Kids on Board Games Geeklist - August 2017
They call me Mister...
Ireland
Donegal
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Welcome to
Kids on Board Games Geeklist
- August 2017



Hello all and welcome to the monthly "Kids on Board" games Geeklist.

Children need time to play alone and with other children without adult intervention, but playtime with adults is also important. As we all know board games are great for that. Not only do they teach children patience, problem solving, social skills and creativity amongst other things they can just be plain FUN for everyone.

This is a geeklist for anyone that plays any board games with children. Remember, they don't have to be your own children! (Just get permission first if they aren't!!) Hopefully it will inspire, inform, advise and open our eyes to the world of gaming with kids.

Feel free to post geeklist items, comment on other peoples items and generally mingle in the comments below. Also, consider spreading the word to anyone you feel may be interested.


Now, all you need to do is:

1. Play a board game with kid(s) within this month - it'd be extremely helpful if you can give the ages of the kids
2. Post a geeklist entry after you've played
3. Let us know how it plays
4. Provide feedback for others:
- hopefully one comment/word per child, maybe they can devise their own rating system?
- give your own overview, the adults perspective on how it was for you and how it seemed for them
5. Be nice, it's okay to disagree but it's not okay to be rude - we're all different but also the same
6. That's it!

Feel free to post photos but also feel free to avoid using full face pictures and avoid full names. You know, the usual internet safety rules.


Previous Months

For past and future geeklist notifications consider subscribing to the Kids on Board Games Geeklist - SUBSCRIPTION THREAD



Kids on Board Resources

Gaming with Kids BGG Forum
GeekDad - 10 reasons to Play Games with your Kids
The Benefits of Board Games
10 Benefits of Board Games with Kids
Stop Playing Monopoly with your kids and Play These Instead
BGG Family Games List
BGG Family Games Subdomain

Kids on Board Games Geeklist - SUBSCRIPTION THREAD



This Month

Welcome to the second ever Kids on Board games geeklist.

Well, there seemed to be a great reaction to the list last month so a big thank you to all who contributed, subscribed, advertised or simply just read it.

What I'd like to do now is gauge some thoughts and opinions on how you'd like to progress this in the future. What I'm thinking of is having volunteer host each month - how do people feel about that? Hosting is very simple, all it entails is the creation of the list and I will give you the header code as a template to maintain some continuity, and that is about it. You have no need to post or comment but it's always better if you do.

I'd also like to see what people think about maybe having simple themes each month (the Couples geeklist theme last month was Travel, or we could use game mechanics e.g. tile laying)? Of course, you are not limited by the theme, you can add any game whatsoever, themes are just another way to inspire you to pull out a forgotten or hardly played item. Whatever your thoughts drop them into the comments below but be all that as it may, as usual, simply take a look around, make yourself at home, and have fun!

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1. Board Game: Codenames [Average Rating:7.75 Overall Rank:50] [Average Rating:7.75 Unranked]
They call me Mister...
Ireland
Donegal
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A strong opening - Cluedo:2, nailed it!


Now they are a little older I thought I would try this fun little game with them and I'm pleased to say it went pretty well.

I had no worries with D(10) but B(8) I thought might need just a little help.

We played boys v girls. After the cards had been laid out I just flipped the few that B may have had trouble with, things like Atlantis, Roulette, Kiwi, etc. It worked out well and everyone had fun. My wife decided this was a great game for B as it helped work on his vocab and reading, his staying quiet and still but in a fun themed spylicious way.

The boys lost 2-0 but everyone had fun and the theme really dragged the kids away from what is pretty much an English Language exercise.



D(10) said "It's very good for learning words without getting bored."
B(8) said "When you're the spymaster it's complicated and tricky to do more than one at a time."
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2. Board Game: Elder Sign: Omens of the Deep [Average Rating:7.88 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.88 Unranked]
Rian Van Der Merwe
United States
Portland
Oregon
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My 7YO daughter loves Elder Sign, and I heard good things about this expansion. She was really keen to give it a go, so we played it on Sunday. We had just gotten back from a party where she got her face painted "rainbow tiger", and she was ready to battle some sea monsters:




It was fun, but the expansion is REALLY hard. Cards come out face down, and it feels like way more monsters appear than in the base game. I think this would be really cool for an adult gaming group, but I think for playing with my daughter I'll stick to the base game, which is a little easier to beat.
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3. Board Game: Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures Game [Average Rating:7.79 Overall Rank:69] [Average Rating:7.79 Unranked]
Nathanael Robinson
United States
Cary
North Carolina
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Normally, this is a great game to get kids to understand how miniatures games work, but it failed miserably over the weekend. Or at least it didn't quite do what it normally does.

Mr. E's friend came over. My son (11) is always eager to share the things he has, especially his miniatures games. However, this boy has what I can best describe as a computer addiction. It is nigh impossible to get him to engage without device in his hand. Several weeks ago, we took Mr. E and his friends bowling for his birthday; this boy barely looked up from his phone when rolling the ball down the lane. (I'm not speaking figuratively).

When he arrived, the friend was holding his phone and had headphones on. Mr. E tried to show him some things that they might play: All Quiet on the Martian Front and Mechs vs Minions, the latter perhaps appealing to him on the basis of being based on a video game. The friend looked, said, "cool," and moved on. He was really only interested in what we had on our XBox. I set up X-Wing, hoping that based on our past experiences, the theme would rope him in. No luck. Mr. E took it in stride, and they spent the afternoon playing Minecraft and other stuff.

Since it was already set up,Mr. E and I played. I'd like to think I can be a challenging opponent, but I am terrible at this game. Within a few moves, Mr. E's Decimator was on me. I got a few good shots off, but after losing the Ghost and having several crits against my other ships, I resigned.

Mr. E likes the game, but he doesn't love it like he used to. Perhaps we have so much stuff that he doesn't identify with a particular force at all. Perhaps he doesn't find the choices engaging. Still, it gets requested and we have fun. Personally, I almost never request X-Wing and, depending on the circumstances, I might recommend something else. For my money, Talon provides far more enjoyment without the hassle of setting up.
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4. Board Game: Schmatzspatz [Average Rating:6.09 Unranked]
Gary Stone
United Kingdom
Freethorpe
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I got this in a bundle of games I was buying and it was only £2.50. It's a Coop game featuring a few cardboard wheels stacked on top of each other in the specially designed box insert.

The first wheel has various holes in it, the next wheel has pictures around the outside and the top wheel has pictures of baby birds with little holes in their mouths. There are 4 wooden birds that sit on the outside of the wheel, each bird has 3 chicks they must feed.

You roll a die which matches the pictures on the second wheel and turn a bird around until you match up with the die picture. That bird then picks up a cardboard worm and tries to put it into one of the babies mouths. If the baby bird's mouth matches up with a hole on the bottom (now hidden) wheel then the worm gets eaten and you place a cardboard beak in the mouth to show it is closed. You have to feed all the birds before you run out of worms.

I played this with my 3 year old daughter and she enjoyed it. We lost on the last bird though.
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5. Board Game: King of New York [Average Rating:7.07 Overall Rank:456]
Michael Lettner
United States
Oklahoma
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Played this with my 7yo (L) & 5yo (N) daughters. My 5yo only played for half the game, but the good thing with this and King of Tokyo that she can play for how long she wants to and then just say her monster dies when she's out. This is a little out of the 7yo's ability, but she likes it a lot.

The game just drags on with getting them to roll the big dice. KoNY lasts a little longer than KoT, but does seem that there is more back and forth. I almost was able to destroy L's Space Kitty, but she was able to buy cards for lots of stars and health. On my last move, I was able to knock her down to 2 health, but she was still alive to claim victory. Space Kitty defeated Kong.

It's kind of fun with having both games and expansions that you can choose what monsters to use. We also play with Power Up cards, but since they wanted KoT monsters, just choose a monster to have it's Power Up cards (Shark's ability for her Space Kitty)
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6. Board Game: Rhino Hero [Average Rating:6.99 Overall Rank:627] [Average Rating:6.99 Unranked]
Justin
United States
Plano
Texas
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This is probably my favorite game to play with my daughter right now. She just beat me (should have taken a picture... oops). She's very big on singing right now so I've had to help her understand that loud singing while you're trying to carefully stack cards is probably a bad idea. She usually listens.

Not much else to say. Rhino Hero is incredibly simple, but satisfying.
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7. Board Game: Apples to Apples [Average Rating:5.88 Overall Rank:3451] [Average Rating:5.88 Unranked]
Marty "back to the grind" Malone
United States
Mansfield
Texas
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This game can be a ton of fun in the right mood. We played what actually made up two games. Cindy got to 5 cards which is our win condition in as fast as possible. Then the kids were like lets go to 7 then to 10 as she got to 7 right away and then a metagame developed where the kids tried to guess which was Cindy's card and not choose it then she had to adjust her strategy to play cards more like the kids so they would be fooled. We have had this happen in Dixit before and it is fun to watch. Kyle actually hit 10 first with Cindy at 9. I think I was stuck on three or four and was mostly an observer but it is a fun little game that takes twists and turns.

Really like it when in the right mood but can be loud.

Loud kid games.
Anomia fun but not when someone has a headache. Loudest of them all.
Snake Oil. Funny game but loud.
Sheriff of Nottingham. Yep loud.
Apples to Apples. Already mentioned.
Resistance: Avalon lying and loud.

I feel as a parent it is important to recognize the loud games and make sure the mood is right or they can be frustrating.
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8. Board Game: Dice of Crowns [Average Rating:6.57 Overall Rank:5341] [Average Rating:6.57 Unranked]
Ben Croswell
United States
heath
Ohio
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The Bubba Nugget(7) loves pressing his luck with the rest of the family. He really enjoys it when he gets to "wear" the crown a the end.
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9. Board Game: Memoir '44 [Average Rating:7.55 Overall Rank:114] [Average Rating:7.55 Unranked]
Nathanael Robinson
United States
Cary
North Carolina
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The quintessential beginner wargame? Perhaps, although it was not our first. I bought this two years ago for Mr. E's ninth birthday (now he's 11). It may be our most played game, mostly owing to the speed at which it can be set up and how quickly it plays.

We played one of the Guadalcanal scenarios from the Pacific Theater expansion. I played the Japanese, who had infantry and one artillery unit, although they were ensconced in the hills. Mr E had infantry, three artillery, and two tank units. Against my better judgement, I played aggressively, trying to use the Japanese combat abilities to their advantage. It surprised Mr. E,but he was able to claw back the victory.

Neither of us think that it is the best wargame. It's good, but it does become really compelling when one of the expansions is added. However, it is the most playable wargame. It's among the few that can be played on a school night.





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10. Board Game: Ticket to Ride: Europe [Average Rating:7.57 Overall Rank:95] [Average Rating:7.57 Unranked]
Janette Lynch
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Played this as a three player with a 6 and 9 year old. Great game, which is a little more cutthroat at 3 players as double routes are only available to one player meaning a rush to get through some cities.
Great game for kids and adults alike, we always have fun when we play it.

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11. Board Game: Pick Picknic [Average Rating:6.56 Overall Rank:1509]
Janette Lynch
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Another game that my kids 6 and 9 took out to play this week. It's a fast simultaneous card selection game that always draws laughs at the table especially when the kids eat mom or dads chickens. Simple game that younger kids can play with no problems.
One that I never say no to and often request to play when we only have a little time before heading out the door.

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12. Board Game: TSCHAK! [Average Rating:6.39 Overall Rank:2975]
Janette Lynch
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Daughter, aged 9 picks this game a lot for us to play. Played this last night with husband and 9 and 6 year old, it's a quick trick taking game where everyone is trying to win treasures and avoid monsters over 4 plays/dungeon levels from a hand of 10 cards. Each player chooses 3 cards per dungeon layer and highest total wins the treasure while lowest total gets the monster. The last card in the hand fights for the gold at the top of the dungeon. There are also some cursed treasures thrown in meaning sometimes you don't want to win any hand which adds a little spin to the game.
When you finish a round, you pass the cards and play a round with the cards someone else was holding last turn, and see if you can do any better than they did. You don’t rely on getting a lucky hand. The winner is the one who plays his cards better than everyone else.
The art is FANTASTIC and I love this game. It's a great introduction to trick taking for kids and incredible to look at on the table. Would highly recommend this one to everyone.


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13. Board Game: Harry Potter: Hogwarts Battle [Average Rating:7.55 Overall Rank:268]
Concetta
United States
Basking Ridge
New Jersey
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My kids are a little older so I hope that is helpful to someone.

I played Games 1 - 3 of this coop with my boys, C(16) and D(13).

The first 2 games were too easy and we won handily, but we had fun regardless. I know the rulebook suggests that if you are familiar with deck builders, which we are, then start at Game 3, but we felt like we couldn't just skip the first two.

The 3rd game only changed one small thing (
Spoiler (click to reveal)
added player powers
), but the game was much more challenging. We lost. Still fun though!

I don't know what it is about this game. So far it is a very straight forward deck builder but we are really enjoying it. We love Legendary: A Marvel Deck Building Game and this has a similar feel so you would think it would be a "more of the same" kind of feeling but for some reason it isn't. I wish I could put my finger on it but I can't.

The boys are incredibly excited about opening Game 4 to see what the heck the
Spoiler (click to reveal)
dice
will add. But we have to beat Game 3 first.

I added the spoiler tags but the spoilers are tiny - kind of overkill but I wanted to play it safe.

If you have any questions about boys this age please ask. We have been playing modern board games together for about 4 years so I have a bit of experience.

Oh - just a little brag - how lucky am I that my teenage boys will still spend a couple hours on a Saturday afternoon playing a game with me!!! #BLESSED!!!!
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14. Board Game: Ivor the Engine [Average Rating:6.44 Overall Rank:4273]
Neill Pert
United Kingdom
Church Fenton
North Yorkshire
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Played this with my Daughter(10) and wife.

This is despite it's cute sheep meepled theme quite a tricky little game making use of multi-use cards.

Definitely enjoyed it and it needs to be out more often.

Joint winners honours went to Daughter & myself. Looking at BGStats she was a victor last time as well

/
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15. Board Game: Codenames: Pictures [Average Rating:7.39 Overall Rank:219] [Average Rating:7.39 Unranked]
Neill Pert
United Kingdom
Church Fenton
North Yorkshire
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A quick blast through 3 rounds with the whole family before leaving for work for the week. (kids 6 & 10)

It's the first time we've had this out this year. The picture edition is great because the littlest Celt can't read words from the normal version inside his head yet.

Had some giggles and the boys manage to get a 3 off one clue.

2 to 1 boys to girls

/:
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16. Board Game: My First Carcassonne [Average Rating:6.73 Overall Rank:1284]
Ken L.
Canada
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My nearly-6-year-old and I broke this out yesterday afternoon as it was raining out and we were having a quiet sort of day. She has to be in the mood for it, but when she is she enjoys it quite a bit. She particularly likes making up stories for what all the kids are doing when she places them and turning it into a bit of a story.

Now that she's getting older, she is starting to make more strategic decisions and I have to hold her hand less as we play. She beat me this time, which always increases her level of enjoyment.
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17. Board Game: Rocky Road à la Mode [Average Rating:6.81 Overall Rank:2613]
Nick Shaw
United Kingdom
Plymouth
Devon
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Played two games of this with the kids over the weekend, first with 3 of them, and second with just my 11-year-old.

First game: We were all re-remembering how to play, but got into the groove really quickly. My 13-year-old pipped us to the win by getting over 9 points first. We just couldn't catch her!



The second game, with my 11-year-old, was a nice, quick game. I managed to get to 10 points, but with 4 spaces available to her, my daughter managed to take a card (1 time), play it down (1 time), complete the first order for free with her existing completed cards (1 time) AND complete the second order using the 2 popsicle tokens she had and the one remaining card in hand (1 time), getting her to 9 points, which also got her the second 3-different-kinds bonus card for 2 extra points, beating my by 1 point! Super stuff.

Building up to my final completed card to get me to 10 points


There's a traffic jam!
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18. Board Game: Dungeon! [Average Rating:5.95 Overall Rank:3635]
Víctor Andrade
Mexico
León de los Aldama
Guanajuato
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my brother in law bring me this wonderful game, i played the mexican version back in the 80's and when i discovered the 5th edition i now i must own one to play with mouse (my kid Ivan, 5 years old)

so far we have played 2 times, the first one were Mouse, Wife and me, the second only Mouse and me, i tweaked a bit the rules for my kid (the spellbook, as he want to play with red wizard and the gold amount to collect was lowered a bit)

if you are curious, the first game ended with my kid playing a priest and won with about 15,000 gold, wife collect at the end 1500 gold and me about 5500 golds. The second game ended with Mouse collecting 17,000 golds and me with a bit less that 5000 golds.

my kid is a bit air headed and a bit stubborn (like father like son) so he usually plays the way he likes, but this game is quite "Elegant" (a fancy way that is simple but on a really cool way)

is worth of note that while we have played 2 times so far, he played 1 on his own, take the box and start playing all by himself, not sure how he played it but at least for me is notable.

a big plus of this edition is the artwork, the monsters are quite funny instead of scary, the gelatinous cube is Mouse favorite monster.
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19. Board Game: Onward to Venus [Average Rating:6.93 Overall Rank:1530]
Nathanael Robinson
United States
Cary
North Carolina
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I defend this game more than any other on BGG, and mostly because I think that most people come to the game with warped expectations. They are expecting a game that is more like Steam, which this is not. They don't seem to get the theme, and expect more direct confrontation.

Onward to Venus is an area control game set in the world of Greg Broadmore's Dr. Grordbort's graphic novels. They present a satirical take on Victorian era imperialism with a sci-fi bent. There are lots of weird ray guns and robots, and the personalities are oversized. In the novels, the "heroes" beat up the primitive species of the solar system and force them to work in mines and factories. The last part of the theme is not really represented in the game. What players do is send fleets and infantry to different planets to capture mines and factories and take special rewards.

Mr. E (11) always starts out slow. Each round starts with tiles being drawn from a bag; the tiles are placed on the various planets and moons. Some are mines and factories that can be taken or conquered. Others offer the opportunity to take other players mines and factories. Still others allow one to draw card from a deck that give special abilities. Mr. E never gets aggressive in the first round. He doesn't pick up the easy factories first, and he ends up spending lots of money to build new forces. It's telling that I had the highest income in the first two rounds. But in the third and final round, Mr. E buckled down, strategically picking off valuable targets to win the game.

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20. Board Game: Minecraft Card Game? [Average Rating:5.76 Overall Rank:8765]
Philip O'Brien
Australia
Melbourne
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Picked up in a recent maths trade and played for the first time with my 6yo and 9yo sons.

Both love minecraft proper, although I think the 9yo is starting to lose interest now.

Seems to have a strong theme connection to minecraft, collect resources and craft them into tools, use tools for their benefits and gain points. Very simple but they really enjoyed it. I even saw them pull it out and play it themselves while I was out which is a rarity for them.



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21. Board Game: Viva Topo! [Average Rating:6.86 Overall Rank:1703]
Philip O'Brien
Australia
Melbourne
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This is the other really hot game with them at the moment.

Pulled this one out thinking maybe they were getting a bit too old for it and I could pass it on. However it's getting a lot of plays so looks like it's staying with us for a while longer.
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22. Board Game: Castle Panic [Average Rating:6.68 Overall Rank:837]
Justin
United States
Plano
Texas
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I traded off Runebound for this and the Wizard Tower expansion after my daughter enjoyed helping me play Dungeonquest. We did a learning game today. The game is rated 10+, but my 4-year-old did okay understanding the mechanisms while I helped with "strategy". The game ran a little long for her attention span, but I think it will be a hit going forward. Her favorite part was the boulders. meeple
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23. Board Game: Santo Domingo [Average Rating:6.74 Overall Rank:3275]
Nick Shaw
United Kingdom
Plymouth
Devon
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Got this game just last week, after breaking my purchasing-fast of the last few months (I've been buying print & play / prototyping materials instead with my gaming budget!). I played this at game night the other night, which went well enough for its clearly filler nature, but I knew it would go down well with a younger audience...

So before I headed off to work this morning, I broke this out with my eldest 3 daughters. They took to it immediately, really liking the simultaneous action selection and interaction the cards had with what other people had played.

The final scores were: Tilly: 31, Me: 30, Evelyn: 28, Martha: 27. So very close in score!

Definitely one we'll be playing more of, especially as it plays in just 10-15 mins, so a great quick-fix game.
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24. Board Game: Hey, That's My Fish! [Average Rating:6.74 Overall Rank:698]
Ryan Mayes
United States
Gilbert
Arizona
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When I'm not looking, my games play each other!
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Tonight, Rory got up from the dinner table and went into the living room. He didn't say anything, he just left. Regina and I were looking at each other, trying to figure out what was going on, when Rory walked back to the table holding Hey, That's My Fish!

That was a pleasant surprise, especially because we allow games at the dinner table.

Anyway, I decided to let him have it this game. I got myself a nice little chunk of iceberg where all the fishes were for me. However, I still only beat him by 5 points. I thought for sure, I was going to beat him by about 15. Haha. No matter. I like that little game, and I like games at dinner.

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25. Board Game: Yashima: Legend of the Kami Masters [Average Rating:7.09 Overall Rank:4076] [Average Rating:7.09 Unranked]
Nathanael Robinson
United States
Cary
North Carolina
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Yashima is another game whose strategies I can't seem to master, and Mr. E consistently cleans my clock on. It is a small skirmish game with miniatures based around themes of Japanese mythology. Each character has its own deck of attacks and special abilities as well as cards that constitute a tome of special abilities. A second deck is shuffled together with the attacks, Smash Up style, the represent the characters "kami" (animal spirit, to be brief). Each card has an attack, a karma value (what can be spent on special abilies), sometimes defensive abilities, and keywords that trigger for the characters' special abilities. There is also a hex grid that shows where on the board that the attack hits, but those have no effect in a two player game. The tome works like a book, and the player can turn the pages of the book to access new abilities. On each turn, a player either attacks or moves and may make one tome action, paying whatever karma is required to do so. The deck of attack cards also represents the characters life, and the goal is to force the opponent to discard all their cards in the deck, killing their character.

Mr. E likes the game, but he has never requested the game. I got it for him at time that he was deeply invested in Ruroni Kenshin, and he liked the Japanese theme of the game. He has one character in the game that he plays all the time, Kenta. He things the miniatures are cool. He gets the cardplay. There is one aspect that I believe he finds unsatisfying. Each round, players take token that say "attack" on one side and "move" on the other. They flip it to the side they want, adding it to an existing pool of two tokens (one move, one attack). Each turn, the player will take one of the tokens, limiting them to either moving or attacking. I think it frustrates him that he can't always get into position to do the attack he wants. The more move tokens that are in the pool, the more that actions (including attacks) need to be played from one's tome. Although I can't seem to win the game, I can control the pace of the game by continually choosing move over attack. On his side, he sees lots of powerful cards in his hand that he can't play, which is frustrating.

I think it's a pretty good game, something small and tactical that can be put out and played in a small amount of time and in a small space. I bought it for around $20 in Amazon's Gencon sale in 2016, so it was a little bargain. I don't think I'd recommend this for kids under 10 because of the way that attacks can be limited, but I think any kid who can get into card play, like Pokemon or Smash Up, should be able to understand the core mechanics. The miniatures are very cool for the price point, and I would recommend it for something to paint first.

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