In the beginning…

…the board game Gods created “roll and move.” Sad but true. For many of us, especially those in our 40’s (approaching 50!!), we started out board gaming with the likes of Monopoly, Sorry, Payday, Life maybe even some chess or checkers. My daughter was no different.

We started with Chutes and Ladders and Candyland. She was 2, give me a break. Now every now and then she wants to break those out and play. That’s OK. You hear that obsessed hobby gamers? That’s. O.K. She was (and is) young and her choice was (and is still) important. She liked them. They were new and exciting. They were colorful. The only bad thing was that she had no control over if she won or lost. Not that she knew that or even understands it now. Both of those games are completely luck driven, like many kid games. That makes it easier for Dad to “cheat to lose.”

When my daughter and I play now, sometimes she wins and sometimes she loses. It can be difficult to teach a young person how to lose gracefully. It’s a wondrous and important skill that is learned over time and my daughter still needs practice.

Honestly, we haven’t played those roll and move games in a while. I remember my daughter getting excited when I set up some solo games for myself like Space Hulk: Death AngelElder Sign and Race for the Galaxy: Gathering Storm. She was all “Woooooo, what’s that?” when my son and I played Pandemic for the first time. She asked me when she can play these games. Of course, my canned response is “When you get older.” Her next question usually is, “You’ll teach me?” My answer is always the same, “Absolutely. I would be happy to.”

As long as I feed her new games to play every now and then, I think I’ll be able to keep her away from the “old standards.” Of course, at this rate, one day will come when she goes over a friend’s house for a sleepover and the mom breaks out Monopoly and my daughter will ask in a snooty voice, “What. Is. That? Don’t you have Kemet, or Caverna, or Concordia?” I know, I know. I’m asking a lot but a man can dream, can’t he?

Viel Spaß!

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My First Post

A little background: I’m a single Dad from Boston. At the time of this writing, I have a 16 year old son who is not all that much into board games. I am still trying, at least when I can, to get him away from his PS2 and his cell phone. I also have a 5 year old girl from my second wife who passed away. So naturally, my daughter and I have bonded quite a bit. That’s not to say I’m not close to my son. It’s just that he is older, needs less attention and is starting to have his own life away from his Dad and mother. On the other hand, my daughter and I get to spend some quality time together when we play board and card games. Plus we get in some time for puzzles, Play-Doh, and Barbies.

In this blog, I hope to talk about our experiences and how our hobby board gaming changes as she gets older. I will be discussing what games, at least in my humble opinion, are great to play with kids — aiming initially for the 4-6 year old range. I originally wanted this blog to be a monthly or biweekly audio podcast, but maybe there are too many podcasts out there about board games. Even though, I know of no audio podcasts specifically related to gaming with kids. Something to aspire to maybe?

Now I am not making my daughter sit down and play Terra Mystica or Power Grid. But I am playing games that are age appropriate and sometimes gender appropriate. What does that mean? Well, I don’t think a girl would want to play a game about aliens and likewise, I don’t think a boy would necessarily want to play a game about princesses. So, many of the games I choose for her will be for both boys and girls but every now and then I might throw in one about little ponies? We shall see.

So I hope as parents yourself, I can give you some gaming ideas for your young ones. Or if you don’t have kids maybe you are a gaming veteran, and you are looking for gaming gifts for nieces, nephews or friends’ kids. Whatever the case may be, I hope you will get some kind of useful and perhaps even valuable information out of this blog.

Viel Spaß!


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