This year’s visit from Santa featured many games for the family. Some are classics, some will be classics, but all are great.
Teen RMN got the classic Battleship for her middle brother. As we all know, Battleship has little skill or tactics and generally depends on luck. That still makes it OK and fun for the RMN kids as they go head-to-head with multiple battles. Due to the lack of tactical thinking required, this game can be easily played by any age, meaning that even the youngest RMN kid can take on any of his older siblings on a generally even playing field. It also works against the grandparents. This game has been played on a daily basis over the winter break. The kids are even challenging each other to rematches and tracking their overall win-loss records. WINNER!
Santa and DaddyRMN combined to give the youngest RMN kid Heroica: Fortaan and Heroica: Waldurk. Both are part of the Heroica series with Fortaan being the “Basic” set and Waldurk being an “expansion” though each game can be played separately. Heroica is basically a dungeon-crawl game. Each player has a “hero” which is a character with a different special ability. The players must fight their way across the board (map) fighting monsters of different levels, gathering treasures and the like before defeating the “monster king.” The game can be played as a campaign series which allows players to accumulate treasure and gold from game-to-game and buy weapons to become more dangerous. All this sounds like a basic Dungeons & Dragons game, ehh? Well it is, but with Legos! The rules lend themselves very nicely to the 7-10 year old crowd. This one proved so popular with the youngest RMN that he actually used his Target gift card to buy Heroica: Draida Bay. He has also pointed out that his birthday in February would be a great time to get the last expansion…. WINNER!
Another game that made an appearance under the tree this year was Forbidden Island. Forbidden Island is a cooperative game where each player is part of a team that is trying to get four treasures off a sinking island. Each player must use their special ability to benefit the team and all must work together because the island starts sinking faster and faster as the game goes on. Think of a group Indiana Jones adventure! Some people on BoardGameGeek deride this game as “Pandemic-lite” but since we don’t have Pandemic (heretic you say!) this doesn’t bother us. What is important is that all the RMN kids, from the youngest 7 year old to the oldest (16) can – and do – play together. Mommy RMN really likes this game because of the coop format – the kids have to work together to win not try to one-up or out-think each other. They can’t wait to introduce Grandpa to this game too. WINNER!