Do you kids like cooperative board games?

We’ve gotten several new cooperative board games. So far our testers aren’t too interested.  Older game players really like the “winner” “loser” thing…and let’s face it, your average 3 1/2 – 4 year old expects that you will bend the rules to assure him a victory.  One of our testers said “what do you mean, we all win?”  I’m all for cooperative play–treasure hunts where everyone works on a team is a great experience for kids.  One of the most humbling experience I ever had in life was when my fourth grade teacher, Mrs. Goldsmith, put all of the so called leaders in one group.  We lost terribly–because we couldn’t agree on a plan. It has always stuck with me – of course that was the point. Playing games with your kids is a great way to model good behavior but I’m not sure that means there can’t be a winner.

So let me know if any of these new games are hit in your house.

2 thoughts on “Do you kids like cooperative board games?

  1. The key for a purely cooperative game would be to have a goal that players “get.” If the game doesn’t have a goal that everyone buys into working towards, then it’s hard for players to get motivated and they are just going through the motions. As adults, we want our kids to be more interested in cooperative games (at least I do), but my kids are drawn to games where there’s a winner…it builds excitement as they hope they’ll be the winner.

    In your “Possibly related posts” there’s a link to an article on Flibbix, which could be an interesting alternative. While final game play doesn’t sound cooperative (you compete to get to the finish first), making a game board and making up rules for the game could be really cooperative. Maybe that’s a good compromise? It gets kids cooperating, but also lets them have fun while playing the game. And if you want to, you can tweak the rules to help ensure the 4 year old’s victory :-)

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