World of Zoo

Game review by
Christopher Healy, Common Sense Media
World of Zoo Game Poster Image
Spectacular virtual zoo lets kids get creative with animals.

Parents say

age 7+
Based on 3 reviews

Kids say

age 4+
Based on 3 reviews

Did this review miss something on diversity?

Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive, diverse representations in books, TV shows, and movies. Want to help us help them? Suggest a diversity update

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Positive Messages

Players learn the responsibility in caring for their animals, as well as the rewards one gets from kindness and compassion. They also get valuable lessons about endangered species. Creativity is encouraged in the animal editing mode.

Positive Role Models & Representations

As a first-person game, there's no real main character to be a role model. But the structure of the game encourages the zookeeper (the player) to act with kindness and compassion throughout.

Ease of Play

The free-form nature of the game makes it accessible for even very young children, who could still get some enjoyment out of playing even without grasping any of the more technical aspects of the gameplay.

Violence & Scariness

Agitated animals can briefly turn on their zookeeper (meaning, you, the player). When this happens, they snap and growl angrily at the camera and the word "Attacked" appears onscreen. There are no repurcussions for being attacked.


It's the player's job to clean up poop with a device called the "Poo-Vac."  Also, some sick animals will audibly pass gas.


The National Geographic name appears on "fact cards" that fill kids in on animal trivia.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this very entertaining zoo simulator mixes a lot of real animal knowledge and realistic animal behavior (tigers flinch and flee at the sight of a crocodile) and mixes it with some elements of cartoonish fantasy (pandas beat on drums and go down slides). It also has an animal editor which allows kids to customize their zoo inhabitants in a slew of different ways, from ear and paw size to stripe and spot patterns and more. Children could, if they wanted to, end up with a blue-and-green spotted tiger with a bushy tail and thick legs -- but it would still act like a tiger.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 7-year-old Written byBetterGames August 1, 2016

Great for kids, will need help though

Great for kids, will need help though if they are young to understand the star count and how to unlock new animals. A little bit pricey but worth it if your kid... Continue reading
Parent of a 8-year-old Written byvelveta December 23, 2010
Teen, 13 years old Written byHotaru Chan August 10, 2010

Cute game, I would get it

My 5 year-old cousin plays this game, and she really enjoys it (she can't read though, so someone has to be with her for her to understand most of the word... Continue reading
Kid, 10 years old May 14, 2010

A fun, easy, but mildly boring game!

This is a good game right here. I sold my Havoc-Heli for $20 and began looking for a good game for Nintendo DS. Then, I found World of Zoo. It looked interestin... Continue reading

What's it about?

In WORLD OF ZOO, players care for and play with the animals they create to live within their own virtual zoo. Every animal can have its appearance edited -- colors, patterns, tails, noses, paws, manes, etc. -- to suit the player's whim. As the zookeeper, players will feed the animals, clean them, play with them, and clean up after them. Keeping the animals happy earns the player stars, which he or she can use to \"buy\" more animals or build fancy play areas within the animal habitats.

Is it any good?

Zoo sims are certainly nothing new, but World of Zoo is well executed and has enough original features to make it stand out among the crowd. The  focus on interacting with the animals makes World of Zoo's gameplay more akin to pet sims like Nintendogs than to business-y games like Zoo Tycoon. And World of Zoo's animals are loaded with personality. When they're at play, they're adorable; when they're angry (which is not often), they're appropriately scary.

Caring for the animals and keeping them happy is relatively simple, which means there's not a lot of drudge work you're forced to do in order to get in some good belly-scratching time. It is seriously fun to watch the animals. For instance, it is very amusing to build a dummy gazelle in the big cat habitat and then seeing a lion bat at it the way a kitten bats at a a ball of string. The creature editor, where you can mix and match animal body parts, is also insanely fun to play around with; that feature alone could give kids hours of enjoyment.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about responsibility and caring for pets and animals. What would be required to care for a real animal that is overlooked in the game?

  • Parents can also use the game as a jumping off point for discussion and further research into the plight of endangered species. Children who become interested in the topic through playing the game can look up real-world ways to help.

Game details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love nature

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

Our ratings are based on child development best practices. We display the minimum age for which content is developmentally appropriate. The star rating reflects overall quality and learning potential.

Learn how we rate