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The Kid Games 100
Mark Jackson
United States
Goodlettsville
Tennessee
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Over the last year (or so), I've been blogging my own personal Kid Games 100 over on my blog, aka pastor guy (http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com).

I've decided to take advantage of the Geeklist format to list all 100 games but arrange them in BGG average rating order rather than the order I'm choosing for them - I figure the contrast will be interesting.

Each entry is in the following configuration:

=====

Kid Games Rank

Quote:
a pithy pull quote from my longer blog post


the link to the blog post

=====

By the way, this link:

http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com/search/label/Kid%20Games%20...

...will bring up all the posts in the Kid Games 100.

And this link:

http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com/2009/07/kid-games-100-whole...

is a comprehensive list of all 100 games.
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1. Board Game: Jungle Treasure [Average Rating:6.96 Overall Rank:2859]
Mark Jackson
United States
Goodlettsville
Tennessee
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#28

Quote:
The theme is pretty simple - the players are jungle explorers, searching for treasure in Mayan temples. Fighting through the jungle involves a variety of tasks: rebuilding ancient ruins, finding needed supplies and/or dangers, reassembling jeweled masks, and rushing to the help of other adventurers. (There's also a "throw a gem in the air & catch it" task that I just can't come up with a thematic reason for... but who cares?)


http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com/2009/03/28-dschungelschatz....
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2. Board Game: Viva Topo! [Average Rating:6.90 Overall Rank:1264]
Mark Jackson
United States
Goodlettsville
Tennessee
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#25

Quote:
Let's start with Bob the Tomato:
Quote:
"I like Mouse Trap. You roll your dice... You move your mice... nobody gets hurt."

Bob is simply expressing a bedrock truth - one of the time-honored themes of kid gaming is cats chasing mice: Cat & Mouse (there at least 5 different games w/this name in the BGG database), Pounce!, Cheese Chasers, Mouse Trap: The Card Game, So Ein Kase, Mause-Rallye, and the ever popular Mush Mouse & Punkin Puss Game. (OK, it's not ever-popular... but it was published the year I was born, so that oughta count for something.)


http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com/2009/03/25-viva-topo.html
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3. Board Game: Gulo Gulo [Average Rating:6.90 Overall Rank:625]
Mark Jackson
United States
Goodlettsville
Tennessee
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#15

Quote:
Seems the wolverines are miffed that the swamp vulture has kidnapped the baby gulo... so, in order to obtain his release, they begin stealing eggs from his nest. (Does this sound like a weird Jack Bauer-ish hallucination... or have I just been watching too much 24?) The first player to find the gulo and steal a purple egg wins the game.


http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com/2009/05/15-gulo-gulo.html
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4. Board Game: Château Roquefort [Average Rating:6.88 Overall Rank:725]
Mark Jackson
United States
Goodlettsville
Tennessee
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#10

Quote:
I wasn't sure whether to include this game in the Kid Games 100 or not - one of my criteria from the beginning was that the games had to be as much or more fun with kids than they were with adults. (When we finish, I'll give you the list of "kid games" I think are better as adult games.) Then I got to watch my son play it with me & with his best friend... and I realized I couldn't cut the game out.

Granted, it's a lot more "tactical" when playing with adults... with kids, it's pretty random & the game usually ends with one player losing three of their mice into the dungeons. But it's not like that's a bad thing.


http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com/2008/11/10-chateau-roquefor...
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5. Board Game: Pirates on the High Seas [Average Rating:6.83 Overall Rank:3293]
Mark Jackson
United States
Goodlettsville
Tennessee
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#8

Quote:
And the cannons... mustn't forget the cannons. There are three of them: one for each ship & one for the fort. They fire small rubber-tipped projectiles at a very nice velocity - not "Red Ryder BB gun/you'll put your eye out" velocity, but sufficient to trigger the targets.


http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com/2009/06/8-piraten-auf-schat...
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6. Board Game: Quackshot [Average Rating:6.81 Overall Rank:4744]
Mark Jackson
United States
Goodlettsville
Tennessee
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#75

Quote:
This is the game that "A Christmas Story" warned you about - "You'll shoot your eye out." Which explains, I think, why it hasn't been published in the U.S.


http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com/2008/06/75-quackshot.html
 
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7. Board Game: Floß geht's! [Average Rating:6.73 Unranked]
Mark Jackson
United States
Goodlettsville
Tennessee
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#86

Quote:
But this is NOT a simple "roll'n'move." (For those of you who aren't steeped in gaming hobby lingo, "roll'n'move" is a derisive term for games that boil down to rolling the dice & moving that number of spaces - Chutes & Ladders, for example, is an infamous roll'n'move game.) At the start of your turn, you may roll the die of ANY player... thus slowing down a leader (if their die has a particularly good match) or helping yourself (if you're just drifting along).


http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com/2008/06/86-flo-gehts.html
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8. Board Game: Maskenball der Käfer [Average Rating:6.74 Overall Rank:3365]
Mark Jackson
United States
Goodlettsville
Tennessee
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#4

Quote:
See, the ladybugs are having a costume party - so they've decided to trade colored spots. (Yes, kids, this happens in the real world all the time, as bugs often exchange their coloring with each other & hold tiny bug raves where they play remixes of Adam Ant and the Scorpions and dance the night way using glow sticks provided by their friendly neighborhood lightening bugs.)

Now, you'd think that my sarcasm about the theme would keep me from enjoying this cooperative memory game - but it doesn't. Maybe it's because I think that the wooden ladybugs with the magnetic noses are so darn cute... or because the idea of yellow wooden ants advancing up the vine to chow down on the picnic food is appealing to me in some way... or probably because after 63 games of this with my kids, this is such a playable & enjoyable game that I'm ready to play it again.


http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com/2009/07/4-maskenball-der-ka...
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9. Board Game: Giro Galoppo [Average Rating:6.72 Overall Rank:1746]
Mark Jackson
United States
Goodlettsville
Tennessee
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#5

Quote:
Well, it certainly looks like a cute kid game, doesn't it? Pretty kid art, little wooden jockeys with interchangeable wooden horses, nifty little wooden fences... but don't be fooled. This game is "mummy, daddy, don't touch it's Ee-vil" in a box. (A very cute box, mind you.)


http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com/2008/11/5-giro-galoppo.html
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10. Board Game: Hop Hop Hooray! [Average Rating:6.71 Overall Rank:3325]
Mark Jackson
United States
Goodlettsville
Tennessee
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#16

Quote:
But Heinz Meister, the designer of Rein damit!, managed to take some of the basic ideas from these two games and mold them into a game that's been a hit with kids, families, adults & gamers (yes, I made "adults" and "gamers" two separate categories - sue me) over & over again.


http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com/2009/04/16-hupf-hupf-hurra....
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11. Board Game: Der schwarze Pirat [Average Rating:6.70 Overall Rank:1815]
Mark Jackson
United States
Goodlettsville
Tennessee
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#33

Quote:
Each player has a small wooden ship with a cloth sail... and there's a pirate ship (call him what you will - I like to call him "the Dread Pirate Roberts" but then again I'm the guy who got a "Have Fun Storming The Castle" t-shirt for Christmas.) On your turn, you roll the die and either get to move your ship or the Dread Pirate.

The trick of the game is how you move your ship... and that's where the nose squeegee comes into play. Depending on which ship you're moving (player or pirate) and what you roll, you get 3 or 4 "puffs" to scootch the ship across the board. There are raised islands and a raised border - each island has a harbor area which is your objective. Park the ship in a harbor (even just a little bit) and you get all the gold that has accumulated on that island (also generated by a die roll).


http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com/2009/02/33der-schwarze-pira...
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12. Board Game: Chicken Cha Cha Cha [Average Rating:6.65 Overall Rank:1035]
Mark Jackson
United States
Goodlettsville
Tennessee
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#9

Quote:
Small children are SCARY good at this game... I've watched kids lap the board just to prove that they can, while the adults they were playing with were still struggling to remember 1/2 of the tiles in play.


http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com/2009/06/9-chicken-cha-cha-c...
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13. Board Game: Mäuse-Rallye [Average Rating:6.63 Overall Rank:5758]
Mark Jackson
United States
Goodlettsville
Tennessee
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#29

Quote:
Flicking games are tricky with small children... the fine motor skills required to play Carabande well don't kick at age 4 or 5. (A great game, btw, now republished as Pitchcar - but still better suited to the 8 & up crowd.) But your average little kid LOVES to flick stuff - they just need a confined play space in which to do it.

Which is where Mice Rally comes in...


http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com/2009/03/29-mause-rallye.htm...
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14. Board Game: Turbulento [Average Rating:6.63 Unranked]
Mark Jackson
United States
Goodlettsville
Tennessee
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#43

Quote:
This is one of those games where the old "how do you get to Carnegie Hall?" joke comes into play - you need to practice flipping discs to get to the second (memory) part of the game - your first games will be over (for the most part) before the memory element comes into play.


http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com/2008/10/43-turbulento.html
 
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15. Board Game: Schildi Schildkröte [Average Rating:6.54 Overall Rank:4396]
Mark Jackson
United States
Goodlettsville
Tennessee
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#19

Quote:
Let's get this out of the way: the worst thing about most Haba games is their English names. "Twiddle Turtle"? Is it a turtle who's twiddling his thumbs? Do turtles have thumbs? And if they do, are they opposable? Well, to bring it full-circle, I oppose the stupid English name of the game.

I do not, however, oppose the game. This game is an act of genius - and my hat is off (using my opposable thumb to grab it) to Herr Hofstatter for the brilliant design of the racing turtles at the 111th Turtle Olympiad.


http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com/2009/04/19-schildi-schildkr...
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16. Board Game: Akaba [Average Rating:6.50 Overall Rank:3041]
Mark Jackson
United States
Goodlettsville
Tennessee
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#17

Quote:
My older son enjoys this game more than Der schwarze Pirat, I think primarily because of the frenetic pace of each of the turns. I was surprised by this, as I thought that the pirate theme would beat the magic carpet theme - but evidently not. I'm good with either of them: Akaba if I'm up for high-charging silliness, The Black Pirate if I'm wanting more of a careful dexterity challenge.


http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com/2009/04/17-akaba.html
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17. Board Game: Kayanak [Average Rating:6.49 Overall Rank:2842]
Mark Jackson
United States
Goodlettsville
Tennessee
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#1

Quote:
But why do I like Kayanak so much? In the words of Elizabeth Barrett Browning, "let me count the ways":

• the theme (ice-fishing) and the mechanics (using a wooden stick to poke holes in the [paper] ice and fishing out small metal balls with a magnet) work together perfectly
• the components are, as is typical for Haba games, top-notch. In this case, they not only look good but are extremely functional.
• the game plays well with 2, 3 or 4 players and with children as young as four & adults as old as dirt.
• it's freakishly fun - I mean, seriously - you get to poke holes in paper (what kid hasn't spent most of slow school morning doing that?!), play with magnets, and pretend to be an Inuit out on a frozen lake. (OK, I have no desire to ACTUALLY be on a frozen lake, but the pretending part is fun.)


http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com/2009/07/1-kayanak.html
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18. Board Game: Froschkönig [Average Rating:6.46 Overall Rank:5464]
Mark Jackson
United States
Goodlettsville
Tennessee
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#52

Quote:
The frogs are all princes who are trying to kiss the princess first & turn into a frog - now, I don't know how to say this without sounding weird, but since these critters are sticking their tongues out, they're trying to, well, french kiss the princess. That's not right. Really not right.


http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com/2008/10/52-froschknig.html
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19. Board Game: Fireball Island [Average Rating:6.45 Overall Rank:1873]
Mark Jackson
United States
Goodlettsville
Tennessee
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#44

Quote:
This is a recent link for a couple of complete copies of the game ($170.00 +) as well as missing pieces. If you want a complete copy, plan to pay through the nose for it. (I guess this is probably not the best time to tell you I picked up my almost complete copy for $2.00 at a thrift store.)


http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com/2008/10/44-fireball-island....
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20. Board Game: Klondike [Average Rating:6.44 Overall Rank:2725]
Mark Jackson
United States
Goodlettsville
Tennessee
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#54

Quote:
Once you start playing, you quickly find out that you've got a lot more here than nifty components - there's a wicked gambling/bluffing/dexterity game shoehorned into the box. (This, btw, is another one of those kid games that works really well with a group of adults - even with no kids in sight.)


http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com/2008/10/54-klondike.html
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21. Board Game: Midnight Party [Average Rating:6.42 Overall Rank:1586]
Mark Jackson
United States
Goodlettsville
Tennessee
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#3

Quote:
There have been a lot of editions of this game - in English alone it's had two different names (Midnight Party and Ghost Party). I think my favorite is Spöktimmen... I have no idea what language that is but it looks like Hugo (the ghost in the game) formed a Icelandic heavy metal band.


http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com/2008/11/3-midnight-party.ht...
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22. Board Game: Daddy Cool [Average Rating:6.43 Overall Rank:5382]
Mark Jackson
United States
Goodlettsville
Tennessee
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#27

Quote:
Imagine if Sid Sackson's classic game, Can't Stop, actually had a theme... and the theme was polar bear cubs covered in paint (from helping the Inuits paint their igloos) trying to get across the ice floes to the bathtub so they can be the first to get cleaned up. OK, you can stop imagining - that's Daddy Cool in a nutshell.


http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com/2009/03/27-daddy-cool.html
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23. Board Game: The Mole in the Hole [Average Rating:6.39 Overall Rank:2140]
Mark Jackson
United States
Goodlettsville
Tennessee
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#7

Quote:
This is probably as close as we're going to get on the Kid Games 100 to touting an "abstract" kids game. See, I'm not a big fan of abstracts (I'll give exceptions to Zertz, Siesta & Pyraos) so you'd think this nearly perfect information game wouldn't be my cup of tea. You'd be wrong.


http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com/2009/06/7-mole-in-hole.html
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24. Board Game: Pyramidos [Average Rating:6.36 Overall Rank:5878]
Mark Jackson
United States
Goodlettsville
Tennessee
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#57

Quote:
Of course, historical accuracy is not the key - in Cairo, you're flicking building blocks off a boat in the river Nile. In Ra, you're bidding for monuments (as well as a lot of other stuff). And in Pyramidos, you're flicking round building blocks (seems structurally unsound to me) down the river, past waiting crocodiles (those are some mighty big crocs with some pretty strange appetites) to build King Tut's tomb.


http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com/2008/09/57-pyramidos.html
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25. Board Game: Strong Stuff! [Average Rating:6.36 Overall Rank:4362]
Mark Jackson
United States
Goodlettsville
Tennessee
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#46

Quote:
Benni the bear is kind of like Pooh's deranged cousin - he wants honey, but rather than disguise himself as a raincloud and use a helium-filled balloon for lift, he decides to grab a bunch of beehives and run.

His loss is our gain - because we get to try & help him leap from flower patch to flower patch in this extremely short dexterity game. I've been known to describe this as "Kapitan Wackelpudding (another odd dexterity game) for kids"... which is still a pretty good description.


http://akapastorguy.blogspot.com/2008/10/46-brenstark.html
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