Max – Cooperative Game of Consultation, Decision Making and Natural Selection

 

Manufacturer: Family Pastimes Limited
Recommended Age: 4 to 7 years
Retail Price: $15.00
On the Web: www.familypastimes.com
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Max – Cooperative Game of Consultation, Decision Making and Natural Selection


We must help get the little Creatures safely home before Max, the Tomcat, catches them. Play as friends, not as enemies! Max fosters the spirit of co-operation. They are never against each other.

In an exciting way, children learn logic, consultation and decision making. An important issue to discuss is also raised: we don’t like Max catching those Little Ones, yet we recognize that he is a natural hunter. How do we resolve this in our minds and hearts? Let’s talk it over.

Includes: 12 x 12″ board, special dice, 4 movers, 4 cat treats


The one thing that struck us first and foremost when starting to play Max was that the game is absolutely, totally age appropriate. Starting with the game play itself, it is easy to see that this game was designed to be played by children ages 4 to 7 years of age (and older of course). With that in mind, the rules are pretty simple – roll simple die to either move one of the sweet little Creatures through the game board to safety, or move Max the Tomcat who is out for a snack!  Players work together, take turns rolling the dice, and discuss strategy for each and every move as they try to navigate the little Creatures to safety and stop Max from having a snack!

Max includes a game board, special dice, a couple of cat treats and special movers – and that is it. Children over the age of 4 shouldn’t have any trouble keeping track of the pieces, and after playing a few rounds we saw no deterioration in pieces.

In a world of SpongeBob, Bey Blades, Pokemon and Superheroes, Max doesn’t exactly jump off the shelf at little kids. Truth be told – Max isn’t loaded with bright colors or flashing lights. There are no sound effects, no moving pieces, and no batteries required! Compared to virtually every other game out there, Max, quite frankly looks plain. (If you are a fan of Max keep reading – we promise it gets better!) But that is part of the beauty. Max is a board game that hearkens back to simpler times. To a time when toys and games for kids were more age appropriate – and we really, really like that. That isn’t to say that Max has enough flash and sizzle to convince a little one to grab it off the shelf, but once he or she does, they are going to find themselves playing a game that they are certainly going to be comfortable playing.

Max is a pretty simple game on the surface, yet as you start to unpeel the layers during play you’ll find there is lot of substance packed in there. First off – kids are working together – which as you know is a welcome relief from the uber-competitive games. Next, kids are working their way through the game using strategy and discussion to figure out the best moves to make and when to make them. If you want to go to another level, kids are starting to learn about the workings of the world as the tomcat Max is out for a snack (he isn’t a villain – just a hungry cat). Through the gameplay and the discussion it’s easy to see this game is quite a bit more functional than you would expect!

In a blind survey our team priced Max right around $15. With a suggested retail price of $15 our team was super-pleased to find a game that was priced perfectly (at least in our humble opinion!).

Max has a truly old-school feel to it. Something about the game makes us think this is something that our parents or even grandparents could have played – and that is part of what makes it so original. Add in the cooperative play features, and the goal of the game itself, and it is easy to see this game is different than so many others on the market today. Truly original.

It would be an absolute lie if we wrote here in this space that we knew Max was going to be a hit from the get-go. Unfortunately, we’ve grown accustomed, like your children, to much flashier much more complicated games. And that is a fault that we will certainly work to correct!

Max is a delightful game. It is age appropriate, fun for kids to play with friends, with parents or even by themselves. Max is durable, functional, priced well, and most of all fun. We love it, you’ll love it, and most importantly, your children will love it!