184 – Play This, Not That – The Family Gamers Podcast
Our cool math fact for the week: 252 – 212 = 184.
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If you’ve ever seen an Eat This, Not That book, we decided to riff on that idea with popular children’s games. This may become a recurring segment on the show – what do you think?
What We’ve Been Playing
Skulk Hollow – a great two player asymmetric game from Pencil First Games. The Foxen have an advantage due to greater numbers, but if you learn an appropriate strategy for a guardian, you may be able to pull off a win.
Detective Club – a party game similar to Spyfall or Dixit – from Blue Orange.
Mountains – a competitive mountain-hiking game from HABA. Like “Go Fish”, you cannot refuse a request for an item you have – but you’ll get a favor token whether or not you can help with the request. Pay close attention to the items other people have, as you’ll need their help to complete mountain hikes. “You want everyone to do well, you just want to do the best.”
Kingdomino Duel – Anitra didn’t like this at first, because the rules aren’t well-stated. There’s more to keep track of than the original Kingdomino, and this is an even tighter game between the two players. Nice and compact for date night :) Review coming soon.
Everyone Loves a Parade – from Calliope Games and Mike Mulvihill. There’s a lot going on for a relatively simple game. Frustrating at a high player count (we tried it at 5 players), but you lose the thematic “parade” feeling at 2 players.
Wavelength – our new favorite party game. Dog name vs. Cat name: where would you put “Rex”?
Boom, Bang, Gold! – see the SNAP review below.
Super Powered Smash Masters – a game that’s new to us. A very simple dueling game from Dark Unicorn Games (there’s a lot of reading, but otherwise simple). Basically, superheroes punching each other – what’s not to like?
The whole family went to Wendy’s for breakfast. Note: you can get the drive thru at 6:30am, but the dining room doesn’t open until 9 (oops!) – so we ordered our food to try and brought it back home.
Between the whole family, we tried some standard breakfast sandwiches, the honey butter chicken biscuit, and the breakfast Baconator.
All were pretty good, but the winner of the morning was the seasoned potatoes – crispy and delicious!
This segment was not in any way sponsored or affiliated with Wendy’s.
SNAP Review – Boom, Bang, Gold!
Andrew, Anitra, and Elliot talk about this silly, fast-moving game of mining with dynamite from HABA.
See the full SNAP review for a transcript and more pictures.
Play This, Not That!
At its core, this is our goal here at The Family Gamers.
Instead of Candy Land…
We have two recommendations. If you need a game to introduce taking turns and matching colors, our recommendation is:
Hisss from Gamewright.
Players use chunky cardboard tiles to construct snakes. Draw a tile and look for any snake that matches one of the colors. No flimsy card-flipping and easily knocked-over pawns. Even more importantly, it offers an opportunity to make decisions! Players can look at their tile, internalize what it means, and then make a decision for what to do with that information.
“Candy Land could be played with a robot.”Andrew
But if you want a game that uses color matching to move along a track, we highly recommend:
Monza from HABA.
Monza is a racecar game with a simple three-lane track. Roll six dice, then use them to make a path that matches what’s available on the track. We’re still focused on color matching and turn taking here, but Monza also introduces strategic thinking. Your kids can practice looking ahead and figuring out the best way to use the dice they’ve rolled. Even if you play it with six (!) players, it’s a short game, lasting 15 minutes or less.
Instead of Guess Who…
Andrew and Anitra both enjoyed Guess Who in their childhoods. But Guess Who has two big limitations:
- It only supports two players.
- Nearly every character is male (20 of 25 in most versions), and every character is white (in most versions). Obviously this is problematic for representing the real world, but it’s also unbalanced for teaching deduction.
Instead, we’d recommend Dinosaur Tea Party from Restoration Games.
Up to five players ask about the accessories and features of the dinosaurs. “Hello dear, that’s a lovely pair of spectacles you’re sporting today!” Every time you ferret out the identity of another player, you earn a sugar cube. The other player is not eliminated, they draw a new character and keep playing.
Every card has indicators to make explicit what the picture represents; these can be a bit hard to see for older players whose eyesight is failing. But that’s the only problem we’ve had with the game. Dinosaur Tea Party also introduces a way to fool the deducing players with banners that tell you a specific dinosaur “Always Lies”, or “Always Says No”, or even “Switches Answers”.
This game is designed to be tongue-in-cheek, and kids get the absurdity of dinosaurs sitting around sipping tea with hats and necklaces and little pets.
Did you like the new segments?
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