Toca Nature ($2.99 - No IAP) is a sandbox game much like Minecraft for Kids. Players are able to build and experiment in a variety of animal habitats.
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Pro Helps kids learn about nature
By giving children the option to experiment with animal habitats and eating preferences, they learn the temperament of certain creatures. Of course this app isn't going to provide the same experience as real nature, but it's a good place to start.
In order to learn about specific animals' diets, players can ask them what their favorite foods are through a speech bubble.
Pro Intuitive design, minimal instruction
Kids are encouraged independently figure out how this game works. While there are almost no instructions, the gameplay is mostly drag and drop so there shouldn't be serious problems.
Pro Many different regions
Habitats can be developed in snowy areas, mountains, valleys, lakes, ponds, and more.
Pro Very open ended
Toca Nature encourages creativity in the same way as Minecraft. Kids can place trees, lakes, and mountains and watch how nature reacts. Although there are omnivorous animals in this game, there is no animal-on-animal violence.
Pro Provides a very calming experience
Toca Nature seems to have very relaxing graphics, especially in combination with the music. By design, this app encourages reflective gameplay because of its trance-like experience.
Con No way to have multiple accounts
If there is more than one player, they must play on the same map. There is no way to play in multiple personalized environments.