View Full Version : Recommended linux games and education softwares for kids (4 to 8 years)

March 20th, 2008, 07:28 AM
The summer vacation is nearing for my kids. I'm looking for some recommended games and softwares for kids aged 4 to 8 years. I have never done this in linux before and I now want put my linux desktop into good use for the kids during the holidays.

I welcome...
> Any free games that run on dosbox *
> Any native linux games *
> Softwares that are both entertaining and fun to learn and use.
> Any other you may wish to add :)

* Any gender kids may like

Thanks for your suggestions.

March 20th, 2008, 07:33 AM
Well, I was actually looking around for math games the other day for my little sister. Two games I found were "Tuxmath" and "Mathwar" give them a try.

March 20th, 2008, 07:38 AM
> Potato Guy

KTuberling is a game intended for small children. Of course, it may be suitable for adults who have remained young at heart.
It is a potato editor. That means that you can drag and drop eyes, mouths, moustache, and other parts of face and goodies onto a potato-like guy.
Similarly, you have a penguin on which you can drop other stuff.
There is no winner for the game. The only purpose is to make the funniest faces you can.
There is a museum (like a "Madame Tusseau" gallery) where you can find many funny examples of decorated potatoes. Of course, you can send your own creations to the programmer, Eric Bischoff, who will include them in the museum if he gets some spare time.

> Anagramarama

Like anagrams? You'll love Anagramarama! The aim is to find as many words as possible in the time available. Get the longest word and you'll advance to the next level.
> Atlantik

This is a KDE client for playing Monopoly-like boardgames on the monopd network.
It can play any board supported by the network server, including the classic Monopoly game, as well as the Atlantik game in which the property includes several major cities in North America and Europe.
> bomberclone

BomberClone is a free Bomberman-like game for Linux and Windows. The rules of the game are simple: run though a level and bomb other players. It features powerups that give you more strength, make you walk faster through the level, or let you drop more bombs.
BomberClone can be played in multi-player mode via IPv4 or IPv6 networks or in single-player mode against the local AI.
> Bouncy the Hungry Rabbit

You play Bouncy the Hungry Rabbit. You're in a garden with yummy veggies and a farmer who's not keen on you eating them. You can hide (and move around) under the ground.
Bouncy was written so it could be enjoyed by the author's daughter, who was about to turn 3, and by older gamers. Hence it's not a violent game and "easy" is really, really easy, and "hard" is challenging.
> Bug Squish

"Bug Squish" is an action game not unlike light gun arcade games, but played with a mouse.
It's loosely based on a MacOS game whose name I can't recall.
Bugs are trying to suck blood out of your arm!
Squish them with with your fly swatter before you run out of blood.
> Circus Linux!

"Circus Linux!" is based on the Atari 2600 game "Circus Atari" by Atari, released in 1980. Gameplay is similar to "Breakout" and "Arkanoid" - you slide a device left and right to bounce objects into the air which destroy a wall.

> Craft

You are a Viking and have to lead a nation. Your main task is to command citizens; you can tell them to harvest resources, or to build one of the 9 building types.
The ultimate goal is to create enough knights, catapults etc. to wipe out the competing civilizations.
You can play against other humans by sending a window to their X display, or against a pretty clever AI.

Thats like 5% of available games suitable for kids of 4-8
Can be found in the installer, category games

March 20th, 2008, 07:42 AM
A range of games and other educational materials can be got by running this command:

sudo apt-get install kdeedu gcompris
Those are the educational suites for KDE and Gnome, respectively. There's a lot there.

March 20th, 2008, 07:46 AM
gbrainy. This one is just like the nintendo ds. It is just awsome!

this game has math, logic, memory. it is very good for enhancing just like what it says.

http://www.getdeb.net/app/gBrainy just to test you, try all and try answering some of the questions.

March 20th, 2008, 08:18 AM
Not games but educational & entertaining even for adults:


Celestia is a real-time visual simulation of space. Choose a point
within the Local Group of galaxies, and Celestia will show you an
approximation of how it would appear to your eyes were you actually
there. Some of what Celestia shows is necessarily hypothetical--the
farther away from Earth you get, the less real data there is and the
more guesswork is involved. Thus Celestia supplements observational
data with good guesses based on models of stellar and planetary


Stellarium renders 3D photo-realistic skies in real-time.
With stellarium, you really see what you can see with your eyes, binoculars or
a small telescope.

March 20th, 2008, 08:21 AM
Planet Penguin Racer

In the game, the player controls Tux (or one of three other characters) as he slides down a course of snow and ice collecting herring. Sliding on ice makes Tux go faster, while sliding on snow allows for more maneuverability and sliding on rocky patches will slow Tux down. There are also trees to block Tux's path and flags for sake of marking out the course.

March 20th, 2008, 08:48 AM
A range of games and other educational materials can be got by running this command:

sudo apt-get install kdeedu gcompris
Those are the educational suites for KDE and Gnome, respectively. There's a lot there.Thnaks for that link.

March 20th, 2008, 09:56 AM
Thanks for the replies. Anything for dosbox ?

March 21st, 2008, 02:00 PM
Thanks for the replies. Anything for dosbox ?


March 21st, 2008, 04:14 PM
Try http://www.dosgames.com/g_edu.php for educational DOS games.

March 21st, 2008, 07:07 PM

March 21st, 2008, 09:15 PM
For DOSBox:

Lots of old DOS games, most are just demos though, but still fun!
I recommend Jazz Jackrabbit (http://www.dosgamesarchive.com/download/game/111) as a game for all ages. I had a lot of fun with that game gorwing up :)

March 21st, 2008, 11:00 PM
I highly recommend the n64 emulator Mupen64 (it is native linux emulator)
the N64 is such a great system, tons and tons of games.
roms can be found through a google search of emuparadise

April 18th, 2008, 05:48 AM
Anything for dosbox?

As a matter of fact one of my favourite games of all time, "The Incredible Machine", works really well under Dosbox. The premise is simple: using materials and equipment that are provided, you construct a machine to carry out a specified task. Once you've constructed your machine, you run a simulation subject to a reasonable approximation of the laws of physics. The levels progress from really easy to fairly complex. An eight year old should have no trouble progressing through many of the early levels. There are a hundred levels in total, but if you run out, you can create your own. It's so fun that even an adult should enjoy it. I know I do!

I can't personally vouch for this link (http://www.thehouseofgames.net/index.php?t=10&id=216), as I haven't tried it myself, but it's most likely legitimate.

Any native linux games *

"Phun" (http://phun.cs.umu.se/wiki) is another interesting game similar to The Incredible Machine, but with fewer constraints. It is more rewarding creatively, but might lack the necessary structure for smaller children.

I second the recommendation of "Celestia" (http://www.shatters.net/celestia/), which is really amazing to see once you've upgraded the star data-base (http://www.celestiamotherlode.net/creators/p_hartmann/starsdb2.1C_1.4.0.zip) (use the "[" and "]" keys to set the star density threshold). However it is probably too difficult for a child of four to navigate, and I'm not necessarily sure how long it would hold their attention (certainly longer than it would take you to install it). An eight year old should have no problems using Celestia.

December 13th, 2008, 03:40 AM
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