Tuesday, May 26, 2009

A sweet classic board game: Candyland

There are only two board games that get regular use at our house -- Candyland and Go Away Monster  (review to come).  

I wonder if there is anyone who is unfamiliar with Candyland -- this classic board game has been around for generations.

A (our oldest, 4.5 years), loves Candyland, he is willing to play it anytime. 

See this game at Amazon.com

As a child I remember being very bored with Candyland.  Perhaps it's because I was an early reader and I felt the color cards were too simple.  I much preferred Chutes and Ladders .  I think that may mean I'm unique.  My new brother-in-law has detailed memories of Candyland's Lord Licorice.....  uh, I thought, who is that?  

It is interesting to compare various versions of Candyland published over the years.   The current came has Princess Frostine instead of Queen Frostine.  The molasses swamp has become a chocolate swamp, and the gameplay has changed.  In the version of my childhood, a player would get stuck on a dot space until a certain color card was drawn, which made for a long, frustrating  time stuck.  The modern version has a photo of licorice on the sticky spaces and the unlucky player only loses one turn -- for a gentler and less frustrating wait. 

The Hasbro web site has a history of the game and neat slide show with photos of the different versions through the decades.  Which version do you remember playing as a child? 

Now that I have a child that loves Candyland, I'm just now experiencing the best of this game with him.  

I admit, I let my son cheat and win every time we play.  He does not like getting sent back to an earlier point in the game by one of the special cards.  For a little while the house rules were that pieces only go forward, but now I am sending my player back to try and model the correct way to play.  A seems to be innately competitive, and he wants to win Candyland every time we play, cheering for himself when he receives double color cards and expressing disappointment when his game piece advances only a space or two.  He sweetly invites me to join him in the Candy Castle as soon as he wins.

I have heard the new, electronic Candy Land Castle  game suits younger players (2 and 3 year olds) who aren't ready for the classic Candyland game.  Apparently the concepts are totally different, and Castle is about color and shape matching.  I am not a big fan of electronic games though, and they can be expensive.  Have you tried Candyland Castle?  Let us know what you think!


Infant Bibliophile said...

My husband and I were huge game fanatics before we became parents (our dream job is opening a games shop in a seaside town somewhere). I've often thought that when our little guy is ready to start playing games, I'd add them to our blog too! I was playing candyland with my nephew (4 years old) at Easter and he was telling me the rules. He explained to me that if I landed on the licorice, I'd lose 2 turns. "Oh," I asked, "What happens when you land there? Do you lose two turns?" Pause. "No. One turn."

Bookworm said...

I loved Candyland growing up and both of my boys have too! We wore the original one out. I went to buy a new one and was so happy they had a "Retro" version that looked just like our original version that I bought in the 90's. Funny that THAT is "retro." It made me feel so old!

Thanks for sharing about this sweet childhood favorite. Brings back LOTS of memories.