GAME NIGHT: SPACE FLUXX

If you can read then you can play Space Fluxx. I’ve played this game enough to know that you will either love this game or you will absolutely hate it. My sister, Kristen, isn’t fond of the game because there are “too many rules.” The game has two basic rules: draw a card and play a card.

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Based on any movie or TV show set in space — Star Wars, Star Trek, Lost in Space, etc. — the deck of cards contains an assortment of information. Character cards — known as Keepers — help players win the game. Read the cards because some characters possess a special ability or power.

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What kind of characters? Every space ship needs a captain, right? And probably a robot. An unimportant crew member. A doctor or medic to take care of the crew. A scientist to explain weird stuff. An engineer to take care of the ship.

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Action cards tell players what to do. Again, the basic premise is draw a card and play a card, but action cards can slightly change the rules. Action: draw three cards. Action: play two cards. Action: keep a maximum of four cards.

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Complete a goal card and you win the game! Do you have the Captain and the Time Traveler? You win! Do you have the Expendable Crewman and the Laser Pistol? You win! Keep in mind the action and goal cards constantly change.

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Sometimes the game takes 5 minutes for someone to win and other times it take forever! My best advice? Read the cards because you can use them to your advantage. Take advantage of the Keeper’s special powers. And remember to laugh often and have fun!

GAME NIGHT: KING OF TOKYO

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Just when I think I’ve mastered the game, King of Tokyo, I’m the first one booted from the game. Luck and strategy are the two key components to winning. Either be the last monster standing or be the first to gain 20 points to win the game.

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I won’t lie — the game sounds complicated and confusing. Roll the dice. Read the advantage cards. Be King of Tokyo. Collect lightning pieces. Earn points. Lose hearts. You really need to play the game a few times to fully understand everything.

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Even when you understand just part of the game, it’s pretty fun to play. Whenever I play with kids, they focus on collecting the lightning squares and picking cards that help players advance — a strategy I don’t use.

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Rolling a handful of dice is always fun, but praying for certain dice is highly entertaining. Need a few hearts to beat off death? Need triple numbers for some points? Need some claws to kill someone?

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Monsters aren’t normally cute, but how cute is Cyber Bunny? For some reason, the kids call first dibs on Kraken or Meka Dragon. While the rules seem a little daunting at first, King of Tokyo is a fun game to play with kids.

GAME NIGHT: TELESTRATIONS

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For a good laugh, I highly recommend this game. The best way to describe the game is it’s a combination of the classic game Telephone and Pictionary. I gave my nephew the six-person game for his birthday not knowing an eight-person and 12-person versions were available. The more the merrier. Seriously.

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The basic instructions: draw a word on the given card, pass your sketchbook to the person to your left or right, that person looks at your amazing and obvious drawing and writes a guess on the next page of the sketchbook, the third person receives the book, reads the word, and draws the word. Eventually, your sketchbook will return to you.

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What’s your guess? If you answered a candle, then you’re right! Beautiful rendition of a candle, right? I think so. One of my better drawings in the game. Apparently, my 15-year-old nephew thought the picture looked like a cannon shooting candy corns. He said if I had drawn a wick, then the correct answer was just obvious.

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I don’t know why my cousin’s quick sketch of spaghetti and meatballs makes me smile every time I see it. Because my cousin took his sweet time with some of the pictures, we eventually nicknamed him Picasso. I have so many funny memories of playing that game with my sisters and cousins.

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Any guesses? I can’t remember what my sister guessed, but it wasn’t the correct answer. Answer: paper rock scissors. I highly recommend buying the game but another set of dry erase markers is needed. The markers that come with the game aren’t the best. Just trust me and have a second set markers ready.

GAME NIGHT: TENZI

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Easiest. Game. Ever! 40 dice in four different colors. The most basic game: a player rolls all 10 dice as fast as they as can until all dice show the same number. So easy. So quick. So fun. At first I was a little skeptical that throwing 10 dice around would be fun, but I was completely wrong.

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A small piece of paper tells the origin of the game and explains other ways to play with the dice. I love the big size and bright colors of the dice — I’ve thrown the dice around in the Roll For It game. I can also tuck the game into my purse and whip it out when the conversation turns silent or awkward.

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A huge thank you to my aunt who gave me and my sisters a game of Tenzi. Becky and Krissy loved the game so much that they knew their offspring would love the game and they needed to buy more dice for a family of five. I also introduced the game to Charlie’s side of the family who immediately fell in love with the game too!

GAME NIGHT: SUSHI GO!

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Sushi Go! is another easy to learn and quick to play game. Plus, the illustrations on the cards are ADORABLE! I love the cute little dumplings and pudding pictures. So cute!

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Starting with a certain number of cards (amount depends on number of players), a player will pick one card to keep and then pass the rest of the cards to the player on the left.

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If a player can collect three sashimi cards, 10 points are awarded. Collect two tempura cards, 5 points are collected. The player with the most points after three rounds wins the game.

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Charlie and I played this cute little game during a small dinner party. Everyone liked the game because it was easy to learn and quick to play.

GAME NIGHT: ROLL FOR IT!

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For an easy to learn and quick play game, Roll For It needs to be in your game collection. When browsing the interweb for the game, a red box and a purple box will be available for purchase. I don’t believe you need to buy one box before the other, but when you buy both, you can combine the boxes for eight players.

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I bought the purple box because it was the last one on the shelf at a local game store. Had the red box been available, I would’ve snatched that too. About 30 short minutes later, I was playing the game with two nephews (ages 5 and 8) and my sister-in-law and absolutely loving the game (and cursing the dice).

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How to play (with four or less people): Three cards from the deck will face the players and each player will roll their six dice. A player wants to match the rolled dice to the dice on the cards. If a player has two out of the three needed dice, she can place two of the dice near the card (see the green card in the picture).

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Once a player matches the dice on the card, she keeps the card and gains the points on the card (the numbers in the red circle). When a player collects 40 points, she wins the game! Easy peasy. Honestly, the game is easy to learn and quick to play, and I don’t mind carrying the box around in my purse.

GAME NIGHT: TICKET TO RIDE

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THE RULES OF THE GAME MAY SOUND COMPLICATED AND OVERWHELMING TO NEW PLAYERS, BUT ONCE THE GAME BEGINS, EVERYTHING SUDDENLY MAKES SENSE. I ABSOLUTELY LOVE PLAYING TICKET TO RIDE — IT IS FUN, STRATEGIC, AND SIMPLY ENTERTAINING.

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LOOK AT MY BLUE TRAIN CARS! EACH PLAYER CHOOSES A SET OF ONE-COLORED TRAINS AND CAREFULLY — OR CARELESSLY — LAYS THE TRAINS DOWN ON THE LOVELY MAP TO FORM A CERTAIN ROUTE. BASIC GOAL: COMPLETE A DESTINATION ROUTE.

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THE GAME CONTAINS TWO SETS OF CARDS — DESTINATION CARDS AND COLOR TRAIN CARDS. DESTINATION CARDS SHOW THE ROUTES A PLAYER MUST COMPLETE — I.E. DULUTH TO EL PASO OR MONTREAL TO ATLANTA. SOME ROUTES ARE SHORT WHILE SOME STRETCH ACROSS THE BOARD.

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DULUTH IS IN THE WRONG SPOT! THAT’S THE COMMENT I HEARD OVER AND OVER WHEN I FIRST INTRODUCED THE GAME TO MY FAMILY WHO ABSOLUTELY LOVE THE GAME AND THE SECOND EDITION — TICKET TO RIDE: EUROPE.

GAME NIGHT: CARCASONNE

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CARCASONNE SOUNDS LIKE A COMPLICATED GAME, BUT IT REALLY ISN’T. PLAYERS SCORE BY COMPLETING KINGDOMS, ROADS, AND FARM LAND. PICK A RANDOM SQUARE EACH TURN AND STRATEGICALLY PLACE IT NEAR THE RIVER.

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MY GREY LITTLE MEEPLES! I THINK THE GREY LITTLE PIG IS ADORABLE. PLAYERS PLACE A MEEPLE TO CLAIM A KINGDOM, ROAD, OR FARM LAND. THE PIG AND THE TALLER MEEPLES ARE FROM AN EXTENSION GAME.

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I MARRIED ONE OF MY GREY MEEPLES TO ONE OF CHARLIE’S RED MEEPLES. JUVENILE, I KNOW. CHARLIE AND I INTRODUCED THIS GAME TO THE OLDEST NEPHEWS, AND THEY ABSOLUTELY FELL IN LOVE WITH THE GAME.

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AFTER PLAYING THE GAME A FEW TIMES, ETHAN AND GAVIN WERE READY FOR SOME OF THE CARCASONNE EXTENSIONS — MORE ROAD, LAND, AND KINGDOM PIECES. ABOUT THE PICTURE: I BELIEVE THIS IS MY SISTER’S KINGDOM IN A GAME AGAINST HER, ETHAN, AND GAVIN.

GAME NIGHT: QWIRKLE

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MY QUICK HOW-TO PLAY QWIRKLE: IF YOU KNOW HOW TO PLAY SCRABBLE THEN YOU KNOW HOW TO PLAY QWIRKLE. INSTEAD OF TILES WITH LETTERS, YOU PLAY WITH TILES WITH COLORS AND SHAPES.

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YOU CREATE ROWS OR COLUMNS, MATCHING SHAPES OR COLORS. WHEN YOU MATCHED ALL SIX TILES WITH SHAPES (LOOK AT THE COLUMN OF CLUBS AT THE RIGHT) OR COLOR (LOOK AT THE YELLOW ROW), YOU HAVE A QWIRKLE!

THREE OF THE SIX TILES IN MY HAND.

EACH PLAYER WORKS WITH SIX TILES AND PICKS NEW TILES AFTER PLACING OTHER TILES. ABOUT THE PICTURE: THREE OF THE SIX TILES IN MY HAND. WHEN I COMPLETE A QWIRKLE, I LOVE SINGING OUT THE WORD.

A SUPER TIGHT GAME WITH ME, CHARLIE, AND KRISSY.

ABOUT THE PICTURE: THE START OF A SUPER TIGHT GAME WITH ME, CHARLIE, AND KRISSY. IN THE END, CHARLIE WON THE GAME BUT KRISSY WAS A CLOSE SECOND. I WAS A VERY DISTANT THIRD.

A GAME.

I LOVE PLAYING THE GAME NOW, BUT I HAD ISSUES IN THE BEGINNING, ADJUSTING TO COLORS AND SHAPES INSTEAD OF LETTERS. I LOVE THE GAME, BUT I JUST DON’T LIKE LOSING.  🙂

GAME NIGHT: TSURO OF THE SEAS

TSURO OF THE SEAS.

TSURO OF THE SEAS.

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TSURO OF THE SEAS: THE SEQUEL TO TSURO INVOLVES DRAGONS, SHIPS, AND DICE, AND I LOVE IT! JUST WHEN I RESIGNED MYSELF TO PLAYING ANOTHER GAME THAT I WOULD BE GREAT AT LOSING, THE GAME PROVED ME WRONG.

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THANKS TO SOME DRAGON CARDS AND THE ROLL OF THE DICE, I HAVE A DECENT SHOT AT WINNING. I’M NOT DOOMED FROM THE START! YAY! THANK YOU, SEAS, FOR ADDING THE ELEMENT OF LUCK AND BOOSTING MY CONFIDENCE.