Best games to play with kids who can't read yet.
Andrew H
Australia
Brisbane
Queensland
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I am looking forward to visiting the states where games are far less expensive than here in Australia. I am particulaly hoping to get some games to play with my kids. They are learning to read but I am interested to see what suggestions my fellow geeks have for pre-readers. The type of games I most want to get are ones that would also be fun for a group of adults but simple enough that the kids can play.
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1. Board Game: PitchCar [Average Rating:7.25 Overall Rank:314]
Andrew H
Australia
Brisbane
Queensland
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Dexterity games must be one way to game with adults and kids together. There is even the possibility of handicapping if the kids are not competitive yet on their own (eg kids have twice as many turns as adults per round).
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2. Board Game: TransAmerica [Average Rating:6.66 Overall Rank:893]
Andrew H
Australia
Brisbane
Queensland
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Has anyone tried this with little kids? Could they handle it?
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3. Board Game: Imaginiff [Average Rating:5.55 Overall Rank:12503]
Andrew H
Australia
Brisbane
Queensland
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Kids could play this from a pretty young age I think. They would have to understand the different answers I suppose but it is multichoice as opposed to most similar games where players have to come up with a word themselves.
The humour is something I could see my kids enjoying too.
 
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4. Board Game: Ca$h 'n Gun$ [Average Rating:6.63 Overall Rank:884]
Andrew H
Australia
Brisbane
Queensland
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Apart from the theme being dodgy for the little guys this could work. I wonder if this could be rethemed without killing the fun?
 
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5. Board Game: Penguin [Average Rating:4.65 Overall Rank:15246]
Andrew H
Australia
Brisbane
Queensland
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As simple as this game is, I don't think really lttle kids cold be competitve with this.
What is the youngest person who has enjoyed this with you?
Is there a way to handicap the game to help the kid a little?
Do you handicap games at all?
Do your kids get put off by playing games if they struggle to even be competitive?
 
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6. Board Game: The Great Balloon Race [Average Rating:6.19 Overall Rank:5476]
Andrew H
Australia
Brisbane
Queensland
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This seems like it would work with kids. It's isn't great but it's certainly holds the interest more than most roll and move games.
 
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7. Board Game: Diamant [Average Rating:6.83 Overall Rank:612]
 
Jeffrey D Myers
United States
Albuquerque
New Mexico
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"Always rely upon a happy mind alone." Geshe Chekhawa.
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Kids like this one (or its alter ego, Unnamed Object).
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8. Board Game: Hey, That's My Fish! [Average Rating:6.75 Overall Rank:672]
flakybiscuit
United States
Raleigh
North Carolina
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Great theme and bits for the kids and you can play very cutthroat with adults.
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9. Board Game: Giro Galoppo [Average Rating:6.69 Overall Rank:2580]
Preston Fuller
United States
Ashland
New Hampshire
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I highly suggest this game. It is even fun for adults. Incredible components as well.
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10. Board Game: Pick Picknic [Average Rating:6.57 Overall Rank:1433]
Preston Fuller
United States
Ashland
New Hampshire
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Another great game. This is a kids game that I feal has a true euro feel to it.
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11. Board Game: Galloping Pigs [Average Rating:5.73 Overall Rank:6247]
Preston Fuller
United States
Ashland
New Hampshire
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This gets a fair amount of play. Cute racing game where you have to use card management to win and everyone "controls" the racing pigs.
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12. Board Game: Reiner Knizia's Amazing Flea Circus [Average Rating:5.79 Overall Rank:6215]
Preston Fuller
United States
Ashland
New Hampshire
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Neat components with the dogs and cats as VPs. this is a game that I have even used as a filler with adults.
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13. Board Game: Niagara [Average Rating:6.53 Overall Rank:1093]
Preston Fuller
United States
Ashland
New Hampshire
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No reading involved but the planning ahead aspect becomes a little more advanced.
 
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14. Board Game: Oware [Average Rating:6.34 Overall Rank:4887]
Preston Fuller
United States
Ashland
New Hampshire
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Oware/mancala...
My daughter has become rather good at this and can hold her own in the amount of wins she gets.
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15. Board Game: Sorry! Sliders [Average Rating:6.42 Overall Rank:1486]
Preston Fuller
United States
Ashland
New Hampshire
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great dexterity game. Much cheaper then Pitch Car and probably a little more kid friendly in regard to a kids ability to flick an object with the same skill level as an adult.
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16. Board Game: Blokus [Average Rating:6.92 Overall Rank:519]
Richard S
United States
Rensselaer
New York
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A great game, period. In addition, no text and simple, easy to remember rules make this one I break out every time we have kids visiting.
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17. Board Game: Gulo Gulo [Average Rating:6.86 Overall Rank:948]
"L'├ętat, c'est moi."
Canada
Vancouver
BC
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My 4 (soon to be 5) year old loves this game and requests it frequently. And kids are frequently better at it than the adults.

Darn those fat fingers of mine!
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18. Board Game: RattleSnake [Average Rating:5.90 Overall Rank:4014]
Richard S
United States
Rensselaer
New York
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This is apparently a hit with some of my nephews (ages 5 and 3).
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19. Board Game: SET [Average Rating:6.48 Overall Rank:1219]
Brian Newman
United States
Portland
Oregon
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Set could be a good game for them. I wouldn't lay out all twelve sets, and I wouldn't have adults play against them in the same game. Maybe six cards and try to pick out three with something similar about them, and be the first to do it?
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20. Board Game: Froop! [Average Rating:5.49 Overall Rank:12530]
Brian Newman
United States
Portland
Oregon
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Could be another good one. Lay out cards trying to get them to match up.
 
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21. Board Game: Cranium Cariboo [Average Rating:6.10 Overall Rank:5296]
The Count
United States
Sacramento
California
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This was a huge hit with my son when he was younger.....It was actually educational too for shapes, colors, and numbers.
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22. Board Game: Skybridge [Average Rating:5.89 Overall Rank:6753]
Liz Gensheimer
United States
Plano
Texas
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Building blocks with a purpose
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23. Board Game: Villa Paletti [Average Rating:6.48 Overall Rank:1391]
Liz Gensheimer
United States
Plano
Texas
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This may require more dexterity than little ones have ... but no reading is required! And you can play it using teams (it's a house rule variant).
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24. Board Game: Carcassonne [Average Rating:7.43 Overall Rank:139] [Average Rating:7.43 Unranked]
Craig Gorham
Canada
Calgary
Alberta
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My 4-year old loves Carcassonne and will request it over most other kids games.

He doesn't comprehend all of the strategy, but can lay his tiles and select his meeples duties.

Some games he doesn't finish, but Carcassonne handles a dropout easily, and then my wife and I can duel to see who can commandeer his roads, cities & fields.
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25. Board Game: Pandemic [Average Rating:7.66 Overall Rank:73]
Craig Gorham
Canada
Calgary
Alberta
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Again, he doesn't read, but since this is a cooperative and can be played solitaire I frequently deal him in when I want to play.

He helps distributing the diseases and moving the pawns for me, as well as drawing his own cards. Even though I, or my wife make all of the decisions, he really enjoys participating, and if he gets bored and drops out it doesn't impact the game at all.

I am amazed at how quickly he is picking up the names of the cities, and even starting to recognize the flags on the cards.
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