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Match Madness is pattern-matching fun

Match Madness board game

Fun pattern matching race game from FoxMind.

How quick are you at pattern recognition and puzzle solving?

You’ll get to find out in Match Madness by FoxMind.

In Match Madness players race to solve patterns using their set of colorful, chunky blocks.

Because there are varying difficulty levels of the patterns, it’s a fun game the whole family can enjoy playing together.


How to play Match Madness

There are 2 different ways to play Match Madness indicated in the rules — “Quick Play” and “Total Madness”.

However, we’ll even recommend a 3rd way that we call “To Each Their Own”.

Regardless of the chosen way to play, the first step to play is for each player to get their own set of blocks. The ends of each block are numbered (1-5) to make it easy for all players to know they have a correct and full set of blocks.

Each block contains 4 sets of paired symbols that are different on every block. So the challenge of the game, regardless of of which way you play, is to find the right pairs of symbols for the right locations.

Match Madness board game

The sets of pattern blocks are numbered to make sure all players have a full set.


Quick Play

In Quick Play, all of the pattern cards are shuffled together and players determine how many rounds they’d like to play. They then take that number of pattern cards from the deck and place them face down in the middle of the table.

The top card is flipped over and all players race to match the pattern using their set of blocks.

The first player to match the pattern calls out their match and grabs the card.

If a player grabs the card without making a correct match, they put the card back and sit out while the others continue to try to solve the pattern.

Once all the cards have been taken, the game ends.

The player with the most cards wins the game.

If there’s a tie for most cards, the player with the most level-5 cards wins (and so-on down the levels if the tie persists).

Match Madness board game

In Quick Play, all players race to match the same pattern.


Total Madness

In Total Madness, the pattern cards are sorted by difficulty level into separate decks and shuffled separately. Cards are taken from each deck equal to the number of players and placed in their separate level stacks face up in the middle of the table.

On the count of three players race to match any of the displayed patterns they’d like.

As soon as a player matches one of the shown pattern cards, they shout “Match” and point to the pattern they match. Everyone briefly pauses to make sure it’s a match. If no one objects, the player takes the card (revealing another pattern below it) and play continues.

The game ends when all the cards have been collected.

Then players score their cards. Levels 1 & 2 cards are each worth 1 point per card. Level 3 cards are worth 2 points each. And cards of levels 4 & 5 are worth 3 points each.

Tie breakers are resolved the same way as in the Quick Play game.

Match Madness board game

In Total Madness players can work to solve whichever pattern they’d like.


To Each Their Own

Our iteration of the game, To Each Their Own, is a way to level the playing field so players that aren’t as quick at solving puzzles can still enjoy playing.

It’s a hybrid of the other two ways to play but mostly resembles Quick Play.

The pattern cards are separated into 2 different difficulty level decks. The level 1 & 2 cards are shuffled into an “easy” deck and the level 4 & 5 cards are shuffled into a “hard” deck.

Players determine how many rounds they’d like to play. They then take that number of pattern cards from the each deck and place them face down(in an “easy” and “hard” stack) in the middle of the table.

At the start of the game players also determine which stack they’ll play from and they can’t cross over. The game is then played out just like in Quick Play.

Once one stack of cards is depleted, the game ends and players count up their collected cards. The player with the most cards wins.

Match Madness board game

This hybrid version can level the playing field a bit.


Can the whole family enjoy playing Match Madness?

Match Madness is absolutely a game that everyone in the family can enjoy playing!

The colorful, chunky blocks have a wonderful tactile feel to them and are simply fun to play with. Players of all ages will enjoy trying to match the pattern cards with them.

Match Madness is also a game kids can enjoy playing on their own.

The different ways to play the game are fun to switch between.

Match Madness board game

Which puzzled should I try to solve first?

The only downside to the game we’ve found is that it can favor players who have a quick grasp of pattern recognition.

Since it’s a race, players who are quicker at solving pattern puzzles, will tend to dominate. And this can lead other players to lose interest after only a couple plays.

Thus, our hybrid rendition of the rules to better level the playing field.

If you’ve got a mix of older and younger players, making the race more evenly matched will help players of all skill ranges enjoy the game together.

We also wish there were more than 4 sets of blocks in the game so that more people could play at a time. Of course, the easy solution to that is to get multiple copies of the game!

Match Madness board game

After solving a puzzle, we like to show other players how they match up.


How does Match Madness score on our “Let’s Play Again” game meter?

Match Madness board gameMatch Madness scores very high on our “let’s play again” game meter because it’s so addicting.

The game is so quick to play that playing multiple games is a no-brainer.

We’ve found that we’re not very good at selecting the number of rounds to in Quick Play because we always want to play “just one more”.

Yet we’ve also found that it’s better to restart after a set number of rounds than to just forego limiting the rounds overall. That way a “runaway” leader can be limited to one short game. Then everything resets and we go at it again.

If you haven’t guessed, we definitely recommend Match Madness as a great family board game!

We’d like to thank FoxMind for a review copy of Match Madness


America Trivia Party Game Review

America board game box

A trivia game that’s actually fun to play!

How long is the Golden Gate Bridge?

What’s the annual attendance at Disneyland?

People in which state listen to Christmas music the most?

When did Butch Cassidy form the Wild Bunch?

How many movies did Ronald Reagan appear in?

You  may not know the answers to these questions. But that’s perfectly okay in the new trivia party game America by Bezier Games.

Because in America close counts!

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Press Your Luck in Mythe

Mythe children's board game

Mythe is a press-your-luck family board game.

Do your kids love pop-up books?

You know, the ones that have cool features that fold out as you turn the pages through a story book?

Well now you and your kids can play a fun press-your-luck board game that has a pop-up game board as the central feature.

The game is called Mythe and it’s from Passport Game Studios and LudiCreations.

I came across the game at Gen Con 2016 and thought it looked like a great family game.

Since then, we’ve played the game a number of times and are ready to share our thoughts of Mythe with you.

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12 Great Games for Your Valentine

Happy Valentine's Day

What will you give your sweetheart?

Valentine’s Day is just a few days away.

So there’s no time to waste in finding something to give your sweetheart.

Of course, if you’re on this board game site, odds are high that you’re looking for something game related.

With that in mind, here are 12 suggestions of fun board games and cards games to play with your sweetheart on Valentine’s Day.

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What will you do with your 3 Wishes?

3 Wishes card game

What will you wish for?

Do you ever wish you had a wish-granting genie?

I’m sure we’ve all let ourselves get carried away with imagining a genie magically appearing and granting us 3 wishes.

What would we wish for?

Would it be fame and fortune?

Or would you go straight for world peace?

In the recently released card game, 3 Wishes, by Passport Game Studios you may have a chance to get all 3.

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It’s all rainbows & unicorns playing Unicorn Glitterluck

Unicorn Glitterluck Cloud Crystals children's board game

Unicorns and Rainbows? Which young girl wouldn’t be drawn in?

Have you ever dreamed of being a colorful unicorn bouncing from cloud to cloud and sliding down rainbows while collecting pink cloud crystals?

You may not have.

But if you have a young daughter, chances are high that she’s had such a dream.

With HABA’s Unicorn Glitterluck you can now make that dream a reality!

No doubt it’s super cute. But is it worth having on your game shelves?

With 2 young daughters, our friend Jason Evans is the perfect person to give you the run down on Unicorn Glitterluck.

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Crazy Karts is chaotic kart racing!

Crazy Karts board game

Ready for a Crazy Kart race?

Mario Kart tournaments have been one of our fun Thanksgiving traditions we look forward to every year. We’ve enjoyed many extended family Thanksgiving weekends racing and battling with turtle shells and banana peels flying all over the place.

A couple years we even set up multiple game systems where losers would move down one TV and winners would move up. We had such a blast with cousins and uncles hooting and hollering race after race and battle after battle.

So when I heard that Crazy Karts from Portal Games was like Mario Kart in board game form, I could hardly contain my excitement. Now was our chance to battle it out on the table instead of the screen!

It may have taken a bit longer to get a copy than I had hoped. But I finally bought a copy of Crazy Karts at the Portal Games booth at Gen Con 2016.

And since the game can play up to 8 players, I wanted our first experience to be a full one – and a Guys Game Night was the perfect chance for it.

So now that we’ve taken Crazy Karts through its paces, the big question is – does it live up to my grand expectations?

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Board Game Calendar and Gaming Goals

Scott King Gaming Calendar

Scott King’s Gaming Calendar rocks!

Do you think having a board game calendar on the wall would get you to play more games?

Well, we’ll know by the end of 2017.

That’s because this year I’ve got one of Scott King’s awesome board game calendars hanging in my home office where I see it every day.

I first found out about these calendars a couple years ago and thought they sounded and looked so cool. Scott King’s photography is beautiful and his board game photos are the best around.

So when Scott started his Kickstarter campaign last summer for 2017 calendars, I dove right in.

And I’m so glad I did – because the calendar is fantastic!

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