Codenames – Review for Bloggers Board Game Club

Codenames is a game for 2 – 8 players aged 14+ RRP £16.99 and is the first game to be sent to us as part of the Bloggers Board Game Club.

As a family we like to spend time playing card and board games. It is the perfect way to reconnect as a family and learn and have fun at the same time. The Bloggers Board Game Club picked Codenames as our first family game. We started playing it when the boy finished for the summer and it has already become a favourite.

Codenames can be played as a party game but is ideally suited to playing with four people. Codenames is a secret agent word game, and although the instructions seemed lengthy at first it is simple and quick to play. As a family of 3 we discovered that we can play in a couple of different ways. With roles as Operatives and spymasters being changed over as we discovered who was best at the clues.

Codenames gameplay starts with the word cards being shuffled and laid out in a grid 5 x 5. A codename card is picked at random telling you which team will start as well as the location of the spy’s, bystanders and assassin. The object of the game is for the spymaster to give a one word clue to the location of their coloured spy’s without the operative finding their opponents spy’s or the assassin. Covering up each word card as it is guessed correctly until you find all your spy’s or the assassin who makes an instant looser. The gameplay is that simple and the rule book gives you examples of guesses and how to best use your clues. There are some firm rules, but you can play to your own rules too.

We loved playing Codenames and discovered that Dad Dragon found it much more difficult to think of the word clues. The boy had a great way of coming up with some alternative ways of thinking and ended up winner on more than one occasion. Codenames can be played in a short time so will be ideal as an addition to our train game list, although it does need some space to lay out the cards. Sometimes the simplest of games are the ones that are the most fun and we have enjoyed playing Codenames.

It has been a great way of looking at words and expanding vocabulary and connections of words. I would recommend Codenames to family’s that like a competitive game as well as those that don’t as you can play with just two players against an invisible opponent. I think you could also played codenames with younger children as the boy is only 12 and loved working out the word clues.

Codenames is available now from online retailers like Amazon, as well as your local store.

Disclaimer: we have been sent this game as part of the Bloggers Board Game Club with Esdevium Games and have not been paid for this review. #BoardGameClub

 

Camel Up – Review

Camel Up is another award-winning game distributed by Esdevium, suitable for ages 8+, 2-8 players and RRP £24.99. This is a fun betting game for all the family, and has already become a family favourite.

The box contains a board, rules, 5 coloured camel counters and matching dice. 40 race betting cards, 8 desert tiles, 15 leg betting cards, 5 pyramid tiles and a selection of coins and notes. There is a small amount of construction needed for the pyramid which is used to shake the race dice, but this is easy and takes no time to make. I love that with Camel up they have thought about how you store the pieces and the box comes with zip lock bags for the smaller pieces for after you have opened packets of cards.

camel up

Camel up is a game that is fun to set up, the board has a town for the betting part of the game and a track for racing the camels. The set up for the game takes a while to work out, and I have taken to reading through game instructions a day before embarking on a new game. This way it saves the frustration of the boy wanting to play straight away. We were very soon getting stuck into learning how to play camel up, and working out our strategy’s. Once you have laid out all the pyramid, and betting tiles. Given each player a starting kitty of 3 Egyptian pounds, 5 betting cards and a desert tile it is time to set up the camels.

camel up pyramid

We love the pyramid dice shaker and you store the coloured dice inside for the game, but first shake all the dice to find out where the camels are going to start. The fun part of the game is stacking the camels. If a camel lands on another he goes at the top, and becomes a unit meaning that he moves with the camel below. The object of the game is to bet on the winning camel and make as much money as you can. This sounds simple but there is plenty to think of, and once we had tried the game a few times found that you had to take a few risks in how you bet.

On each turn of Camel up you have four options, first to take a betting tile on which coloured camel you think might win the leg. Betting on the overall winner. You could place your desert tile on the board or move it to help boost a camel to the winning line or stop him in his tracks. Or your other option is to take a pyramid tile and shake and release a dice from the pyramid. The rules are far more comprehensive and once you have played the game through are easier to understand. Camel up is basically played in sections legs with each player taking turns until the last dice is released. The bets are all paid out, and moneys won and lost. We found each game was made up of about 4 or five legs and took about half an hour to play.

camel up game

The game ends when the first camel crosses the finish line. The game stops monies are paid and the overall winners and looser are paid out. This we found was where it was worth taking an early risk on which coloured camel might make it to the finish line. Camel Up is a great family game and one that we have played with granny too. We found the boy doesn’t like to take risks and Dad dragon does! This means that out of the last 4 games we played Dad has lost quite badly including going into minus coins! The boy likes Camel up, working out how staking the camels and moving them and which ones still have to move in relation to the coloured dice. At first glance Camel up may seem a little straightforward or even dull, but we can see why it already has won awards, and has become an evening favourite.

If you would like to play Camel up with your family  this summer then have a look at my affiliate link below visit the Esdevium website for stockists or enter my gleam giveaway using the app below.

 

 

Camel Up

Disclaimer we were sent this game in return for an honest review.

Terms & Conditions:

The giveaway is open to the UK only

  • It is mandatory to leave a comment in the post comment section answering the question specified. Other tasks completed will gain additional entries. The winner will be checked to make sure they have both left a comment and completed the task for the winning entry.
  • Winner will be drawn randomly after the competition closes at 23:59 on Monday 4th July
  • The winner will be sent an  e-mail to the e-mail address left at time of entry. The winner will need to reply to the e-mail within 7 days of the notification. Every effort will be made to contact the winner, but if no response is made within the 7 days a new winner will be chosen.
  • The prize details are stated at the top of the giveaway, and may be subject to change if they become unavailable.
  • The prize will be posted by the promoter, unfortunately I cannot be held responsible or replace missing parcels. Please contact me if there is a problem.
  • Please allow 28 days from notification for your prize to be sent out.
  • This competition is listed at: Win competitions at ThePrizeFinder.com and SuperLucky
SuperLucky Blog Giveaway Linky

Disney Pictopia – Review

Disney Pictopia is a fun family game with many awards to its name and we were excited to find out if this game would be as fun as it looked from the box. Available now RRP £29.99 for ages 7+ and 2-6 players.

disney pictopia

Disney Pictopia is a picture based question game, but unlike other board games where you play as an individual the great part of this game is that you answer a lot of the questions as groups. This makes Disney Pictopia a great all ages family game. The box contains: 6 mickey counters, 6 sets of wager coins, a dice, Mickey answer dial, board, rules and 1,000 picture question cards.

We found the rules and game play very easy to learn, and the game played well in our little family of 3, as well with more people as we tested this game on granny too! Each player starts choosing a coloured mickey playing token, 5 wager coins, and the answer dial. cards are shuffled and placed picture face up and you are ready to go. The person with the next Birthday starts as the question master. they throw the dice and move their token this number down the board. The square they land on will show which question from the card will be asked. If the question master lands on gold silver or bronze, then the other players will answer as a team. the solo pick spot and spotlight squares you will need your mickey answer dial.

disney pictopia board

Before the question is read out you place a wager coin on the board depending on how confident you are that you will get the answer. These are placed face down on the bottom of the board, and then the question is read out. Depending on the square as to how many answers you have to give, and we loved the fun spotlight rounds. These are questions where you have to match the question masters answer using your mickey answer dial. If answered correctly each player moves the same number of spaces as they wagered. These tokens are then put to one side and play continues with the player on the left becoming the next question master.

On first glance I thought Disney Pictopia might be a little tricky for the boy as he has seen lots of Disney films but maybe not as many as I have in my lifetime. I needn’t have worried as I had the tables turned on me when it came to the newer films and Disney characters. The questions cover lots of the Disney TV shows as well as films so there are some I had never seen before. The questions are sometimes challenging, but we found others which looked hard could be worked out with a little thought They are not always the question you think will be with the picture either so this will keep you on your toes!

disney pictopia game

We have loved Disney Pictopia ( I knew we would) and I think for any Disney loving family this is a must have board game. Games are fun, inclusive of all ages, and get you talking about your favourite characters, or even why you chose Merida to guide you through the forest. I would say our only disappointment is that we cant understand how Dad has managed to win at every game we have played? I think maybe he is a secretly watched more Disney films than we have? The quality of Disney Pictopia means that it will last as a family game, and there are additional rounds and content via the free app.

If Disney is not your family thing, then keep your eyes peeled as the Star Wars version is due out later in the year. I was lucky to have a go of the prototype at the London Toy Fair, and it looks like a winner especially as you can play as Yoda, but beware the questions looked super tricky.

If you would like the chance to play Disney Pictopia then why not enter my giveaway by filling out the Gleam app below:

 

Disney Pictopia

Terms & Conditions:

The giveaway is open to the UK only
  • It is mandatory to leave a comment in the post comment section answering the question specified. Other tasks completed will gain additional entries. The winner will be checked to make sure they have both left a comment and completed the task for the winning entry.
  • Winner will be drawn by randomly after the competition closes at 23:59 on Monday 28th March 2016
  • The winner will be sent an  e-mail to the e-mail address left at time of entry. The winner will need to reply to the e-mail within 7 days of the notification. Every effort will be made to contact the winner, but if no response is made within the 7 days a new winner will be chosen.
  • The prize details are stated at the top of the giveaway, and may be subject to change if they become unavailable.
  • The prize will be posted by the promoter, unfortunately I cannot be held responsible or replace missing parcels. Please contact me if there is a problem.
  • Please allow 28 days from notification for your prize to be sent out.
  • This competition is listed at: Win competitions at ThePrizeFinder.com and SuperLucky
SuperLucky Blog Giveaway Linky

Logo Lite from Drumond Park – Review

Logo Lite from Drumond Park is a great new standalone game which can also be used as a top up pack for the popular Logo Board Game. Suitable for ages 12+ and for 2-4 players, RRP £19.99 Logo Lite is a neat and portable family game.

The Logo Lite box contains 264 Logo cards in a plastic holder, 4 pieces to make up the playing circle, 24 coloured counters, spinner and rules. Set up is quick and simple, as you slot the four coloured disc holders together to for a ring, the spinner then sits inside. shuffle your question cards and you are ready to play.

logo lite

The Logo series of board games have been something we have enjoyed playing as a family and Logo Lite is no exception. Like the Logo Board game the questions fall into 3 categories, picture cards pot luck, and theme cards. Play is simple the youngest player starts and the person to their left becomes the first question master. A card is chosen from the front of the box and each question is asked to the first player. Answer correctly and you can spin the spinner and collect the corresponding coloured counter to add to your coloured holder. Get it wrong and the question is passed to the next player until either someone answers or you run out of players. (2 player games don’t pass the question on)

The Logo Lite winner is the first one to get one of each coloured counter on their section of the coloured holder. This may take a while, as you wait for the spinner to land on the right coloured segment! Logo Lite has proved to be a fun game and one that the boy enjoys. Some of the question cards have subjects he doesn’t recognise, so to even out the play of the game we give him 5 opportunities to pass on a card that he knows nothing about. We still found enough topics that he did recognize with a nice mix of questions including subjects on toys, cars and food.

logo lite from drumond park

The boy loves to spend time being question master so we have found after playing a proper game he enjoys quizzing us on the topics to see how much we know or can remember. We think Logo Lite is a great edition of the Logo series of board games and will be popular this year, especially as there is no board to set up, and it could be played almost anywhere. I love the addition of the question box to keep the cards neat and it is much easier to see the front and back of the cards. If you fancy treating your family to Logo Lite this Christmas then have a look at my affiliate link below. Logo lite is also available from all good toy shops, or why not have a go and enter my competition below.

The lovely people at Drumond Park have been kind enough to give me two copies of Logo Lite for you to win, which would be a great way to start 2016. If you would like the chance to win Logo Lite then simply use the Gleam app, and don’t forget to leave a comment, good luck!

Logo Lite

Terms & Conditions:
The giveaway is open to the UK only
  • It is mandatory to leave a comment in the post comment section answering the question specified. Other tasks completed will gain additional entries. The winner will be checked to make sure they have both left a comment and completed the task for the winning entry.
  • Winner will be drawn by randomly after the competition closes at 23:59 on Friday 15th January 2016
  • The winner will be sent an e-mail to the e-mail address left at time of entry. The winner will need to reply to the e-mail within 7 days of the notification. Every effort will be made to contact the winner, but if no response is made within the 7 days a new winner will be chosen.
  • The prize details are stated at the top of the giveaway, and no alternatives will be offered.
  • The prize will be posted by the promoter, unfortunately I cannot be held responsible or replace missing parcels. Please contact me if there is a problem.
  • Please allow 28 days from notification for your prize to be sent out.
  • This competition is listed at: Win competitions at ThePrizeFinder.com and SuperLucky
SuperLucky Blog Giveaway Linky

 

Colt Express – Review

Colt Express is a Bandit Train game for 2-6 players aged 10+ RRP £27.99. This game is an award-winning board/card game with a bit of a difference. We have tried other games from Esdevium and were looking forward to something new.

The box contains, 6 playing pieces and 6 sets of action cards. Marshal, Locomotive, 6 cartridges, 13 bullet cards, 17 story cards, 18 purses, 6 jewels, 2 strong boxes. Also assembly instructions game rules and 6 player profiles.

colt express

Colt Express sounded just the sort of game that my family would enjoy so I was interested to see what they would think to this different style of board game. The box looks fairly traditional but once you open it you will find that unlike other games it has no board. Instead you have to build the Colt Express train which will act as the playing platform for your pieces. There are 6 carriages, the Locomotive, as well as money, jems and even a few scene setting cacti. When you first set up this game it is worth noting that it will take some time and care freeing the pieces, to build the train cars. We found that if you tried to rush this process there was some damage to the playing pieces. The card is of very good quality, but it was almost impossible to avoid a few tears in the pieces. Assembly instructions are included and this took about half and hour to complete.

colt express board game - Copy

Once you have built the Colt Express Train it is worth having a good read through of the game rules. We decided to have a play through to get a feel for how the game worked and did find that the rules are quite complex. Once you have played a few times the rules become clearer and we found after two games we had worked out where we were going wrong. The basic idea of the game is to move your bandit playing piece around the carriages of the train using action cards, collecting as much money as you can. There is extra bounty to be earn’t for being sharpest shooter, and robbing the Marshal.

colt express game

You start the game buy choosing your bandit, each has a special power that comes into play when you get into the second part the “stealin’ phase” of the game. You set out the locomotive with the marshal and one of the strong boxes. You then need to add a carriage for each player. Each player has a set of 10 action cards, six bullet cards and a purse of $250 to start. Shuffle the 7 round cards and choose 4 to start your story as well as one end story card. Set up the train with the number of loot tokens indicated on each of the carriage floors. Choose a starting player and this person puts their bandit in the last carriage. Even numbered players go in the next carriage along, and odd numbers in the back. Now you are all set to start the first phase, the Schemin’.

colt express bandit game - Copy

Colt Express game play has two phases, Schemin’ and Stealin’ In phase one  you take it turn to lay action cards following the descriptions on the round cards. This is quite tricky to work out the first few times you play. There are additional rules, and this is the part where you have to concentrate on where you opponents end up!  Once all the cards are placed it is time for player one to read through the story in the “Stealin” phase. This is the fun part, as if you have “Schemed” correctly then you will be collecting the loot. Get it wrong and there is plenty of shooting into thin air! There are added events on some of the story cards meaning you need to think about where your bandit ends up at the end of a story too. At the end of the 5 parts to the story the Bandit with the most Loot, including shooting bonuses is declared the winner. In our case this was most often the boy, but I have managed to win back one game.

This is only a brief explanation of the game rules as there are additional play rules for experts, 2 player games and games with more players. Once we had mastered the basic play Colt Express has been a great way to spend a wet cold evening. It is a game that the boy feels he has no disadvantage with his age, with both an element of luck and mastery needed. The added special abilities of the bandits mean you tend to find a favorite player and stick to them. We had fun banning dad from his favorite player Ghost, or playing with players we hadn’t tried before. Colt Express is best played in a group of 3 or more and I can imagine is great fun in a bigger group, the age recommendation is about right as you need to have a good understanding of the complex rules and cause and effect each action card has on a player. There have been plenty of laughs as well with Colt Express as sometimes you have no option but to shoot or punch nothing, or even better being shot by the marshal and not ending up on the part of the train you thought. We even managed to persuade Granny to give it a try, and despite not really understanding fully what was happening, she said she could see it was good fun and something a bit different.

I have the chance of one of you to win this great family game, so if you think you would like to win Colt Express for your family then enter with my gleam app below.

Colt Express

Colt Express is already winning awards, and we can agree it is a great fun family game. Esdevium distribute this game in the uk, and you can find out more by visiting their Facebook and twitter pages. Colt Express is available to buy now from Waterstones, or Amazon. Have a look at my Amazon affiliate link below

 

Terms & Conditions:
The giveaway is open to the UK only
  • It is mandatory to leave a comment in the post comment section answering the question specified. Other tasks completed will gain additional entries. The winner will be checked to make sure they have both left a comment and completed the task for the winning entry.
  • Winner will be drawn by randomly after the competition closes at 23:59 on Monday 4th January 2016
  • The winner will be sent an  e-mail to the e-mail address left at time of entry. The winner will need to reply to the e-mail within 7 days of the notification. Every effort will be made to contact the winner, but if no response is made within the 7 days a new winner will be chosen.
  • The prize details are stated at the top of the giveaway, and no alternatives will be offered unless the item is unavailable.
  • The prize will be posted by the promoter, unfortunately I cannot be held responsible or replace missing parcels. Please contact me if there is a problem.
  • Please allow 28 days from notification for your prize to be sent out.
  • This competition is listed at: Win competitions at ThePrizeFinder.com and SuperLucky
SuperLucky Blog Giveaway Linky

Best of British – Review and Giveaway

The Best Of British board game from Drumond Park (RRP £24.99), celebrates everything that makes this island what it is! This game is played with teams or individual players (2-6) and is suitable for ages 12+, although if you are playing as a team you can play with younger players, who I think will enjoy some of the fun questions.

The Best of British box contains a round playing board, 400 question cards, rules and 6 playing pieces. The game follows the same style of play as the other LOGO board games, so if you have played them The Best Of British will need no explaining.

best of british

We like to play The Best of British board game as teams so here is how you set up. Each of the two teams chooses a playing piece and places on the start square of the board. You then choose a question master for the first team, and they pick a card from the box. Starting with the top question on the card (red question) they read out to the other team. If they answer correctly they move their playing piece to that colour space on the board. If they answer incorrectly or pass then the question can be asked to the question masters team. If they can answer correctly then they can move their piece to the questions coloured space.

There are three types of question card, picture, theme and pot luck. Sometimes there is a picture or word clue on the back of the card and this side can be shown to the players. Play continues with each team taking it in turns to ask the questions from each card. Play continues until one of the teams reach the winning zone, where a bonus question must be answered before the team can be declared the winners.

best of british board game

The Best of British is a great game that we have enjoyed playing. The boy likes to be question master and this has improved his reading skills with some new words that he hadn’t come across before. There are some historical and difficult questions but we found there are also some very funny and random questions. Like what is the average weight of an average British snowman? The Best of British board game will be something that I think families can enjoy over a BBQ with friends and family, or if like us you plan to go away this summer it will be fun to take with us for that unexpected wet day!

We had great fun playing this game, and also just testing each other on our British knowledge, we loved the addition of the Olympic questions as the boy could answer some of these. If you would like to try out this fun British board game then have a look below at my giveaway.

The Best of British

Disclaimer we were sent a copy of this board game to review the opinions remain our own and have not been altered.

 

Terms & Conditions:
The giveaway is open to the UK only
  • It is mandatory to leave a comment in the post comment section answering the question specified. Other tasks completed will gain additional entries. The winner will be checked to make sure they have both left a comment and completed the task for the winning entry.
  • Winner will be drawn by randomly after the competition closes at 23:59 on Friday 14th August
  • The winner will be sent an  e-mail to the e-mail address left at time of entry. The winner will need to reply to the e-mail within 7 days of the notification. Every effort will be made to contact the winner, but if no response is made within the 7 days a new winner will be chosen.
  • The prize details are stated at the top of the giveaway, and no alternatives will be offered.
  • The prize will be posted by the promoter, unfortunately I cannot be held responsible or replace missing parcels. Please contact me if there is a problem.
  • Please allow 28 days from notification for your prize to be sent out.
  • This competition is listed at: Win competitions at ThePrizeFinder.com and SuperLucky
SuperLucky Blog Giveaway Linky

Dr Dreadfull Scab N’ Guts Game review for Izziwizzi Kids

This is our second game review for Spin Master games, and Izziwizzi Kids Play Fest and I must confess I was not looking forward to this one, as I am a little bit squeamish! so was pleasantly surprised.

The game is for families and ages from 6+ and retails in the US at $14.99 which I think it good value for money.

The game comes in a lovely sturdy box with a long playing board with a body and lots of fun facts. Six playing pieces as organs, 2 packs of question and forfeit cards. I thought it was a great idea having the gameplay and rules printed onto the inside of the box with yet more fun facts, so no chance of losing the all important instructions.

The game starts with the player with the cleanest fingernails, and you choose a category. At this point I would like to say make sure that you give the cards a VERY good shuffle as all the forfeit cards are together, so good idea to spread them out on a table and shuffle that way. Players pick questions and move spaces as per the cards. Forfeits are great there are good (Green move forward) and bad (Brown move backwards). Some are facts, some you act out. The Boy (7) loved these, and I think it made up for the fact he lost the first game, as lots of giggles.

Some of the questions and words the boy found difficult to read as lots of medical words but great for the vocabulary! You take it in turns to read questions, but you could play in teams if playing with younger kids.

We loved this game, there is a nice mixture of hard and very easy multiple choice questions, the only problem we had with a couple was some of the American terms, like Boogers…The Boy thought lots were gross, but when a few questions came back round he had remembered the answers. We even got Granny playing this one, and although reluctant at first, thought it was good fun and went on to win.

I think this would be a GREAT christmas after dinner game, and lots of fun to be had!

we give this 5 out of 5! Brilliant…

Thanks to Spin Master, and Izziwizzi Kids…