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Games with Dan and Cora
Dan Hughes
United Kingdom
Huddersfield
West Yorkshire
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My four year old daughter Cora is perhaps an even more enthusiastic gamer than I am and over the last couple of years has amassed quite a collection of board games:


(the X-Wings on the top shelf are mine however)

Cora and I have recently started doing a little segment on the Dice Tower's Board Game Breakfast , and so I thought it might be nice to do a geeklist in order to document the ones we've covered so far.

We're both very much enjoying doing it so far, and I plan to continue until we run out of games, the Dice Tower ask us to stop, or Cora's cuteness wears off and I can no longer exploit her for z list internet fame.

Unfortunately you don't appear to be able to embed videos with a specific start point in BGG, so I've included a youtube link to each segment in the entries instead.
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1. Board Game: Cranium Hullabaloo [Average Rating:5.73 Overall Rank:10869]
Dan Hughes
United Kingdom
Huddersfield
West Yorkshire
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Our first review, and perhaps my favourite. Hullabaloo is a fantastic game and is one that Cora's older brother and sister will tolerate playing with her on occasions too. It also has the advantage of needing a clear floor, and so can be used as incentive to tidy up.

Theoretically there is probably an educational element to this game too, especially for younger children - teaching colour, shape, and categorising things. However its main strength is it is just a lot of fun.

We go our copy of Hullabaloo from a charity shop, which can be absolute treasure troves for kids games; much more so than decent adult games.

https://youtu.be/rIxP1zI2lrI?t=51m35s
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2. Board Game: Linus, der kleine Magier [Average Rating:6.19 Overall Rank:11707]
Dan Hughes
United Kingdom
Huddersfield
West Yorkshire
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I'm an absolute sucker for magnets in games, and Cora's game collection very much reflects this. I'm desperately trying to ration them out over the weeks so I don't just splurge them out all in one go, but it's taking a lot of self control.

Linus the Little Magician is a great little memory game where the players take turns to help the young wizard Linus tidy his room.

The players take turns to draw a card with a picture of a toy on it. They then place the Linus figure on top of a corresponding cardboard disk. If the disk is enchanted then it will magically stick to the base of Linus.

I got this from Amazon.de on one of my periodic "buying random kids games and hoping they are good" splurges. I've got many great games this way and even managed to pick up Super rhino nearly a whole year before everyone else started talking about it. Oh yes, I liked Super Rhino before it was cool.

https://youtu.be/BlcRpdA535Q?t=43m7s
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3. Board Game: Outfoxed! [Average Rating:7.23 Overall Rank:1357]
Dan Hughes
United Kingdom
Huddersfield
West Yorkshire
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Outfoxed is one of our more recent purchases, and its rules are a bit more complex than some of the other games in our collection. Cora loves it, but I'm not sure she'd be able to manage it if she were a little younger.

It's a deduction game where you have to find out the identity of a criminal fox by uncovering suspects, and then narrowing them down by a process of elimination using clues "they aren't wearing a hat, they haven't got a cain, They are wearing spectacles" etc.

It's a cooperative game, which tend not to be Cora's favourites as she gets a lot more stressed about losing (and presumably letting the team down) than she does in competitive games. This is a trait she shares with her 9 year old brother, who a few years ago got so stressed during a game of Forbidden Island he burst into tears.

I picked up this game after seeing a positive review on the Dice Tower I seem to remember, and certainly haven't regretted it.

https://youtu.be/yzuoNl4_vos?t=42m25s
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4. Board Game: Rory's Story Cubes [Average Rating:6.36 Overall Rank:1930] [Average Rating:6.36 Unranked]
Dan Hughes
United Kingdom
Huddersfield
West Yorkshire
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We've had a set of Rory's Story Cubes for a long time. In fact I think I first bought some to play with Cora's 12 year old sister (who these days will roll her eyes and sigh heavily if I even suggest playing a board game ).

Cora loves making up stories with these dice, and she can be surprisingly creative at times (I just missed out on recording her do a story about a teacher who's students already knew everything and so she had to make things up to tell them or she would be sacked - worthy of a Roald Dahl story I thought).

In this video I tried a different camera angle giving me a lot more natural light, which I much prefer the look of. You can see my laptop reflected in the behind me - but I'm sure no one minds. I use the webcam on my laptop to record the segments as

a) I don't have a camcorder anyway.
b) The fact Cora can see herself on the screen is the only reason she looks at the camera during the filming.

I'm fairly happy with the quality of the picture, however I'm not with the sound and will be investing in a proper microphone shortly. I've got a good mic already from back in my podcasting days, however it only records what is directly in front of it and so is no good for recording two people's conversation.

https://youtu.be/oxQSEP_TThQ?t=43m24s

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5. Board Game: Da ist der Wurm drin [Average Rating:6.33 Overall Rank:4476]
Dan Hughes
United Kingdom
Huddersfield
West Yorkshire
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I absolutely love the art and the production quality in this game, and it's a perfect example of how the German market treats children's board games with so much more respect than the UK market.

As I say in the review, at it's heart this is a roll and move game. However it's done really well and even grown ups get a thrill out of pushing the worm segment into the bottom of the compost heap and seeing the worm pop up at the top.

There is a variant of this game that makes it a little more interesting and introduces a bit of "take that" to proceedings. However it requires more than two players, which unfortunately rarely happens for Cora and I (her 12 year old sister doesn't like playing games at all, and her 9 year old brother only plays "kids games" out of sufferance - much preferring X-Wing and Dice Masters).

This was another "buy it and hope it's good" purchase from amazon.de. With recent changes in the strength of the Euro against the pound I think the days of those kinds of shopping sprees have come to an end for a while.

https://youtu.be/979olrAMaj4?t=46m23s
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6. Board Game: Brandon the Brave [Average Rating:6.47 Overall Rank:4686]
Dan Hughes
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Huddersfield
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For a long period of time this was definitely Cora's favourite board game. Brandon the Brave is a lovely, relatively inexpensive, tile laying game. This is the first Haba game we've ever featured I think, but it's very unlikely to be the last.

I was talking to Eric Summerer while I was at Essen recently (do you like how I dropped that right in there?), and he was telling me that the for a long time the Haba people had no idea how popular their stuff was with hobby gamers. That's changed now and I think they are making more of a push to the specialist market.

Like most of my Haba games i bought Brandon the Brave from Amazon.de. Of course that was back in the days where the strength of the pound made that sort of thing feasible.

https://youtu.be/mIY9sMzZaFY?t=43m9s
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7. Board Game: Guess Who? Extra [Average Rating:5.77 Overall Rank:9635]
Dan Hughes
United Kingdom
Huddersfield
West Yorkshire
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Cora loves Guess Who, as I did as a kid. We tend to play so just one of us is guessing at a time so as to reduce the number of things she has to think about a bit.

There are a few other mainstream or traditional games that we play quite a bit that I may feature at some point in the future. Snap, Dominoes, and the magnetic fishing game are all strong favourites.

I look like I'm frozen in the gameplay portion of the video for some treason, like its the final credits in Police Squad or something. It made me realise I need to ham it up a bit while we are playing the game too.

https://youtu.be/cIC9_XAF-n4?t=37m47s
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8. Board Game: Charly at the Zoo [Average Rating:5.30 Unranked]
Dan Hughes
United Kingdom
Huddersfield
West Yorkshire
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Another Haba game, but one that's been out of print for a while unfortunately. I got this in a trade with someone on a Facebook group. I think I swapped Pengu Pengu for this game and also Turi-Tour, which may be making an appearance in a segment at some point in the future (although Cora is really bad at it)

I amused myself greatly with the Mother-in-law joke in this video.

https://youtu.be/FZIMiA_i6RI?t=43m24s
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9. Board Game: Spooky Stairs [Average Rating:6.46 Overall Rank:2255]
Dan Hughes
United Kingdom
Huddersfield
West Yorkshire
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Magnets. I love magnets!!

Spooky stairs is one of my favourite kids games, and one of our most played. For a while we didn't own a copy and so every now and again the kids and I would take a trip to my FLGS in order to play the copy that they have in their library, which was lovely as it made it a real event.

Eventually I caved however and bought a copy from amazon.de for Cora's 4th birthday.

The person under the sheet in this review is my friend
Mike Poole
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Huddersfield
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https://youtu.be/7iNrpgj9E7Q?t=42m1s

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10. Board Game: Pengoloo [Average Rating:5.95 Overall Rank:6853]
Dan Hughes
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Huddersfield
West Yorkshire
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The lovely components in this memory game really raise it above the herd.

I cringe a bit when rewatching this video as I was playing so sub-optimally it's untrue. I'm constantly picking the wrong penguin despite the fact that the correct one had been revealed to me just moments ago.

My wife also told me off for this one as Cora is still wearing her pyjamas.

https://youtu.be/cTTohqg_eqI?t=39m51s
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11. Board Game: Hamster Clan [Average Rating:5.55 Overall Rank:13560]
Dan Hughes
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Huddersfield
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I spotted this game on the Essen preview lists and was very keen to pick it up. I was actually quite lucky to get it as there were very few of them on sale at the Haba booth.

While at Essen I met Eric Summerer which was very exciting. I persuaded him to buy this game for his kids. He didn't like it. I felt bad.

He was wrong though, this game is great! (considering it's a roll and move game aimed at young kids)

https://youtu.be/Npp4PVv2CW4?t=31m55s
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12. Board Game: Zingo! [Average Rating:5.34 Overall Rank:15595]
Dan Hughes
United Kingdom
Huddersfield
West Yorkshire
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Another twist on a old standard which rises above the crowd due to excellent components.

There are actually quite a few different variants of Zingo! with various educational twists which look very interesting. Now Cora is starting to read and do maths at school we may well be picking a couple more up at some point.

https://youtu.be/Npp4PVv2CW4?t=31m55s
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13. Board Game: Follow that Car! [Average Rating:7.00 Unranked]
Dan Hughes
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Huddersfield
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I suddenly realised the other day that Follow that Car is a tile laying version of Uno. Which is no bad thing in my view.

Orchard Games, the publisher of Follow that Car, are fairly ubiquitous in the UK and, while they aren't in the same league as Haba for quality, they have a reliable standard to them.

https://youtu.be/Q0opjsdDDaU?t=34m8s
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14. Board Game: Family Flutter-By [Average Rating:5.92 Overall Rank:11102]
Dan Hughes
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Another game I picked up at Essen after seeing it on the new releases list.

I've never seen this origami/folding mechanic before, and it is certainly intriguing (although a similar style of game aimed at adults was released at the same time at Essen I think).

As I say in the video we don't tend to use this as a game as such, in that Cora would have zero chance playing against and adult or older child if they were playing to win (and so fails somewhat as a "family game" in my opinion. I imagine it would be a lot of fun with a group of people with similar skill levels however.

https://youtu.be/6_6Qjr_VZO0?t=25m18s
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15. Board Game: Loopin' Louie [Average Rating:6.83 Overall Rank:729]
Dan Hughes
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Huddersfield
West Yorkshire
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A classic game, which I am reliably informed by a Duchman is exclusively played by drunk university students in Holland.

I played a eight player version of Looping Louie once at a convention which had also been adapted to have a variable speed louie. I have glimpsed nirvana and now the world seems like a cold place.

Interestingly after seeing this video my 10 year old son has said he'd like to appear in a segment in the future. My only problem will be restraining his talkativeness in enough to fit in the time limit Tom has assigned me. I might have to request my own 3 hour special.

https://youtu.be/e_4jyDWBsdo?t=37m40s
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16. Board Game: Bugs in the Kitchen [Average Rating:6.27 Overall Rank:2629]
Dan Hughes
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Huddersfield
West Yorkshire
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We tend to record our segments in batches of a few at a time. This review, along with a couple of others, was recorded at a time when I hadn't realised how mucky the lens of the camera was. The result is that it has a kind of soft focus blur worthy of a 70's movie dream sequence.

Bugs in the kitchen is a fantastic game, and another one that goes down well with people of all ages. Its one of the rare games that all three of my kids can play against each other with everyone having equal amounts of fun (although Cora has still to grasp the actual strategy involved in the game). It has a great toy factor too.

https://youtu.be/k2BD5GyrSGU?t=34m34s
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17. Board Game: The Princess and the Pea [Average Rating:5.42 Overall Rank:14836]
Dan Hughes
United Kingdom
Huddersfield
West Yorkshire
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This is a game that I've had my eye on ever since I started buying kids games, and one that had been out of print until very recently.

I saw a copy in Haba's games library at Essen and would have bought it if I'd have seen it in their shop. However it wasn't there and I thought my chance had slipped through my fingers.

However a very kind and generous BGG Secret Santa sent us a copy of it (along with a copy of Robinson Crusoe - which was also very exciting). They also sent us a variety of lovely German sweets and treats which I reluctantly shared with the kids too.

https://youtu.be/oaIL37Zob10?t=32m15s
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18. Board Game: Peng! [Average Rating:5.73 Unranked]
Dan Hughes
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Huddersfield
West Yorkshire
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Another soft focus episode.

Peng! was one of Cora's favourite games for quite a long period of time. I've been quite impressed at how well she takes the "take that" elements of the game - being gracious when she's targeted but an appropriate level of trash talk when she is dishing it out.

A lot of people have asked about the card holders we use in the video. I bought them from a 3rd party seller on Amazon who I'm not sure are still trending. However if you search on amazon or ebay you should find someone selling something similar.

https://youtu.be/MVVNgGcRMRo?t=35m26s
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19. Board Game: Top That! [Average Rating:6.17 Overall Rank:7185]
Dan Hughes
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Huddersfield
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Top That! is a fantastic tool for developing complex thinking for kids of five and under, but it doesn't work particularly well as a game due to it's "race" nature.

Cora has no chance at being competitive at this game, and so unless I throw the result (which I'm more than happy to do on occasion) I could see her becoming very disheartened with playing it.

Which doesn't mean that this game has no place in the kids games collection however - we just treat it as a co-operative logic puzzle rather than a competitive experience.

https://youtu.be/IWuBPZ8L0yo?t=35m46s
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20. Board Game: Rabbit Rally [Average Rating:6.41 Overall Rank:8574]
Dan Hughes
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Huddersfield
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Rabbit Rally is a fantastically original and fun game, and I feel we didn't really do it justice in this video. I'm unhappy with the lightning, the angle I shot the overview section, and also I probably should have waited until Cora was a little bit less hyper before shooting it.

However Boardgames Breakfast was right in the middle of its Kingdom Death Monster controversies at that point so no one commented on it

https://youtu.be/a_QmOlYJ5pI?t=52m57s
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21. Board Game: Outside the Scope of BGG [Average Rating:6.74 Overall Rank:2716]
Dan Hughes
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Huddersfield
West Yorkshire
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I just wanted to mention to anyone following this list that I've uploaded all the segments I've done for The Dice Tower onto my own YouTube channel.

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCTl7ZQ4SLkchZr6NblRd7ig

There's only repeats there currently. I've vague plans to start doing some original content too - but then again I've got vague plans to do a lot of things
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