Yesterday my daughter (10yrs old) had to stay home from school because she had a fever. Yesterday was also going to be her first time going to a birthday sleepover. As you can imagine she was CRUSHED. In an attempt to cheer her up, we decided to have a family game night. We made it through three games before our “Do’s and Don’ts” became overwhelmingly apparent. That said I’d like to share the experience and games with you now.
-Brave Rats by BlueOrange Games-
2 players, 1 – 15 mins
Brave Rats is a short two player game that requires a bit of strategy. In Brave Rats you are part of a rat clan at war with your rival rat clan. Each player gets eight cards that are labeled 0-7 and all have separate abilities. Each player has the same set of cards, just a different clan and color. Players use strategy and probability to beat the other player by choosing what card to play each turn. The players flip their cards over at the same time and for the most part, the player with the highest card wins. The first player to win 4 rounds wins the game. There are exceptions to the general rules, which you can see here: http://www.nonsensicalgamers.com/brave-rats-review/ *** The lowest price I’ve found is at Walmart: http://www.walmart.com/ip/39580105?wmlspartner=wlpa&adid=22222222227027265244&wl0=&wl1=g&wl2=c&wl3=57058379169&wl4=&wl5=pla&wl6=89570793129&veh=sem *** You can see more information at the OrangeBlue Games website: http://www.blueorangegames.com/index.php/games/braverats
-Takenoko by Asmodee-
2 – 4 players, 30 – 45 mins
Takenoko is a beautiful game and probably one of my favorites. Players compete to complete different objectives based around three different types of objective cards: Gardener, Panda, Formation. There are many different rules to this game, but it is well worth it and once you have the rules down you can play it with your eyes closed (not really, don’t try it… it makes a huge mess). A player wins when they complete an X amount of objective cards which is based on how many people are playing. This game is for 2-4 players, BUT there are five of us. We play with all five… this leaves us with one less board, but when you know the game well it is very much so possible. You can see how the game is played on Tabletop: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wv4n-e-hb_o *** The lowest price I’ve found is at GameSurplus: https://www.gamesurplus.com/advanced_search_result.php?keywords=takenoko&osCsid=ahbn2b5uol5mnrtgkv56c8i326&x=0&y=0 *** You can find more information at the Asmodee website: http://us.asmodee.com/ressources/jeux_versions/takenoko.php
-Clue by Hasboro-
3 – 6 players, 30 – 45 mins
Clue is a classic board game in which you are an investigator trying to solve a murder, but most of you should know that. It’s a fun game and there are tons of different styles and expansions. We have the 2013 edition as shown above. Amazon has fantastic prices on clue and a very large list of the different Clue editions: http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_c_0_4?url=search-alias%3Dtoys-and-games&field-keywords=clue&sprefix=clue%2Caps%2C315 *** The Hasbro website has additional information including reviews, demos, and a price comparison: http://www.hasbro.com/en_US/search/_/Ntt-clue?Ntk=All&Ntx=mode+matchallpartial
Ok so time for the fun part. Brave Rats worked well, it was a great chance to have a short one on one game with a single child which not only helped keep their attention, but allowed for my ill daughter to have her own little bit of attention. That said, my other daughter (8yrs old) does not do well when she isn’t the main focus. For a great deal of the time when my husband was playing with our 10yr old, the 8yr old was trying to push her way into the action. Takenoko on the other hand was nice and new to my 10yr old. Our 13yr old son and 8yr old daughter had both previously played. Playing a new game with a sick child is a bit of a fool’s errand, but it definitely took her mind off of her illness. The 13yr old had just had dessert and was very hyper the entire time, while the 8yr old pretended to be sick and sat out of the game. Clue was a new experience for all of the kids, again a fool’s errand when one of your children are sick. We did not get to complete Clue because the 8yr old did not acknowledge one of the cards in her hands when the 10yr old was making a guess. From there it just became extreme confusion and frustration for everyone.
Alright time for the Do’s and Don’ts.
*Play a familiar game with a sick child, it raises their spirits.
*Have a Family Game night, it really improves family relationships.
*Pick a game that allows you to focus on one child at a time, like a two player game.
*Make sure that everyone is truly up for a game before starting.
*Avoid playing games directly after dessert.
*Do not play NEW games when your children are ill.
Hyper 13yr old boy + Sick 10yr old girl + Jealous 8yr old girl= A headache
I will say that I love our game nights, but we need to pick the time better. 🙂
I hope you enjoyed this and thank you for reading. Until next time… Live by the Board.