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Subject: A quick game of Bohnanza rss

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William Crispin
United States
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I have been playing Bohnanza with my wife and eldest son recently. My twin girls, age 8, have been watching and they have been asking to play the "bean" game. I played with them a week ago and taught them the rules. It has been challenging to make them keep the cards in order but otherwise fairly simple. I printed out a play mat from here, that helps them remember the sequence.

So tonight they were staying up and watching TV with my wife because it was Saturday. When she said it was time for bed they rejected that proposal. Daughter 1 ran to me and suggested we play and daughter 2 pretended to be asleep. I suggested to the "sleeping" daughter 2 that a few rounds of the bean game would be fun, so she "woke up" and followed me upstairs.

Daughter 1 focused on some mid-frequency beans like stink beans and soybeans, plus a long run of chile beans. Daughter 2 played several runs of frequent beans including; coffee and wax beans. I was working on blue, wax, green, and soy beans. Play was smooth this time around with all of the basic rules down. I needed to remind them a couple times that they had to plant the intial card so then needed to make sure it got traded in a previous players turn if they did not want to plant it. Daughter 1 was the first one to score and she maintained and lead until near the end. I think she is better at scoring but she wants to give away as many cards as possible so she frequently has very few in her hand. Daughter 2 and I scored several good harvests late in the game and daughter 1 pushed it over the top because we dumped a bunch of high frequency beans on her and she harvested several runs over a dozen long.

We stopped the game due to lateness and tallied gold after around one pass through the deck. Final score:

Me: 13
Daughter 1: 14
Daughter 2: 15

Overall the play is quite different than with adults. The girls play very cooperatively. The take great glee in completing someone else's harvest. They understand and play to maximize their harvests but they do not negotiate strongly. The are more than willing to donate and hope that the other player will give them back anything that they can use. The first game with the girls, which we played to the end, resulted in scores in the 30s which was much higher than with my wife and son.

The girls asked if we could play again tomorrow.
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