I was just chatting with my youngest daughter the other night and she loves to ask questions about my youth. “What did you like to wear when you were my age?” “Who were your best friends in 4th grade?” What did you like to play when you were 9?” She’s shocked when she hears I wasn’t a Barbie fan like she is and that I also didn’t dance like her and her sister. “Well, what did you do then?” I answered honestly and truthfully, “I loved to play games, board games specifically!”
I know she knows this about me, I feel like I’ve told all three kids the story repeatedly over the years. I mean we have whole closet devoted to board games, some missing half the pieces. But I hate to part with them just out of sheer love for the game! All five of us have a competitive side whether it’s in school, on the sports field or dance floor, or at our dining table armed with game pieces! When I was asked to review the Star Gazer game by Simply Fun with the kids I was excited. Simply Fun has games for families, classrooms, and homeschool groups and their mission is learning through play:
Did you know, play, along with instruction and life experience make up the three ways we learn. Play is essential for developing skills beyond formal instruction, thinking skills that support decision making, creativity, and strategy. We invite you to step inside our SimplyFun world and discover the fun of learning through play!
- Add a Star-adds one of your stars to the board
- Remove a Star-takes one of your stars off the board
- Shooting Star-add or remove an opponent’s star to or from the Galaxy Board
- Swap a Star-you can replace an opponent’s star with your own, move any star on the board to another open space, swap position of any two stars on the board
Each player is dealt 5 Star Cards and 1 one-point Gazer Card. On your turn you play or discard any/all of your Star Cards to try to complete the pattern on your Gazer Card. A few rounds help you understand the strategy using the the cards to complete the pattern. What we do with new card games is play a few times with all cards UP so we can help eachother learn the game together. The first games are learning, then we can really get competitive!I was impressed with the speed we all picked the game up, including my 9 year old. We started using words like “sabatoge” and “revenge” when our plays didn’t work for us but would prevent the opponent’s from creating their pattern. Of course all in the name of friendly/family competition! Also, the typical rules have your cards hidden from your opponent, so those tricky moves aren’t apparent to everyone. Getting one-point patterns is easy, with 2 and 3 point Gazer Cards the challenge is bumped up a notch and may take you two turns to complete pattern. When you think about spatial reasoning you literally see it as each player turns their Star Gazer card in circles to match up your perspective of the game board to figure out each move.My husband noted that this game is like Chinese Checkers, Sorry, Uno and all rolled into one. My 14 year old son was peeking over our shoulder awaiting his turn and he thought this was a cool game and couldn’t wait to get in on it!
Your turn ends once you’ve played your cards and if you complete your pattern. Before the next player takes their turn, make sure you replenish your Star Card count to 5 cards and take a new Gazer Card if needed. Rounds continue until one stack of Gazer Cards is empty. When a player draws the last Gazer Card in any stack , the final round begins. Now this is where it gets tricky for me, the directions are confusing (let me know if you read them and understand) on the game’s end, but we made sure that each player got one last turn after that final Gazer Card is drawn before ending the game. All players count their earned Gazer Card points and the player with the most points wins!
I was the big winner this night and we came to the conclusion that Star Gazer by Simply Fun was a super fun and challenging game for our family! To learn more about going back to school with SimplyFun: visit this LINK and find this game and others and make game night a fun and educational way to connect with the kids!
This sponsored post is in partnership with Simply Fun, all opinions are completely our own!