Category: Fun Tidbits

10 Games Perfect for Any Spring Basket

10 Games Perfect for Any Spring Basket

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While chocolate, candy, and anything bunny or chick related is usual basket fare, we have a few suggestions for some different ways to fill them up this year. Give your child something other than sugar, and pick up a game or two to add the gift of play to their basket. The best part about swapping out some of that candy for games?  They are sure to be appreciated long after the chocolate bunnies and gummy eggs have been wolfed down. Plus, they give your kids something to channel all that sugary energy into! Check out some of our recommendations for colorful, fun games that would be great additions to any basket this spring; all of these are available in stores and online now.

ringit_tin_new_flat-resizedRing It! Ages 5 and Up, 2-9 Players

Clap and ring your way to victory! Players continuously flip their cards until a combo is found. Be the first to find the combo, clap your hands and ring the bell. Hesitation may cost you 1st place, but if you act too quickly you may make a mistake and face a penalty! Get ready for chaotic clapping followed by lots of laughter!

FastTrackMini_Pkg_GameFastrack Mini Ages 5 and Up, 2 Players

This mini-version takes all of the fun of the original rapid-action shooting game, and packs it into a smaller design. The same high-quality materials and exciting game play are now perfect for on-the-go entertainment! Each side starts with 4 wooden disks and then players race to get all 8 disks on their opponent’s side by shooting them through the slot opening. Skill and luck mix in this action-packed game!

TellTale_TinOnly_LowResTell Tale Ages 5 and Up, 1-8 Players

Discover the art of storytelling with Tell Tale. Be guided through your own unique tale with cards illustrated with a variety of characters, settings, objects and emotions. If a picture is worth a thousand words, imagine the possibilities with 120 inspiring images! Create your own storyboard or improvise a tale together; there are four ways to play! In this creative storytelling game, everybody is a winner.

RallyUp_Tin_Flat_HiResRally Up! Ages 6 and Up, 2-6 Players

What happens when 110 exotically illustrated cards are shuffled, distributed, and then rhythmically turned face-up on the table? Players will find themselves in a hullabaloo and will race to rally up 2 or more images belonging to the same family! Scan swiftly through the craziness to get these thingies back to where they belong!

EyeNSeek_Pkg_GameOpen_FlatEye ‘N Seek Ages 6 and Up, 2-6 Players

Flip a card and then spin the wheel to find its matching icon in the windows. Make sure to pay attention and search quickly- it’s a race! Spot the match before your opponents to win the round and a point. 6 double-sided wheels, 100 icon cards, 3 levels, and 6 rules to play create challenging searching fun for all ages.

 

GoGo-Gelato_Pkg_Game_FlatGo Go Gelato Ages 6 and Up, 2-4 Players

Using 4 cones, 3 scoops, 2 hands, and 1 challenge card fill your customers’ orders as quickly as you can! Pass the scoops back and forth between the cones, being careful to not touch or drop them. Work quickly to figure out the best way to satisfy your customer before your opponents do. Fill the order exactly like it looks on the card, or you’ll lose the race. A tasty and engaging dexterity race that’s fun for everyone!

Djubi_Slingball_PkgDjubi Slingball Ages 6 and Up, 2 Players

It’s the ultimate game of catch that allows you to send the ball sailing over 100 feet! It relies on a unique launching system that creates maximum distance and maximum fun! The balls come with a rubber loop attached, allowing players to launch them from a hook on the racket frame. This version takes all the launching fun of the Djubi Classic and packs it into a lighter design that’s perfect for all ages.

DiceStack_Pkg_FlatDice Stack Ages 7 and Up, 1-6 Players

Roll the tilted dice and stack them up in numerical order. Stop at any time while you are building your stack and win the sum of the values you stacked. Carefully place the dice and don’t let them fall, or you’ll lose it all! The drawstring bag and compact game pieces make this a great travel game. Play anywhere there’s a flat surface!

Fast Flip

Fast Flip Ages 7 and Up, 2-8 Players

Get ready to scramble for the match in this crazy fruit salad! Match your fruits to a number, or numbers to a fruit; you don’t know what match you’ll have to find next! Whether you play with the tokens or with the cards alone, all players of any age will be fast flipping for this brain teasing match up. The game comes complete in a tin for your cards and tokens, making it an easy travel item. The magic distribution of fruits on the cards guaranties that there is always one correct answer. You just need to be the fastest to find it!

 

RalllyRoll_Pkg_FlatRally Roll Ages 8 and Up, 2-6 Players

Roll the dice to rack up your points! On your turn, roll all the dice, scoring points based on the color of the big die. Then, decide to bank points won in that round, or take a chance and roll again! If no dice match the big colored die, forfeit all points won in that round. Take big risks with this fast and fun, take-anywhere dice game!

A Game Fit for a….Queen?

A Game Fit for a….Queen?

Queendomino_PackagingIf you have been following board gaming news recently, you might have heard of a little tile-laying game called Kingdomino. It won the board game equivalent of an Oscar when it took home the Spiel des Jahres this past July, putting both its designer, Bruno Cathala, and publisher, Blue Orange Games, at the forefront of the gaming scene.

According to the Spiel des Jahres jury, Kingdomino was given the award because it “lifts the time-honored principle of dominoes to a new level – without losing any of the sleek elegance of its predecessor. On the contrary: the dual mechanics of planning the far-reaching lands surrounding the castle and the clever method of selecting tiles fit together extraordinarily well, they are expertly reduced to their essential components.”

For those unfamiliar with Kingdomino, first of all buy it – we promise you won’t regret it. Second of all, the jury’s praise of the game’s simple yet elegant mechanics is an opinion shared by many in the gaming world. During a turn in the game, you select a new tile and add a previously selected tile to your kingdom, making sure to match one side of the domino to a like terrain type already in play (just like how in dominoes two sides must match in order for you to place a domino). Each turn, players select a domino in an order determined by their previous selection. It is this mechanic, coupled with the planning and strategizing required to build a kingdom within the constraints of a 5×5 grid, which makes the game so clever.

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Queendomino for sale at Essen in October.

Less than a year after Kingdomino was released, Bruno Cathala announced the next in line to the throne: Queendomino. The announcement was understated in the US. It involved a little sly product placement at Blue Orange Games’ Gen Con Booth, and a quiet BoardGameGeek.com listing. Both piqued the interest of many in the gaming world ahead its release, which happened in October at the Internationale Spieltage in Essen, Germany.

Kingdomino was launched at that very same festival, in 2016, and according to the game designer himself Queendomino was thought of soon after that. “I started working on Queendomino right after coming back from Essen 2016, so just a few days after Kingdomino was released.” It was a game born from his desire for something more challenging, as he had been playing his crown jewel for over two years before it finally launched.

“Of course, after playing a game as simple as Kingdomino 200 times, I wanted something more challenging,” he said, continuing with, “ I wanted a game with the same mechanic of building a Kingdom through domino selection and placement, but with a little more complexity that required players to be more methodical in their gameplay.” Thus, the idea for Queendomino was born.

The largest difference that Kingdomino fans can expect to see between the two games is that in Queendomino there are many more options which make game play richer and more complex. The biggest addition is the inclusion of a 7th terrain, towns, on which players can construct buildings. Cathala highlights other differences saying, “Another one is money, because in order to build you need to pay. There are many different building you can put in your kingdom, each with their own way to score points, allowing many different strategies.  A fun twist is that in the towns there are no point-earning crowns, so to get points you need to build on them.” He continues with, “There are other fun additions like towers that help you host the queen, knights that help you collect tax, and a dragon who has the tendency to burn coveted buildings if bribed….” Needless to say, the additions definitely elevate the simplicity of the original game.

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Richer gameplay and heavier strategy require a few more game pieces than Kingdomino!

What is interesting is that during Queendomino’s development, Kingdomino’s Spiel des Jahres win was a nonfactor. Cathala elaborates on this saying, “At the time of the nomination, the prototype was already finished and validated. Then when the award was announced, Queendomino was already in production.”

While the development process for Kingdomino took over 2 years, Queendomino’s was much shorter, as details such as the basic rules, components, and illustrator were already set.  According to Cathala, “The main concern was making sure that all the additional elements made the game attractive and balanced, and not unpalatable or cluttered. In fact, the hardest part was to make it so that Kingdomino and Queendomino could be played both separately and together.”

Cathala’s work in making the game both an expansion and a standalone was well worth it, as it is this quality that intrigues a lot of Kingdomino fans. The game was designed so that you can combine a Queendomino with a Kingdomino in what is affectionately called “The Royal Wedding”. This allows for 4 players to play with more expansive 7×7 kingdoms, or for 6 players to play with the traditional 5×5 grid. Just like in the original game, Queendomino can be played by itself with 2, 3, or 4 player counts.

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Cathala states the reason behind this decision was because, “This type of game has rarely been done in the past, so the challenge of making a game that worked by itself but also in conjunction with another game was interesting to me. This also allows me to have a game on the market for the general public [Kingdomino], and another one completely independent for the more expert public [Queendomino], without the 2 games competing with each other for attention.” He continued with another motive saying, “A more personal reason was because I love playing the 2 player 7×7 variant in Kingdomino, and having both games allows for 4 players to play this way.”

Although Cathala himself, and reviewers who received advanced copies, praise the game for its complexities he still believes there is room in anyone’s game cabinet for both, as they serve different purposes.“I don’t prefer one over the other. It depends on who I am playing with and how much time I have in front of me, as Queendomino games are a little longer”.

When asked about his future plans for the Kingdomino universe Cathala teased an upcoming expansion saying, “I thought of Kingdomino fans playing with younger children, or not wanting too many more options during game play. This is the reason I am refining an expansion for Kingdomino. It will allow 5 players to play at once and will add a few elements, very simple but fun. All I can say right now is that it involves giants!”

Kingdomino and Queendomino are both currently available in stores and online.

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Note: This article originally appeared in the November 2017 issue of Meeple Monthly magazine.
Kingdomino Cookie Recipe (A Blog Re-post from Sugar High Score)

Kingdomino Cookie Recipe (A Blog Re-post from Sugar High Score)

Note: This post originally appeared on http://www.sugarhighscore.com and was re-posted with permission. Find the exact posting here.

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Here at Blue Orange we are no strangers to our fans creating projects in honor of their favorite board game. However, when someone goes above and beyond in celebrating one of our games, we must share it with the world! Below you will find a video and corresponding recipe to make some pretty awesome Kingdomino cookies, courtesy of the talented duo known as Sugar High Score. On their blog and Youtube channel they show people how to re-create awesome baked creations that are all inspired by their favorite games. We thank them for setting the Kingdomino fan bar so high!

Chocolate Cookies

The perfect chocolate cookie recipe for roll-out cookies

Ingredients

  • 1 cup butter
  • 1/4 cup shortening
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 3 1/2 cups all purpose flour

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees

  2. Using a mixer, cream together the butter, shortening and sugar until smooth.

  3. Add the eggs one at a time. Then mix in the vanilla. Continue mixing until well incorporated. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.

  4. Add the baking powder, salt and cocoa powder.

  5. Add flour 1 cup at a time.

  6. Roll the dough out to 1/4 inch thickness and chill for 30 minutes in the refrigerator.

  7. Cut the cookies into the desired shapes and bake at 375 F for 7-10 minutes.

     

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Royal Icing

Ingredients

  • lbs confectioner’s sugar
  • 5 tbsp meringue powder
  • tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 – 3/4 cup water

Instructions

  1. Mix the flavoring into half the water.

  2. Using a mixer, combine the meringue powder and powdered sugar.

  3. Slowly add the water and flavoring into the dry ingredients. The icing will then become very thick.

  4. Next add the remaining water and mix on medium speed and whip until thick and fluffy. Stop mixing when the icing forms a soft peak.

  5. You can add more water as needed to reach the desired piping consistency.

Some of my favorite tools and supplies used in this video:

Tip #2 and Coupler

Joseph Joseph Rolling Pin

X-Acto Knife

Meringue Powder

Sheet Pan

Piping Bags

Gel Food Colors

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Make sure to give Sugar High Score some love on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram (@sugarhighscore), and subscribe to their Youtube channel so you can see which game they are inspired by next!

An Interview with Bruno Cathala: How Kingdomino became his Crown Jewel

An Interview with Bruno Cathala: How Kingdomino became his Crown Jewel

Portions of this article were originally published in The Casual Game Insider Issue #21 and Meeple Monthly’s September 2017 Issue

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Cathala receiving the award.

Bruno Cathala: Passionate gamer, celebrated game designer, and as of recent, Spiel des Jahres 2017 recipient*. For a designer like Cathala, whose ludography includes popular games like 5 Tribes, 7 Wonders Duel, and Abyss, this award is a long time coming.

With the announcement of its win on July 17th, 2017, Kingdomino instantly joined the ranks of popular past award winners like The Settlers of Catan, Ticket to Ride, and Codenames. According the Spiel jury, Kingdomino was chosen because it, “lifts the time-honoured principle of dominoes to a new level – without losing any of the sleek elegance of its predecessor. On the contrary: the dual mechanics of planning the far-reaching lands surrounding the castle and the clever method of selecting tiles fit together extraordinarily well, they are expertly reduced to their essential components.”

Kingdomino plays like dominos with a kingdom-building twist. Each turn, players select and then add a new tile to their existing kingdom, matching one of the terrain types on the tile to another already in play. However, in this domino spinoff, the gameplay is elevated by the tile bidding mechanism. Players must decide how much they value certain tiles, as the selection of tiles during a round determines the draft order for the next round. The game ends when each player has attempted to complete a 5×5 grid, and then points are counted based on the number of connecting tiles and point-earning crowns.

While the finished product has impressed the public since its debut at Essen 2016, the story behind how a humble game of dominos turned into a crown jewel shows that much like building an entire kingdom, the creation of a board game is no easy feat. Amidst his busy schedule, Bruno Cathala was kind enough to answer a few questions about his game design process, the gaming world, and his crown jewel Kingdomino.

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Interviewer’s note: Answers were translated from Cathala’s native French and edited for the sake of clarity and length.

 

Kathryn Hill: To start off, what is the biggest challenge when it comes to inventing a game?
Bruno Cathala: When I have an idea, and I start developing it to create the game of my dreams, there is excitement, feelings of urgency, and a lot of hope about the playful experience I am hoping to generate among players. The biggest challenge is to keep this excitement up along the way, test after test, even when the prototype is completely done.

 

KH: During this process do you find inspiration in other people, or other games? 

BC: True creation without any external influence is completely impossible. This is true in literature, in painting, and in music. It’s also true for games. The author is influenced by his own life experience: the games he has played, the films he has watched, the books he has read, the conversations he has had. However, in my case, if all those influences do exist, they are not conscious. I never work on a project thinking ‘’Oh, I could do it as in this game… or I could do as this person did…’’ But even if the ideas coming to my mind seem very personal, I bet they are the result of a long and complex process that digests all the various influences I have experienced.

 

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Cathala signing games for fans at Gen Con 50 in Indianapolis.

KH: From your experience as a French game designer, what are the main differences between the European market and American Market? 

BC: My experience of the US market and how it works is too limited to give a straight-out opinion about the differences between both markets. However, in the last few years I have been going to Gen Con in Indianapolis. And I have to say I am delighted by the welcome gamers are giving me. I have met playful, cheerful, curious people, with whom I have become friend with, and this summer event has become a real pleasure. Thank you all for this welcome!

 

KH: Do you take the market or previous experience into account when designing games?
BC: Actually, my creative process is quite selfish. I only work on the games I want to play myself; I am my first client. Then, once my creative job is done, I start a second phase trying to convince first the editors, then the players, that they need to follow me! I never think about the market when I create my games, and that’s better. To format a game to a specific market from the beginning of its creation is the best way to create a game that will surely be functional, but probably with no soul. It is my passion for games that I try to convey (probably clumsily) game after game.

 

KH: It seems you have spent a lot of time creating games…do you play a lot of games yourself as part of the designing process?

BC: Not often enough! Indeed, I know it does sound surprising, but my close ones I don’t really like to play. I only have one evening a week dedicated to playing games, and I mainly play my own prototypes. I try to play other inventors games as often as possible, when I get an opportunity to do so. However, I do stay connected to game industry news by reading websites (Tric-Trac, boardgamegeek, Dice Tower…), watching how-to-play videos, and reading rules on the internet.

 

KH: Currently, what are your favorite games on the market?

BC: Over the past few months I have fallen in love with a few games. Captain Sonar is amazing because it gives an incredible, different and unique gaming experience to players. I like Flamme Rouge, because it’s easy, clever, end so elegant. I love Santorini, because for a fan of pure and beautiful abstract games like me, it’s a must have. I also really like Jaipur. You absolutely have to download the app, it’s one of the best ever!

 

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KH: Now moving on to your pièce de résistance; where did you get your inspiration for Kingdomino? What is the story behind it?

BC: Kingdomino’s story is different from my other games. Indeed, at the very beginning, it was a game specifically developed for a ski resort! On top of my job as a game designer for the conventional board game industry, I create games for private clients, following their specifications, for them to use for internal or external communications purposes, or as a training tool. I had already created tile, dice, and card games for this ski resort to give to people who bought week long family passes, and so when 2015 arrived I wanted another playful object that I could possibly use, and twist, to make a very simple game. Almost right away I thought of dominos. This is what led me to K’dominoz! The size of the box only allowed each player to play with 8 dominos, small in size and thickness. I had so much pleasure in playing and playing again, that I told myself it would be a shame to not try to enrich it a bit and give it a chance in the board game world.

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The inspiration for Kingdomino, K-domino’z.

I created Kingdomino on that basis and incorporated a theme, hesitating a long time between the building of a Kingdom as you know it, or some kind of farm with fields containing different animals in place of crowns. I also increased the number of tiles, added domino types, and introduced the system of numbers underneath each domino to bring an interesting dilemma for savvy players. Then came the different game play variations, of which the 2 player 7×7 is my favorite. In regards to the timing…the first little game was wrapped up within one afternoon. However, for this draft to become Kingdomino, there was about 6 months of work and dozens of tests to validate a final distribution that met my satisfaction.

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The game tiles, which center around the “kingdom” theme, featuring different terrain types and unique details.

 

KH: After the initial development period you just mentioned, are there any interesting changes or improvements that were made before production?

BC: The path from a prototype to an edited version is not always easy. One essential element to the success of this operation is the artistic direction. With good artistic direction, a complex game can seem easy, and a simple game can seem complicated.

When it comes to Kingdomino, the work started with an illustrator, who was told to draw everything from a top point of view, in contrary to my prototype which was based on buildings seen from the side in an isometric view.  At the end, to my biggest disappointment, the final result was difficult to play and the aesthetic was questionable and not very attractive. The work was completely done, the illustrator had been paid, and the game was ready for production. However, I shared my doubts and sadness with Blue Orange and they were incredibly responsive to my disappointment. They changed the illustrator and paid for the cost of the re-done illustrations. This is when Cyril Bouquet became the illustrator, drawing the buildings from the side, and adding crowns, just like my prototype, to visualize important squares.

Today I am entirely satisfied with the final result. I am sure that without this last minute change, Kingdomino wouldn’t know the success it is having today. I want to thank my editor for making this decision, I do not know too many people able to say ‘’I was wrong’’ and double the costs to correct a problem.

 

KH: It seems you and Blue Orange Games have a good relationship, how did you start working with them?

BC: The story is kind of surprising actually. Before becoming a designer I was a gamer for a very long time, mostly passionate about 2 player abstract games. In the mid-80s I completely fell in love with a game that was produced one at a time by its author, Claude Leroy, called Gyges. In 2002 I discovered that Claude Leroy, whom I admired, lived a few miles from my parents in South of France. I took advantage of a Christmas visit to my parents and contacted Claude Leroy to simply tell him all the good I thought about his work, and he invited me to his home. There I met his son Timothee Leroy.

A few years later Timothee, who had just finished his business studies, decided to create a publishing company called Jactalea with the main goal of highlighting his father’s work, and abstract 2-player games. In brief, we had met before and we have a common passion for abstract games and Claude Leroy’s work. Naturally, I immediately connected to Jactalea and a year or two later I offered them a 2-player game, Kamon. It was then our partnership was born. (Interviewer’s note: Jactalea and Blue Orange Games combined in 2013 to create Blue Orange Europe, connecting Cathala with the Blue Orange brand).

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Bruno Cathala and the Blue Orange Europe team at the Spiel des Jahres ceremony, post announcement.

 

KH: How did it feel when you found out about the Spiel des Jahres nomination?

BC: When one of my games is nominated for a prize, and even better, is awarded the final prize, it’s always for me a surprise, a joy, and a big honor. But this is more than that. In our little world of board games, I think it is the equivalent to winning an Oscar. Being part of the 3 finalists is just huge, especially because it is my first nomination after 15 years of designing games, and maybe my last.  I was happy, honored, and also a little stressed.

 

Cathala post-announcement.
KH: What was your reaction and thought process when Kingdomino was announced the winner? What does this win mean for you today?

BC: When I heard the announcement I was paralyzed. I couldn’t breathe. My heart was beating at 180 beats per minute, and the tears were not far. I sat there speechless, while everybody was jumping and crying around me, shaking me in all directions. It took me a good 30 seconds to get my thoughts back together. This is because it is the greatest recognition that exists for a game author. The holy grail. An Everest.  It is an absolutely fantastic reward, and the biggest gift the gaming world could offer to me.

 

KH: Do you have any advice for someone who has ideas about games or would like to start inventing games?

BC: First, I would say that having a game idea doesn’t make you a game designer. Having an idea is just the beginning… it’s the visible part of the iceberg. Transforming this part into a real game requires a lot of work, and the first thing you have to learn is patience. You will need to build your prototype, playtest it, modify it, playtest it, modify it again, again, and again with a lot of different people (not your family or friends who always think that what you do is incredible). You will feel excited, disappointed, excited, and disappointed, again and again…and at the end, you will have to really work a lot to write an understandable and clear rules booklet. Only then it will be time to try to contact a publisher.

 

KH: Looking towards the future, do you have any upcoming projects you are excited about?

BC: Yes, always! Regarding projects with Blue Orange, I am right now working on different avenues to develop the universe and concept of Kingdomino. And for the end of next year, I also have lots of hopes for a cool game that can be played solo, or one on one. It’s a common project with Ludovic Maublanc and I believe in it. I am quite excited about it actually!

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Bruno Cathala’s latest release with Blue Orange Games, Queendomino.

 

Check out our website to learn more about Kingdomino and Queendomino.

 

To learn more about the Spiel des Jahres, check out their website.

 

* The Spiel des Jahres is internationally acclaimed as the reigning authority on deciding the best and most accessible family board game of the year, although its contenders are games that are new only to the German market. It evaluates three finalists looking for the best design, rules, layout, and overall gaming concept. More complex games fall under the Kennerspiel des Jahres category, and children’s games fall under the Kinderspiel des Jahres category.

Top 10 Games to Give the World’s Greatest Dad

Top 10 Games to Give the World’s Greatest Dad

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This Father’s Day, give the gift of play to the most playful one in the entire family, with a little help from Blue Orange Games! The perfect gift is one that brings people together, and what greater way to spend some quality time with Dad than with a little friendly competition? Challenge him to one of our games, and we are sure you’ll have a memorable Father’s day. Last minute doesn’t have to mean lame- Check out our top 10 suggestions for a present that won’t disappoint!

 

For the Sport-Loving Dad

FlyingKiwis_Pkg_Game_FlatFlying Kiwis

Want revenge on Dad beating you at all those tic-tac-toe matches? Challenge him to a game of Flying Kiwis! Players try to line up their Kiwis in the fruit crate by aiming carefully and launching their tokens with a ramp. This game ensures you’re spending Father’s Day doing a fruitful and fun bonding activity! Learn more about Flying Kiwis here!

Fastrack_GameOpenFastrack

Bring Dad the excitement and fast-action of his favorite sports in an addicting high-speed game! In Fastrack, each player starts with 5 discs. The goal is to try to rid your side of all of discs by using your finger, and an elastic band to fire the discs through the slot to your opponent’s side. It’s a sure fire way to fill your Father’s Day with fun! Learn more about Fastrack here!

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The fast-flying game of construction and destruction! Players each take turns being the master-builder, trying to build as many towers as possible, or the saboteurs, who launch projectiles with the aim of knocking down the towers. Launch into a great Father’s day with Kaboom! Learn more about Kaboom here!

For the Fun loving, Risk-Taking Dad

 TumbleTree_GameOpen_FlatTumble Tree

Have some good quality fun with dad and this dynamic card-placement game. Build your own Boabab tree using the game tin as the trunk, and toss, fling, place, and throw the cards as you try to get rid of your hand. Be careful to avoid penalties and be the player with the least amount of cards at the end to win! Learn more about Tumble Tree here!

RalllyRoll_Pkg_FlatRally Roll

A big-risk game for your biggest supporter! On your turn roll the dice and score points for those that match the color of the large die. You can keep rolling and scoring as long as they keep matching, but if no matches come up you forfeit all points won in that round! Challenge the whole family to this fun and easy risk-taking game! Learn more about Rally Roll here!

For the Strategy-Loving, Bookish Dad

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Kingdomino

Show dad who is the real King of the castle in this light-weight strategy game. Each turn connect a domino to an existing terrain type already in play, making sure to watch out for point-boosting crowns! At the end of the game, count the points in everyone’s 5 X 5 Kingdom, and crown the person with the most points the victor! Learn more about Kingdomino here!

Battlesheep_Pkg_Left_Flat_LoResBattle Sheep

Go head to fluffy head with Dad in this quick moving strategy game! Players try to occupy the most pasture while strategically moving their sheep around the board to block their opponents. A build-your-own game board means each game is as unique as your old man! Learn more about Battle Sheep here!

microbeDr. Microbe

Challenge dad to a brainy logic race! Using logic, race your fellow scientists to figure out which microbes are missing from the incomplete challenge card, and snatch them up fast with your tweezers. Remember, the super bug needs to always be a different shape and color than the other microbes in your petri dish. Who will be the first to help Dr. Microbe complete her research, Dad or you? Learn more about Dr. Microbe here!

For the Dad Who Already Loves Board Games

Viking_Pkg_flatVikings on Board

Have the whole family join in on this big box family strategy game! Each player’s objective is to have their clan of Vikings set sail on the ships best equipped for a Voyage. Watch out as the rival clans will be trying to rearrange the composition of the ships, and their value, throughout the entire game. Take control of the Fjord, and the family, with Vikings on Board! Learn more about Vikings on Board here.

TheBoss_Pkg_FlatThe Boss

Bluff and deduce your way to a good Father’s day with a little help from lady luck. In this game, players send their crews of gangsters out to assist local bosses, being careful to size up each job to make sure it is strategically advantageous. Show dad who the true boss of the family is and beat him at a game or two! Learn more about The Boss here.

 

To see the full lineup visit: www.blueorangegames.com
Toy Fair and ToyFest West 2017 Wrap-Up: The Top 5!

Toy Fair and ToyFest West 2017 Wrap-Up: The Top 5!

Toy Fair and ToyFest West 2017, our two most important trade shows this time of the year are over, and the 13 new games that were unveiled at our booths will be in stores and online in the coming weeks. This year we debuted an expanded “Doctor Collection”, as two of our newest games, Dr. Beaker and Dr. Microbe, have joined our 2016 bestseller, Dr. Eureka. These science-themed games fell in perfectly with the STEM trend that was seen all over Toy Fair. We also introduced games with unique play patterns that would entertain a wide variety of ages, like Tumble Tree and Dice Stack. They are a little different but stay true to Blue Orange’s simple-to-learn and easy-to-play mission. Read below to learn about these and the other stand outs that the attendees raved about at the show!

Top 5 New Games

microbe

Dr. Microbe
Ages 8 & Up | 2-4 Players

What our customers loved:
• STEM themed speed logic race
• Gummy microbes make for easy pick-up!
• Tweezer components promote fine motor skill and dexterity development

Dr. Microbe has important research to do and she needs help! Using a pair of tweezers, players race to grab the correct colorful microbes and place them into their petri dish to solve an incomplete challenge card. Make sure to follow the research rules and finish first to impress Dr. Microbe and win the card as a point. The unique concept and components will make this your new go-to!

 

beaker

Dr. Beaker
Ages 8 & Up | 2-4 Players

What our customers loved:
• Unique mechanism means the beaker really rotates!
• Colorful components
• High quality materials so you can play again and again without worry!

Stir up excitement in the third installment to the Dr. Collection! In this logic race, players move molecules around the compartments of their beaker to try and match solutions on flipped challenge cards. Players must think quickly and work fast as they rearrange the molecules with their stirring rods. The first to finish wins the card as a point! A special rotating platform at the bottom of the beaker makes this race unlike one you’ve ever tried!

 

GoGo-Gelato_Pkg_Game_Flat

Go Go Gelato
Ages 6 & Up | 2-4 Players

What our customers loved:

• Cute, kid-sized gelato stand display
• Colorful gelato theme
• Large components and simplified logic for little hands and minds
• Easy to explain rules and quick game play

 

Become a gelato mixing master in GoGo Gelato! Players fill their customer’s orders armed with 4 scoops, 3 cones, 2 hands, and 1 challenge card in this delicious game of rearrangement. Happy customers are the ones whose orders are filled quickly and efficiently, so speed and thinking ahead are a must. This logic race has the perfect recipe for a good time!

 

tumble
Tumble Tree
Ages 6 & Up | 2-4 Players

What our customers loved:

• Original, eye-catching package
• Unique gameplay, each card is added to the treetop in a different way
• It’s self-contained, you play on top of the tin that stores the cards!

Build your own baobab tree in this card placement game. Each animal card has its own way to be added to the ever-growing canopy, but place them carefully! If the branches are overburdened the tree will fall. Avoid penalties and be the player with the least amount of cards at the end to win, but most importantly… don’t let the tree-top topple!

 

eyenseek
Eye ‘N Seek
Ages 6 & Up | 2-6 Players

What our customers loved:
• It’s size and gameplay make it a great travel and card game
• Different levels means all ages can play!
• With 6 wheels, everyone can join in on the fun!

Spin to win! Flip a card and then rotate the wheel to find its matching icon in the windows. Hurry, it’s a race! Spot the match before your opponents to win the round and a point. With 6 double-sided wheels, 100 icons, 3 levels, and 6 games to play the searching fun is endless!

 

Honorable Mention

These unique dice games were very well received for their portability, high-replay value, and quick to explain rules!

 

dicestack

Dice Stack
Ages 7 & Up | 1-6 Players

Pile up your points in this stacking dice game. Roll the tilted dice and then carefully stack them up in numerical order. Stop at any time to win the number of points in the stack, or take a chance and try to stack all 6. Once you have stacked all 6, do you dare to try and double your points with the Golden Die? Just make sure to not let them fall or you’ll lose it all!

 

rallyroll

Rally Roll
Ages 8 & Up | 2-6 Players

Will you risk it all? Roll all 6 dice and win the number of points that match the big colored die. Decide to bank your points, or take a risk and roll again. Keep scoring as long as you have numbered dice that match the colored die. If nothing matches, forfeit all points won that round and try again next time! Take big risks with this fast and fun dice game!
View the entire Blue Orange 2017 catalog online here 

For more information about Blue Orange, visit: http://toyfair.vporoom.com/BlueOrangeGames

Add Some Gaming Spice to Dating Life

Add Some Gaming Spice to Dating Life

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Got a gentleman or lady you want to impress? Or are you looking to spice up your dating routine with your significant other? Why not try a board game? A board game offers creative quality time for communicating and having fun with your partner. In April, DateBox included Yamslam in their game date box theme. They said later in their article on dating games, “Our absolute number 1 favorite date night game is Yamslam… We can tell you that it’s fun, addictive, and you can play over and over again without getting bored.” Games are a perfect way to spice up a date night for couples across the board, whether it’s their first date or fourth anniversary. But Yamslam isn’t our only epic matchmaker. We have five more games worth breaking out on your next romantic evening.

Table for Two

Not every game requires a crowd, and often the best games are limited to two. Here are three games that will spur some competition between you and your one and only.

NiyaNiya
From its sophisticated design to its small set of rules, Niya sets the mood for some intimate quality time mixed into some strategic game play. Each tile you draw influences your partner’s next move, opening perfect strategic opportunities to test how well each player knows the other. While on the surface it might be a matter of lining up four tokens in a row, in truth, just like in garden conspiracy, your victory may lie in how you relate with your opponent across the board.

U-Turn

U-Turn
Blue Orange Games’ newest on-the-go strategy game doesn’t leave room for an awkward pause when waiting for dinners or movies. U-Turn’s easy portability serves as a perfect kickstart to a conversation in the car or in the theater. Whether you and your partner enjoy the mental thrill of piecing a strategic puzzle together or you simply enjoy snapping together a sculpture, U-Turn is the perfect puzzle to spark some spontaneity during your special night.

Fastrack

Fastrack
If you enjoy scoring goals, making baskets, or kicking up a race with your partner, this is hands down the best challenge to bring on your next date. Fastrack is a high speed, head-to-head race perfect for couples who thrive on the thrill of the phrase “best two out of three”. It’s addictive with intense competition that will rev some fun into your evening before bonding over that candlelit dinner.

 

Make it a Double

While it’s important to set aside time for just your one and only, some of those most special moments can be found in a crowd of friends or alongside another couple. Here are a couple of double date hits in our game collection.

Cup of BluffCup of Bluff
Can you pull a poker face on your partner? For new and old couples, Cup of Bluff is a great game to flirt with deception and score some points. Test how well you and your partner can catch each other’s tells in a date night bluff battle between each other or on a double date with your friends.

WinkWink
What better game for a double date than this silly wink-fest? Craft alliances in secret with the wink of an eye to score points while avoiding the suspicious glances from your opponents. Wink is an amazing game to laugh and bond with your better half, and friends, over silly faces and deceptive competition.

While dinners and movies can create intimate moments and important quality time with that special someone, it’s good to remember that sometimes the best date ideas are as simple as pulling fun out of a box with a well-crafted board game. What better way to spend your night than to roll the dice and play your cards with the person you care about most?