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Author Topic: Board Games for Kids  (Read 3825 times)
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El-Producto
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« on: December 15, 2009, 07:45:37 PM »

Looking to get my 8 and 10 year old daughters a few new board games this Christmas.  Preferably something we can all enjoy.  Currently we have:

Ticket to Ride
Gulo Gulo
Apples to Apples
Heroscape


I've been really interested in the following:

Small World
Through the Desert
Adventurers
Tobago
Enchanted Forest
Shadows over Camelot

Wondering if anyone has played these with kids, and how well they play?



The following games I own, but haven't tried teaching the kids:
Carcassonee
Catan
Mr. Jack
Runebound
Arkham Horror
Memoire 44
Battlelore
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Bullwinkle
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« Reply #1 on: December 15, 2009, 08:10:13 PM »

I'm looking into Small World, myself.  I've played all the games on your list except Heroscape (which I have, just haven't played it).

Two games I would say are worth looking into are Dominion and Zooloretto.  Dominion has basically blown me away.  I haven't enjoyed a game so much in years.  My daughter is six, and she really enjoys it, too.  Zooloretto is also excellent, though we haven't tried it in a while.

I have all the games you list at the bottom and haven't tried any of them (and I doubt Mr. Jack or Arkham Horror would go over well with the wife if I played them with my daughter), but I've almost broken out Carcasonne with her a couple of times.  Mine's not ready for Catan yet (Zooloretto is filling that bill so far), but 8 and 10 seem to be appropriate ages.
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El-Producto
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« Reply #2 on: December 15, 2009, 08:14:27 PM »

Thanks.

I've got my eye on Dominion, I just didnt' know how well it would play with kids.

I keep hearing great things about Zooloreto, I may have to grab it.  Small World sounds great, so I'm probably going to get it anyway.
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« Reply #3 on: December 15, 2009, 10:20:12 PM »

My sons are 10, 12 & 13 and love the following games:  Ticket to Ride, Carcassonne, Small World, Pirate's Cove, Coloretto, Memoir 44 and Heroscape.
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El-Producto
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« Reply #4 on: December 16, 2009, 11:29:45 AM »

I picked up Small World, we'll see how it goes.  Looks great though, I'm excited.
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« Reply #5 on: December 16, 2009, 05:35:13 PM »

My son really likes candyland castle and the match game.

Hey, give me a break, he's 3.
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« Reply #6 on: December 16, 2009, 05:38:19 PM »

Quote from: coopasonic on December 16, 2009, 05:35:13 PM

My son really likes candyland castle and the match game.

Hey, give me a break, he's 3.

It cracks me up, I was reading a thread over at BGG regarding what peoples kids are playing.

People are saying that their 4 month old is playing boardgames.  More like eating the pieces.  Some boardgamers really are geeks.
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« Reply #7 on: December 16, 2009, 06:43:28 PM »

Quote from: El-Producto on December 16, 2009, 05:38:19 PM

Quote from: coopasonic on December 16, 2009, 05:35:13 PM

My son really likes candyland castle and the match game.

Hey, give me a break, he's 3.

It cracks me up, I was reading a thread over at BGG regarding what peoples kids are playing.

People are saying that their 4 month old is playing boardgames.  More like eating the pieces.  Some boardgamers really are geeks.

I have a shelf loaded with board games that my wife didn't want to play before we had kids, but did because we had a lot of free time. Now that we have 2 young kids and no free time, we don't have a spare minute for them, so it's all about waiting until my older so can play. I need to find or come up with a set of rules for heroscape with a very young child.
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El-Producto
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« Reply #8 on: December 16, 2009, 06:59:55 PM »

Quote from: coopasonic on December 16, 2009, 06:43:28 PM

Quote from: El-Producto on December 16, 2009, 05:38:19 PM

Quote from: coopasonic on December 16, 2009, 05:35:13 PM

My son really likes candyland castle and the match game.

Hey, give me a break, he's 3.

It cracks me up, I was reading a thread over at BGG regarding what peoples kids are playing.

People are saying that their 4 month old is playing boardgames.  More like eating the pieces.  Some boardgamers really are geeks.

I have a shelf loaded with board games that my wife didn't want to play before we had kids, but did because we had a lot of free time. Now that we have 2 young kids and no free time, we don't have a spare minute for them, so it's all about waiting until my older so can play. I need to find or come up with a set of rules for heroscape with a very young child.

My kids are at a great age, and they actually like playing games.  My fiancee has a low geek tolerance factor, so it's finding games that she likes that's the problem.  I cracked open Arkham Horror one night, and she just laughed at me.
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« Reply #9 on: December 16, 2009, 07:30:58 PM »

Quote from: coopasonic on December 16, 2009, 06:43:28 PM

Quote from: El-Producto on December 16, 2009, 05:38:19 PM

Quote from: coopasonic on December 16, 2009, 05:35:13 PM

My son really likes candyland castle and the match game.

Hey, give me a break, he's 3.

It cracks me up, I was reading a thread over at BGG regarding what peoples kids are playing.

People are saying that their 4 month old is playing boardgames.  More like eating the pieces.  Some boardgamers really are geeks.

I have a shelf loaded with board games that my wife didn't want to play before we had kids, but did because we had a lot of free time. Now that we have 2 young kids and no free time, we don't have a spare minute for them, so it's all about waiting until my older so can play. I need to find or come up with a set of rules for heroscape with a very young child.

You can always flip the Heroscape cards and use the side without the special abilities.  That is the official "simplified" version of Heroscape.
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« Reply #10 on: December 17, 2009, 04:39:22 PM »

Zooloretto is a good option for that age, and it's very kid-friendly. 

Just picked up a new game for my son for his 8th birthday called Castle Panic.  It's sort of tower defense in board game form, and it's really well done.  Not sure how much your daughters would be into the theme but I'm pretty impressed with it. 
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« Reply #11 on: December 18, 2009, 12:00:19 AM »

I'm also going to throw my hat in the Zooloretto ring. My family plays this and Aquaretto quite a bit. I actually prefer Aquaretto as it adds a bit more strategy. Another one that we've been playing is Duck Duck Go. Think Robo-Rally extra lite.
http://www.boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/35964/duck-duck-go
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El-Producto
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« Reply #12 on: December 18, 2009, 07:28:19 PM »

Alright it's a sickness.  While researching Small World, I just finished ordering Dominion and Pandemic.

I was all but set to pull the trigger on Ghost Stories and Last Night on Earth... but I stopped at the last minute.

Both sound like great games that I should be able to get my fiancee to play as well!
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« Reply #13 on: December 19, 2009, 07:26:13 AM »

Quote from: El-Producto on December 18, 2009, 07:28:19 PM

Alright it's a sickness.  While researching Small World, I just finished ordering Dominion and Pandemic

Gratz on some great purchases. slywinkthumbsup  I haven't played Dominion, but I just played my 1st game of Small World last week and I've played Pandemic on many occasions - two outstanding games IMO. And after having read and contributed to many threads on those at boardgamegeek, I can say both have a strong appeal for girls and women.

I just picked up Lord of the Rings the Confrontation and Maneuver for my kids for Xmas.
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El-Producto
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« Reply #14 on: December 19, 2009, 12:56:48 PM »

We were at my fiance's Staff party last night, and it turns out one of her co-workers and her husband play Carcassonne, and other "German Games".  We are planning on getting together to play which is great.. it's so tough finding people who want to play these games.

What do you think the chances of me sneaking a short game of Arkham Horror in there?  eek


Quick question for those that play games with their kids.  Anyone have any luck teaching their kids Catan or Carcassonne.  Seems to me like they might be too complex, but I know I don't give the kids enough credit.  Any tips on how to teach?
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« Reply #15 on: December 19, 2009, 03:26:06 PM »

I don't think there'd be a problem teaching Carcasonne to kids.  It's fairly simple in concept.  However, there's a big-picture aspect to the game that has kept me from teaching my kid.  There's a big snowstorm this weekend, though, so maybe we'll take some time to play it.

For Catan, it depends on the age of the kid.  When mine's ready, it'll help that she's played some games with similar ideas (Zooreka and Zooloretto, oddly).

For Pandemic, I keep hearing great things, but I'm worried that it'd be overwhelming for my six year old.  I was also worried about the whole spreading disease thing, but with the recent swine flu fears, it may help put that in perspective.
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« Reply #16 on: December 19, 2009, 06:07:00 PM »

Quote from: Bullwinkle on December 19, 2009, 03:26:06 PM

For Pandemic, I keep hearing great things, but I'm worried that it'd be overwhelming for my six year old.  I was also worried about the whole spreading disease thing, but with the recent swine flu fears, it may help put that in perspective.

I think it'd be a bit too difficult for a 6 year old, but fine for some 8 year olds. I also think both Catan and Carcassonne can be learnt by many 8 year olds. Both of those games have a 'User Suggested Ages' rating from boardgamegeek of 8 or above, and IMO that's rating, along with the other user ratings at that site, are the most reliable around.
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« Reply #17 on: December 19, 2009, 06:08:48 PM »

I know I started the thread about kids games.. but Dominion and Pandemic are for the big kids slywink
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« Reply #18 on: December 19, 2009, 08:11:01 PM »

Quote from: kronovan on December 19, 2009, 06:07:00 PM

Quote from: Bullwinkle on December 19, 2009, 03:26:06 PM

For Pandemic, I keep hearing great things, but I'm worried that it'd be overwhelming for my six year old.  I was also worried about the whole spreading disease thing, but with the recent swine flu fears, it may help put that in perspective.

I think it'd be a bit too difficult for a 6 year old, but fine for some 8 year olds. I also think both Catan and Carcassonne can be learnt by many 8 year olds. Both of those games have a 'User Suggested Ages' rating from boardgamegeek of 8 or above, and IMO that's rating, along with the other user ratings at that site, are the most reliable around.

Yeah, I've found their age ratings to be pretty spot-on, too.

Quote from: El-Producto on December 19, 2009, 06:08:48 PM

I know I started the thread about kids games.. but Dominion and Pandemic are for the big kids slywink

Don't agree with Dominion.  My daughter loves it.
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« Reply #19 on: December 21, 2009, 03:53:58 AM »

Quote from: Graham on December 16, 2009, 07:30:58 PM

You can always flip the Heroscape cards and use the side without the special abilities.  That is the official "simplified" version of Heroscape.

I played a couple super-simplified games with my 3 year old today. I just opened the box and let him pick some figures and grabbed a group myself. It's good for counting and comparisons "What's more 4 shields or 3 skulls?"

Then I let him take one of the dragons and attacked it with a horde of zombies. He had fun mowing them down. slywink
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« Reply #20 on: December 28, 2009, 02:19:28 PM »

Xander: "Daddy, let's play the quiet game."
Daddy: "What game is that buddy?"
Xander: "The fighting quiet game upstairs!"

We've played about a dozen games of simple rules heroscape with super small armies, one card each except for the mega-match with all my huge figures. He's not exactly a strong tactician. We've just started using ranged figures but he doesn't really get the tactics of it, but he has fun and daddy has fun and he can look at the cards and figure out how many dice to roll now.

We did have one "the dice are evil" game yesterday. Rechets of Boghdan (something like that, pack of dogs) vs Iron Man. Iron Man goes first, takes out one dog on the first shot at range. I move into melee and attack. I roll four and get two skulls, he rolls his EIGHT dice for defense and gets 7 skulls and a blank. Iron Man goes down to a dog in one bite. He wasn't a very happy loser on that one.
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« Reply #21 on: December 29, 2009, 11:21:00 PM »

I got my family Small World, but haven't played yet.

I also picked up Dominion and Pandemic.  Played a quick game of pandemic and it seems fun.
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« Reply #22 on: December 30, 2009, 12:18:19 AM »

Quote from: El-Producto on December 29, 2009, 11:21:00 PM

I got my family Small World, but haven't played yet.

I also picked up Dominion and Pandemic.  Played a quick game of pandemic and it seems fun.

I did the same (except it was the Dominion expansion).

I also got Summoner Wars, Castle Panic and Tumblin' Dice (the big one, which is normally, like, $70, but I got it for half that).

Should be here next week.
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« Reply #23 on: December 31, 2009, 07:07:37 PM »

Man, I really want a copy of Last Night on Earth... that game looks amazing.  Looks like L4D the boardgame!
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« Reply #24 on: January 14, 2010, 12:36:41 AM »

I just played Castle Panic with my daughter, and she really enjoyed it.  She's even looking forward to playing it solo!
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« Reply #25 on: March 08, 2010, 07:04:36 PM »

Jus ta quick follow up on 3 years olds and heroscape. We've decided the simple rules are too hard and it's now brain dead rules. We each get a set number of pieces, usually 3-6. Technically his pieces move 7 spaces a turn but seem to have some ability to teleport from time to time slywink , mine move 6 spaces. He gets 8 dice and I get 6 dice. This means he wins 95% of the games usually very quickly, but daddy doesn't have to dig through the binder to find the unit cards so setup is basically "choose your army" and we're off.

eventually I assume he'll figure out the games are fixed, but until then he gets practice counting and on world problems... I make him decide if a roll is a hit or miss. Hahah you're doing math sucker!
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« Reply #26 on: March 09, 2010, 05:27:47 AM »

A recent game I picked up that's a real hit with my kids is Shazamm! It's simple in terms of components and the time required to learn it, but it has a surprising amount of strategy. The game consists of each player having a wizard that faces off on either end of a bridge over a lava filled chasm. At the beginning of each turn each player secretly dials in an amount of mana and plays any number of magic cards, up to a max of 5. The player that succeeds in spending the most mana -subject to some really strange results caused by the magic cards- moves a wall of fire closer to their opponent. The catch is that the bridge is slowly crumbling into the lava at either end, and each new round one of the bridges flagstones is removed from each end of it. The games over when a player successfully pushes their opponent into the lava.



It took a bit of time to grasp it, but my 12 yr old son has really mastered it -usually always beats me- and my 10 yr old daughter is getting quite good at it. I really like the fact that it takes up very little space and it's become 1 of our favorite travelling games.
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« Reply #27 on: March 09, 2010, 01:26:58 PM »

Shazamm!  looks awesome.  Off to find it.

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« Reply #28 on: March 09, 2010, 11:52:18 PM »

Quote from: Bullwinkle on March 09, 2010, 01:26:58 PM

Shazamm!  looks awesome.  Off to find it.

It's by Z-man Games whose products' are widely distributed throughout N.A., so you probably won't have a hard time finding it.
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« Reply #29 on: March 10, 2010, 12:22:50 AM »

Quote from: kronovan on March 09, 2010, 11:52:18 PM

Quote from: Bullwinkle on March 09, 2010, 01:26:58 PM

Shazamm!  looks awesome.  Off to find it.

It's by Z-man Games whose products' are widely distributed throughout N.A., so you probably won't have a hard time finding it.

I actually fell down a game well on boardgamegeek, searching through two geeklists.  One was good games under $10 and the other was starter games you should really try.  I wound up getting four additional games.  To my shock, every one of them was by Z-Man!


OH!  I also picked up a game that looked pretty awesome called Monkey Lab.
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« Reply #30 on: March 11, 2010, 06:53:45 AM »

Quote from: Bullwinkle on March 10, 2010, 12:22:50 AM

Quote from: kronovan on March 09, 2010, 11:52:18 PM

Quote from: Bullwinkle on March 09, 2010, 01:26:58 PM

Shazamm!  looks awesome.  Off to find it.

It's by Z-man Games whose products' are widely distributed throughout N.A., so you probably won't have a hard time finding it.

I actually fell down a game well on boardgamegeek, searching through two geeklists.  One was good games under $10 and the other was starter games you should really try.  I wound up getting four additional games.  To my shock, every one of them was by Z-Man!


OH!  I also picked up a game that looked pretty awesome called Monkey Lab.

Well Z-man certainly has their share of good games including the mega blockbusters Agricola and Pandemic. Chinatown, Duel in the Dark and Neuroshima Hex are some other great games by them. I also picked up their Camelot Legends during their big sale last month, and it's proven to be more than a decent game - really great artwork on the cards. slywink

Monkey Lab sounds interesting and I'm curious to know how it plays.
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« Reply #31 on: March 11, 2010, 01:20:46 PM »

Quote from: kronovan on March 11, 2010, 06:53:45 AM

Quote from: Bullwinkle on March 10, 2010, 12:22:50 AM

Quote from: kronovan on March 09, 2010, 11:52:18 PM

Quote from: Bullwinkle on March 09, 2010, 01:26:58 PM

Shazamm!  looks awesome.  Off to find it.

It's by Z-man Games whose products' are widely distributed throughout N.A., so you probably won't have a hard time finding it.

I actually fell down a game well on boardgamegeek, searching through two geeklists.  One was good games under $10 and the other was starter games you should really try.  I wound up getting four additional games.  To my shock, every one of them was by Z-Man!


OH!  I also picked up a game that looked pretty awesome called Monkey Lab.

Well Z-man certainly has their share of good games including the mega blockbusters Agricola and Pandemic. Chinatown, Duel in the Dark and Neuroshima Hex are some other great games by them. I also picked up their Camelot Legends during their big sale last month, and it's proven to be more than a decent game - really great artwork on the cards. slywink

Monkey Lab sounds interesting and I'm curious to know how it plays.

I bought Pandemic a little while ago, but I may be waiting for Forbidden Island, which has been described as Pandemic for kids.

Duel in the Dark has been on my wish list for a while, but it would be an indulgence since I know no one would play that with me here.

I've heard great things about Agricola, but I need a little more flash in my subject matter.
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« Reply #32 on: March 11, 2010, 04:08:47 PM »

You might take a look at the new LEGO Games line.  It sounds like your kids are right in the age range sweet spot.
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« Reply #33 on: March 12, 2010, 04:21:26 AM »

For anyone who is interested, Shazamm is at Tanga right now for $14 total ($7.99 + $5.99 S&H):

http://www.tanga.com/deals/current/game

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