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Now my son is three and a half and his concentration has grown we have slowly bought him more board games to play. Now and again I come across some lovely ones in charity shops or our local baby and toddler buyer, seller shop which is where I found this fun game 'Maisy's colourful counting game'.
----The Box contents----
The name of the game is to reach the finish first following the track along on the board.
The game contains the following: the game board, the spinner (that attaches to the board), a numbered die, four different Maisy playing pieces and four counting stands to put them in and the rules of the game.
The board itself measures roughly 12 inches by 12 inches which I feel is a nice size for a young child to play with. I feel a board that is too big makes it difficult for a young child to move their pieces around the board which is very important to a child. If you are familiarly with the Maisy story books then you will know this board will be fun and colourful. That is exactly what it is. It is covered in bright colours and lovely fun illustrations of Maisy and her friends. It is a fairly simple board with a track that is split into forty one boxes with different things in them to follow round with a start and a finish box at either end. There are a couple of loops on the track which may confuse a little one to begin with. In the middle of one of the loops is the colour spinner which can be used instead of or as well as the die. As I have mentioned it is a fairly simple board with only four of the individual pieces on the track actually having something written in it. The rest of the pieces have different items in the box like three ladybirds or five carrots and the background is coloured in, in a bright colour. Everything about this game is bright, ideal for a child of the recommended age three years plus.
The four Maisy playing pieces are a piece of strong card which is slotted into a coloured counter stand. All the Maisy's are dressed differently and there is a red, black, blue and yellow counter stand to chose. My son likes to set them up at the beginning. Personally I felt it would have been more fun if there had been Maisy and her friends rather than just four differently dressed Maisy's. But that said the four Maisy's didn't cause us any trouble.
----Playing the game----
The game can be played with either the spinner or the die or with both. The simplest and the game we first tried playing with my son was the spinner. Each player takes it in turns and spins the spinner you then move your Maisy to the next correct colour space on the board. If you spin a red you move your Maisy to the next nearest red space on the track. My son found this very easy and really enjoyed the fact he could pick up a game so quickly. As he is three and half I did feel it was maybe a bit too simple for him this way so we have the last couple of times played it using the die. Using the die you again take it in turns to roll the die you move to the space with the same number of objects on it. This is a bit more complicated for my son and does take a bit of patience on my side but it does help my son with his counting. The rules do also say you could play it with the spinner and die but we have yet to do this.
----My son's opinion----
As soon as we purchased the game my son was eager to give it a go. He instantly recognised Maisy and her friends on the front of the box and thought it looked like fun. The first time we played it he enjoyed it and liked the fact it was so simple. Now we have progressed to using the die he does sometimes lose a bit of concentration as the game can take a while to finish as my son likes to count the objects on ever space. It is a fairly simple game and although my son does enjoy playing it from time to time it isn't his favourite.
----My opinion as a parent----
I liked the fact the game is a bit different to other games my son has many lotto style games or matching cards to things it does have a bit more of a traditional board game feel with the track. The fact it is so simple has been great for my son although I can see he will quickly out grow it. For parents the most important thing is it does deliver in the fun yet educational box. It has your child matching colours up and doing plenty of counting. The bright colours of the board and the fun illustrations of Maisy and her friends on it will appeal to any young child.
----Value for money?----
It retails at around five pound which I feel is a very fair price for a fun yet very simple game. As I have mentioned I don't feel it will last my son long but he has already had great fun with it. I was even luckier as I managed to pick it up second hand for £2.50.
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