Are you looking for the best video games for seniors?
My grandmother enjoys gaming, so I’ve researched suitable games for her activity level and skills.
And I’m here to share these senior-friendly games with you and help you find the best one for your elder family members.
Just keep reading.
Table of Contents
- Playing games has several health benefits for seniors and can improve your coordination, emotional health, and memory skills.
- Puzzles, brain teasers, and word searches are excellent games for dementia and can improve memory.
- Always keep in mind the users’ interest and the game’s difficulty when picking the best video games for seniors.
13 Top Best Video Games for Seniors [With Reviews]
Many people think gaming is a suitable hobby for the younger generation. But according to statistics, 15% of the games are over 55! (1)
Despite popular beliefs that video games are bad because they decrease physical activity, the benefits of gaming are more than you can imagine.
Video games can improve memory, balance, coordination, and reflexes. They can slow down the decline of cognitive functions, reduce depression, and increase your mental capacity.
Jason Allaire, an author of a study, says, “The research published here suggests that there is a link between gaming and better well-being and emotional functioning.” (2)
But what is the best video game for seniors? With the rise of tablets, many seniors have taken a liking to iPad games. The best iPad games for seniors offer intuitive controls and engaging storylines. Let’s delve into my top suggestions.
#1 Candy Crush Saga
Candy Crush is one of the most popular games for mobile phones, and it’s an excellent choice for teenagers, adults, and seniors alike.
The game’s goal is to match three or more pieces in a row to crush “candy.” You’ve got limited moves to clear the board or score a certain amount of points with the help of power-ups.
The first levels are easy, and you quickly get addicted to beating the levels. It’s a great way to keep your mind sharp, devising strategies to reach the goal.
It’s perfect for seniors because you can play whenever you want, the game doesn’t take up much space, and you have various puzzles. It also doesn’t have any complicated gaming so
However, some challenging levels are far too difficult to pass without spending money. And it’s easy to get frustrated when you can’t beat a level.
#2 Word of Warcraft
World of Warcraft is the best choice for senior gamers who enjoy complicated and in-depth games or want to sharpen their cognitive skills.
It’s an MMORPG (meaning a multiplayer, role-playing game), so it provides plenty of social interactions and allows seniors to keep in touch with friends or make new ones worldwide.
You’ve got plenty of quests to pass, evil monsters to kill, and treasures to find. And you get to enjoy the captivating story, stunning graphics, and fantastic music.
The game requires quick reaction time, attention to detail, and creativity, benefiting your cognitive health and improving your critical thinking skills.
I lie the best that you can choose the level of difficulty, and there are plenty of quests and challenges to complete.
But you need a decent gaming laptop to run such games, and it may take an elderly person more time to learn the game controls. Check this beginner’s guide.
#3 Animal Crossing
If elderly people like social simulation games, they’ll fall in love with Animal Crossing. It’s a series of games focusing on exploring, collecting items, and socializing with anthropomorphic animals.
This Nintendo game has open-end gameplay, so you don’t have to reach a specific goal to win. Instead, you can sit back, relax, and enjoy the story mode without worrying about the time limit.
Interstingly, Animal Crossing: New Horizons features a real-life passage of time, making it even more enticing because you must go back to the game regularly to check what’s happening.
Moreover, Animal Crossing allows you to interact socially with other players on your terms, and you enjoy all kinds of cute animals in this fun game.
But this real-time game can be a bit overwhelming for new players. Still, if you like Animal Crossing, check out these best Nintendo Switch games for seniors.
Minecraft is another excellent classic game for elderly or retired people. It’s a sandbox game, allowing you to create whatever you want in a 3D environment.
As such, Minecraft benefits seniors because it doesn’t require special skills, is easy to play, and stimulates mental activity.
Players can choose between five game modes and four difficulty levels, so it’s one of the best video games for seniors with a lack of experience in gaming.
Moreover, many children enjoy playing Minecraft, so it’s an excellent way to bond with your grandchildren. Check this beginner’s guide for more information.
#5 Microsoft Solitaire Collection
Solitaire isn’t one of the most popular video games, but it’s an excellent option for seniors because it provides mental exercise and stimulation.
The Microsoft collection includes five classic card games – Spider, FreeCell, TriPeaks, Klondike, and Pyramids. You’ve got daily challenges to complete and events with varying difficulties.
The best thing is that the game is free – all you have to do is download it, and you’re ready to play. But I’ve got to warn you it features ads!
If you or a loved one is visually impaired, finding enjoyable and accessible games can be a challenge. That’s why we’ve put together a list of fun and engaging games specifically designed for visually impaired seniors. Check out our article on “Games for Visually Impaired Seniors” for ideas on how to stay entertained and active, even with limited vision. From card games to board games and beyond, we’ve got you covered.
#6 Mystery File Cases
Mystery File Cases is a series of hidden object games, perfect for novice or experienced gamers. You solve a mystery by exploring scents, finding clues, and cracking complex puzzles.
The games offer you several difficulty levels with plenty of hints and strategy guides so you won’t get overwhelmed. And it’s excellent for brain training and keeping your vision sharp.
Moreover, each story has beautiful art, a soothing soundtrack, and an engaging story that will keep you on your toes.
However, it doesn’t have a multiplayer mode, so you can’t play with friends. But there are plenty of similar online games, such as Hidden City,
Does your elderly friend enjoy logic games? Then they will love Wordscrapes with its unique design, beautiful backgrounds, and relaxing music.
It’s a mobile phone game that combines word searching, anagrams, and crosswords. You’ve got jumbled letters and must make words from them, advancing through levels.
Such mental exercises are great for seniors because they keep their minds sharp, stimulate creativity, and help decrease stress.
As specialists from Dementia Australia say, “Activity that exercises the brain may build brain reserve that helps to compensate for the damage caused by Alzheimer’s or other diseases.” (3)
#8 Trivia Crack
Trivial Crack tests your knowledge so it doesn’t have challenging levels to conquer. Instead, it allows you to compete against friends and people worldwide.
It’s an excellent choice for seniors because it’s not physically demanding, stimulates the brain, and helps you keep in touch with friends and family.
Moreover, it’s an excellent choice if you want to learn new things! It’s free to download and play and available for Android and iOS devices.
#9 Crossword Puzzles
Puzzles, crosswords, and other brain teasers can slow down memory loss and help people with dementia. And they’re beneficial for cognitive training.
While you can find many excellent crossword puzzle books, you can also do such puzzles online. I recommend Crossword Puzzle because it’s easy, engaging, and free.
Moreover, once you download it, you can play anywhere because you don’t need an internet connection for its hundreds of puzzles.
And seniors don’t have to worry about their experience level. The game is great for novices because players have plenty of hints to use.
#10 Wii Sports Club
Are you looking for the best video games for seniors that love sports? Then this interactive sports game won’t disappoint you.
It features five sports – golf, tennis, baseball, baseball, and bowling. Players partake in light workouts, have fun, and improve hand-eye coordination.
And Wii Sports Club is a multiplayer game, so you play online with friends. The earlier versions didn’t have this advantage, so be careful which one you buy.
Don’t miss out on the fun! Check out my article on ‘outside games for seniors‘ for some exciting ideas to enjoy the great outdoors with your loved ones. Let’s make some memories!
#11 PGA Tour
PGA Tour is another excellent option for golf fans. And it makes the list of the best video games for seniors because you can play against pro golfers or friends on real-life golf courses.
And this interactive game has plenty of benefits. It allows players to improve their creativity by customizing their avatar’s clothes and creating golf courses.
Moreover, PGA Tour is an excellent light exercise for people who can’t be too active. And it can improve your coordination!
#12 Jigsaw Puzzle Lovers
Online jigsaw puzzles are the best video games for puzzle lovers. You get to piece together beautiful pictures without worrying about losing a piece or where to store
And such puzzles are excellent for brain training and can improve your coordination, concentration, and critical thinking.
#13 Old Man’s Journey
My last recommendation for the best video games for seniors is Old Man’s Journey. It suits seniors who enjoy relaxing games without worrying about battles or competitors.
The game is about following an old man’s path and experiencing hope, loss, and life in a stunning landscape.
Watch this video to see how to play the game.
What to Consider Before Choosing The Best Video Game for Seniors?
When choosing the best video games for seniors, you should keep a few things in mind to ensure you pick the right one for your loved one.
#1 User’s Hobby
Think about what your senior friend likes to do. Some people enjoy puzzle and logic games, while others prefer sports, music, or art.
Choose a game that’s close to the senior’s hobbies and interests. Otherwise, your family member/friend might not enjoy it, even if it’s highly recommended for elderly people.
Some electronic games are available for mobile phones, while others require a laptop to run with a specific requirement.
Think about what device your senior friend has and check the game’s recommended parameters to ensure it can run smoothly on the device.
#3 Game’s Difficulty
Some games sound easy when you read the description, but the gaming consoles or game modes are more complicated than expected.
You have two ways to avoid buying the wrong game: play the free version or watch YouTube videos to see if it matches your experience level.
1. Why Should Seniors Play Video Games?
Board and online games have several benefits for seniors. They can improve cognitive skills, increase social interaction, and provide light exercise.
2. What are the best games to play for dementia?
The best games for dementia are jigsaw puzzles, bingo, card games, and other logic games that stimulate memory and thinking.
3. How Much Time Should Seniors Spend Playing Video Games?
To reap the benefits of gaming, seniors should spend no more than an hour or two playing.
The best video games for seniors provide not only hours of fun but help improve cognitive functions, coordination, and memory skills.
However, seniors shouldn’t spend a lot of time gaming. Too much time sitting in front of phones/computers is bad for the eyes, and lack of physical activity can worsen chronic diseases.
What do you think about these 13 best video games for seniors? Which one is your favorite? Share your thoughts with us in the comments!
1. Clement J. U.S. average age of video gamers 2019 [Internet]. Statista. 2021. Available from: https://www.statista.com/statistics/189582/age-of-us-video-game-players/
2. Sandy B. G. says. Seniors Who Play Video Games Report Better Sense of Emotional Well-Being [Internet]. NC State News. Available from: https://news.ncsu.edu/2013/03/wms-allaire-social-2013/
3. Mental exercise and dementia [Internet]. Available from: https://www.dementia.org.au/sites/default/files/helpsheets/Helpsheet-DementiaQandA06-MentalExercise_english.pdf