2012-01-16 22.19.39

Well, my son and I both had a sick weekend.  We pretty much stayed in bed and watched reruns of Good Eats while sharing a box of tissues.  I did, however, manage to drag myself downstairs to grab a couple of games that we could play while still curled up under the covers in bed.  We had the opportunity to play Scruble Cube and Jishaku.

Scruble Cube is like a Rubic’s Cube, but with letters.  Players take turns twisting the cube and trying to spell words for points.  The scoring is similar to Scrabble, with opportunities to get double or triple words or letters.  We actually found this game really difficult.  It says that it’s for players 8+, but my son is 13 and he got a little frustrated playing, and we sometimes had a hard time getting the rows to align properly so that the cube would turn, so I would probably recommend this game for 12+.  I’m a pretty good speller, but it was HARD to find and make words!  You’d think you had a word spelled, and then you’d flip the cube and one letter would mess the whole thing up!  There’s an option of using a timer or not, but we thought the game was challenging enough without it.  You can see in my picture above, the second row from the right spells “wiped”.  It starts on the top of the cube and then comes down onto the side of the cube.  This is the part that makes it challenging!  If your child is good at spelling, and needs a challenge, this is definitely the game to get them.  I think that the cube will probably be kept in my car so that if we have unexpected time in the car and my son’s looking for something to do, our Scruble Cube is on hand!  You don’t need the timer and score sheet, and you don’t even need other players.  This is something that can be played alone, just for fun, and since there’s no pieces we can lose, it’s going to be the perfect travel game!

Strategy Board Games For Families

We also were able to play Jishaku.  This is a quick and easy game to play.  The rules are simple, which I love, and you can play a round in less than 10 minutes, which is great for families on the go.  The game is made up of 18 super-strong magnets and an egg-foam playing board.  There are a few different versions of play, but the one we liked the most is the “I’m Out!” version.  It’s so simple – players take turns placing one of their magnets in one of the dips of the egg crates.  The first one to run out of magnets is the winner!  Here’s where it gets tricky – when you place a magnet, many of the magnets around you start moving do to the magnetic pull.  If you go to place a magnet, and instead other magnets stick (or even jump onto) yours, you have to take any magnets that stuck together on your turn and put them back in your hand.  The concept is easy, but it’s really tricky once you see how difficult it is to place the magnets without moving the other magnets!  It definitely takes a steady and slow hand to pull it off.  This was a great game for us.  My son just had a few minutes before bed, but we still had time to squeeze in a quick game of Jishaku, which was nice.  My mom also played with us, and picked up on it right away.  I didn’t need to pull out the rules to read them to her – it’s an easy enough concept that she just watched me and then started playing.  I would highly recommend this game for any family, or even adults.  In fact, it can be played alone, so you could get it for yourself and practice up for date night!  This game will be played frequently in our house – we really love it!

The makers of Scruble Cube and Jishaku are giving one of our readers a copy of both games.  Enter using the Rafflecopter form below.

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