A Gnome's Ponderings

I'm a gamer. I love me some games and I like to ramble about games and gaming. So, more than anything else, this blog is a place for me to keep track of my ramblings. If anyone finds this helpful or even (good heavens) insightful, so much the better.
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There are some good free Roll and Writes that are good for kids

Lowell Kempf
United States
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I was trying to write a blog about a game I tried called Santa’s Southern Cross when I realized that it all boiled down to I found it dull, I’d rather play Paper Pinball and the best use for it was to have a stack of play sheets at the kids table so the adults could finish Christmas dinner.

And then I realized that you can do a lot better if you want to keep the kids occupied with Roll and Writes, even if you don’t want to spend any money.

(I also realized that Paper Pinball is a threshold game for me)

Just off the top of my head, you could use Tanuki Matsuri or 13 Sheep or Canterpiller Feast. And if I spent twenty minutes going over my files, I’d probably come up with a dozen or so more.

What I realized you would need in my theoretical table of kids who’d rather play a Roll and Write than find fragile family heirlooms to destroy (hey, I was a kid once) are games that are thematic, accessible and actually fun. I quite enjoy abstracts but I think a theme is good for young minds to latch onto.

Tanuki Matsuri is a game where playful spirits collect fruit through theft. The cascading effects creates really fun gameplay. Canterpiller remains the closest thing I’ve found to The Very Hungry Caterpillar the Game I’ve found. And 13 Sheep is one of the only Roll and Wrotes I’ve found that just uses a single die and still works. Plus, cute sheep.

And all three of my examples are games you can teach in about three minutes.

Yes, I know if I actually brought a stack of Roll and Writes for the kiddies, the best I could hope for is then to become paper airplanes. But I could give kids quality games to ignore!
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