Last week I attended the Toy Fair 2010 NYC at the Jacob Javitz Center in New York. I was overwhelmed with what I saw. I am going to make my first of many Toy Fair posts about the great board games I found. What I love about these are that they are unique and can be played across a variety of ages, which makes them great for family bonding
1. Top Trumps – Do you remember the simple card game war that you probably played while growing up. Top Trumps puts a twist on this classic game. There are packs available in almost any category you can imagine, including Marvel comic heroes, movie stars, animals, sports, Harry Potter, The Simpsons, Hannah Montana and Star Wars. Each card has 5 statistics on the back and when it is your turn, you choose the statistic in which you think you will have a higher number than the other players. These card games have been a hit in The United Kingdom for years now.
2. SET: The Family Game of Visual Perception – The winner of over 25 best game awards, SET is a great game for any age and for families to play together. It can also be played alone. A game of visual perception, players must create sets of cards from varying colors and shapes. “Age is no advantage in this fast paced family game. SET is great fun for the whole family because there is no previous knowledge required.” For more great games by this company, check out the SET Enterprises website.
3. StoryTellers Game – A great game for friends, families or school. Three to Five players create a story by choosing game cards that describe different elements of the story. For ages 10 and up, StoryTellers won the 2007 Game of the Year Award from Creative Child Magazine.
4. Triviathon – A game in which you will learn trivia, but don’t have to know the answers to win. The questions all have to do with how many spaces on the game board to move, or what color space to move to. The trivia questions have colors or numbers as their answer, so even if you just guess, you can still do well. A winner of many parenting awards, Triviathon allows people of all ages to play together. See a full review of Triviathon.
5. Would You Rather…? – The classic version is for ages 12 and up. There is also a Would you Rather for kids for tweens 7 to 12. This type of question game has become very big among teens, so wouldn’t you rather them have this game with pre-approved questions. A game of bizarre questions, Would You Rather will get everyone talking, thinking and laughing.
6. I’ve Never teen version – A similar game to the one above, this game for 12-18 years olds contains appropriate questions, unlike the questions that they probably come up with themselves without use of this game. You may have seen I’ve Never played on TV shows such as Lost. Great for groups of teens, I’ve Never teen version can be played at parties or among a small group of friends.
7. Jungle Speed – For ages 7 through adult, Jungle Speed is great fun for families. Observation and quick reflexes are the only skills required. A fun quick card game that can be taken on the go and played anywhere.
8. Catch Up – The perfect game to connect with your teens. Catch Up was created for players to catch up with what is going on in the lives of their friends and family. This is not a game of winning, just fun and bonding. A portion of the proceeds are being donated to educate school teachers about autism. Somewhat similar to Would You Rather, the questions here are less bizarre and more real life.
9. Wits & Wagers – Another trivia game in which you don’t need to fully know the answers, Wits & Wagers has won more awards than any other party game in history. Part trivia, but gambling (not for money), this game can be played by ages 10 and up. All players write their anwers to a trivia question on a wipe off board. You all show your answers and everyone bets on which answer they think is right. For other great games from the makers of Wits & Wagers, see the North Star Games website.
11. Sort It Out – The Game of the Year Winner 2010 from the TOTYs (the Oscars of the toy industry), Sort It Out from University Games is a new party game for the whole family. It requires arranging things in the right order, such as events, weights, measurements, etc. For 2-6 players ages 12 and up.
12. Consensus – The winner of many awards, Consensus is a game about opinions, not correct answers. At least 3 players are required since winning each play requires being part of the majority. The original edition is for ages 13 to adult. There is also a junior version for ages 8 to adult, and movie and music versions for ages 17 and up. Currently, Mindlogic, Inc., the maker of Consensus games, is donating 10% of Consensus board game profits to the relief effort in Haiti.
This is just the tip of the iceberg of products that I saw at the Toy Fair 2010 NYC that I want to recommend. So as not to overload you with too much at once, I am saving the non board game products for further posts.