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Subject: Recommendations for my Three Seven Year Olds, Please. rss

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Fergus Hadley
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My three daughters turn 7 soon and I want to get them a board game. They're already familiar with a few games. Here's what they like and don't like:

Like
Pirate Fluxx
Viva Topo (although growing out of this a bit now)
Niagara
Hive
Ludo (groan!)
Jenga
Downfall
One Banana, Two Banana
Ticket to Ride (although we have to play a shortened, slightly simplified version - and they like it best with Alvin & Dexter included)
Simple card games with an element of excitement (Cheat is the current favourite, they also like "spoons" - where when you get a set you have to quietly take a spoon from the pile on the table and the last one to notice loses a point)

Dislike
Zooloretto (although they love animals they never warmed to this)
Kids of Carcassonne
Hey, That's My Fish (sometimes they like this but tend to knock the board when it gets exciting)

Looking at those lists, I think what they really like are games with an element of roleplay, where you can interact outside the game and minor elements of "take that" - but not so much it spoils your game plan (they like being able to gang up on me). They don't like anything overly abstract or with much downtime between turns, either.

Pieces you can move around or balance are also a plus - or pieces that clearly show your progress. But something relatively small and portable we can take on day trips and play in a cafe would also be good.

Oh, and nothing where players get knocked out of the game, please.

All that and preferably with a shortish playing time and at least 4 players (although 5 would be better so my wife can play, too).

Phew! So, any ideas?
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Matt Leach
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The Adventurers: The Pyramid of Horus a good, different bit of fun aimed squarely at your age group. My kids enjoyed a fair bit, though replayability fades. Big rolelay element going on if you want to play that way!
Bohnanza cheap, fun, always goes down well
Click Clack Lumberjack latest hit with my 6/8 yrs olds ("like Jenga but better!")
Carcassonne works well always (the kids version seems superfluous, it's a simple,accessible game for bright kids as it stands)
The Climbers fantastic, interactive, different from every other game you have. Kids and adults love. No down time, lots of thinking. Lots of balancing of blocks as the tower grows higher...
King of Tokyo massive obsessive hit, quick, hugely variable, like Cosmic Encounter for kids once the mad card powers kick in. Some knock outs, but all fast and fun.
Forbidden Island you need at least on coop, might as well be the best (for kids), definitely role play element going on as well
Qwirkle a more accessible symbol based scrabble (sort of). Anyhow, always popular, works well with that age group
Totemo I find it a bit irritating, but great cloth board, wood bits and kids love, everyone has a chance all the way through.
Fast Flowing Forest Fellers silly, very repayable racing game. Movement cards a bit reminiscent of Niagara, but more fun to be had and very different game? Lots of "take that" moments, but never critical....

7 a great age for kids getting into gaming, as you can see their analytical capability grow before your eyes. The grown up games my 8 year old graduated onto now (and getting good at) are amazing
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Sean Boyll
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Big +1 for King of Tokyo. It is just a dam fun game. It does have player elimination but plays so fast it doesn't affect it much.

+1 for The adventurers. But in our case it is The Adventurers: The Temple of Chac.

Tobago is a beautiful reverse deduction game. An excellent family game with no player elimination.

Eruption is a screw your neighbor tile laying game with an excellent balancing mechanism and no player elimination.
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Clare Marie
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+1 Forbidden Island
+1 The Adventurers: The Temple of Chac

Only I personally wouldn't take either of these to play in a cafe situation

Frank's Zoo
Pickomino
There's a Moose in the House

Might fit the bill though meeple
 
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Kevin Shillinglaw
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Two by Two would work nicely, but it only plays up to 4 and may be cafe-worthy, depending on the size of the tables there.

It's Alive! is another one to look at. It does play up to 5 and is more suited for a cafe (smaller footprint).

Good luck!

 
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Fergus Hadley
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Thanks everyone. I've plumped for King of Tokyo. My girls love monsters and I can imagine them getting into this game a lot.

 
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Matt Leach
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If you get KOT bring a couple of little tupperware boxes to keep energy crystals and poison dart tokens. Easiest bits to lose on a cafe floor. Small, portable box, but bits can get a bit fiddly!
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Buddha Meeple
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+1 Bohnanza - great game at any age.

 
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