183 – NY Toy Fair with Engaged Family Gaming – The Family Gamers Podcast

2020 Toy Fair New York
2020 Toy Fair New York

This week, we are with Stephen Duetzmann and Linda Wrobel from Engaged Family Gaming. They attended New York Toy Fair 2020 – and brought Andrew along. What really stood out to the three of them?

What We’ve Been Playing

Stephen has been playing Dreams on PS4 – “the most important video game that has released this year.” Create games, experiences, movies. Create assets that other people can use. See some of the community’s creations on Twitter: #madeindreams

Linda played Tsuro – a great intro game with parents of a 7-month-old.

and also Metal – (from Lay Waste Games) – it’s basically tabletop lawn games.

We digress into our Fire Tower stories: we’re looking forward to the Kickstarter for the expansion!

Anitra and Asher played Panic Island – the fastest game we have! We tried it with the third (blue) tribe, which is significantly harder.

Andrew and friends played Champion of the Wild at game night. Hot dog eating, cake decorating, and speed skating?

Battle Sheep – such an accessible favorite! We love this with kids.

Astro Trash board game passing yellow trash to the sun

SNAP Review – Astro Trash

Nick and Izzy tell us about this speedy game of “decluttering”, with a little help from Jace. See the full review for a transcript and more pictures.

NY Toy Fair 2020

Stephen confesses that he failed at his goal of “not overbooking” – but they made it work.


Qwixx – a new card-based version

Shifting Stones – we saw this as Boston FIG and we’re all super excited for it.

Abandon all Artichokes – a deck deconstruction game.

Dungeon Drop – with Phase Shift. Stephen is particularly happy for this one, having followed Dungeon Drop since its early days. “It plays great in a pizza box” or a lid for a plastic tote.

Super Impulse

Super Impulse makes very tiny things. Lured us in with “World’s Smallest Magic:The Gathering deck”, but they also have tiny arcade cabinets.


Miyabi is gorgeous (and we have a review up today!) – suitable both for children and for strategy-minded gamers.

Christmas themed Animal upon Animal is very cute.

Mountains is also very pretty.


This is a “mobile game maker” from Tink Digital. Draw a picture, different colors represent different elements. Scan it with the mobile app and it becomes a game. They were handing out cookies that were playable in the app?

Breaking Games

We’re Doomed! – Andrew has played this before. You must get the right combo of players to have fun. No heavy analysis allowed!


Doom on You – currently on Kickstarter. Find out more at OK2Win.com.

Peaceable Kingdom

Rock Paper Switch – blends rock-paper-scissors with 4-player chess. Not the highest “wow” factor, but probably will have great longevity. (And the pieces are a little bit squishy for safety and a fun tactile experience – we’ve seen this before in their game Sky Magic.)

Bandit’s Memory Mix-up – tinker-able memory game.

Smoosh and Seek Treehouse – a memory “hide and seek” game, but you find out if you chose the right character to find by squishing the token into some playdough and seeing what comes out!


StationMaster – Andrew played this at PAX Unplugged

Ship Shape – we love it and will have a review soon.

Tsuro: Phoenix Rising – the tray that allows you to easily flip tiles is amazing. The artwork on the tiles is clever while also being beautiful.


Mia London – reconstruct a villian’s portrait.

Flash 8 – 3×3 grid sliding puzzle. Frantically slide and try to match pattern on a card first.

Stay Cool – a party game. Several players asking easy questions to one person, on a timer. Answer one set verbally and the other set by arranging “letter dice”.

Blue Orange

StarLink – create constellations on a star map to clue other players to your word.

Cupcake Academy – Towers of Hanoi puzzle that’s cooperative – the puzzle style is a bit like Dr. Eureka.

Fish Club – created by the son of the man who invented Connect 4. Drop fish and be the first to get 5 fish touching (see our video).

There will be a “my first” Kingdomino – with dragons!

MeepleLand – roller coaster / park building

The OP (1:12:00)

Coded Chronicles – The OP is doing escape boxes! Scooby Doo: Escape from the Haunted Mansion is the first one. How it works – combine a character with an object/location and read from a book. Feels a lot like Adventure Games (from KOSMOS) that we recently reviewed. There’s a lot of opportunity here, since The OP has the rights to make games for a lot of popular movies/TV/etc.

Telestrations: Upside Drawn – one person holds the pen, different person moves the board.

Hues and Cues – give a one-word clue and then a two-word clue to try to get everyone close to your chosen color.

Harry Potter House Competition – a worker-placement game. The four houses are competing, completing magical tasks and gaining new abilities.

More Games!

Outset Games – Catacombs of Karak – “my first dungeon crawl”

Everything from KOSMOS looks cool.

Genius Games has anatomically correct jigsaw puzzles of body parts.

Ravensberger – Wonder Woman: Challenge of the Amazon (out now!) A cooperative game in which you defend Themiscira from villains.

Marvel Villainous from Ravensberger / Prospero Hall. Now with a shared fate deck!

Our Top 3 Games:

Catacombs of Karak is Linda’s favorite. “My 7 year old desperately wants to play” D&D. Since this is more basic, it is going to go over really well.

My City from KOSMOS is Andrew’s favorite. It’s a family-friendly polyomino game designed by Renier Knizia, with legacy/campaign components.

Pan Am is Stephen’s favorite. From Funko Games, this is set during the early days of commercial flight. Build your airline while also buying stock in Pan-Am (even though Pan Am will buy YOU eventually).

Follow us online:

Find Linda: @dragonrose720 on Instagram, @moms_stories on Twitter.

Stephen is at @SDuetzmann, mostly for silly memes, wrestling, and football.

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Twitter: @EFGaming

Instagram: @engagedfamilygaming

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Youtube: @engagedfamilygaming1

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