2016 Board Games & Puzzles Article

Credit: https://pixabay.com/

Temperatures are dropping and the fun is moving indoors, so peel off the cellophane and crack open a new board game. Here are our favourites for 2016.

Rogers Daytime (October 25, 2016)


Three Little Piggies (3+, Smart Games)

A sturdy, attractive preschool puzzle. Our testers particularly loved how the piggies fit inside the houses and can peek out the windows. The familiar theme (reinforced by the included story book) makes this a more concrete challenge, especially with all the imginative play this set inspires - kids loved helping the piggies escape the wolf by solving the puzzles. For a slightly more difficult challenge, Little Red Riding Hood is another great preschool puzzle by the same company. Full Review


Gas Out™ Game (5+, Mattel)

Our testing families loved how this game made them laugh. The ever increasing anticipation, as well as the sheer silliness of farting sounds made this game a real favourite.

Full Review

Outfoxed!™ (5+, Gamewright)

A cleverly designed cooperative sleuthing game. Who stole the pie? The cool decoder device helps uncover which articles of clothing the thief is and is not wearing. There's a memory twist, too. Additional suspects are revealed throughout the game, so don't forget the clothing clues to help rule out future suspects.

Full Review

Top That! (6+, Blue Orange Games)

Great brain building fun. Everyone has the same five magic trick inspired pieces that stack or nest together. Players race to match the challenge card by making sure the coloured objects on the card are visible, grey-toned ones are hidden inside other pieces, and any objects missing from the card are set aside.

Full Review

Bounce Off Rock 'N Rollz (7+, Mattel)

Our testers loved this action-packed Tic-Tac-Toe styled game. Unlike more cerebral pencil and paper versions, this game requires physical skill. Players bounce balls trying to get them to land in the spots they need to claim. The twist in the Rock 'N' Rollz edition is a see-saw dynamic that requires players adapt to the sliding weight distributions that shift the existing balls into new patterns.

Full Review

Dr. Eureka (8+, Blue Orange Games)

A game of quick thinking and nimble fingers. Players simultaneously race to transfer coloured marbles between test tubes, trying to be the first to match the challenge card. It does take some puzzle-solving planning, but the real challenge is physical dexterity - moving the marbles without spilling them, yet fast enough to beat your opponents.

Full Review

Stratospheres (8+, ThinkFun)

Connect the spheres to cerate a three dimensional four-in-a-row game. We love the concept of a board-less, pass-it-around tic-tac-toe styled game, and this game has an added twist we didn't expect: the comnnectors themselves become a strategic part of the game, sometimes blocking moves that an ordinary marble-based version would allow. Lots of fun, and lots to think about as you plan your moves.

Full Review

Sushi Go Party!™ (8+, Gamewright)

As much fun as the original game, but with more cards. The original version uses the same deck for every game. This new deluxe set lets you pick 8 of 23 possible card types to make a different deck every time you play. A great enhancement, especially for avid game-playing families.

Full Review

Escape the Room: Mystery at the Stargazer's Manor (10+, ThinkFun)

Escape the Room: Secret of Dr. Gravely's Retreat

A well-rounded assortment of brain teasers to solve before you can 'escape the room'. An entertaining cooperative group activity, where each person can shine at solving the puzzles they're good at.

Full Review

Balance Beans (5+, ThinkFun)

When does one plus one equal three? It's the kind of math that can make a preschooler scratch her head. But kids don't need to understand seesaw physics - playing is the best way to solve these puzzles. And we love that you don't just have to make the board balance, your task is to balance it using the pieces specified on the challenge cards - and that's the real puzzle.

Full Review

Walls & Warriors (8+, SmartGames)

We love the medieval castle theme and the simple premise of this puzzle: position the castle walls so that your (blue) knights and the tower are protected inside the walls, while keeping the red enemy knights outside the castle compound.

Full Review

Speak Out (16+, Hasbro)

Lots of laughs as players try to read the challenge phrases while wearing a mouth pieces that keeps their mouth wide open – no easy task. And be prepared to look as silly as you sound because, after all, wearing the see-through mouth piece is just so glamorous.

Full Review

Escape Room The Game (16+, Spin Master)

Well designed and set up to facilitate four very satisfying cooperative puzzle solving sessions. Your task is to search though the material provided to find clues as to which four keys, and in what order, will solve the puzzle and move you ahead to the next level.

Full Review

Smartcar 5 x 5 (4+, Smartgames)

It's blocks and cars, but a whole new way to play with them. Your task is to load up the blocks on the chassis to build a car. The challenge is to arrange the blocks to match the colour pattern shown on the challenge card.

Full Review