Some time ago the local newspaper, I think it was the Courier Mail, ran a promotion where if you bought their paper and produced a coupon from inside the paper (or perhaps just purchasing it, I can't quite remember, but it has usually been the case to provide the coupon); you would get a game, a different game each day or week (again, my poor memory can't recall). [Just did a quick search of the bookshop which is now clearing these games and there are 14 of these individual titles, so I'm assuming the promotion went for two weeks, so a daily coupon.]
Where am I, ah yes, small boxed games. Initially I thought of buying the newspaper just to get the game but the newspapers are hardly worth the print they print (literally) these days. Most of my news I can get off the net or telly for no cost, plus the sheets are horribly biased (not that the telly is any better mind you) so I forgot all about it. However (back on topic) today having a little cash left in my pocket I spotted my local bookshop flogging off the games (the Reject Shop is selling them for even less) for what they claimed half-price on their website but going for 3 for $12 in-store (this is Australian pesos, lira, bottletops or marbles depending on where you are and at what time of day it is). I searched through the remaining titles they had left and settled on three (really only wanted one, but... you know what it's like when their is a bargain, why buy a single at $5 when you can have three at $12).
Would you believe that in my entire life I have never owned a copy of any of these games, Cluedo, The Game of Life or Battleship. The only game I have played is Battleship and that is more than likely due to the fact that it has been readily available as a free game on PCs for a long time.
Right. That's the contents as shown above. The plastic is rather thin, 1mm for the standing piece, actually it's 1mm for the blue sheets. I cannot see the standing sheet lasting very long with a young person playing, it will snap rather easily at the point of insertion to the flat base board. Now the flat base board is sturdy and will literally take a good beating. It it ribbed, why they could not have applied the same design principles to the standing sheet eludes. The Plastic pieces, both ships and pegs (used to represent hits and miss's) fit snugly into the holes. As to their long term wear and tear I can not ascertain,but seeing that this will be an once in a blue moon game, I doubt I'll be able to provide any feedback on that point. The contents were accurate in that everything that was said to be was there. The rule sheet was one double sided "page" (14cm x 14cm) in total.
Above is the contents of the boxed Cluedo. The game board is very thin card stock, not sure the gauge? It unfolds out to a 28cm x 28cm full colour game board. A four page rule book (similar to above 14cm x 14cm). A small Detective Notepad (with 20 sheets, yes my OCD had me count the sheet, do judge me). Two small die, 6 plastic player token, the 21 Black Cluedo cards and 13 Red Bonus cards and correct and accounted for.
The bonus for me (as you will also get in the next game, is the red game tray. It is a brilliant dice tray for rolling the die in. I did a number of rolls, it is nice and handy. If I had bought this for children then this is what I'd be teaching them to use. For reasons that may have to do with the manufacturing process the cards did stick together and in the process when they came apart they were marked. This now has made the cards very much individuals, making the game easy for those who like to "cheat". My solution, buy another set and hope it's not indicative of the run OR just make a small cardboard screen and hide your hand behind it.
THE GAME OF LIFE
Above are the contents of the box. The game board is very thin card stock, not sure the gauge? It unfolds out to a 28cm x 28cm full colour game board. Woo Hoo I get a Spinner, I've not had a spinner in a game since Nuclear War, and I loved that game. All the contents were there, 78 cards, 4 "cars", the pegs, the paper money (no my OCD did not have me count it out to it's denominations...*), and a handy dandy one page game guide.
Right I'd pinch the red tray for dice rolling if I didn't need it to keep all the pieces safe. Mind you I could probably do that with a zip lock bag of the right size? Will look into that, give me some time... The tokens used by players on the board are a disappointment, I'll probably nick the ones from Cluedo, far better and stand out more on the board. OK they might get knocked over, but hey, style over matter everyday.
Are these games worth buying. Yes. They are great introductory games, the other titles in the series are Boggle, Chutes & Ladders, Connect 4, Guess Who, Hungry Hungry Hippos, Mastermind, Monopoly, Operation, Trivial Pursuit Family, Twister, and Yahtzee Classic. As a parent unsure if your child would be interested in board games and you worry about spending $50 on a game that will get played once, then these are perfect. For a small investment your child or even you yourself can see if your really want to invest your money in the game.
I am going to upgrade my Cluedo and The Game of Life by mounting the thin card game board onto a sheet of MDF board. I'll try and fix the cards and probably play around with a few other components in the games.
Thanks for taking the time to read my blog. I hope you find them entertaining, educational (sinister laughed in the background) and that you come back at another time to see what else I have posted.
Till next time.
The Hon. John
* Yes I counted the denominations, are you satisified, I know I am? :)
10K - 20
20K - 20
50K - 20
100K - 50
500K - 30