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I had heard a little about Brain Box games through reading reviews and so I decided to have a look on amazon to see if there were any I could get for my son's friend for her birthday. I bought the once upon a time game for my son's friend and also decided to treat my son to it. This is my review of the game.
==Once upon a time==
Brain box games are designed to be a fun game which is quick to play but that will test your memory skills and work your brain at the same time. The games can be played with two or more players but also they can be played with just one person if you adjust the game play slightly which I think is an excellent feature, especially when you have an only child. The idea of the game is a simple one really in that you have to study a picture for ten seconds and then roll a die to see which question you must answer based on memory from the card.
The game comes packed in a good quality feeling, tough cardboard box which features a magnetic front strip which can be lifted to expose the contents of the game. I think it is excellent that the game is so self contained and tidy and there is really no setting up to be done as everything is kept together so you are basically ready to go in a few seconds. The box features lovely pictures of classic fairy tale characters such as red riding hood, the three little pigs and the gingerbread man and so you are aware from the onset that the game will focus on these types of tales. The side of the box shows an example of one of the cards that is in the box and some of the questions that you may be asked such as "Is Rapunzel wearing a bracelet?" or "What colour is the bird on Rapunzel's finger?" so again you are able to get a good idea about what the game is about even before you open the box.
Instructions on how to play the game are included on the side of the box which is handy as you can just keep them next to you as you play. There are instructions for if there are two of more players but also for if there is just one player which as I said earlier I think is an excellent idea.
Inside the box there are the following items:
1 rules card
1 sand timer
There is a cardboard partition which is ideal for storing the cards in and then there is a smaller section in which the sand timer and die can lie down so it really is a compact little game which is well thought out for quick game play. My son and I will sometimes opt for a game of this before bed instead of reading a bed time story and so whilst the game only lasts five or ten minutes I really appreciate the fact that there is no setting up to do and everything is easy to sort out before you play.
The cards in the box are made from a thick card and are nicely coloured with pictures of a fairy tale scene on one side and questions on the reverse side. The cards feel as though they will with stand plenty of play if looked after properly but would bend and possibly snap if you were to fold and mistreat them. The idea of the game is simple really in that you pick a card from the box and then study it for just ten seconds whilst the sand timer runs out and then you should turn over the card. You should then roll the die to determine which of the six questions on the reverse of the card you should answer. If you get the answer correct you get to keep the card but if you don't you should place it back in the BrainBox box. The box says the player with the most cards after ten minutes wins but there is no reason you can't say the first to five cards or whatever you want really depending on the time scale which you have to play.
The pictures on the cards do have quite a lot to look at and the ten seconds really does go so fast and so it is hard to take in all of the information in that time. As such some of the questions you may be asked you may be given a multiple choice which will either jog your memory or you will simply get lucky and pick the right option! What I do like about this game though is how it does get you to really focus and concentrate as you try and take it all in and so you really have to use your brain to play this one and your memory skills as you try and answer the questions. My son is certainly much better than me at this game but I have to say that it took us a few plays before he did get quite good at it and so I do think it helps your mental skills when you play this game. There are certainly things which will stand out more to you on the cards as you play but the key is to remember the smaller details too as you never really know which question you are going to get until you roll the die.
My son does enjoy playing this game and whilst it isn't one that we get out every day and play it is there for when we want it and it passes five or ten minutes really well and I feel good that whilst he is having fun he is also using his mind as well. I have actually purchased another BrainBox game for him for Christmas as a result of purchasing this game which is about the world and there are many other alternatives so I am sure there would be one to suit everyone really.
The box advises that this game is suitable for children aged six years plus and I have to say I do agree with that because observation skills are probably more finely developed at age six and so the child will have more chance of getting answers right and feeling as though the are doing well at the game. A younger child may struggle and be put off the game as a whole if they cannot get the answers to the questions right.
I do recommend this BrainBox once upon a time game for both boys and girls to be honest. It is a simple concept which is easy to play as it requires no set up time yet it is challenging and requires you to use your brain, concentration and memory skills as you play yet it is fun for a child to play too.
The current selling price on amazon is £8.16 but I paid closer to five pounds for it when I bought it and I would say the prices do seem to fluctuate up and down on these and so I would keep your eye on them and purchase them around the five or six pounds mark as for that price you are getting a bargain in my opinion.
Thank you for reading my review!