Designing Games for Kids

Game 2: Zookeeper

The goal of the game is to be the first to build their zoo! Each player has to collect three of the same set of animals with their matching food or three different sets of animals with their matching food.

At the beginning, every player is handed five cards from the action pile
Each player can play as many cards as they want from their hand on their turn
At the end of each player's turn, there must be five cards in their hand
A player's turn is over once they fill their hand with five cards
All food cards must be placed in front of the player on their turn
A player can only have at most four food cards and three animal cards in front of them
A "New Arrival" card prompts the player to pick a card from the animals pile
Players can only keep the animal card if they have the corresponding food card that is indicated by matching border colors on the card
Action cards have their own functions that are written on the card

Game 1: The Donut Game

The rules of the game are simple. There are three players. The card in the middle shows which items to look for. Each player gets three game pieces, and every player has to look for those items on the board. When a player finds the item, they place their piece on thop of the item. Whoever finds all three items first wins the card. The player that has the most cards at the end wins.

The kids had a very fun time playing this game and it actually turned pretty competitive. I was very surprised because two kids almost had a fight over who found what item first.

After playtesting this game with my siblings, my baby sister called it "The Donut Game" because of the shape. I guess the name is sticking for now until I find a better name.

I wish I had access to a color printer since the colors I used were very pretty but I think the black and white added a challenge to it.

The game turned out very successful, but I would tweak a few things about it to make it more fun. I would make it in color. I would also make the board bigger so that there can be more players. I would also vary the sizes of the pictures just to make it more interesting. The cards also became harder to pick uo from the center after the deck started to deplete so I would try to find a better way to contruct it so that it is much easier.

Game 1: Concept

Last week, I was given the game "Spot It" to take home and study. It was a simple game of matching. When we played games with kids last week, I played "Busytown". It was a collaboration game that also involved matching. This inspired an idea that combined both "Busytown" and "Spot It".

The concept would be like "I Spy", but with more matching. The idea would be to have a giant board that kids will be able to walk around. Then there will be a deck of cards that resemble the cards from "Spot It". The players would have to find all the images on the board from the card. Each player would have their own colored rings that they will use to keep track of their findings, much like in "Busytown". Whoever finds all the cards first will hit a buzzer, and that player will win the card. However, there is a "Uno" aspect of it, and if a player sees another player going for the buzzer, they can buzz it before they do and the card is forfeited and a new round begins.