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Subject: Knights and Castles themed games for a 7-year-old? rss

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Vaucharwen 30
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I'd love some ideas and recommendations for a birthday game with a knights and castles theme for a 7-year-old. Aside from introducing a new theme to his life, we have a lovely old Schleich castle and knights, catapault etc to bring out of storage now that all those little weapons, etc are less likely to be broken. It would be great to find a game or games that enhance his understanding of this time but most importantly are fun to play with his mum, friends, grandparents.

Some background. He is an active, interested, energetic and fairly adventurous kid, a good reader and seems to like maths a lot. He loves playing games such as Hunters and Gatherers, Blokus, and Duck, Duck Bruce, along with the usual things a child of his age is interested in - Lego, transformers, Mighty Beanz, Wii, running fast, kicking balls, silly jokes.

We have Castle Keep. Any other suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
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John Crawford
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Heroscape Master Set: Rise of the Valkyrie - Any Heroscape set, however they're harder to find (and more expensive) than they used to be since they have been discontinued.

Castle Panic - Nice Co-op game that I've played with all my kids. You are defending your castle from the monsters.
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Vaucharwen 30
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Thanks very much John. I had Castle Panic on the radar for him but it looks best for 4 and he mainly plays with 1 other (his mum) or 2 (his mum and a school friend). On the other hand 1-6 players looks good. Do you think it would work solitaire for a 7-year-old? (He's pretty happy to play games alone and does lots of imaginary 2 or even 4 player games for long periods, including quite competitive '2 player' Hunters and Gatherers!)

Would just love to find Heroscape for him and have been looking for it for a while as I read about it when I first found BGG. Am positive that it would hit the spot! However thrifting in Australia doesn't seem to include such wonderful games and even on ebay they are scarce.
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Vaucharwen 30
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Thanks very much Jeff. I hadn't come across these before. Will do some research.
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Vaucharwen 30
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Oh my goodness Jeff! Battleground War Chest is $240 on Amazon, without shipping to Australia! I'll try to find it 2nd hand here though as it looks good, could be expanded a lot (at some considerable expense though!) and is 2 player which would be great.
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J. Riddell
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Great ideas above (Castle Panic is a big hit with kids at that age)

If you can find it Castle Knights would work great at a party. You could even make your own. I've been wanting to do this large scale, but haven't gotten around to it yet. That would make for an awesome party and you could get away with using most any blocks, some long elastic band, and some rope.

Another good castle co-op game for younger kids is Ghost Chase. It might be a good idea for an adult to play the ghost, but the kids would have a great time trying to find him.
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Vaucharwen 30
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Thank you! Castle Panic is now up there at the top of the list. Cooperative will probably be really good for playing with his school friends, learning to socialise well, etc. (He has a little brother but he's only 9 months old so there is a 6 year gap, hence his mum being his key board game companion.) Have you ever played Castle Panic solitaire?
 
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J. Riddell
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Never played Castle Panic solitaire. I do enjoy it, but mostly by teaching it to kids or people new to board gaming. It's a pretty simple game for adults (not easy, but simple), but the kids will absolutely love it. Solitaire would be tough because trading is a big part of the game.

Be sure to check out Castle Knights. It is a great co-op dexterity game and would be great at a birthday party. It's pretty challenging for adults too with always lots of tension and laughs.
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Toasted Jello
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i know it's not knight or castle themed but we picked up Catan Junior at our wonderful FLGS and our 7 year old son loves it!! It's non-reading so even a younger child could play it and the resources are gold, goats, molasses, and cutlasses which instead of being printed on cards are now large chits (perfect for small hands.) We enjoyed it so much we picked up a second copy for a nephew...

I also recommend Kids of Carcassonne but it's currently out of print and hard to find, sometimes you get lucky on ebay. My son also likes Pirate vs Pirate which is a 3 player game that plays very well with 2 people also. very simple straightforward game with great plastic pirate components to move around the board.
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Jeff Binning
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This might be a bit much for a 7 year old, but Domaine might be worth a look.

 
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Vaucharwen 30
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Thanks Jeff. I've looked at Domaine previously and it looks really good but as you say it might be a bit much for him just yet. The good thing about a thread/discussion like this is that it's helping me to clarify some of the desirables/requirements. One of those is that he can play it with school friends, so complexity and time are more important than I initially realised.

By the way, I am fairly new to BGG forums and I can't work out how to put my replies underneath the contribution I'm responding to. Could someone tell me how please! I've tried 'Quick Reply' and 'Reply' but both end up at the very bottom of the page.
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Jeff Binning
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AnnC wrote:
Thanks Jeff. I've looked at Domaine previously and it looks really good but as you say it might be a bit much for him just yet. The good thing about a thread/discussion like this is that it's helping me to clarify some of the desirables/requirements. One of those is that he can play it with school friends, so complexity and time are more important than I initially realised.

By the way, I am fairly new to BGG forums and I can't work out how to put my replies underneath the contribution I'm responding to. Could someone tell me how please! I've tried 'Quick Reply' and 'Reply' but both end up at the very bottom of the page.


All of your replies will go to the end of the thread, but using the "QuickQuote" (as I did here) will allow you to capture the post you're replying to.

Since you mentioned your 7 year old seems to like math, I thought this might be a nice "level-up" to try out. It's a pretty good game that's not too hard to grasp, as it uses icons rather than text.
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Vaucharwen 30
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Colorado_Jeff wrote:
[q="AnnC"]
All of your replies will go to the end of the thread, but using the "QuickQuote" (as I did here) will allow you to capture the post you're replying to.

Since you mentioned your 7 year old seems to like math, I thought this might be a nice "level-up" to try out. It's a pretty good game that's not too hard to grasp.


Thank you again! I hope the quoting works! I'll look further into Domaine. 90 minutes playing time worried me. He would play for that long on his own but might not be able to find anyone else to play with him (friends who don't play many board games, mum with small baby)!

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Jeff Binning
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Play around with the quickquote for awhile, and you'll see it's easy to edit, and then preview to see if it looks the way you want it.

I haven't played Domaine for awhile, and now that we're talking about it, I've brought it out to play this weekend. I enjoy how games that are new to some people can remind others about old, forgotten favorites.
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Vaucharwen 30
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angel2298 wrote:
i know it's not knight or castle themed but we picked up Catan Junior at our wonderful FLGS and our 7 year old son loves it!! It's non-reading so even a younger child could play it and the resources are gold, goats, molasses, and cutlasses which instead of being printed on cards are now large chits (perfect for small hands.) We enjoyed it so much we picked up a second copy for a nephew...

I also recommend Kids of Carcassonne but it's currently out of print and hard to find, sometimes you get lucky on ebay. My son also likes Pirate vs Pirate which is a 3 player game that plays very well with 2 people also. very simple straightforward game with great plastic pirate components to move around the board.


Thank you for this. It looks great! I didn't know there was a Junior version. He has Kids of Carcassonne, has loved it and still plays it with his friends, and is now playing Hunters and Gatherers with enormous enthusiasm. His mum has Ninja versus Ninja for him, not yet played but it goes well with the current Lego Ninjago passion. I can see that Pirate versus Pirate is probably more versatile. Luckily we have lots of grandsons who are not yet 7!
 
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Vaucharwen 30
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riddell wrote:

Be sure to check out Castle Knights. It is a great co-op dexterity game and would be great at a birthday party. It's pretty challenging for adults too with always lots of tension and laughs.

Thanks for that little push. I've searched now for a 'buyable' copy of Castle Knights/Burgritter but without any luck so far. Often I find that even if it is available somewhere in Europe or the US the postage to Australia is exorbitant. For example, there is one on ebay US which is $39.99 + $48 postage! I'll keep searching as it does look like a fun game for a group of little boys to play.
 
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J. Riddell
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AnnC wrote:
riddell wrote:

Be sure to check out Castle Knights. It is a great co-op dexterity game and would be great at a birthday party. It's pretty challenging for adults too with always lots of tension and laughs.

Thanks for that little push. I've searched now for a 'buyable' copy of Castle Knights/Burgritter but without any luck so far. Often I find that even if it is available somewhere in Europe or the US the postage to Australia is exorbitant. For example, there is one on ebay US which is $39.99 + $48 postage! I'll keep searching as it does look like a fun game for a group of little boys to play.

I picked up my Castle Knights at a Barnes & Noble Red tag sale for under $15. I wouldn't pay $40 for it. You might be able to make your own big set with some rope, some elastic tie downs, and some boxes or cartons (decorated as castle walls of course with different shapes and colors). You could also make a smaller version with string, elastic hair bands, and some different sized blocks. Then all you need are some cards to tell you what different configurations to put them in and a timer. There isn't really that much to the game, but this might be too much work, however I think it would be a fun little project, and I've noticed that others have done it. I hope your son has a wonderful birthday party.
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oh, i missed the part where he likes math: Archaeology is a quick card game that involves trading in a market, my son does well with that one too and seems to enjoy it. I will get flamed for this but he also likes Munchkin: he recommends Super Munchkin and Munchkin Impossible.
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Michael Z
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angel2298 wrote:
oh, i missed the part where he likes math: Archaeology is a quick card game that involves trading in a market, my son does well with that one too and seems to enjoy it. I will get flamed for this but he also likes Munchkin: he recommends Super Munchkin and Munchkin Impossible.


I've found munchkin great for this age group. Sometimes the reading of fine print can slow it down. The downside is that it needs 3 to wor. Also can cause fights or ideally learn how to deal with losing/bad things happening.

Has anyone suggested Monopoly Deal. Also needs a bit of reading for some action cards. But once they know what they ate, they atre easy to recognize.
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RJD
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Feudal perhaps? It's an old, old game - sort of like a cross of chess and a simple miniatures game with all sorts of medieval figures. Long out of print as far as I know but shows up on Ebay very regularly and very cheaply. Nowhere near as great a choice as Heroscape would be, but not a horrible choice either.

Edit: Oh wait! Scratch that! It's a nice game, but a used copy off of ebay probably wouldn't make a good Birthday present.
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Vaucharwen 30
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zayzayem wrote:
angel2298 wrote:
oh, i missed the part where he likes math: Archaeology is a quick card game that involves trading in a market, my son does well with that one too and seems to enjoy it. I will get flamed for this but he also likes Munchkin: he recommends Super Munchkin and Munchkin Impossible.


I've found munchkin great for this age group. Sometimes the reading of fine print can slow it down. The downside is that it needs 3 to wor. Also can cause fights or ideally learn how to deal with losing/bad things happening.

Has anyone suggested Monopoly Deal. Also needs a bit of reading for some action cards. But once they know what they ate, they atre easy to recognize.

Many thanks for these suggestions. He was given Archaeology last Christmas but his mum thought the rules were a bit hard and put it away for a while. I'll remind her about it. (It's an 'Australian' creation I think, so nice for us to be able to support it.)

I've avoided Munchkin because of all the negative comments on BGG but will look again, so thank you to you and to angel2298 for that new perspective. Little boys of this age certainly seem to love theme and his reading is pretty good so I'm guessing that he could cope with the cards after some help. At the moment I don't even know what a Munchkin is so I have some learning ahead!

We have Monopoly Deal here but we haven't played it with him yet. Thanks for the prompt. Will try it soon. Whenever he comes to stay for a day or two I get out 4 or 5 games and we're lucky to get through 2 of them (ie 2 or 3 games of Hunters and Gatherers and a dozen games of Coloretto, along with a Lego building fiesta, occasional food, take up most of a day!!)
 
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Vaucharwen 30
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UnluckyNumber wrote:
Feudal perhaps? It's an old, old game - sort of like a cross of chess and a simple miniatures game with all sorts of medieval figures. Long out of print as far as I know but shows up on Ebay very regularly and very cheaply. Nowhere near as great a choice as Heroscape would be, but not a horrible choice either.

Edit: Oh wait! Scratch that! It's a nice game, but a used copy off of ebay probably wouldn't make a good Birthday present.

Another new one for me to check out - thank you. 2nd hand games are no problem at all - he loves them just as well and his collection is primarily 2nd hand. However, we don't have very good thrifting opportunities (we call it 'op shopping') in Australia and I haven't yet found many of those classic old games on our ebay. Anything on US ebay doubles in cost - or more than doubles - when postage to Australia is added. Am thinking seriously of buying a ticket to the US, taking 2 empty suitcases, holing up in a cheap hotel and thrifting and ebaying for a week or two!
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Vaucharwen 30
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Things have quietened down so I just want to say thanks to everyone for your thoughts and suggestions. I think the decisions will be:

* Buy Castle Panic and its expansion;

* Keep looking for Castle Knights (hopefully on ebay Australia one day!) as a game to play at parties - would be good for his younger cousins also;

* Search for Heroscape and/or Battleground. I'm sure he'd absolutely love either one.

* Start playing Archaeology and Monopoly Deal.

* Bonus plan .... oops! Get Catan Junior. It looks just great and Kids of Carcassonne worked beautifully as an introduction to Hunters and Gatherers.

* Research Munchkin games and put Domaine on the list for the future.

Does BGG get a commission for all the board game sales it leads to!! Just a few cents per game would probably bring in millions.
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Robert Zaleski
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I personally avoid buying games based primarily on the theme. I'd bought Pirate's Cove and really hated it. After trying it on the kids 1-2 times, the run-away-leader part of it just killed it, and I had to trade it so they wouldn't ask to play it.

The games mentioned are probably great. But you may do better to focus on game-play. Something like Blokus may be great even though it's completely abstract. Something like Agricola would also be great for a 7 year old, has a theme they can relate to and get into, but also will grow with your child.

That said, I totally trust the recommendations from people in this forum. But I just thought making the theme secondary, even for kid games, may make it easier to pick up a good game you can play with your child.

Happy Gaming!
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rzaleski wrote:
I personally avoid buying games based primarily on the theme. I'd bought Pirate's Cove and really hated it. After trying it on the kids 1-2 times, the run-away-leader part of it just killed it, and I had to trade it so they wouldn't ask to play it.

The games mentioned are probably great. But you may do better to focus on game-play. Something like Blokus may be great even though it's completely abstract. Something like Agricola would also be great for a 7 year old, has a theme they can relate to and get into, but also will grow with your child.

That said, I totally trust the recommendations from people in this forum. But I just thought making the theme secondary, even for kid games, may make it easier to pick up a good game you can play with your child.

Happy Gaming!

Thank you for this advice Robert. I do appreciate it and understand. Agricola is a really interesting suggestion. We don't have it in the family and I thought he probably needed to wait a few years. Was also worried about the length of time needed to play games like this as he's only in 1st Grade and his mum is pretty busy with a small baby. On the other hand, he does love Hunters and Gatherers!

Reassuringly, this little fellow does play quite a few non-theme games, including Blokus which he loves - e.g. No Thanks, Skippity, Mastermind, Checkers, Hey That's my Fish, Coloretto, and at the moment he and his mum are trying to learn Hive. I focussed on theme this time because of the Schleich castle etc, knowing that he knows a lot less about knights and castles than he does about Star Wars or Super Mario! Am thinking now, in light of your advice, that he could probably pass whatever it is on to his little cousins in a few years.

One again thanks for your thoughts. I'll slow down on the short-term games!
 
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