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Subject: Can't Stop Playing Can't Stop rss

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Dennis Ku
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"You can spend all your time making money / Or you can spend all your love making time."
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Photo by BGG user W Eric Martin

Sid Sackson is a legendary game designer from a bygone era.  Chances are, his games would not sell nearly as well today given the new Golden Age of board gaming that we are experiencing.  It's a good thing, then, that he did his designing when he did because there is a lot to offer in this little classic of a game.

As an elementary school teacher, I'm always looking for ways to (a) trick the kids into learning when they don't want to learn and (b) make the teaching fun for myself.  What better way to tie in math concepts like addition and probability than playing board games?


Photo by BGG user W Eric Martin


In Can't Stop, players roll four dice before placing them into two sets of two dice.  Add up the pairs and move the corresponding cones (one per player per sum, from 2 to 12).  Stop whenever you want or push your luck by rolling and making sums again.  Each player can only advance three cones per turn, so you have to be careful to stop at the right time. Stopping effectively saves your progress on that sum's column.

What makes this game interesting is that the length of each sum's column varies based on the probability of rolling that sum with two six-sided dice.  If you reach the end of the column first, you basically "lock down" that column and score a point.  First to three points wins the game.  To win the 2 column, you only need to hit that sum three times, but to score the 7 column, you'll have to get a sum of 7 thirteen times.  It's all about balancing luck and gauging your opponents' situations.

Playable for 2 to 4 players, my students love the speed at which this game plays.  Even as early as first- or second-grade, the students can figure out the answers to a few good questions:

- Why are some of the columns longer?
- Why isn't there a 1 column?
- Can you ever "go bust" on your first roll?  If so, when?

Recently, one of my seven year-old students asked a great question: "We could use a 12-sided die instead of two 6-sided dice.  Is that the same?"  As a class, we tried his theory and the resulting discussion was priceless.  

There is no theme.  There are no miniatures.  You can play the game with a few coins, 4 dice, and a hand-drawn board.  Hell, you don't even need a board if you're enterprising enough.  Regardless, the idea of the game is fantastic in its simplicity.  I'm convinced this would make a great casino game.  I'd much rather play Can't Stop for a stack of chips than roulette or War.  

Our blog aims to give scores to games based on the following question - How much money would it take for me to never be allowed to play the game again?  While I wouldn't miss playing Can't Stop in my personal life (other than the occasional quick game on Yucata.de, I never play it at home), I would be hard pressed to find another simple game that illustrates the probability of dice throws as clearly as Can't Stop.  As a result, it has a unique added value in my collection.

Holy Chit! Rating: $100

Pros:

There's not much to it - you could make it yourself (not that I'm advocating not buying a copy)
Very easy to learn
Young kids can easily play it
It has an octagonal board, which is kind of cool if you like stop signs
illustrates math concepts clearly

Cons:

a light game and a filler unless you're using it to teach math
not exactly cheap given the few components (I paid $35 Cdn in Toronto for my copy)

If you found this review interesting, and you want to read more (once we get more on the site), head over to https://holychitblog.wordpress.com/
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Jim Cobb
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visit rollordont.com for a free computer game with a challenging AI player!
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visit rollordont.com for a free computer game with a challenging AI player!
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futhee wrote:

Photo by BGG user W Eric Martin

...

not exactly cheap given the few components (I paid $35 Cdn in Toronto for my copy)

...


While true, you can play my very-similar web-based version for free.

Also, it will beat you. A lot.

http://www.rollordont.com

Jim

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Dennis Ku
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Jim Cobb wrote:
futhee wrote:

Photo by BGG user W Eric Martin

...

not exactly cheap given the few components (I paid $35 Cdn in Toronto for my copy)

...


While true, you can play my very-similar web-based version for free.

Also, it will beat you. A lot.

http://www.rollordont.com

Jim



Jim, I've been playing it for the past hour. It's fantastic!
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Jim Cobb
United States
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visit rollordont.com for a free computer game with a challenging AI player!
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visit rollordont.com for a free computer game with a challenging AI player!
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I'm blushing.

Be sure to check out the options under the "Menu" button for lots of stuff!

Also...tell your friends! :0)

Jim
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