Saturday, September 18, 2010

Game Giveaway


Our next An Inch of Gray giveaway is one of my fave childhood games-- Mastermind! I spent many afternoons in Betsy Arnold's basement playing this game of code-making and code-breaking.

Yes, this is the same basement where we watched the Thriller video for the first time and reviewed key passages of our mothers' Danielle Steel novels. Fun times!

When the folks at Pressman Toy offered me a Mastermind game to review and give away, I jumped at the chance. I sometimes need a kick in the pants to remember to play board games with the kids. And the big game closet in our basement, while attractive, is about as effective as the crisper drawer in my fridge. Things go in, but rarely come out. I left Mastermind right on the kitchen table so we'd remember to play it.

In Mastermind, the Codemaker makes a hidden code out of colored pegs. The Codebreaker has to use problem solving skills to guess the correct colors and sequence in the fewest number of guesses. Players take turns being the Codemaker and the Codebreaker.

The verdict? I am still crazy about this game! It took me about 2.5 seconds to wrap my head around the new jewel-toned colors of the pegs, rather than the primary colors of my youth. But I quickly got into the strategizing. I find that being the Codemaker can be as interesting as the Codebreaker.

Jake loves playing this game with me. Like Tom, he loves logic and can take just a few glances and know which colors have been eliminated. For me, there is much talking to myself, as I decide which guesses to make. "Okay, I've already tried green there..."

Molly? Dislike. She is not a fan of most games, especially ones that use the process of elimination. She is more relational, and would rather make up games to play with friends. When we tried to play Clue, for instance, she became a screaming lunatic when the 3 of us jotted notes down on our little forms.
"Why is everyone writing things down? It's not even your turn! This makes no sense! What's going on? Quit acting so smartical! How do you even know what to write? I hate this game! Waaaah!!!!" Dramatic board toss and sobbing stomp off to her room. Board game buzz kill, for sure.

Mastermind is for ages 8 and up, and there are several variations on the Pressman Toy site. I think it would be great to have on any classroom game shelf, and it's perfect for various ages to play together.


Playing Mastermind was like finding an old friend, and I plan to leave it in the kitchen for pick-up games.

This classic game is celebrating its 40th year as a favorite of teachers, kids and parents alike. And if you ask me, 40 is fabulous!

If you would like to enter the giveaway, just leave a comment on this post. Make sure I have your email if it's not linked to your user name.

If you are a follower of An Inch of Gray, leave a second comment for a second entry.

Giveaway closes Thursday, Sept 23.



Disclosure: I was given this game by Pressman Toy for free to review and I get to keep the game at the end of my review period.

18 comments:

Ellen Stewart (aka Ellie/El/e) said...

This IS a great game. I have three of them in my classroom. It's always fun to watch kids discover it, and then it's better fun to watch them get hooked! (Always an indoor recess hit.)

I'm not entering (already have the three), but I had to also "endorse" your game taste!

And I remember where I first played this game too, my dad's cousin's Bob's house. Thanks for a little sweet memory...

Kristina P. said...

I totally remember this game! Count me in!

Christy said...

I follow your blog. Doh. AND I want this game!

Christy said...

My brother and I used to battle it out with the primary colors edition when we were kids. I am sure I would still LOVE to play.

Signed, Ms. Smartical

Texan Mama @ Who Put Me In Charge said...

I LOVE your description of Molly! ha ha I can totally picture it, because THAT WAS ME as a child. Totally.

I want that game! We are a game family!!!

Texan Mama @ Who Put Me In Charge said...

And I'm a big-time follower, fo sho.

L said...

I agree with Molly on Clue. I always felt inadequate when people took notes and had smug looks on their faces while I had no... clue what to think OR write. I'd love to try Mastermind!

L said...

I am a follower!! :)

Anonymous said...

Okay, so I make it a practice to not enter blog giveaways, so please don't include me or my random comment number. But I just wanted to say that I am MOLLY when it comes to playing board games. People gave up playing them with me long ago. I always want to revise or ignore the rules and just make it be "fun."

jbhat

Cat said...

Woo hoo! I love board games. Sign me up!

Cat said...

I am a follower too!

zcan said...

Anna -- I am absolutely leaving a comment to enter this contest. If I don't win I am going to order one anyway. I totally forgot about this game but I know it is something Zoe would love!! I am so glad you discussed it. (And I know you have my email, just in case I am lucky.)

Sarah Johnson said...

This looks awesome! We're always looking for new games to play at homeschool!

Cynthia said...

Woo hoo! Love Mastermind! Count me in for the give away!

Lisa G said...

Looks like fun! I don't think I ever played that one.

Jennifer said...

Love this game. I remember playing Mastermind with my brother as a kid.

Kate Coveny Hood said...

You've inspired me to do more of this with my kids....

Kate Coveny Hood said...

AND - I'm a follower.