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Subject: A Four Year Old's Perspective rss

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Patrick McInally
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My friends Ada and her four year old son, Eli, dropped by today to pass a bit of time and play some games. Looking at the game shelf and pointing on high, Eli declared "I want to play the blue one with the star!"

Given that the blue edge of the Twilight Struggle box was currently facing out, he could mean but one game and one thing: Eli had a hankering to re-enact the Cold War. I was to match wits with a four year old in a battle for the ages!

We chose sides, Eli as the "blue team", me the "red team". We picked up our appropriately coloured dice.

I flipped the first card: a 4! We rolled, and I came up short! A 3! Drats! Eli, his impetuous strategy already paying dividends, rolled a 4 to match the card! Victory!

My wily opponent cheered, and demanded we flip again: a 1! What a challenge! We rolled, this time tying, each scoring a 3... a re-roll was essential. This time, despite myself, I scored a narrow victory, my 2 being closer to 1 than his 4. Success!

Now, this tense game tied 1-1, we went into the Sudden Death Round.

A Scoring Card! No number! This meant we had to flip TWO cards, a 2 and a 4! We each rolled twice and, the little genius, he got a 2 and a 4! A crushing victory! The Americans had just won the Cold War, sending my poor Commies back to the frozen wastes of Siberia. Despair!

Thus ended Eli's first foray into the depths and joys of this amazing game. He declared it "fun". I think we'll play again next time, though my mind boggles at how I might break down his seemingly impenetrable defense.

Moral of the story? When a child asks to play a game -- any game -- you play. Just play. Fudge the rules. Change the rules. Make up new rules. Ignore the rules. Whatever.

Just play.

(For the record, I made no reference to "war" at all,for those who might find the concept of a 4 year old playing a wargame offensive. Not that Twilight Struggle is a wargame, of course.)
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ŁṲÎS̈
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Great session report!

Sobriquet wrote:


(For the record, I made no reference to "war" at all,for those who might find the concept of a 4 year old playing a wargame offensive. Not that Twilight Struggle is a wargame, of course.)


That would actually bother someone?
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Patrick McInally
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monteslu wrote:
Great session report!

Sobriquet wrote:


(For the record, I made no reference to "war" at all,for those who might find the concept of a 4 year old playing a wargame offensive. Not that Twilight Struggle is a wargame, of course.)


That would actually bother someone?


Some people, yeah -- many parents have pretty strong ideas on when and how a child learns certain concepts. I'm not a parent, so I wasn't about to deign to make that choice for someone else. For the record, though, while Ada didn't really want me bringing up "war" as a concept it isn't because she doesn't want Eli exposed to the idea, just that it wasn't the right time or situation to tackle such an issue. To a certain extent, I think she was buffering me from the responsibility. Eli is a very inquisitive child.

Parents have a tough job, indeed -- I'm glad that, when it comes to kids, I just get to play!
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Isaiah Tanenbaum
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I can't believe I paid $40 for such a simple game. I'm also ashamed that I'm still so confused by the rules.

Great report!
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Jason Matthews
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Sobriquet wrote:
My friends Ada and her four year old son, Eli, dropped by today to pass a bit of time and play some games. Looking at the game shelf and pointing on high, Eli declared "I want to play the blue one with the star!"

Given that the blue edge of the Twilight Struggle box was currently facing out, he could mean but one game and one thing: Eli had a hankering to re-enact the Cold War. I was to match wits with a four year old in a battle for the ages!

We chose sides, Eli as the "blue team", me the "red team". We picked up our appropriately coloured dice.



Good lord man, a 4 year old's first game and you made him play the Americans? Ruthless.

Jason
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Christian Moura
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You should have posted this in the variants folder!
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Patrick McInally
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JasonMatthews wrote:
Sobriquet wrote:
My friends Ada and her four year old son, Eli, dropped by today to pass a bit of time and play some games. Looking at the game shelf and pointing on high, Eli declared "I want to play the blue one with the star!"

Given that the blue edge of the Twilight Struggle box was currently facing out, he could mean but one game and one thing: Eli had a hankering to re-enact the Cold War. I was to match wits with a four year old in a battle for the ages!

We chose sides, Eli as the "blue team", me the "red team". We picked up our appropriately coloured dice.



Good lord man, a 4 year old's first game and you made him play the Americans? Ruthless.

Jason


Ruthless? I think he just wanted to give me a sporting chance!
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Patrick McInally
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Epee wrote:
You should have posted this in the variants folder!


Makes me think that, while I generally don't like "jr" games, a "Twilight Struggle Jr." is very much warranted!

You should get on that, Mr. Matthews
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David Aubert
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A basic rule that all games should have :
Rules aren't set on stone, play as you like.

I was surprise by the title of this report, thinking : "Wow, is this 4yo is already at MENSA ?"

But no: excellent example of how having fun and make playful child happy ... I'll try to remember this for my futur nephews.
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Adam O'Brien
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JasonMatthews wrote:

Good lord man, a 4 year old's first game and you made him play the Americans? Ruthless.

Jason


If this is the deluxe edition, with Chinese Civil War and the optional cards we are talking about, they should be pretty even, right?
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Charles Rayburn
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As a father of a game loving five year old, I whole heartedly agree with this. I am constantly trying to get Avery to play my "big boy" games (as he calls them). We just play with whatever rules he can understand.
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Mendon Dornbrook
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Awesome. Excellent session report and an inspiration.
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Jim Hills
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Sobriquet wrote:
(For the record, I made no reference to "war" at all,for those who might find the concept of a 4 year old playing a wargame offensive. Not that Twilight Struggle is a wargame, of course.)[/size]



How else can we teach our children that some people need killin'?
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Patrick McInally
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Fenedin wrote:
Sobriquet wrote:
(For the record, I made no reference to "war" at all,for those who might find the concept of a 4 year old playing a wargame offensive. Not that Twilight Struggle is a wargame, of course.)[/size]



How else can we teach our children that some people need killin'?


By observing the holiday stampedes at a Walmart superstore?

And thanks everyone for the kudos and thumbs -- didn't expect it. I actually kinda thought I was going to get slagged for very idea that this would count as a session report for a game as rich as TS. Very glad that didn't happen!
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Heroic Monkey
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Your son executed some really nice plays. Sorry, but I don't think you ever stood a chance.
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Patrick McInally
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Game Guardian wrote:
Your son executed some really nice plays. Sorry, but I don't think you ever stood a chance.


*Chuckles* yeah, he's a wily kid, that one! Not my son, though -- I'm just good friends with his parents
 
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Michael Pank
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Eli's obviously been working on his technique. Aren't slacking off, are we?
 
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