail and Mr. Krabs -- to stop him. 

Farm it!

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Apple

Farm It! is a casual simulation game where you must gather resources to create your dream farm. Play mini games, work the land, gather resources, plant seeds, decorate your dream farm home, collect crops and take care of your animals in this fun farm adventure.

Crayola Create and Play

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Apple

Crayola Create and Play is loaded with fun features like coloring pages, tending to in-game creatures and plants, learning and arcade-style games, puzzles, and more. It encourages creativity and curiosity with digital versions of Crayola art supplies (remember stamp markers?), while encouraging kids to think about letters, numbers, problem solving and more. There are no "wrong" answers, just creativity.

Loud House: Outta Control

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Apple

Loud House: Outta Control is based on the Nickelodeon show. Help Lincoln Loud and his 10 sisters -- Lori, Leni, Luna, Luan, Lynn, Lucy, Lana, Lola, Lisa and Lily -- reach timed, simultaneous goals. Don't crash into each other or cause sibling rivalry fights as you schedule activities in the busy house. The timer adds an extra level of mayhem as you direct Lincoln to his comic books or Lana to her mud pies. You'll get bonus points for beating the clock. Every floor of the Loud House has new challenges waiting and special items to collect.

Steven Universe: Unleash the Light

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Apple

Steven Universe: Unleash the Light is a colorful platformer RPG, with all your favorite characters from the popular animated Cartoon Network series -- the Gems, Steven, Lapis Lazuli or Bismuth. Assemble a team to fight against two Prism-wielding Gems. Unlock new abilities, equip new costumes and change formation into Gem fusions including Sunstone or Rainbow Quartz 2.0.

Read more: 7 great, cheap kid-friendly gifts that aren't video games