Christmas is over. We got a bunch of new games we don’t have room for. That means we need to stop getting games.

Yeah, no. We retire games. Some games are packed away for future grandkids that we can’t part with because they have sentimental value, but the kids have all outgrown, others we pass down to other kids in the family or family friends when ours have outgrown them. It’s a great tradition. So before these games leave our house, I can talk about why.

Retired Games:

Skip-Bo Junior:

Ages 4+, 2-4 Players

Skip-Bo Junior by Matel

Instructions:

Just like regular Skip-Bo, but with open hand of 3 cards. If you can’t play the 3 cards, you deal more cards onto those 3 cards (there is no discard stack in front of you unlike Skip-Bo). Cards go up to 10 instead of 12, there are still wild cards. The first player to get rid of their cards wins.

Review:

I’m not a fan. I was raised with Skip-Bo since I was a small child. We did open hand. The rules made this over simplified without the stack to pull from. Also, having Thing 2 and Thing 4 with Autism, they were overly distracted by the bugs on the cards (already knowing their numbers). We found it easier to just pull out cards 1-10 of the original Skip-Bo deck and play the original game with modified rules.

When I remarried and had step kids, never played it with them, always played the original Skip-Bo. It might work better with neuro typical kids or kiddos with different issues.

Clue Junior, the Case of the Missing Prizes (note, there are tons of Clue Juniors): (Cludo for everywhere else in the world)

Ages 5+, 2-4 Players, 20 min average playtime.

Clue/Cludo by Hasbro

Instructions:

Each player moves their character around the board trying to get to ride at the carnival (where the clue cards are). When you arrive, you can look at the clue cards and mark them off your clue sheet. After every player has taken their turn, they put a “guess” token in the “guess” slots guessing who and when the prizes were stolen (and where for advanced games). You play until all 10 tokens are used (9 for advanced games). Reveal the winner by opening the “truth envelope”. Place the gold tokens in the matching slots. Which ever player that placed the most guess tokens in that guess tray wins!

Review:

So, I had seen some Clue kid games where it was a nice intro to Clue, it still had the paper check off sheet they had to fill out and it was still basically the same game, but easier… this wasn’t that game.

The guessing part ruined it. One of the kids hated it so much, to prove a point, they wouldn’t ever move their character to find clues, they would just make guesses based on other players guesses and they won 1/3 of the time. The game sucks. If we ditched the guessing part, it was ok…. do your research and get a different Clue Junior game.

I won’t be passing this one on to a family member… I loathe it so.

Also available:

Case of the Missing Cake – no guessing tokens
Case of the Broken Toy – no guessing tokens
Loki’s Big Trick – no guessing tokens
It’s the same awful game with new packaing….

Eye Found It! Disney:

Ages 4+, 1-6 Players

Instructions:

Each player chooses a character mover. Start on the “Start” space. Use the “search cards” to find your objects, mark them with your markers (mouse ears for Disney). Race to the castle before the clock reaches midnight. If one player makes it, everyone wins (teamwork).

Review:

We loved this game. The board is 6 feet long. This allowed for several players room to play and for them to easily cooperate by designating search areas. It was an easy enough game where they could play on their own as well. That being said, my kids also love ISpy, Look and Find, and Where’s Waldo… We did have to forgo the small timer during searching, it did not do well for the kids with anxiety.

Searching games help with memory, focus, object identification, reading skills, matching skills, and this one in particular helps with teamwork and cooperation. This game has lead to a love of Hidden Object Games for some of the kids. (see my review about HOGs).

We are debating on passing this down in the family or packing it up for future grandkids. Oh the choices… but will I want to get on the floor by then… hmmmm…

Also available:

Journey Through Time
Dream Works
Star Wars
Marvel
Busytown
Minions (I expect this one would be hard… so much yellow)

Most of these are also available in card/travel form as well.

Cranium:

Ages 16+, 4+ Players (team play)

Instructions:

Reader’s Digest Version: It’s a party game, split off into teams, pairs are ideal. There are 4 categories, art, acting, trivia, and words/english. The rules are a combination of other games based on which section you are in…

There is another version for players 8+

Review:

I thoroughly enjoyed Cranium when it came out in 1998 and throughout college. That being said, it is not the game for us in my family setting. Having children who are NOT neurotypical, they do not switch from subject to subject well, and some struggle in other subjects and want to avoid them completely. This game ends up being the source of a lot of anxiety for them. That’s not what gaming is about.

Thing 2 Update:

Thing 2 had surgery on her sinus. she is miserable, but not as miserable as she was. she can finally smell again, meaning she can also taste food. Her chronic headache is finally gone. Although she is in pain from her surgery, it is a different kind of pain. I look forward to seeing how she progresses from here.

Sorry this is a short update, but I haven’t slept much as I was stressed prepping for her surgery. Hope to get back into a schedule soon.

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