This whimsical iPad app game is perfect for relaxing over the holidays

Screenshots of the Lost in Play iPad game from the Apple App Store.
The Lost in Play iPad game is a fun, whimsical adventure. (Image credit: Apple App Store)
Lost in Play

The Lost in Play iPade game logo.

(Image credit: Apple App Store)

iPhone / iPad – Free (In-App Purchases)

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If you're winding down for the holiday season and want some fun, whimsical escapism, then try Lost in Play. This app works on both the iPhone and iPad, although to make the most of the visuals and controls, I much prefer the experience on a larger iPad screen. 

I've recommended several minimal, achingly simple games over the past few months, like I Love Hue, Teeny Tiny Town, and Linko. But at this time of year, when everyone wants to relax but stress levels are still running high, I need a game with a story and animations that are much more involved and engrossing, and I know I'm not alone. I've been finding a lot of joy playing Lost in Play on my iPad – it's no surprise it was selected as a finalist in the 'iPad Game of the Year' category for the App Store Awards 2023.

The objective of the game is to help a brother and sister on an adventure to find their way home, solving puzzles, escaping obstacles, and meeting unusual creatures along the way. It's free to download and play, but there is an additional purchase of $5.99/£5.99 to unlock the full game, including some extra obstacles and levels. 

Family fun

I think Lost in Play is one of those games that's both timeless from a visuals point of view and ageless from an audience perspective. 

The developers describe it as "a journey through childhood imagination" and you can expect to "explore the enchanted forest of a horned beast, start a rebellion in a goblin village, and help a team of frogs free a sword from a stone." Expect a compelling story, thoughtful puzzles and colorful characters and scenes. But that doesn't mean everything is easy and light, there are still challenges here for everyone no matter their age and experience level.

The fact that Lost in Play is aimed at all ages, however, with simple point and click controls makes it a fun choice to play at home with the kids or while you're all travelling somewhere. It's also the perfect choice to make the most of the iPad's gorgeous display, too. So if you're buying a new iPad for a loved one this year, Lost in Play is one of the first games I'd recommend you download onto it.


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Becca Caddy

Becca Caddy is a contributor to iMore, as well as a freelance journalist and author. She’s been writing about consumer tech and popular science for more than a decade, covering all kinds of topics, including why robots have eyes and whether we’ll experience the overview effect one day. She’s particularly interested in VR/AR, wearables, digital health, space tech and chatting to experts and academics about the future. She’s contributed to TechRadar, T3, Wired, New Scientist, The Guardian, Inverse and many more. Her first book, Screen Time, came out in January 2021 with Bonnier Books. She loves science-fiction, brutalist architecture, and spending too much time floating through space in virtual reality. Last time she checked, she still holds a Guinness World Record alongside iMore Editor in Chief Gerald Lynch for playing the largest game of Tetris ever made, too.