I have mixed feelings about this game. It says 10+ and I’m sure 10 year olds could play on their own in a peaceful, reasonable way. My 6 year old loves to play this game, and I think it is a great way for him to practice adding single digit numbers. However, my younger kids require my help and get frustrated easily. Therefore, the math benefits are counter balanced by a slight decline in my sanity from time to time.
Pac-Man Board Game Details
Product: Pac-Man Board Game
Company: Buffalo Games
Recommended Age Range: 10 and up, kids as young as 6 can play, but they might need a little adult help
Price Range: ~$20
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I’m really not sure why this game is meant for kids that are at least 10. The rules are fairly simple. My 8 year old has no trouble playing on her own. She frequently beats her 10 year old brother. However, my 6 year old definitely has a little trouble with strategy. He doesn’t always remember that he needs to plan ahead in order to avoid the ghosts. This leads to some frustration.
However, I like it when he plays this game, because on every turn, whoever is Pac-Man rolls all 3 die and adds them up to figure out how much they are allowed to move. This is a great, way to get my 6 year old (and even my older kids) practicing some simple math without realizing it. It’s like sneaking in vegetables.
It also allows my 4 year old to practice not only counting, but also one-to-one correspondence. He needs help in order to move Pac-Man the correct number of spaces around the board, but this is valuable exposure.
My younger children love the munching noise Pac-Man makes as he moves around the board. The physical act of pushing the pegs down to represent eating up the dots like in the arcade game is very satisfying. There are lots of aspects of this game that are really fun.
At the end of the game, players get 40 points per peg they have pushed down, plus bonus points for killing ghosts, eating fruit, and completing certain quadrants of the board. This makes it great math practice for my older kids as well.
Apart from the fact that I don’t personally enjoy helping my younger kids play with my older kids, I do not have anything negative to say about this game. In fact, once in awhile I even enjoy being Pac-Man and kicking my kid’s booties.
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