Sunday, August 10, 2014

Matching Fun with Spot it! Splash from Blue Orange Games {A Review}

Blue Orange Games has become another one of my favorite companies for unique, family friendly games. They have games in several different categories:

  • Card Games
  • Party Games
  • Family Games
  • and Brain Games
You will find games for people ranging in age from 3 to adult. We have acquired several different games from Blue Orange games, and they are always a hit. When I contacted them about joining me for my Back to School/5 Year Blogiversary Celebration, they were glad to help. They sent me two of their new games to try out with the children, Spot it! Splash and Battle Sheep

I shared my review of Battle Sheep with you earlier. Now I would love to share our thoughts on this newest Spot it! game.

Two years ago we had the privilege of reviewing Spot it Jr.! Animals. This Jr. edition was an easier version of Spot It!, meant for children as young as 4. Now that the girls are older, it was nice to get this new game that is suitable for children 7 and up (though Amelia is able to play with us at 6 years old). What makes this Spot it! Splash game unique from other Spot it! games, is that it is waterproof, allowing you to take it with you while out and about in the summer, say to the beach or the pool, without ruining the cards. As a mother that still has a toddler and a preschooler at home, I have another reason for appreciating waterproof cards. I'm sure I am not the only mom who has to deal with spills daily. I would love if all our games were waterproof!

What comes with Spot it! Splash? Well, unlike the other Spot it! games, this version does not come with a tin to store your cards in. Instead, they provide this nifty little mesh bag, perfect for on-the-go play. It has a drawstring to help secure your cards and the look of it really makes me think of heading for the beach or pool. Though, I would suggest playing at home first and learning the rules, because it would probably be safer to leave the paper instructions home.

There are 55 waterproof cards with 8 pictures on each card. These pictures are all related somehow to summer fun. 

Here is a closer look at the list of symbols:

With all the symbols on the cards, only one match will be found on any two cards.  Here, see if you can find the matching images on these two cards.

Now, I removed the card on the left and added another card. Can you find the match?

There are instructions for 5 different mini games where the game play and goals change, but the means of playing are the same, finding the matching images between cards.

We started by playing The Tower.

The goal in this game is to have the most cards after the pile has been used up. Everyone is dealt one card which is kept face-down, while the pile is placed face-up in the middle.

The cards are then flipped over at the same time. . .

and the first one to spot a match and call it out puts the middle card on their pile. This is their new card to try to match to the new center card. While we were playing, there were times the game play was too fast for Amelia, and she felt she didn't have time to look at the cards before someone found a match. I decided to cover the center pile after each turn and say, "Ready, Set, Pay Attention" so everyone was looking at the same time.

The second mini game we played is called The Well. In this game, One card gets put face-up in the center and the rest of the cards are dealt evenly. The object of this game is to get rid of all your cards. When you have a match, you put it in the center as a discard instead of adding it to your pile.

As you can see, each game is just a different variation. This one is Hot Potato. Just like the party game Hot Potato, you do not want to be the last one holding the cards. Everyone is dealt one card. The first one to find a match on either opponents' card calls it out and places their card on the other's card. The remaining players continue to play until one player is left holding the pile. We only had the three of us playing, but if more people were playing it would work the same way. Then you can start a new round. Play continues for an agreed upon number of rounds, and then the player with the least cards is the winner.

This next game is called The Poisoned Gift. When a match is found between the center card and any of your opponents' cards, you call it out and give them the card. It is an unwelcome gift because the one with the least cards is the winner. 

This last game is a bit more challenging, as such we haven't tried it yet. This is called Triplets. You have to find a match that is common to 3 cards. This is more difficult because every pair you find isn't going to have a third card where that same picture matches. I had fun with this challenge for myself, but I am afraid the girls might get frustrated.

As you can see, several fun games are possible with one deck of cards. The children had a blast playing these games. Though I can see The Poisoned Gift game becoming vindictive if players constantly give one player the matching card so they lose. I always tried to vary who I was giving the card to, and encouraged the girls to do the same.

As with all the Spot it! games, the children are developing visual perception, honing their reaction time, and improving their attention skills. They can also improve their vocabulary by learning the names of new objects and having to be able to say them clearly to claim a card.

The only concern I have with this game is that it is very tricky to pick a single card up from a smooth surface because of them being laminated. These are definitely more suited to being played at the side of the pool on a beach towel or on the living room carpet, than on a table.

Tabitha's thoughts: "I like that it's a fun matching game with summer related things. My favorite games were The Tower and Hot Potato."

Amelia's thoughts:"I like Spot it! Splash because of the games that I can win on. My favorite game is The Tower because the second time I won on it."

Once again Blue Orange Games has produced a winner! You can check out all the products they offer at their website

Spot it! Splash retails for $15.99
You can find Blue Orange Games on Facebook and Twitter.

Though I have not been given a copy of Spot it! Splash to give away as a part of my Back to Schoo/5 Year Blogiversary Celebration, I am going to give you the opportunity to earn bonus entries as I have with all my other Back to School Reviews. If you are interested in finding out how to earn 10 extra entries into the Grand Prize Giveaway, continue reading.

How would you like some extra entries into this giveaway before it even starts? 
Head on over to the Blue Orange Games website and tell me which other Spot it! game you would love to try out. Leave the answer here in the comments with your email and when the giveaway is live I will email you the secret code to place in the Rafflecopter for a bonus 10 points. 

Don't miss out on the Grand Prize Giveaway!
Click here to enter the giveaway.

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