Gaming with (your) kids - New to the kids August 2017
Marcel Sagel
Netherlands
Groningen
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Continuing the tradition started by Ed the Red this geeklist offers an opportunity for gaming families to share their experiences.

Which new games have you introduced to your kid(s) in the past month, or have any of your games enjoyed a new lease of life and become popular again?

It would probably be informative if you share what ages the children you played with are, and how much they enjoyed it as well as how much you enjoyed it.

Please add your own entry to the list, one per child might make sense if they are of different ages and abilities. And if you play with kids that aren't yours - nieces, nephews or friends' kids, you can include those.

If you'd like to be alerted to next month's list when it appears, subscribe to this announcement thread.
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1. Board Game: Citadels [Average Rating:7.14 Overall Rank:295]
Marcel Sagel
Netherlands
Groningen
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Citadels had been collecting dust for years in our household, but then my partner saw a holiday picture from a friend/acquaintance on which said friend was playing Citadels with her family. Which triggered the thought - hey, maybe we should play this with our boys (13 and 11) too!
And so we did, and it was quite a hit. In the first game, our oldest son was on the receiving end of some thieving and assassinating (mostly targeted at others, as is usual in this game) so he didn't seem to like it much, but he turned around and is now the one requesting it all the time.
We played a total of four times last month.
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2. Board Game: Custom Heroes [Average Rating:7.05 Overall Rank:3369]
Marcel Sagel
Netherlands
Groningen
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For the first time ever, and after 500 attempts or so, I won a prize in a BGG contest! (They had to make a contest with a whopping 100 prizes for that.)
So, first of all, a big THANK YOU to Alderac Entertainment Group (AEG) for sending me this game.

Custom Heroes is actually a very simple climbing game, but there is a twist: It features the "card crafting" mechanism (also seen in Mystic Vale), so you get some options to change the cards on the fly. Which makes a somewhat dull concept suddenly interesting again.

It took us a round or two to wrap our heads around the card crafting, but then we really took off and some sleeves got completely filled up, and stronger and stronger plays became possible: initially, the highest card in the game is a 10, but after a while we were playing pairs of 14s as if it was nothing.

The kids' initial reaction to the game was strongly tied to their performance (not unusual), so I may have to play it with them some more to get a better idea of their opinion.
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3. Board Game: Hacienda [Average Rating:6.97 Overall Rank:651]
Marcel Sagel
Netherlands
Groningen
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New for my youngest son, the oldest had played before.

Like many euro-games, to win this you have to be efficient with your actions, and that is a skill that takes time to develop (and as a parent, you sometimes wonder if they ever will...)

But it's a pleasant game to play, and when the board is filled up with chits it looks nice and colourful, so we had a good time.
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4. Board Game: Gentleman's Deal [Average Rating:6.60 Overall Rank:9809]
Marcel Sagel
Netherlands
Groningen
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A bluffing/negotiating game about criminals dividing their loot.

Theme appeals to the kids, and the fact that they were allowed to join game night always makes them happy, so reactions from the young ones were positive. It is a funny game when played in the right spirit, but unlikely to be played very often since it requires 5 players, and our family consists of only 4.
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5. Board Game: Res Publica [Average Rating:5.95 Overall Rank:3903]
Marcel Sagel
Netherlands
Groningen
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Not new, but still going strong in our family (and that's worth mentioning too I think).

In fact, a lot of still-going-strong games were brought out last month:
Bohnanza
Fluxx
King of Tokyo
Evolution: The Beginning
Saboteur - The highlight being when my oldest son bamboozled half the table about his true identity, giving the sabotuers a win.
Diamant
Space Beans - The kids seem to be souring on this one, though.
Traditional Card Games
The Game: Extreme
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6. Board Game: Love Letter [Average Rating:7.31 Overall Rank:178]
Carthoris Pyramidos
United States
Centennial
Colorado
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Late to the party for this one, I picked it up for $5 at a Walgreens while getting shaving supplies for a family vacation. We played it a bunch on the trip and a few times afterwards. My 12-year-old daughter likes it a lot, but I think we may have both already gotten to the point where we both play about as well as skill can impact this game. We also played it a couple of times with a sharp 7-year-old friend of hers.
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7. Board Game: The Battle for Gotham City [Average Rating:6.00 Unranked]
Andy
United Kingdom
Manchester
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This was new to me, new to the kids, and new to BGG as I had to submit the game this month!

It's a roll and move game where you have to collect resources in order to defeat Batman's villains and/or progress through the levels. To win, you need to defeat a villain in the 4th level, atop the cardboard tower.

Both kids (4 & 7) had a lot of fun playing the game.. and the game board does look really cool. For the adults it was passable as a game, but pretty random, what with dice AND a spinner!

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8. Board Game: Checkers [Average Rating:4.86 Overall Rank:14233]
Johannes cum Grano Salis
United States
Finger Lakes
New York
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800,000,000 designer games out there and my 6-year-old son requests Checkers. But we're a Light Abstract house, and this is OK. Evidently he's been playing my mother when she watches him, and he proudly shared that he has beaten her before. He did pretty well for himself in our games, and he now keeps the combination Chess/Checkers/Backgammon set in his closet.

We also played Chess for the first time and, as I suspected, he had a lot of trouble keeping the movement rules straight. But he was intrigued (though he needed a lot of coaching on the ramifications of his moves), and so I'll call it a success because he said he enjoyed himself.

Gaming in my house (and in my life) hibernates for the summer, for the most part. Now that the weather is changing and we're getting back into School Mode, it'll pick back up again.

And like many parents before me, I am really struggling to find things to play with my 3-year-old daughter. We have a few Haba games she can handle (My First Orchard, Hungry as a Bear, Evening in the Stable), but it's been difficult finding other things to play with her. I'm glad this list exists, and I look forward to stealing ideas from everyone.
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9. Board Game: Hisss [Average Rating:5.59 Overall Rank:8986]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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Veronika is 3 years old.

Looking through the list of my games I found Hiss and thought of how popular it was with the older kids a few years ago - and also that she would be probably able to play it fine! Well, yes and no: she understood the rules but still she wasn't completely engaged in playing and especially thinking - it turned out this almost pure luck game still has a tiny bit of thinking involved and my son turned that to his advantage.
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10. Board Game: Yōkaï no Mori [Average Rating:7.08 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.08 Unranked]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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Borcsa is 7 years old.

After she won 1st prize in the chess camp in her age group I thought it's time for her to learn some of our lighter-and-colorful 2-player abstract strategy games. She played the following four games and while I think I have won each (having played them with my son a few times before), she not only enjoyed these but showed skill and had pretty good moves and strategies.

Yokai no Mori
Hive
Onitama
Longhorn
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11. Board Game: Medici: The Card Game [Average Rating:6.97 Overall Rank:2392]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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Miska is 9 years old.

Medici: the Card Game is the only game he learned 'alone', as you might see from the next entry. Of course the game has quite a high luck level but it's still fine - also it fit my son perfectly. He won once and I won once, we'll keep playing this in the next years.
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12. Board Game: Orongo [Average Rating:6.56 Overall Rank:3747]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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Borcsa (7) and Miska (9) learning games together

Magic Maze
We learned this one in the beginning of the month. We played 4 times (3 introductory scenarios) in a row. it was fun for both, even though they still need to focus more on their roles and our common aims.

Hanabi

I taught this one to Miska first but Borcsa insisted she wants to play as well later. I must say we thought she might be too young for the game, not being able to read others' mind and tell the perfectly timed, perfect clues. She might have made one or two mistakes but she was very good - and her first play already ended with 22 points (with us making mistakes as well)!

Small World
Okay, I thought this complexity would be definitely too much for her. Also I was afraid she would hate us attacking her nations (she doesn't really like direct confrontation, especially against her of course, in games). But she said she still wants to try. And we had a 91:91 tie with my son in the end of the first game, Borcsa scoring only 67. But she loved it! What's more, she won our second play (where I even added a few expansions) by more than 10 points advantage...

Orongo
After all this I taught this game to both of them with confidence. And indeed she played fine: well, she almost won. It seems in secret she's just became a really good strategy player!
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13. Board Game: Guess Who? [Average Rating:4.78 Overall Rank:14234]
Andy Howell
United States
Alexandria
Virginia
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Two glorious weeks of beach vacation. We did some gaming, but the weather was so great that most of our time was actually spent in the surf! Number of fish caught - extremely impressive; total weight of fish caught - not so impressive.

We played a bunch of family favorites, but also raided the beach house’s game/puzzle cabinet. Together with my four year-old we learned Guess Who. Great game for the busy mind of a 4yo. She loved it.

My 10 year old really enjoyed a trivia game call Tribound. I’d never heard of it. Not a great game, but there’s something really compelling about trying to figure out the relationship between three seemingly-dissimilar items.


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14. Board Game: Plague Inc.: The Board Game [Average Rating:7.87 Overall Rank:913]
Sharon Khan
United Kingdom
Shefford
Bedfordshire
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I bought this for my daughter for her 12th birthday, and we played it a few times this month - a surprisingly good game based on the popular app. My youngest (7) didn't like it, as it was a bit long for him at just 7, but quite often helps one of us for the first half of the game and then wanders off - he does enjoy the mechanics. The older two (12 and 10) do enjoy it, but it does have the downside of being a game I always win by miles, as they don't make such good decisions in the game. It's rejuvenated their interest in the app too!
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15. Board Game: You Robot [Average Rating:5.98 Overall Rank:6085]
Sharon Khan
United Kingdom
Shefford
Bedfordshire
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This game has a listed age of 6+ on the box, but I really couldn't believe that it would work with my children, but now my youngest is 7 I thought I'd give it a go, as something different. It was actually quite a hit, to my surprise, with one of my sons loving being a controller, while the other loved being a robot. The only problem was that sometimes my daughter was deliberately being a difficult robot rather than a cooperative one, which did cause a few arguments! But the idea definitely appealed to them!
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16. Board Game: Mice and Mystics [Average Rating:7.46 Overall Rank:173] [Average Rating:7.46 Unranked]
Sharon Khan
United Kingdom
Shefford
Bedfordshire
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I'd heard this was a good coop to play with children, but after getting frustrated with it with adults I wasn't sure, but I was looking for something different to play this summer and thought I'd give it a go, and they loved it, and we've played through the first three missions now. Something about the mix of cool bits and story seems to really appeal to them.
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17. Board Game: Loony Quest [Average Rating:7.11 Overall Rank:601]
Sharon Khan
United Kingdom
Shefford
Bedfordshire
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I MathTraded for this specially to play with my children, and it seems to have been a particular hit with my older son, 10, although the others seem to enjoy it as a spectator sport, even if they're not actually playing. My children aren't as accurate as adults, but in some ways that just makes it more fun!

Also tried with the kids this month: Kingdomino (they weren't that impressed), Coloretto (they seemed to enjoy it but haven't requested again), Blokus (my daughter said she enjoyed it but the other two weren't as keen).
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18. Board Game: Secret Hitler [Average Rating:7.60 Overall Rank:235]
Colls
United States
Silver Spring
Maryland
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My 10- and 12-year-old girls LOVED playing this with neighbors several times. I think the three of us all enjoy being sneaky. (I loved it too.)
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19. Board Game: Chess [Average Rating:7.09 Overall Rank:400] [Average Rating:7.09 Unranked]
Murray Fish
Australia
Canberra
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They explained everything in detail and at great length. After they finished I sat, despondent, contemplating a bleak and empty future. "I’m glad you’re depressed" said one. "It means you’ve understood the situation.”
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I took Little Fish the Elder to a local games cafe after his soccer game a few Saturdays ago and, amongst other things, he chose to play Chess. Thsi kind of surprised me as I had no idea this wa son his radar, but he was adamant this was what he wanted to play. Anyway, off we went and I managed a win after a very scratchy and unsatisfying game. He has decided he wants to joing the Chess Club next term at achool whch is no bad thing. If he keeps it up he'll soon be beating me.
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20. Board Game: Loopin' Chewie [Average Rating:6.44 Overall Rank:2039]
Murray Fish
Australia
Canberra
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They explained everything in detail and at great length. After they finished I sat, despondent, contemplating a bleak and empty future. "I’m glad you’re depressed" said one. "It means you’ve understood the situation.”
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We also played Loopin' Chewie at the cafe and he loved it. No surprise there. Not sure is we need this one at home as we already have Loopin' Louie but when we next go back I can see us playing it again.
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21. Board Game: Zoowaboo [Average Rating:6.43 Overall Rank:3533]
Murray Fish
Australia
Canberra
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They explained everything in detail and at great length. After they finished I sat, despondent, contemplating a bleak and empty future. "I’m glad you’re depressed" said one. "It means you’ve understood the situation.”
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Little Fish the Younger got this for his birthday and we've given it a bit of a run already. Not bad fun but one that will probably be 'solved' pretty soon once we figure out optimal numbers for animals on each of the six rafts. Still, it's a bit of fun for the kids so that's always good.
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22. Board Game: Spot it Jr.! Animals [Average Rating:6.33 Overall Rank:3875]
Murray Fish
Australia
Canberra
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They explained everything in detail and at great length. After they finished I sat, despondent, contemplating a bleak and empty future. "I’m glad you’re depressed" said one. "It means you’ve understood the situation.”
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Also played at the game cafe. Quite a good filler/warm up game for younger children. Wouldn't want to play it everyday but now and then is great. I imagine this game would be pretty fun (and chaotic) with four or more.
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23. Board Game: Puerto Rico [Average Rating:8.08 Overall Rank:12]
Eddy Richards
Scotland
Allanton
Duns
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Having very successfully taught Stone Age to Rebecca (11) in July - a game she has asked to play a number of times since - I thought it was time to try out some other classics, and Puerto Rico was next on the list. She already plays and likes San Juan so she already got the basics, but of course PR is somewhat more detailed. All went well, she got the hang of it quite quickly and played well, and indeed won the game - partly because I wasn't playing too hard (well, that's my excuse) and partly because her mother is inexplicably terrible at it! A success, I think, we'll have to see if she wants to have another go. I wouldn't recommend it for all kids of this age, as there is quite a lot to it, but it still works well after all these years, for an 'advanecd' gaming child.
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24. Board Game: Race for the Galaxy: Xeno Invasion [Average Rating:7.99 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.99 Unranked]
Sara
Belgium
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Our 8-year old wanted to try Xeno Invasion, so we did. We played with open cards, so we could explain to her what the cards did and she quite liked it.

She also played Kingdomino for the first time, with other kids at a gaming evening.
 
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25. Board Game: The Heroes of Kaskaria [Average Rating:6.55 Overall Rank:7771]
Henrik Lantz
Sweden
Uppsala
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This was a nice find. I looked through Amazon.de and what HABA games they had available, and this title popped up. Sparse information here at BGG, but enough for me order it.

Have played it twice now with my 9 year old, and I am quite pleased with my purchase! It uses a card mechanism similar to Ticket to Ride where you want to collect sets of same-coloured cards, and then use these to race your fantastical creatures to the troll's nest to collect the magic talisman. Quick and fun! My wife joined in one of the sessions and she had a bit of a problem differentiating between the colours, which decreased her enjoyment. Neither I nor my daughter had any problems with that, we just had fun. Great components too!
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