Sunday, December 16, 2012

A Super-Game Saturday

My husband and I were keen to do some whole-family fun-time things with our kids this past weekend (understandable considering that some families south of the border won't get to do that sort of thing with their children after the tragedy on Friday) so we had a game-playing marathon. Here are some photos and highlights:

Game 1: Lego Heroica

The boy really likes playing this game because of the jewels. It's exactly like that old game Mastermind where you must guess your opponent's hidden pattern before they determine yours. The boy won, despite the fact that my husband had used our personality traits to correctly deduce our patterns. For instance, my treasure chest uses a pattern (yellow, red, red, yellow) because I don't like peeking over and over at my pattern to say if someone's right and I like symmetry. Hubby knew the boy had a white peg because he'd want a diamond in his collection.

Game 2: Labyrinth

This is another of the boy's favourite games. He has very good visual-spatial sense. However, by a fluke of the tiles, I won this game and the girl came in second place. We play the version where you can see all your cards at once and plot accordingly; this makes the game faster. We received an anniversary version of this game from my husband's aunt in Maryland as a Christmas gift this year. I think the boy might be sad to learn it's not the electronic version. It's worth having two sets.

Game 3: Blokus

I was shocked when the boy agreed to play Blokus with us. I really love this game and, all modesty aside, I'm pretty good at it. I was yellow, hubby was green, daughter was red and son was blue. I have a very particular play style - I set out all my pieces in two rows (one with all the 5-square pieces, and one with all the 4-square or lower pieces) and then I try to use up all my 5-square pieces as quickly as I can, by spreading quickly and aggressively across the board. My son played in a very different way - hubby called it "zen". He didn't organize his pieces. He actually spent a lot of time assembling his off-board pieces into large blocks of squares. The second piece he played in the whole game was a 3-square piece, one that I'd never play so early in the game.

Because I'm known as the strongest Blokus player in the house, my family spent a great deal of time trying to destroy me and block every single pathway I'd create. Despite their efforts, I was doing pretty well - all I had left near the end was my straight 5-square line, my straight 4-square line, and my straight 3-square line. Blokus counts the number of square in the pieces you have remaining that's left off the board - the smallest number determines the winner. With 12 squares, I thought I had the game in the bag - until my son's bizarre method of play turned to his advantage and he was able to place just one more piece on the board.

You can count - even though these were 5-square pieces, he only had two remaining, and with 10 squares, he won the game. He was pretty proud of his accomplishment, and I learned that my strategy for playing Blokus isn't the only one people can use to win the game.

We also played our Nerf sword game. My son and I were a bit disappointed that the girl did not want to start the fight by providing a cheesy action-movie line prior to attack, so we ganged up on her. We also acted out great mortality scenes when we were defeated. It was fun to play as a family and I hope we get to do it again.

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