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Dreamwell» Forums » General

Subject: Suggested Age of 14+ Is Way Out to Lunch rss

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False Maria
Canada
Ottawa
Ontario
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After receiving my copy, my daughter was super pumped to play. She's nearing eight years old in a few months. When I saw the box had "14+" as the age group, I immediately forbid her to play it. Just kidding! I told her we'd play for sure, but that she might find it easier to play with an adult at first since it might be a bit complicated for her.

Well, she played a game, and immediately got the hang of it. Not only that, but the 2nd game she beat us handily. Granted, my wife refrained playing a card so we'd get an extra go around the table, and in doing so letting my daughter win. Regardless, she was doing quite well for herself.

I think her issue (and other young players) is keeping the "long game" in mind. This is why we don't play with Farmers in Carcassonne (also 13+ I believe). I think she might not strategize as much when needing "3 of X Character" to gain 5 points, but I think that'll also come quickly.

All that to say I think this game is very accessible to much younger players, especially if they have experience playing board games at all.

Cheers!
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Troy Brewer

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A lot of boardgames have 14+ for compliance reasons. If they are for 14+ they don't have to be tested for child safety compliance.
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The Game Steward
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Alexandria
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WhoDislikesKittens wrote:
A lot of boardgames have 14+ for compliance reasons. If they are for 14+ they don't have to be tested for child safety compliance.


Yes, US regulations require child safety testing for any game or toy that is indicated as appropriate for kids 13 or younger. For smaller publishers, that's a hassle that they don't want to deal with, so they put the info on the box that it is appropriate for 14+. It has nothing to do with the complexity of the game.
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False Maria
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Ah, good to know. I just wanted to let people know in case they'd let that get in the way of purchasing it to play with their kids.
 
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Christy Risser-Milne
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I understand avoiding child safety testing, but agree that 14+ is wrong for this game. We play it with my 5 3/4 year old (she insists on the 3/4), and she actually strives to get the 3x of one friend for points because it's how she won the very first time we played.

She loves the art and has given her own names to the various characters.

It's a game she asks to play.

You're right that she might not see the long term strategy, but she'll get there. In the interim, she loves playing it to her own level, which turns out to be very effective in terms of final scoring.
 
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Travis R. Chance
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mac03579 wrote:
I understand avoiding child safety testing, but agree that 14+ is wrong for this game. We play it with my 5 3/4 year old (she insists on the 3/4), and she actually strives to get the 3x of one friend for points because it's how she won the very first time we played.

She loves the art and has given her own names to the various characters.

It's a game she asks to play.

You're right that she might not see the long term strategy, but she'll get there. In the interim, she loves playing it to her own level, which turns out to be very effective in terms of final scoring.


Unfortunately, if you walk around about ANY FLGS and look at the suggested age, MOST say 13-14+. Why? Child safety and compliance testing, which also adds MONTHS on to delivery time, is a racket, can make navigating Customs more of a headache, and also open up a lot of potential legal nonsense were something bad to happen.

Some people just roll the dice and put the recommended age they think it is WITHOUT knowledge of this, and to those I say "g'luck!"

Ninja Camp is an even more apt example, as we have played this game with kids as young as 5 year olds at conventions, kids that stomped me into the earth pointwise.

Now that we are working with IBC and we have more lead time, we will likely consider making sure the ages are more accurate on the box.

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Todd Fast
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Hey Travis, I'm interested in hearing more about testing as a "racket". Could you elaborate?

For what it's worth, there is another angle here. I'm not roundly condemning the practice of mislabeling, and if put in the position, I'm honestly not sure what I would decide. But the reason child safety and compliance testing exists is ostensibly to help ensure that companies with a financial incentive (like manufacturers in China) don't compromise children's health. Unfortunately, overseas manufacturers have a long history of doing just that.

Remember those cases of tainted candy from Mexico, or white metal jewelry containing lead, or excess cadmium in yellow paints on toys, or tainted baby formula? And those were in products INTENDED for children.

While I'm not prone to obsess over it, in the back of my mind I am worried that a cut-corner Chinese manufacturer might just add some extra cadmium paint to the mix when the publisher insists that the low-margin wood meeples they're producing for a "14+" (wink, wink, nudge, nudge) game aren't yellow enough.

Though I strongly empathize with the compliance headache and impact on small businesses, it is fair to call out the practice of mislabeling games as possibly irresponsible and even marginally unethical when in fact they are intended to be played by younger kids.
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Travis R. Chance
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I mean that it costs money and the process is a bit laborious.
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