Claws and Caves
I first heard about cooperative board games from Play Eat Grow. Yes, that’s right. I learned about them on my own blog. Tiffany had a chance to review some board games and my own kids received on for Christmas 2014 that has gotten a lot of use. Now, I know that competition is a natural part of lives, and I think especially for boys it’s really a part of who they are. “I buckled my seatbelt first!” “I finished my cracker first!” “I got my clothes on fastest!” I mean seriously, why does it matter who does any of those things first? But I digress. We enjoy playing many different types of games as a family, but sometimes the whole winner-bragging-loser-crying thing gets old, so I think it’s a great to pull out a cooperative game!
We recently had a chance to play Caves and Claws, which we received from Suzanne Lyons at Cooperative Games. Her website is a great resource for anyone wanting to learn more about cooperative games. The premise of Caves and Claws is that you are a team of archeologists hunting for treasure in the jungle. There are obstacles in your way and certain tools you can use to defeat the obstacles. Everyone shares the single playing piece, the treasure, and the tools.
I liked that you can set the board up to be different every time. Some games will be more challenging than others because of that. Team members are encouraged to talk together before making their move regarding where they should go or what kind of tool they should use to overcome an obstacle.
|Beware the Hairy Thing!|
My boys (ages 6 and 8) enjoyed the funny monsters in the game, like the Big Hairy Thing, as well as the silly remedies, such as the stinky sock. I wish I had known a long time ago you could scare monsters away with a stinky sock! We did find that the cards that make up the board wiggled around a fair amount while we were playing (which I assume is related to my wiggly kids!). We also found that using the “basic” board set up was too easy, but by tweaking the rules a bit (placing obstacles on intersections instead of entrances and exits) it gave us the opportunity to use the fun remedy cards. I think that this would be a good “in-between” game to get before introducing your child to a more complicated cooperative game like Treasure Island.
If you’re interested in learning more about cooperative games, in particular games suitable for younger children, check out Tiffany’s review. She also includes suggestions for changing some traditional games to make them cooperative instead.
I received this game for free in exchange for an honest review.