Hi everyone and thanks for visiting our blog. My wife and I created this blog to chronicle our experience while raising a son with Asperger's syndrome. Since our son was diagnosed with an ASD at age 5, we've had a lot of questions. Lucky for us we have a great support network in place. And our blog gives us an opportunity to share what we've learned with our readers. We hope you find our blog informative and interesting. Thanks again for visiting.

"It seems that for success in science and art, a dash of autism is essential." Dr Hans Asperger 1906-1980

Tuesday, 27 December 2011


I hope everyone had a happy holiday.  In this blog I'm going to discuss Jacob's top 10 favourite DS games.  Jacob has been playing his new DS game since Christmas morning.  He loves the DS and so do we.  It's console is roughly $100 and it's geared directly to children.  It's durable, (Jacob's been pretty rough with his) and the battery lasts a long time.  There are other hand held consoles out there like the PSP, but the PSP uses little discs and I was concerned about Jacob's ability to handle the games safely and properly.  The PSP seems to be more geared towards teens rather than kids.  I was searching for a list of top DS games for kids with autism, but I couldn't find one anywhere.  Then I thought I'd just create my own.  So here's our list of Jacob's top 10 DS games.

10.  WHERE'S WALDO?  -  This is the original search and find.  Jacob loves this game, the levels are vast and every time you find a desired object, the game says "Amazing!" with a strange accent.  He's played this game for hours and he keeps playing it.  It also sharpens Jacobs mind as he searches for Waldo and his friends. 

9.  TOUCH MASTER  -  This title is full of smaller games all geared towards kids.  I've personally played this one myself.  If you use the DSI XL while playing and set a high score, you can take a picture of yourself.  Jacob always asks me "How did your picture get there dad?"  I'm not sure how many games there are, but there's enough to keep Jacob playing for days.

8.  DRAGON QUEST VI  -  This is a role playing game where you travel the world and fight monsters.  Jacob enjoys this game because there are hundreds of different monsters to battle.  The monsters will chase you and once engaged each monster will do a special dance before attacking.  Jacob frequently pretends to be the monsters as he does their attack moves on me.

7.  MX VS ATV  -  This is a racing game and at first I thought it would be too hard for Jacob to play, but he picked it up and began racing right away.  You can choose different types of vehicles to race with and you get big air when doing the jumps.  Jacob loves racing the dirt bike and it sounds pretty real.

6.  MARIO KART  -  I think everyone knows Mario and Luigi.  This is another racing game, but it's more cartoon based.  You can shoot shells at fellow racers or make them crash by dropping a banana peel.  Jacob hates when a racer makes him crash and he frequently gets mad, but he cheers when he wins a race.  You can choose between many classic Nintendo characters like Mario, Princess Toadstool and Bowser.  Jacob's favourite character is Donkey Kong.

5.  STAR WARS COLLECTION  -  This is the complete saga with 3 games in it.  My son loves to pretend he's a Jedi knight and fight storm troopers.  The best part about the game is the sounds it makes.  The game sounds just like the light sabres from the movies.  I can't make the sound, but I can hear it clearly as I think of it.  This game is a button masher so to speak.  You can chain together combos and attacks and unleash them on Darth Vader himself.

4.  PEGGLE  -  This is a simple game that anyone can play.  The object is to hit all the red pegs ion the stage before you run out of shots.  There are dozens of stages and they're not all easy.  I've tried to play this game and some stages I couldn't complete.  You can choose between many characters, each with their own special power up ability.  The best part of the game, is when you're about to hit the last red peg,  the game zooms in and goes into slow-mo.  And if you hit the peg, you'll hear Beethoven music as you win.

3.  DRAGON QUEST IX  -  This game is a little different than part VI, but this game has a much larger world and many more monsters.  Once Jacob got this game, he was in shock with how much bigger and more expansive this version was.  This one also has more characters you can play as.  I'm not sure about the differences in game play, but they must be different because Jacob still often plays both.

2.  PLANTS VS ZOMBIES  -  This game was game of the year in 2010 and believe me it's loads of fun.  You have to develop and harvest a garden of plants to help you fight off the hordes of zombies that are trying to attack your house.  There are about 40 different plants and just as many zombies.  In the game, you play during the day, night, in the water and on the roof of your house.  This game is simple and easy for anyone to play.  My son loves to use the menu to read about all the types of zombies.

1.  DRAGON QUEST MONSTERS JOKER 1 & 2  -  I combined these games together because I don't know how they're different.  I have never even played either one of these games, but Jacob loves them both.  It's much like Dragon Quest, but this time your in a dungeon and I think the game play is a little different.  Unfortunately for me, Jacob still performs the monsters special moves on me, so I know there's many more monsters in these games than in the other Dragon Quest titles.

So there you have it, our top 10 DS games for kids with autism.  I think that all games are rated E for everyone, with the exception of Plants vs Zombies, which was rated T for teen.  I don't think it deserved this rating as it's only cartoon violence, but I'm not an expert on game ratings.  Also, all of these games were $40 or less so they won't break the bank.  I hope this list helps if you're searching for a new game for the DS.  I'm confident that any child will love any of these games.

Also check out my other lists for more great suggestions:




  1. Thanks for posting this. I have a 7 year old with mild autism and he really wants a DS, but I was struggling to decide which games would be appropriate for him.

    1. Hi Liz and thanks for commenting. These games are some of my son's favourites, but you may have to try and see what type of games your son likes best. My son loves role playing games like Dragon Quest and they have the most play time. Other kids seem to prefer puzzle games like Tetris and games like that.

      You might want to go for a game that has many games in it like #9 on my list. And the DS is the best system for kids like ours. I've seen one bounce down 15 stairs and keep playing like nothing happened.

  2. What do you guys think of Yoshi's Island DS?

    It's a great game with lots of interesting and colorful characters and funny sound effects. There's not a lot of dialogue or menu complexity and the gameplay itself is very beginner friendly and full of abstract puzzles with a wide range of levels. It has also consistently earned very high ratings.

    I'm considering getting it as a birthday present for my autistic cousin - she is 7 years old. I played this game when I was her age and really enjoyed it. My brothers and I would all sit and play it for a long time when we were kids (it originally came out in 1996 for SNES). I specifically remember that it was easy to progress pretty far into the game even if you weren't very good - as a kid it was one of the first video games I ever completed. That seems appropriate because my cousin sometimes gets frustrated and throws a temper tantrum if she is having trouble figuring out what to do in a game or isn't doing well in it.

    To me it seemed like a good choice.

    1. Oh wow I didn't even think of Angry Birds.

    2. I find that you can be comfortable with any Mario based game because most Mario adventure games are just as you described. The only issue with Games like Mario and Yoshi is that they're often slightly more expensive and rarely come down in price.

      But if you don't mind spending $40, then I'd definitely try it out and be sure to let me know if your cousin likes it. Thanks for commenting.