Sports games are really fun to plan, either alone or as a team. Find your new favorite off our list of Great Sports Video Games (For family and solo play).
For more family fun, check out our Family Board Games list.
I’m so bad at sports in real life and I’m not much better at video games. The last sports game I was really good at was Soccer for NES. I think that was it. The one where you could push a whole bunch of buttons and do a flip move. Games are so much more involved now — and a lot more realistic too. I just don’t have the thumbs for them.
If you have a sports fanatic, plus a video game lover, on your shopping list, you’re in luck. We put together a list of Great Sports Video Games.
We separated this list of the best sports games into two sections: games for families and games for solo play. That makes it just a little easier for you to shop.
If you’re doing some shopping and you need some help, be sure to check out all of our Holiday Gift Guides.
10 Great Sports Video Games
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We tried to vary the sports and not put multiple of any sport in each section. Plus, we kept this list at 10 games, so it’s really (in our opinion) the best ones.
Also, we just gave a brief overview of the games, which will help you decide if it’s for your family or not. These aren’t in depth game reviews. There are more qualified game reviewers out there.
Sports Video Games For Families
By far, Wii Sports is our favorite sports game. We bring it out any time we have people over for an extended period of time. Our overnight guests always end up throwing a bowling ball or swinging a tennis racquet — in the game of course.
What we love about it is the gameplay is so simple. You move your body just as your would in the actual sport.
Plus, each sport has a series of games. So, you can start with the easiest gameplay and work your way up to the third level.
If you don’t have a Wii, but you have a Switch, Nintendo Switch Sports is very similar.
Mario Kart is such a classic racing game. When my brother first got it for the Switch, we spent so long racing against each other. Now, our friends’ kids will bring it over (with four controllers) and we can play it on the big screen in our garage. It’s such a hit.
There’s basically no game play involved in Mario Kart. You just drive in a circle, trying to avoid bananas and other hazards that other players have dropped, and try to get to the finish line first. That’s really it. It’s so easy to play so it’s a really good family game.
Mario Strikers: Battle League
The best features of Nintendo sports games are that they’re over the top. It’s not very precise game play. It’s exaggerated and over the top and as much fun to watch as it is to play.
Mario Strikers delivers on that.
It’s a soccer game for, well, people who aren’t real sports fans. If you really want your characters to follow the rules and play masterfully, the FIFA series is more your speed. But, if you want to just have fun with your family, this is your game.
Sports Video Games For Solo Play
Madden NFL 23 is pretty bittersweet because it’s the first Madden NFL that’s out since John Madden passed away. So he’s on the cover. The Madden series has been around for a long time. It started in 1988 and Electronic Arts (EA) Sports has released a new version ever since.
Madden is definitely one of the most classic football games out there.
We’re putting this down as a solo game, not a family game, because it’s really involved. In Franchise Mode, you’re either the Head Coach, Star Player, or Team Owner. So you make a lot of decisions. It’s not really a consensus, and you’re gonna wanna do it on your own.
Plus, one of the comments we read said unless you have the latest Xbox Series X, the option for coop franchise play is removed. So you can’t play with your friends anymore if you have an Xbox One, so that kind of stinks.
Gran Turismo is up to 7 in the series and, if the reviews are to be believed, it’s the best one. So, if this is your first time playing the racing game, you’re in for a treat.
It’s a single player game, which is why it’s in this section. But, there’s an online play component where you can hook up with players around the world.
The jury is out on that (apparently, some players think the game focuses too much on that rather than the solo play), but if you’re into racing others, you won’t have to worry about that.
Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater
My favorite game in this section of the list is Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater. I like sports, but I love extreme sports. Not to physically do myself (no, me and my skateboard never really got along), but to play and watch, it’s so cool.
And playing Tony Hawk is so great for people who aren’t really that great at games. You can just push the buttons quickly and haphazardly and your skater will do a trick and gain a lot of points. Will he stick the landing and give you all those points? No, probably not. But it’s still cool to watch him flip.
Also, funny aside. Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater is the first video game I played where my character just wiped out and didn’t get up. It was definitely a glitch in my brother’s Playstation, but I felt so bad. So, when I met Tony Hawk later that year, I begged him to tell Chad Muska that I was really, really sorry. He was like, “He’s really cool, I don’t think he minds,” but I was like, “Will you please tell him for me?”
I’m sure he did. Tony Hawk seems nice like that.
Alex, our model in the blog hero, is playing NBA 2K23, so of course, it had to make this list because it’s his favorite of the basketball games our there. But, is it as good as NBA Jam was back in the day? I’d argue not.
Okay, fine. It’s probably better. But, is Lebron James gonna be “on fire” in this game like Michael Jordan was in NBA Jam? I don’t know. Maybe.
Anyway, Alex loves this so whoever you’re shopping for will love it too.
Tiger Woods PGA Tour
The majority of these games are team sports, even though they’re solo play. So, I had to add Tiger Woods PGA Tour to at least get one individual sport game on the list.
This is the 13th iteration of this game. Geez. That’s a lot of golf games. Is lucky number 13 better than the previous titles? I’m not sure. The only one my brother owned was the original (and maybe the second), so it’s gotta be better than that one.
Super Mega Baseball
Super Mega baseball brings us into the future. There’s no hard copy of the game. You can only download the digital version. Which I guess is one of the new ways kids are getting games these days, but it’s so frustrating to me because I like hard copies of games.
Anyway, that’s EA Sports’ plan now that its acquired this series.
It’s a good game. Apparently one of the best baseball games out there. Just not for us old folk who like to blow on a game before sticking it in the console to make it work.
And, we end this list with, probably, the most popular sport game: FIFA Soccer. The hold that this game has on the market is incredible.
Last year was a World Cup year, so you’d think that helps boost this overall, but really, people just like playing soccer video games. You only really need to understand the basic rules to figure out how to play. Worry more about scoring goals and winning the game and less about being offsides and you’ll do just fine.
More Sport Lover Gift Ideas:
If your sports fan isn’t into video games, check out Fanatics, a site for discounted sports items. There are a bunch of items on that site, including Christmas ornaments, hats, t-shirts, and more, in college and pro teams. There’s something for everyone.
Which of these Sports Video Games is your favorite? Let us know in the comments.