When I was at BlogHer last month, I stopped by the Pressman Toys vendor booth and was offered the opportunity to review the game Mastermind. Since it’s a game geared toward kids 8+, and I have a 12 year old and an almost 8 year old, I thought the review was a good fit.
A couple of weeks after BlogHer, my Mastermind game arrived in the mail. Bug, the almost 8 year old, was really excited, and he immediately began begging to play. I was a little concerned about his ability to understand the game, but we opened up the game to play anyway.
To play Mastermind, one person has to be the Code Maker, and the other person gets to be the Code Breaker. The code maker chooses 4 colored pegs and places them in an order of his choosing. This is the code.
The Code Breaker has 10 turns to guess the code. After each guess, the Code Maker reveals how many pegs are the right color and in the right position and how many pegs are the right color and in the wrong position. The Code Breaker uses these clues to continue guessing the code.
After the Code Breaker figures out the code, the players switch positions. Whoever breaks the code in the fewest turns wins.
Our Experience Playing Mastermind
The first game with Bug was a bit difficult. To show him how it works, I had him be the Code Maker the first few times. After he saw how I narrowed down the code, he wanted to try being the Code Breaker.
At first I would give him hints to help him figure out the code logically. After two weeks, he’s got the game down, and he’s never taken more than 10 tries to figure out a code!
My daughter caught on to the game quickly and is pretty good at playing, too. Now the kids have fun playing together!
The Skinny on Mastermind
- Develops logic skills
- Plays quickly, if you don’t have a lot of time for a long game
- Is inexpensive
- Is non-electronic, requiring no batteries or screentime
- Only two players can play at a time, so multiple children will have to take turns
- Lots of little pieces (a con if you have very young children in the house)
- It’s hard to fit all the pieces in the storage compartment
My Overall Opinion
Mastermind has quickly become a favorite game in our household! I like that it gets the kids away from computers and the Wii, and I love that Mastermind teaches logic skills. The kids don’t even realize they’re learning! We’ll be using it from time to time as part of our homeschool day.
Mastermind is available at Amazon and local retailers for around $15.
Pressman Toys is offering me a Mastermind game to give away! To enter, just leave a comment on this post, telling me what your favorite board game is. Only one comment, please, as multiple comments will be deleted.
I will close comments at noon on Wednesday, September 15, 2010. Winner will be drawn using a random number generator. I will email the winner, and the winner will have three days to get back to me with a shipping address, or another winner will be drawn.
Pressman Toys will ship the prize after I pass on the winner’s name and mailing address.
And while we’re on the subject of games, don’t forget to log your game minutes in the Million Minute Challenge!
*Disclaimer: I received a free Mastermind game in exchanged for my honest review.