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Subject: Any euro recommendations for a family who loves Stone Age? rss

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Wil
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I'm looking for some recommendations for gaming with my family: my wife, and two daughters (ages 8 and 11).

Past hits have been Stone Age, Carcassonne, and Dominion. All three of these were easy to teach and play in less than an hour. (On Stone Age, we play with hut stacks of 5, plus I randomly remove 10 civilization cards to help keep the game time down a bit).

I'm currently considering the following games:

* Asara - Looks like a perfect match for my gaming group.

* Kingsburg - Dice are always a hit with the kids.

* Fauna - Looks fun but I'm worried that us parents will have an unfair advantage.

* 7 Wonders - I own this one actually, but I'm somewhat concerned about the iconography and scoring so I haven't exposed it to them just yet.

* Jaipur - Looks like it might be a great choice but limited to two players so it's lower on the list.


If you have some suggestions on family friendly, easy to learn, fast turns, reasonable game length, and fun, fun, fun, please let me know.

Thanks for your time!
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Ryan Langewisch
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I see you own Ticket to Ride and Ticket to Ride: Europe; were those not hits with the family?
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Rik Van Horn
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Add Egizia and Valdora.
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Wil
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Legendary wrote:
I see you own Ticket to Ride and Ticket to Ride: Europe; were those not hits with the family?


Good question. Well, the first two games of Ticket to Ride were quite great but it was just the three of us: my wife, my oldest daughter, and myself. We then tried a four player game another night with my youngest daughter and it involved some rather intense tears.

I concluded that although my youngest daughter is extremely bright and loves games, she's still at a point where she plays games in a rather structured and linear fashion. With enough players in Ticket to Ride, this play style is bound to lead to blocked routes and sore feelings.

I picked up Ticket to Ride Europe as I feel that the stations will be the antidote for her to learn to deal with this type of issue within a game and grow from it. We haven't given it a try just yet but I do plan on doing so in the not too distant future. Hopefully it will be a hit as I really did enjoy the game.
 
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Ed
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Survive: Escape from Atlantis!
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Markus Hagenauer jr.
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From your list I´d pick Asara.
But maybe you should have a look at Fresco.
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Geoff Hall
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+1 for Survive: Escape from Atlantis!

Also check out:
Blue Moon City
Two by Two
Clans
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Ticket to Ride is the quintessential family game. Otherwise take a look at:

- Thebes. Fun, very thematic
- Roll through the ages. If you like dice, although a little heavier
- Fearsome Floors. Fast and chaotic, your kids will love to assemble the monster
- The Magical Labyrinth.
- For Sale. Because everyone needs a good filler and this one is incredible

DON'T get Egizia, it's way too convoluted with special rules for everything on the board. Survive is way too cutthroat for some families.

EDIT: Didn't notice you have quite a collection so you already have some of these.
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Sharon Khan
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I don't know Asara or Jaipur, but of the others you're considering:

Kingsburg - I personally wouldn't have thought to try this with kids, and there is an element of blocking, and having things destroyed by the raiders that they might not like, but it's probably worth a shot. May also be a bit long - regularly goes over an hour here, sometimes over two with slow players.

Fauna - I've found kids enjoy this one. The younger ones need help with lengths and weights initially, to find a point of reference, and yes, the adults might have an unfair advantage, but it will be very educational whilst being a lot of fun too!

7 Wonders - I would be wary of this one. It may be simple when you know what you're doing, but it has a steep learning curve, and has left several of my casual gamer friends very confused.

If Ticket to Ride wasn't popular for the blocking but popular otherwise, definitely try Europe - I always teach that version to new players, as it's more forgiving.

The other games that I remember being a huge hit with a friend's 9 year old were Bohnanza and Settlers of Catan. Also things like Ubongo are great, but they're a bit lighter.
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Dennis Bingham
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How about Glen More?
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Kevin Garnica
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Glen More
Fresco
Cargo Noir
Trollhalla
Wasabi
Gonzaga
Jamaica
Yspahan
Metrolopys
Finca (if you can find it, I believe it's out of print)
Chicago Express (Don't know how old your kids are, but it's never too late to get them thinking about stocks and portfolios)
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Ishai BD
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I am not sure why this wasn't suggested, but I think Vikings would be a good choice. I think it will work for you given that Stone Age does.

Check out some of the reviews including a 10 year old's opinion!
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Jonathan Powell
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We have two daughters, ages 6 and 9. Fresco has been great for us. Say Anything Family Edition is also a fun time with the girls.
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Roberto Vaccari
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I suggest Zooloretto, my wife and my daughter (9 years old) love it!
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Craig Liken
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If you have Stone Age down Ok then I don't really see 7 Wonders as being a big problem. I think just play with open hands for the first game or so and take it slowly - it seems complex when you first learn it, but it is pretty simple really.

I have also had trouble with teaching it and at least one person who just had no idea - they kept saying "what should I do now" on every turn. It is such a quick game that it doesn't really matter - the best approach is to just build anything you can - after two or three games it is much easier.

I see you own Settlers - I would have thought that a good fit with four players and with the ages of your children.
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Kevin B. Smith
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Apparently Jaipur can be played by 3 with just minor rules tweaks. There were discussions about playing with 4 people using 2 copies of the game, but I never heard whether it actually worked or not.

I see you didn't rate Forbidden Island highly (6.5). That's one I would have suggested. Since you like Pandemic, you should check out Flash Point: Fire Rescue when it comes out (I was a playtester).

Kingsburg can feel somewhat intimidating, and the seasons are a bit confusing at first. The blocking is probably a bit worse than Stone Age, although you can mitigate it with die modifiers. It has dice but it doesn't come across as a "fun" dice game. I think Yspahan or Ra: The Dice Game might fit that description more. Or Quarriors! (which I haven't played yet).

7 Wonders can be very confusing at first. Not really for the icons, but mostly because of the way resources work. As long as you explain that well, and everyone is ok stumbling through their first game having no idea of strategy, it's not bad. A lighter drafting option would be Fairy Tale.

I really like Thebes, and it's easier than Stone Age, but still has a lot going on. Some other "family strategy" games (which I have not played) include Around the World in 80 Days, The Hobbit, Journey to the Center of the Earth, and Dragonland.

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Andy Andersen
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I think Hey, That's My Fish! would be a great game with kids that age.
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Mitch Willis
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+1 Fairy Tale
+1 Thebes
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HenningK
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7 Wonders is great, but as others mentioned, learning it isn't all that easy. You should be prepared to do a first test game; only after that will it really be down.

Fresco is pretty good. A great aspect about it is that it comes with three additional expansion modules, so you can slowly expand the complexity of the game. It might be a bit longer than you'd like, about 90 minutes for the first few games.
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Wil
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Thank you everyone for your suggestions. It is greatly appreciated!

You've provided me with a fantastic list of games, the vast majority of which I hadn't heard of yet. This is exactly why I posted and I truly appreciate the feedback. I will be reviewing each and every recommendation with the kids to help sort out our next few games to try.

A few comments and answers:

Rokkr wrote:
Add Egizia and Valdora.


Thank you. I'll check these out!


ed95005 wrote:


Thanks for this recommendation. I do own this and have fond memories of this game and the new version looks great. I'm just waiting for the right time to spring this on them as confrontational games aren't their preference just yet.


Markus Hagenauer wrote:
From your list I´d pick Asara.
But maybe you should have a look at Fresco.


Thanks! Asara is feeling like a must buy. The fact that it has a "rinse and repeat" style of play over multiple rounds seems like the perfect way to really learn how to fully play the game within a single play session. Games that take multiple plays to comprehend the feel and style are harder for the kids.

Fresco also looks quite intriguing. We'll check this out.


DreadFuzzy wrote:


Excellent, thank you we'll check these out.



carnofago wrote:
Ticket to Ride is the quintessential family game.


I agree and do look forward to getting Europe to the table. I think it will fully address the challenges we had with hurt feelings on the first game. Building up thicker skin is a challenge and can take some time so anything that helps with that growth in a positive way is a win.


carnofago wrote:
- Thebes. Fun, very thematic
- Roll through the ages. If you like dice, although a little heavier
- Fearsome Floors. Fast and chaotic, your kids will love to assemble the monster
- The Magical Labyrinth.
- For Sale. Because everyone needs a good filler and this one is incredible


Thank you. We do have two of the above: Roll Through the Ages and For Sale. Both are excellent recommendations and For Sale is a definite hit around here. Another one that we enjoy in the quick play department is No Thanks. Both have seen a lot of play are just right when we're looking for something light and quick.

I haven't heard of the others just yet but I'm looking quite forward to reviewing them as it seems like our family has similar taste in family games. Thanks!



carnofago wrote:
DON'T get Egizia, it's way too convoluted with special rules for everything on the board. Survive is way too cutthroat for some families.


Thanks on this. Yeah, I don't think we're ready for either of these games just yet. Someday hopefully, and there's lots of time ahead of us so we'll get there.


sa266 wrote:
Kingsburg - I personally wouldn't have thought to try this with kids, and there is an element of blocking, and having things destroyed by the raiders that they might not like, but it's probably worth a shot. May also be a bit long - regularly goes over an hour here, sometimes over two with slow players.


Thanks for this. That's two red flags particularly the length of the game and play time per player. I can see them getting fidgety in their seat in this situation. It still looks like a great game but I think it's one to save for later based on these comments.


sa266 wrote:
Fauna - I've found kids enjoy this one. The younger ones need help with lengths and weights initially, to find a point of reference, and yes, the adults might have an unfair advantage, but it will be very educational whilst being a lot of fun too!


Thanks. I can't pass this one up. It's educational value and fun play seem like a must have for any family. If I feel that mom and dad have too much of advantage, we can always point out that they should put their cubes near whom they think is correct. We could also consider tweaking the rules so they never have less than 4 cubes, and the adults 3. Something like that to give them some tips and a bit of an advantage while we can still play to our fullest.


sa266 wrote:
7 Wonders - I would be wary of this one. It may be simple when you know what you're doing, but it has a steep learning curve, and has left several of my casual gamer friends very confused.


Thanks for sharing this. I agree and have seen this confused glaze with playing with adults. I have wishful thinking on it as a combo of cards, building something, simultaneous play, and quick play time are huge pluses but I don't think they are ready for the commitment to multiple plays to get beyond the learning curve. I'll save this for the right time and that may be a year or more from now.


sa266 wrote:
Also things like Ubongo are great, but they're a bit lighter.


Wow! I hadn't heard of this one before. This looks like a must buy based on my quick look at it. Anything that can expand their spatial reasoning within a fun game is a winner in my book.


ScYcS wrote:
How about Glen More?


pacman88k wrote:
Glen More
Fresco
Cargo Noir
Trollhalla
Wasabi
Gonzaga
Jamaica
Yspahan
Metrolopys
Finca (if you can find it, I believe it's out of print)
Chicago Express (Don't know how old your kids are, but it's never too late to get them thinking about stocks and portfolios)


Two Glen More votes in a row. I'll definitely read up on this one and all of these other suggestions. Thanks!


ishaibd wrote:
I am not sure why this wasn't suggested, but I think Vikings would be a good choice. I think it will work for you given that Stone Age does. Check out some of the reviews including a 10 year old's opinion!


Excellent. Thanks for this. I'll definitely read up on this.


petercox1001 wrote:
Powergrid


Ha! I wish. Unfortunately my family isn't quite ready for this. Someday hopefully. Agricola is another that hope to bring to the table down the road. Until then, I'm going to enjoy the scenic ride to get to this destination.


ukraineboo wrote:
We have two daughters, ages 6 and 9. Fresco has been great for us. Say Anything Family Edition is also a fun time with the girls.


Thanks. That's two Frescos. Great to hear. Say Anything Family Edition also looks great. We have Wits and Wagers Family and they love that so trying another game from North Star seems like a great call.


Viki3m wrote:
I suggest Zooloretto, my wife and my daughter (9 years old) love it!


Thank you. We do own this one. It fell a bit flat for us but I'm going to give it another go or two as it may have just been the wrong time or place.


liken@xtra.co.nz wrote:
If you have Stone Age down Ok then I don't really see 7 Wonders as being a big problem. I think just play with open hands for the first game or so and take it slowly - it seems complex when you first learn it, but it is pretty simple really. I have also had trouble with teaching it and at least one person who just had no idea - they kept saying "what should I do now" on every turn. It is such a quick game that it doesn't really matter - the best approach is to just build anything you can - after two or three games it is much easier.


Thanks for this. I'll discuss this with everyone and will compare it to the initially complicated scoring in Stone Age as well. Once they feel that they are up for a commitment of two games in a row open handed, then I think we can give it a go. I just need to be cautious on introducing games with complexity as kids are harsh critics and having a positive play experience is always my goal, even if that does mean that I have to keep the game on the shelf for a few more years (if needed).


liken@xtra.co.nz wrote:
I see you own Settlers - I would have thought that a good fit with four players and with the ages of your children.


I'm almost embarrassed to admit that I own the game and haven't played it yet. I did break it out for them one time and they looked pretty intimidated by it so I decided that I needed to get a few plays under my belt before introducing it to them so I can properly teach it. I have yet to achieve that with my adult gaming group but will attempt to pull this off as I agree that it should be perfect for a family of 4. The game length looks a bit long but if everyone is involved during other's plays, we can avoid the fading interest.



peakhope wrote:
I see you didn't rate Forbidden Island highly (6.5). That's one I would have suggested. Since you like Pandemic, you should check out Flash Point: Fire Rescue when it comes out (I was a playtester).


Thanks for the heads up on Flash Point: Fire Rescue. I'll check that out.

Regarding Forbidden Island, the initial play was a loss (the game beat us) as the kids were fixed on independently getting a trophy rather than playing cooperatively. This is natural, especially for kids, but I felt that the only way to get the to play cooperatively would be for me to really run the show a bit and I honestly didn't want to do that as that removes the point of the game.

Based on this, I decided that I wanted to shelve it and try Pandemic with them instead. I personally prefer Pandemic (fantastic game), and by eliminating the trophy aspect to the game I think it may just work. It's on my list for soon to break out to the kids. I just need to water down the theme a bit. More like the spreading of a cold rather than total extinction of the human race.



peakhope wrote:
Kingsburg can feel somewhat intimidating, and the seasons are a bit confusing at first. The blocking is probably a bit worse than Stone Age, although you can mitigate it with die modifiers. It has dice but it doesn't come across as a "fun" dice game.


Thanks for this. Yeah, I'm going to scratch this off of the list for now.


peakhope wrote:
I think Yspahan or Ra: The Dice Game might fit that description more. Or Quarriors! (which I haven't played yet).


Thanks for these as well. We did try Quarriors and I personally enjoyed it's random chaos, but with kids 4 players was too much. The game needs to move quickly and that just wasn't happening. I plan on trying it again in the near future with just 1 on 1 or a max of 3 until we see if we can speed up the rounds and get the full enjoyment out of it.



peakhope wrote:
I really like Thebes, and it's easier than Stone Age, but still has a lot going on. Some other "family strategy" games (which I have not played) include Around the World in 80 Days, The Hobbit, Journey to the Center of the Earth, and Dragonland.


Thanks for all of this as well. Thebes is at the top of my list to read up on after I finish my rather lengthy reply.

On that note, to anyone still reading, sorry about the length. I just wanted to personally thank you all for your time and feedback.


Orangemoose wrote:
I think Hey, That's My Fish! would be a great game with kids that age.


Definitely. I was waiting for the FFG reprint to come out and this is a must buy. Thanks.


otha62 wrote:


Wow! Another Thebes. I can't wait to read up on this game. Thank you for all of the others as well. Perhaps Fairy Tale may be the way to go to introduce the girls to card drafting prior to breaking out 7 Wonders. I'll definitely check it out along with these others.

Thanks again everyone!
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+1 Thebes
+1 Vikings
-1 7 Wonders
-1 Kingsburg
-1000 Chicago Express

I like lots of the suggested games, but many wouldn't be a good fit based on what you've described.
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HenningK
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Here's something very different, but really family-friendly: Dixit. It's super-easy to learn and teach, plays in under an hour, doesn't have direct conflict and stimulates imagination.
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Kevin B. Smith
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-1 Vikings, because sometimes I almost cry when the tiles or meeples I need get "stolen" from me.

Possible -1 on Glen More only because the interactions between things seem a bit complicated. On the one hand, it's a concise game that isn't that complicated, but on the other hand it's not. You can decide based on reviews.

What you said about Forbidden Island and Pandemic makes sense. Castle Panic is a fun, light co-op, but might not have enough decisions to be interesting for you.
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Jared Frandson
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I'm not too familiar with any of the ones on your list, except 7 wonders.

I have a 7 year old who is a pretty big board game fanatic. He likes Stone Age quite a bit. He is also a fan of 7 wonders so there may be some interest there. It is largely indirectly competitive, so your youngest shouldn't get those hard feelings. Fast and the turns are simultaneous, so very little waiting

He also likes carassonne, his favorites and mine: Carcassonne: Hunters and Gatherers (2002) and Carcassonne: The Castle if you haven't tried either of those.

His other favorites right now:

Galaxy Trucker, building spaceships and watching them fall apart. This could cause some tears, but doesn't have to if you just laugh when your ship has hunks fall off. fast and everyone is building at the same time.

He really likes Small World, I see not such a hit at your house, you have it up for trade.

Agricola he likes, we play the family variant with him, very similar to stone age, I see you own that, it can be a bit long though.

Ingenious and Quirkle are usually well received by everyone, simple to teach, enough to keep the adults engaged.

Bohnanza is a great family game. Your kids will become shrewd bean traders in no time, to the point you'll be laughing your butt off. Important with the younger ones to keep them engaged in the trading, if they are shy, but as long as you do that everyone has fun. A little confusing to people just reading the rules, if you've never played it, different than most card games. Just watch a tutorials, it'll make more sense and be easy to teach.



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Brian McCormick
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Out of the ones you're already considering, Kingsburg would be my recommendation (and the expansion is a great addition, too).
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