Very easy to download from app store, various skill levels available. Games encourage visual, auditory, and haptic learning. Includes original Osmo base (reflector and stand).
Games are repetitive, not as engaging for older children.
Provides a real-life restaurant simulation for young players. Introduces mathematical concepts in a non-math environment. Difficulty level is adjustable for various players.
Software "freezes" are a common issue with players. App may not recognize proper placement of game pieces. Only works on Apple devices. A separate base is necessary.
Very educational, spurs creativity from younger children. Monster character is appealing to a wide audience. Drawings can become computer animated.
App only works with Apple devices. Additional supplies can be obtained elsewhere. Games described as repetitive. Works on iPad only.
Strong appeal with computer-savvy users – very engaging apps. Interactive play encourages cooperation. Works well with the special needs population.
Technical issues can affect interest and engagement. Some gameplay is difficult to understand.
Good introduction to the concept of computer coding. Gameplay is appealing to adult users as well. Popular among students with ADHD and autism.
Will not work without an additional Osmo base. Coding results are variable. Some younger children may lose interest quickly.
We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.
A digital device is able to instantly transport children to a wildly creative interactive world were they can thrive. The problem with tablets and other electronic devices, however, is that there are no physical pieces to pick up and move about. Because of this, your child may experience difficulty developing fine motor skills if the only activity is tapping or swiping on a screen.
Thankfully, there is Osmo. Osmo is a gaming accessory that ingeniously melds the digital and physical worlds so your child can have the best of everything. Osmo's wide variety of educational games are played in the physical world but affect what is happening in a digital world. What this means is your child can develop in multiple areas at once just from playing a single game.
If you'd like to learn how to find the best Osmo game for your child, keep reading, and check out a few of our favorite Osmo toys, too.
Before getting into the finer points of which particular Osmo game is best for your child, answer the following three questions.
Granted, this is a simple question to answer, but you must first consider your child's age because different Osmo games are designed to meet the needs of specific age groups. A younger child will get frustrated with a game that’s designed for an older player, and an older child will quickly get bored with a game that’s too easy to play.
The Osmo base holds the device (such as an iPad, iPhone, or Fire tablet), and the red reflector is how what happens in the real world is translated to the digital realm. Some of the Osmo toys do not include the base or the red reflector. These products are for individuals who already own those two items and are just looking to expand their collection of games. If you purchase a game that doesn’t include the base and the red reflector, and you don’t already have these essential components, your child won’t be able to play the game.
Not all Osmo games are available for all devices. The Little Genius Starter Pack, for instance, is only compatible with an iPad. If you have a Fire tablet, your child won’t be able to play the games in that particular starter pack.
When deciding which particular Osmo game or starter set is best for your child, there are two approaches: theme or educational focus.
If having fun is your primary concern when shopping for an Osmo game, it's best to focus on the theme. For instance, if your child loves racing, you can get Hot Wheels MindRacers and speed through eight different worlds with a selection of six Hot Wheels racing cars. On the other hand, if your child prefers Disney princesses, you can get a Super Studio so your child can learn to draw their favorite Disney princess.
If educational development is your primary focus, Osmo also categorizes its games based on what your child can learn when playing. If you'd like your child to receive an introduction to business, for example, Pizza Co. allows them to learn the skills needed to run a pizza shop. If spelling is a skill you'd like your child to improve, then Osmo's Words would be the perfect game.
Finally, with Osmo toys, the more you pay, the more you get. You can buy a game for around $20, but you’ll also need a base to hold your device as well as the red reflector that makes the game work, and these two items together cost roughly $40. A small starter kit that costs around $60 or $80 includes a game, base, and red reflector. A starter kit that also includes several games costs about $100.
Q. What are Osmo toys?
A. Osmo toys are learning tools that allow children to use real-world objects, such as puzzle pieces, number and letter cards, or a drawing tablet to interact with the digital world on their compatible devices.
Q. What devices is Osmo compatible with?
A. Osmo is compatible with most iPads, iPhones, and Amazon Fire tablets.
Q. What can I do if my child loses a game piece or breaks the base or red reflector?
A. Within reason, you can request a free replacement game piece via your myOsmo account up to 90 days after the date of purchase. If you lose or break the base or the red reflector, however, you’ll need to purchase that item.