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Subject: Best games for 3 years old rss

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Daniel Mendez-Bonito Magniez
Spain
Oviedo
Asturias
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Hello, can you recommend games/boardganes for a 3 years old baby?. Thank you!!!!
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Greg Gresik
United States
Bolingbrook
Illinois
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The one game that jumps to mind is Itsy Bitsy Spider - although it's probably not easy to find.

I did a review on it (which is part of the reason it "jumps to mind" ), as my kids all played it growing up (they are now 7, 15 & 16).

There are other good games out there though.
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Bartosz Trzaskowski

Tucson
Arizona
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My kids are a bit older now, but you may wanna take a look at some of the reviews I've written when they were 3:

Gaming with 3-year old: Gulo Gulo (versus 3 other kid games)
Gaming with 3-year old: Sorry! Sliders (versus 3 other kid games)
Gaming with 3-year old: Tier auf Tier (versus 3 other kid games)
Gaming with 3-year old: Villa Paletti (versus 3 other kid games)
What's wrong with Heroscape? (playing with 3-years old)

I'd definitely recommend Animal Upon Animal (or the newer Animal Upon Animal: Balancing Bridge) since it's readily available and the best of this bunch.
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Michael Roden
United States
Danube
Minnesota
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Up the River by Ravensburger may be something a young one would understand.

Michael
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Joakim Björklund
Finland
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Overtext?! We don't need no stinking overtext! Oh wait...
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First Orchard is good.
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Peter Quentin
United Kingdom
Shoeburyness
Essex
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I have been playing games with my boy since before his second birthday, he is now three and a half and these are the games that I have had success with so far:

Villa Paletti: This was the first game we had success with. It's a simple stacking game with a coloured die to determine what colour piece to move next. It is great fun for everyone and the pinnacle of the game is when the whole lot comes crashing down to laughs and excitement all round.

Animal upon Animal: This is another stacking game where a die determines you options for choosing which animal to stack next. It is a little more complex for a two to three year old to understand how to win but Haba has produced some great components and my boy loves playing it.

Chicken Cha Cha Cha: This is a memory game where turing over the correct tile in the middle allows your chicken to move. When your chicken has over taken all the other chickens you win! This has been very successful and the great thing about this sort of memory game is that small children often genuinely do better that adults! My boy still needs a bit of encouragement to play it correctly but we have even played this with him at our board game club's christmas party, and he won!

Snap: We have Gruffalo Snap and Animal Snap. What can I say, an essential game and lots of fun with a child. Interestingly though, he is still not that good at it but he does now fully understand what to do.

The Kids of Carcassonne: Tile laying where every tile fits every time and a simple mechanic where completed paths allow you to place meeples. This is quite complex for a three year old and when we play it I have to keep explaining what to do but he is getting there and enjoys playing with it. I am looking forward to him understanding more about what strategies he needs to use to win which I anticipate happening before his forth birthday. An essential game for your growing board gamer!

The Kids of Catan: I hate this game, it is totally dice driven with no meaningful decisions and the quality of the components is poor as I have to keep gluing them together. However, he enjoys it and has not yet noticed the total lack of sill required to play. I expect him go get board of this one first and I would not buy it again.

Gulo Gulo: He has just got in to this game and for that reason it is his current favourite. It gets good press here on the Geek but to be honest I don't think it is as good as people think. However, it has some great mechanics that make it easy for adults to ensure that kids keep up and for that and the fact that it is quite fun I would recommend it.

Cthulhu Dice: One big coloured dice with a monster octopus that sends his parents mad, what is not to like if you are a three year old! Surprisingly his game works extremely well.

I am always on the look out for more games so I am looking forward to some more suggestions...
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Jeffrey D Myers
United States
Los Ranchos
New Mexico
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"Always rely upon a happy mind alone." Geshe Chekhawa.
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Go Away Monster!

Monkey Madness
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Duane Stewart
United States
Pittsburgh
Pennsylvania
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At that age my son enjoyed Feed the Kitty, which is an LCR clone, and Sequence for Kids, which is a simple matching game. He still enjoys Feed the Kitty with the right crowd, but at six years old he has move on to other sequence games.

We also tried Gulo Gulo, but at that age we had to modify the rules to keep the game moving.
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Gerald Goh
Australia
Glen Waverley
VIC
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My 3 year old son absolutely loves Eye Found It!.
 
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Bryce Nesbitt

California
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We definitely like Don't Break the Ice and Max (a cooperative game)
 
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Jim Shaw
United States
Swoyersville
Pennsylvania
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Go away monster is a great choice, although more of an activity than a game. I've had fun with Zitternix, and my daughters still enjoy it. Chicken cha cha cha was another big hit.
 
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AB
United Kingdom
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Gulo Gulo, definitely!

Also consider:

Cranium cariboo
My first Uno
picture dominoes

 
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Pamela Tan
Singapore
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Gulo Gulo and Kids of Carcassonne are Out Of Print, so if you see any, do grab them. Monkey Madness is also non-existent nowadays.

I would say Go Away Monster! is one of the best games for a 2.5yo, 3+ yo.
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Kent Pritchett
Canada
Calgary
Alberta
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I would say Go Away Monster!, Take the Cake!! and Loopin Louie. Take the Cake!! and Loopin Louie say 4+ on the box but no reason a 3 year old can't play, honestly my 2 year old plays Loopin Louie and has a blast.
 
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Kevin O'Hare
United States
San Carlos
California
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Three is tough depending on how astute they are about games in general.

Memory type games can be fun and as mentioned Gulo Gulo is a great game, as is Surprise!. I also like Snail's Pace Race as it's is great for teaching turn taking and rolling dice. Rat-a-Tat Cat would round out the short list for me.
 
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John Squires
United States
Brooklyn
New York
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I'll reiterate some of the other great suggestions.

For the young early 3-year old:

Feed the Kitty roll the dice and do what they tell you. My 2.5 year old daughter really enjoys this.

Go Away Monster!. There's a reason why this game is so popular. It's got a lot of charm and kids love shouting "Go Away Monster!"

Snail's Pace Race does teach taking turns and colors. For parents it teaches patience. You'll be happy when your kid ages out of this.

For the older 3-year old going on 4:

Froggy Boogie is a simple game with color-combination recognition and a small amount of memory (50% chance, unless you can remember). Excellent components.

Bunny Hop, fun game, where again some simple memory will help out. Love the production and the hopping bunnies.

Treasure Falls is basically the coin-pusher game you find at the arcade/fair but it's quick and fun.

Ants in the Pants is a simple dex game, that players and kids can enjoy together.

Sorry! Sliders really is great fun for adults and kids alike. I wasn't too impressed with Disney Pixar Cars 2 Sorry Sliders: World Grand Prix Race Edition though... the set-up alone is not worth it.

Spooky Stairs has good production and hidden identities. Best for when you kid is old enough to be patient and can concentrate enough to remember who's who.

Other than that we play a ton of HABA - Habermaaß GmbH games. They always have impressive components and age-appropriate play. Really, in most cases you can't go wrong. Just play games and afterwords say something along the line: "I had a great time, good game! I don't mind if I win or lose."



 
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Adam Jones
United States
Hillsboro
Oregon
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My daughter has a hard time sitting still for any length of time. But she does enjoy A Little Golden Book Circle of Friends Game. When my son was that age he really liked Cranium Cariboo.
 
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Lenore Borisova
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We have 3-year-old twins so here's what we have introduced successfully - both twins are able to sit for a fairly good amount of time so usually we don't play just one of these games at a time, and we play all of them unscored. Oh and they are one month away from being 3.5 if that helps.

* Dominoes - traditional black and white pips (no colors or pictures)
* Uno - we play open hand, but they get it
* GeoFamily - we play open hand, but they get it (matching sets of 4)
* Bat-waf - comparison matching game
* Balloon (also known as Five Balloons) - teaches how to lose
* Ravensburger memory game - I think ours has Moshi Monsters on it...I try to avoid getting anything commercialized but that's not always easy. We do all 48 cards and it's fine.
* Funny Penguins - the most simple of them and really I would think this should be more for 2-year-olds than 3-year-olds. Our kids love it though it's ridiculously simple. It was cheap.

We're thinking of introducing Set, Sequence for Kids, Snakes & Ladders after this. The twins had no trouble with all of the above.

We often say "Sometimes Mama wins/loses and sometimes [other names of whoever is around] wins/loses" - they seem to accept this without issue though their general dynamic tends to be cooperative so we downplay competition of the "winning" and "losing". Or we might allow a kid to play out their hand after someone has already been declared a winner because it doesn't matter and maybe in that moment they might need the closure or practice - that sometimes happen when we are first learning a game.

We have more upset over our daughter wanting to get the purple Balloon card in her hand or the Wild card in her Uno hand...so sometimes she gets upset and wails if she doesn't get the card she wanted. So we say "Maybe you'll get it next time" or "Maybe you'll get it as we play the game (from the draw pile instead of in your hand)" and only once have I had to say "I think we should play a different game right now until you're more ok with this one"

Our son seems to be happy to be doing just about anything though he requires a bit more prompt to stay on task sometimes.
 
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David Bartholomew
United States
Lancaster
Ohio
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Our three year old (almost four) absolutely LOVES the Memory Challenge: Civil War game. If you're not familiar with it, it's a matching game with 110 tiles (50 matching pairs + 10 "event" tiles).

The tiles have Civil War battles, generals, etc on them. The "event" tiles do things like let you peek at other tiles or take a match from another player. Each person also takes a role in the game and if they get the match that their role calls for then they get to invoke their special ability - making the opponents team lose a turn, etc. As an added bonus, the rulebook gives a little historical background on each of the matching sets. We try to read a couple of these each game so our older child (and us) learn something too.

The three year old does surprisingly well and gets VERY excited when they find a match We enjoy it way more than we expected too - I think the added "event" tiles, special roles, and historical information add a little bit to the standard matching part.

I'm pretty sure the Memory Challenge game is available in several other versions if U.S. Civil War isn't of interest to you.
 
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