Game Reviews

Ten for ten at 10

Tonight we are taking on a special project for Blynken who wanted to find board games for kids that are $10 or less.  After a fair bit of research and a lot of head scratching we give you 10 games for 10 year olds that are $10 or less (or as close as we could get, all prices based on Amazon.com at the moment and are subject to change).

Niya – Blue Orange Games

In Japan’s Imperial Garden, courtly manners and nature’s beauty veil a dark political conspiracy among two influential clans. On each turn, players replace a garden tile with one of their clan tokens. The next player can only exchange a token for a garden tile that has an element in common with the previously chosen tile. The first to position their clan in a row, square, or blockade will win control of the garden…and power at court! A simple yet sophisticated abstract strategy game, Niya captivates players young and old.

Zeus on the Loose – Gamewright

Catch Zeus if you can! The great Greek god has bolted from Mount Olympus and it’s up to you to nab this dashing deity. Play cards strategically, adding numbers as you climb up the mythic mountain. Grab Zeus when the total reaches a multiple of 10. Better yet, summon the strength of Apollo, Poseidon, or all-powerful Hera to bring Zeus within your grasp. Reach the top of Mount Olympus with Zeus in hand and you’re a mortal among the gods. To play is human. To win, divine!

Love Letter – Alderac Entertainment Group/Z-Man Games

All of the eligible young men (and many of the not-so-young) seek to woo the princess of Tempest. Unfortunately, she has locked herself in the palace, and you must rely on others to bring your romantic letters to her. Will yours reach her first? Love Letter is a game of risk, deduction, and luck for 2 to 4 players. Your goal is to get your love letter into Princess Annette’s hands while deflecting the letters from competing suitors. From a deck with only sixteen cards, each player starts with only one card in hand; one card is removed from play. On a turn, you draw one card, and play one card, trying to expose others and knock them from the game. Powerful cards lead to early gains, but make you a target. Rely on weaker cards for too long, however, and your letter may be tossed in the fire.

As an added bonus if the Love Letter theme doesn’t excite you the game can be found in Christmas, Batman, The Hobbit, and other editions (some of these are out of print and may not be easily available).

S’Quarrells – Home Lantern Games

Under a nearby acorn tree embark in the rigorous task of collecting acorns before winter sets in. Other Squirrels are all trying to take them before you do. Whirlwinds, Ambushing, Quarrelling, and Hoarding are all just part of the fun. Get the coveted Gold Acorn but watch out for the dreaded Rotten Acorn. The more acorns you get the better chance you have of surviving winter! The player to store the most acorns when winter finally comes WINS! S’Quarrels is designed for playing in groups of 2 to 6 players.

Zombie Die – Steve Jackson Games

Zombie Dice is a quick game for any zombie fan (or the whole zombie family). The 13 custom dice are your victims. Push your luck to eat their brains, but stop before the shotgun blasts end your turn! Includes 13 custom dice and dice cup, to carry the game in. Fast to learn, games are 15 minutes or less to play.

Battle Kittens – Ultra Pro

Draft your purr-fact team of cute but cutthroat kitties, then deploy them to battlegrounds and watch the fur fly! compete to win the biggest haul of fresh fish and become the pick of the litter!

Dos – Mattel

UNO has a new best friend, dos! in this fun card game, two is more important than one, and number matching is King! just like UNO, dos involves a race to be the first to get rid of your cards. To start, there are two discard piles between the players. On each player’s turn they can discard on either pile with either one or two cards, so if a player has two cards that add up to the number of a card in the center pile, they are able to put down both cards. When you’re down to two cards, don’t forget to yell “dos!” the first person to 200 points is the winner! the game includes a 112-card deck plus instructions. For 2 to 4 players. Ages 7 and older.

Animal Upon Animal Small But Great – HABA Games

Roarrrrrr! The Animal Pyramid World Championships are under way. There are only two minutes left before the starting whistle is blown for the grand finale.  The players try to pile their animals, as skillfully as possible, to form a collective pyramid. But watch out! The animals must not fall off! Who will be the next Animal Tower Stacking World Champion?

ROX – HABA

The Druids are getting ready for the great Druidic contest. The aim of the contest is to restore order to the natural flow of elements. To be successful, every Druid must pay close attention and master sleight of hand. Only the quickest Druid will be able to put the symbols of the individual elements in the correct order and restore the natural flow of earth, water, fire, air and magic. If you manage to order the elements quickly enough and they pass the test of the magic eye, you will win the wild Druidic contest!

Slamwich – Gamewright

Flip and stack this clever loaf of cards to build slamwiches and double deckers. Tomato, cheese, tomato… slap! Get there first and win the pile. But watch out — you’ll have to catch thieves and stop munchers from stealing the stack of cards. When you’re out of cards, you’re out of the game. The first player to collect all the cards wins.

Sushi Go – Gamewright

Pass the sushi! In this fast-playing card game, the goal is to grab the best combination of sushi dishes as they whiz by. Score points for making the most maki rolls or for collecting a full set of sashimi. Dip your favorite nigiri in wasabi to triple its value. But be sure to leave room for dessert or else you’ll eat into your score! Gather the most points and consider yourself the sushi master!

Do you know of any games that we missed?  If so let us know and we’ll update the list beyond 10.

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