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Website review by
Susan Yudt, Common Sense Media
Bearville Website Poster Image
Safe virtual world promotes positivity -- and products.
Parents recommendPopular with kids

Parents say

age 6+
Based on 19 reviews

Kids say

age 7+
Based on 119 reviews

A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

The site provides a safe, friendly environment for kids to socialize. Sharing and being helpful are encouraged. Veteran users can apply to be "Jr. CyBearGuides," who help new users get acquainted with the virtual world and answer their questions. On the downside, the site places a lot of emphasis on fashion and shopping -- especially for Build-A-Bear products.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff

To access the site's full array of features, users must own a Build-A-Bear. There are links to the Build-A-Bear product site, as well as ads for other websites. Also, kids can collect virtual money and use it to buy clothing, accessories, etc. within the game.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this friendly virtual world was created by the Build-A-Bear Workshop, which sells customizable bears and other stuffed animals online and in stores. Certain site features are restricted to visitors who own a Build-A-Bear toy (which comes with a code) -- this may frustrate kids and prompt them to ask for one. Otherwise, the site is a safe and pleasant place for kids to play online.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 9 and 12 year old Written byCJJDSMOM May 22, 2009

Cute Website for Kids

I started off playing this with my son when he got his first stuffed animal. I didn't have an animal then and could still play games with him and shop wit... Continue reading
Parent of a 1, 3, 8, and 10 year old Written byJacobyShaddix32 November 27, 2009
Kid, 8 years old February 16, 2013


VERRY BORING UNLESS YOU HAVE A PET ! THEY DONT EVEN LET YOU HAVE A HOUSE !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!... Continue reading
Teen, 16 years old Written byfantasy_faerie January 24, 2011

Great game-- but if you love it, you might want to buy a furry friend

CONCERNS Violence: There is no violent content in BABV, and violent talk is not possible as BABV only allows certain words. Sex: There is no sexual content in... Continue reading

Is it any good?

Kids who've bought a Build-A-Bear stuffed animal will get the most out of BEARVILLE. The site's centerpiece is a virtual world that allows visitors to bring their furry friends along for games and other activities. Any kid who registers can visit the virtual world, but without a toy, they won't have access to the full range of activities. Still, there's a lot to do on this colorful site. One highlight is the Friendship Forest Photo Safari -- point and click to capture photos of animals as they fly or scurry across the lush landscape, and check out the resulting photo album. In addition to a slew of games, there’s video content, such as the web series “Craftshop,” which teaches kids how to make fun fashions on the cheap. Despite the ever-present prompts to buy Bearville gear, this bustling world does a good job keeping kids engaged -- and safe.

Online interaction: Kids can "friend" other users and trade items. There are two chat options: safe chat, which limits users to a pre-approved list of common phrases, and open filtered chat, which checks chat against a dictionary of approved words. (Parents can also turn chat off entirely.)

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about online safety and what's appropriate to share on online.

  • Talk about how much time kids spend online. Parents can review our online worlds tips.

Website details

For kids who love playing online

Our editors recommend

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