Games We Love – March 2018

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Hello DK readers! As you may know, this is my second edition of Games We Love. Sorry, it’s been a while since my last post. Obviously I’ve been playing games instead of writing. Since my first iteration in December, both of my kids have had birthdays. So, my 1yo and 3yo are suddenly 2 and 4! Our third child is coming soon, so I will have no shortage of website material. It will be fun to document their evolving tastes in games.

Enough introductions, and onto the next edition of Games We Love. Let’s talk about which games my family has been enjoying recently…

Games My 2yo Loves

WHERE’S BEAR?

games we love
Why do bears love hiding? (Photo from www.mindware.com)

My son is finally showing a little interest in games! His journey has begun with a few light games. One of those games which he loves is Where’s Bear? Although, it’s more of a toy or activity rather than a formal board game (hence the lack of a BGG entry). In fact, Where’s Bear? is a glorified (and attractive) hide and seek game. There’s also a mini-game for finding objects within the box illustrations. It’s somewhat overpriced for a wooden bear and a set of six nesting boxes, but it’s well-designed with good quality, and it’s hard to deny my kids’ enjoyment – even my 4yo loves it!

Furthermore, games like this are a perfect way to establish an evening game routine at an early age and can even be used to incentivize good behavior.

Games My 4yo Loves

DREAM HOME

I can personally attest that Dream Home is enjoyable for players from ages 4 to 90.

Wow has this one been a hit! Dream Home is a game about filling an empty house with beautifully-illustrated rooms, and scoring points based on room adjacencies and home functionality. The art is very cute and whimsical. Meanwhile the card-drafting mechanic can be enjoyed by “gamers” while also being extremely accessible. I can personally attest that Dream Home is enjoyable for players from ages 4 to 90. It’s quite beautiful. My daughter and her great-grandmother enjoy the same game, and neither of them can get enough of it! If it’s just me and my daughter, we play with rooms only – no special effect cards, no roofs – to keep it simple and fast. We don’t have the Sunny Street expansion yet, but based on the game’s current popularity in my house, I’m sure we’ll be getting it soon. (BGG link)

games we love
A house full of joy. (Photo by cnidius – boardgamegeek.com)

QUICKPICK: ISLAND OF MONSTER MASKS

I talked about Quickpick: Island of Monster Masks as part of a big game comparison my daughter helped me with in 2017. It’s a simple game where silliness and face contortion win the day. My daughter requests Quickpick a lot and she’s surprisingly good at it! She’s shown a lot of improvement, and can hilariously match her mouth and eyes to the monsters on the cards. There’s no strategy involved, but there’s also no shortage of fun. One more thing: Its tiny box is perfect for family vacations! (BGG link)

Games Dad Loves

DECEPTION: MURDER IN HONG KONG

When I’m playing with at least 5 adults, I bring out Deception: Murder in Hong Kong every single time. It’s always a hit. Since buying it, I’ve never played it less than 3 or 4 times per session. Someone always asks for “just one more game.” Multiple rounds get played because it’s such a quick game, but also because the variety of roles keeps it fresh. The forensic scientist gives silent clues, while the other players (murder, investigators, witness, etc.) do their best to help their team – or help themselves. The creative potential murder scenarios people come up with always lead to a few hearty laughs. Deception – as well as the next game I love this month – certainly benefits from players that don’t take it too seriously. This will be part of Games We Love for quite some time.

games we love
A murderer is on the loose! (Photo by Heath Washburn – DadKingdom.com)

The new expansion, Deception: Undercover Allies, offers more of everything: more clues, more weapons and more roles. While I don’t think it is an “essential” expansion, if you love Deception as much as I do, you’ll likely want to get the additional content. More is better!  (BGG link)



DINOSAUR ISLAND

My love for Dinosaur Island is hard to contain.

This will be an exercise in restraint. My love for Dinosaur Island is hard to contain; mostly because it’s a fantastic game, but also because it releases my inner-child that was obsessed with dinosaurs 30 years ago. (Yay 1980s!) But, I’m not alone. The handful of times I’ve played it with buddies, they’ve enjoyed it too. Everyone likes the amazing components, the DNA resource-management, the marketplace of park attractions and the simultaneous worker-placement phase. Yet, the most consistent source of entertainment from Dinosaur Island is the delicate balance of security and park excitement. Poor dino security – and the ensuing patron deaths – always leads to jokes and laughter among my friends. The icing on the dino cake is that the game has a fairly satisfying solo mode as well! Dinosaur Island is sporadically available in retail. But, to obtain the glorious “deluxe” components (and 5th player expansion), you’ll have to pounce on the second print-run currently being funded on Kickstarter (until mid-April).  (BGG link)

games we love
Can you hear the Jurassic Park music? (Photo by Heath Washburn – DadKingdom.com)

So, there you have it. A brief glimpse into the games we love and the ones which have been getting the most plays recently. If you liked reading Games We Love, share it, comment below and all that good stuff.

Dad Kingdom was not paid for this article, nor was any free promotional product received. Dad Kingdom earns revenue through AdSense advertising and also receives a small commission percentage from purchases made through Amazon links. For details, read About Dad Kingdom.

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