Scott Kulik
United States
Livonia
Michigan
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So I went up to my grandparents this past weekend for Thanksgiving and met up with my sister (23) and my dad (55). We usually end up playing cards (poker, euchre, etc..) but this time I was just getting into board games so I brought up a handful.

Day 1:
The first game we played was Carcassonne (everyone except my dad). All of them really enjoyed this and it was pretty easy for them to learn. There wasn't too much thinking and everyone got the hang of it pretty quick. As always, anyone who plays for the first time doesn't usually go for the farmers so by the time they realized how many points i was going to get for my farmers they were too late. I ended up winning this by about 30 points.

The second game we played was Ticket to Ride (everyone except for my dad). I figured this was a good second game since it was also pretty easy to learn. Everyone except for my grandpa got the hang of this pretty quick. He kept trying to play his sets of trains on any color track. I don't know how many times I had to tell him he can only play any color trains on the gray tracks. For some reason he had a hard time telling the black tracks from the gray tracks, too. My sister ended up winning this by a about 30 points since she got all her destinations and also had the longest route.

The third game we played was Zooloretto (Grandma, Sister, and I). This was my first time playing but I had already read the rules and thought it was pretty easy. This one played pretty quick. My grandma was playing conservatively and kept grabbing the trucks that were only 1 or 2 filled. My sister and I kept fighting for full trucks and she eventually ended up filling up all her zoo spaces. She ended up winning this one as well by about 10 points.

Day 2:
After the first few went so I well I decided to pull out Galaxy Trucker (Grandma sat this one out). The rules for this one overwhelmed them a little bit. It took me about 20-30 minutes to explain. My grandpa had a pretty hard time picking up the pieces and matching them up with the connectors on the different pieces. My dad tried way to hard not to have any exposed connectors and somehow my sister managed to fill up the entire ship almost every time. Grandpa's and Dad's ship were always pretty small and my sister was usually the biggest. The first mission everybody's ship except mine lost all their astronauts to the last frigate. The second mission we ended up drawing about 4 open space cards. My dad and my sister only had double thrusters and ended up running out of energy so they were stranded in space. My grandpa always ended up getting his ship blown to pieces and and of course had no thrusters left so he was forced to give up as well. By the third round they were getting the hang of it. I had lots of lasers and was in the lead for the most part so I ended up saving them from some frigate attacks. But we ran into so many meteor storms and laser attacks that everybody's ships (including mine) were blown in half. I ended up winning by a large margin against my sister. I think my grandpa had 0 credits at the end and my dad only had a few. They enjoyed it but I don't know if I would pull this one out again for them.

Since they were own they way to becoming boardgamegeek's I pulled out Agricola the Family Version (everyone played this one). I have only played once before as a two player and can say the game is much harder with 5. After about 30 minutes of explaining the rules we were ready to play. They were overwhelmed by all the choices and my grandpa had a real hard time reading the board. For the majority of the game, everyone was just trying to make ends meat to feed their families. Everyone loved gathering wood and building fences for their animals but they did not pay much attention to the Major Improvements so they ended up sacrificing almost everything just to feed. After the 2nd harvest all of the 5 begging cards had already been handed out. Nobody was expanding their family (except me and my dad) since they were already having enough problems feeding two people (they ended up taking the first player and fishing spaces). After about 2 1/2 hours the game finally ended. My grandma and my sister with only 2 person families ended up with 1 point. My grandpa got about 6, my dad had 18, and I had about 26. I think they all enjoyed it and would play it much different next time but it might have been just a little too long.

After this long game I figured we would play a quick game of Red Dragon Inn (Me, Dad, Grandpa, and Sister). This was my first time playing and I assumed it was going to be quick. My dad was already down a few vodka's and lemondade and he thought the theme of the game was hilarious. We started playing and I made them read all the cards out loud. Everyone was amused when we pulled up cards like round of drinks for everyone! Everyone was laughing almost the whole time. My grandpa didn't really understand what he was doing and always ended up reading the entire card, as well as the flavor text at the bottom. This was always good for another laugh. Well, my granpda ended up passing out first since I don't think he really knew what most of the cards in his hand did (he never discarded to draw and never played any counter cards). My sister was getting drunk (in game) pretty quick and my dad was almost sober (ironically). I had a huge pile of money but ended up getting some big drinks which put me under the table. My sister and Dad battled it out for a while until my Dad finally ended up winning after 1 1/2 hours! I don't think my grandpa really knew what was going on but my sister and my dad would definitely play again.

Day 3:
On the last day everyone was up for another game before I left. I was thinking about an easy one like Alhambra but decided to try one I didn't get a chance to yet...Princes of Florence (yelp! everyone played. this was also my first time since I never had a group this big to test it out with yet). This one was probably the most confusing at first for all of them because of all the hard to read text on all the cards and what they were supposed to be auctioning for. It took me another good 20 minutes or so to explain the rules and we dug in. I ended up winning the dice roll and got a jester for 900 coins. Everyone else grabbed some landscapes and a builder. They were a little confused as to what they were supposed to be doing and the differences between prestige and work value points. Once again, I think my grandpa was a little lost and just liked collecting as many landscapes as possible even though he didn't really have a reason, too. My grandma kept trying to buy auction only items during her actions phase. My dad and sister had a pretty good idea of the game.
My dad, sister, and I ended up grabbing some more profession cards and once they ran out my grandpa and grandma were left to try to figure out what to do with their recruitment cards. After some help, we showed them which professions were the best to take. By the end of the game my grandpa came in last (suprise!) followed by grandma. My sister did pretty well but the end game came down to prestige cards where my dad had the edge where he ended up winning by about 3 points (he also had some really good bonus cards to win the best work a few rounds).

Overall, I had a really good time. I didn't think my grandparents were going to make it though half of those games but they had a great time. On the ride home my sister was already asking me where she can buy some of those crazy board games. I think my dad my even be up for occasionally coming over to my place now every once in a while for some new board games.

Hopefully this wasn't too much to read. I had a great time this weekend so I thought i was share in case anyone else was afraid to break these games out in front of the grandparents!
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Pat T
Canada
Vancouver
BC
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Awesome story. I really enjoyed reading it. I too have had some luck introduceding some eurogames to my elderly parents: Mid 80's.
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Andrew Swan
Australia
Randwick
NSW
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kuliksco wrote:
Carcassonne ... anyone who plays for the first time doesn't usually go for the farmers so by the time they realized how many points i was going to get for my farmers they were too late.

This is why I leave out farming when I teach this game to people who are not hard-core gamers.
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David Larkin
England
Brighton
Sussex
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Some challenging games to try on non gamers! My mum is nearing 80 but has always had an interest in puzzles and quizzes and as a family we always played family games at Christmas. I have tried out a few more modern games at recent get togethers, and often find that when I next visit she has bought them! (Carcassonne, Niagara, Settlers, etc)
I haven't tried Agricola yet (maybe this Christmas), but Snow Tails went down a treat last time we were together
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Matthew Bond
United Kingdom
Norwich
Norfolk
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I guessed The Campaign for North Africa or Busen Memo.
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Andrew Swan
Australia
Randwick
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Otterdance wrote:

This thread should have been a Geeklist, just so someone could add Busen Memo!
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Bill Eldard
United States
Burke
Virginia
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Otterdance wrote:


How about Twister?
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Shawn
United States
Muskegon
MI
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laugh

Thats simply hilarious Eldard suggesting Twister. I am sure several medical agencies would have been dispatched to the home after only a few minutes. The Jaw of Life would most certainly have been required.

I can't help it but I keep thinking "what about Naked Twister?". Man I am warped.
 
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Bill Eldard
United States
Burke
Virginia
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skipster13 wrote:
I can't help it but I keep thinking "what about Naked Twister?". Man I am warped.


I had considered that, but the image of ANY 70 year-olds participating in it was too frigthening. gulp
 
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Doc Bullseye
United States
Brownsburg
Indiana
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Eldard wrote:
skipster13 wrote:
I can't help it but I keep thinking "what about Naked Twister?". Man I am warped.


I had considered that, but the image of ANY 70 year-olds participating in it was too frigthening. gulp


It isn't fair for you to think about him playing that with his grandparents unless you're willing to imagine you playing it with your own.
 
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Bill Eldard
United States
Burke
Virginia
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KnobDoctor wrote:
Eldard wrote:
skipster13 wrote:
I can't help it but I keep thinking "what about Naked Twister?". Man I am warped.


I had considered that, but the image of ANY 70 year-olds participating in it was too frigthening. gulp


It isn't fair for you to think about him playing that with his grandparents unless you're willing to imagine you playing it with your own.


My grandparents are dead. You go ahead and imagine me playing naked Twister with them. I'll pass.
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Kris Verbeeck
Belgium
Mol
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Don't take this wrong I enjoyed reading it but I think you had a tough selection going on.

There a plenty of shorter games that only take a couple of minutes to explain and offer great fun.

Can't Stop
6 nimmt!
No Thanks!
Coloretto
You're Bluffing!
For Sale: A Real Estate Game
High Society
Ingenious
Citadels
Guillotine
Saboteur

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Kevin Bourrillion
United States
Mountain View
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kuliksco wrote:
(Re: Agricola) My grandma and my sister with only 2 person families ended up with 1 point.


God, nothing rankles me like these brainiacs who, in their very first game of the 'gric, actually rake in POSITIVE points! Show-offs!
 
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Scott Kulik
United States
Livonia
Michigan
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kevinb9n wrote:
kuliksco wrote:
(Re: Agricola) My grandma and my sister with only 2 person families ended up with 1 point.


God, nothing rankles me like these brainiacs who, in their very first game of the 'gric, actually rake in POSITIVE points! Show-offs!


that was with a little help! we were already out of hunger cards so i showed them that they really need to get a major improvement!
 
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M Hellyer
United States
Aurora
Illinois
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Hi Scott - Wonderful report! How great of you to play all those games with your family, and how great of them to play with you.

My 85 year-old father loves "Ticket to Ride" and "Empire Builder" and would play those 24/7 if he could. He plays TtR solo on his pc every day.

I taught "Carcassonne" to my Dad about 3 years ago, and to an 87 year-old great-grandmother a year ago and they both enjoyed it, but I agree, leave out the farmer the first couple times -- or always.

My 85 year-old father also loves "TransAmerica" and "Formula De."

Congratulations again on what I'd call a dream family weekend together.
 
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Driver 8
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Eldard wrote:
Otterdance wrote:


How about Twister?


You beat me to it.
 
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Matt Musselman
Canada
Burnaby
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Eldard wrote:
skipster13 wrote:
I can't help it but I keep thinking "what about Naked Twister?". Man I am warped.


I had considered that, but the image of ANY 70 year-olds participating in it was too frigthening. gulp



The only game I ever played of naked Twister (or, strip Twister in this case) was in university and ended abruptly when my neck was covered in vomit from the (I suddenly discovered) very drunk girl who was straddling over me. gulp

Kind of put me out of the mood of ever trying it again.

I was winning, too, dammit. yuk
 
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Steve Lett
United States
Michigan
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I'm glad it went well. That was a daring move bringing out Galaxy Trucker.

I finally got Pandemic. We should play when I'm back in town.
 
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