Gulo Gulo

My daughter Talia is five. She likes board games. Unfortunately, she mostly prefers truly awful ones, like Candyland and Chutes and Ladders, which are 100% luck and quite frustrating for adults to play. (Yay, we're almost to the end. Oh no, not that card that randomly sends me back to the start and makes me endure another 15 minutes of this nonsense.)

I visited and looked for ratings for kids' games, hoping there was something not too hard for her that I could at least tolerate. Of course, no kiddie games actually got ranked near the top overall — that would be like expecting a juice box to rate high on a wine snob site — but the most recommended was a game I'd never heard of called Gulo Gulo, a dexterity game involving wolverines stealing eggs from a vulture. I was a bit skeptical because I thought she'd have a hard time winning a dexterity game against adults, but I bought it anyway.

It's been a hit. Talia has wanted to play it multiple times almost every day since. It's got cute little colorful figures for the players (they're supposed to be wolverines but they look more like bears to me), and cute little colorful eggs, and the main play mechanic is pulling a particular egg out of a bowl without knocking over a stick or disturbing the other eggs. Turns out that little kids are pretty good at this — small fingers are often more useful than adult coordination. The games only take about 10 minutes, and she wins almost as often as I do.

Recommended, if your kids are old enough to not swallow small objects, but too young for games that require reading or deep thinking.