January 25th, 2010

Zingo! by ThinkFun

ZINGO! (by ThinkFun) is Bingo for the under 8 set. This award winning game is constructed well, with a nice balance of color and bold artwork. The point of the game is basic – the first to match the illustrated tiles to their Zingo card is the winner.

The single feature of the game that makes it so much fun is the Zingo! Zinger Tile Dispenser. The dispenser is designed with two shoots that are loaded with the 72 Zingo! Tiles. When the dealer glides the Zinger back and forth, two tiles are revealed with each deal. It is up to each player to know their game card, and to quickly grab the tiles they need to win the game.

The game can be played at two levels: one is more fast-paced than the other, which will result in participants eagerly grabbing at the tiles before their opponent does. Also, you can play multiple game cards at once, or challenge one another at filling in particular patterns on the cards, rather than covering all the spots.

While the game is recommended for children ages 4 and older, Spicy Girl (who is 3) was easily able to catch on to the game. It’s competitive matching. We played it for hours one day, and she could have kept going on, had we not forced her to eat and sleep. Zingo! is a game that will grow with her as she gets more confident with her concentration, matching and memory skills.

Right now, she wants everyone to win, so she likes to give Mommy and Daddy the tiles they need (which is very sweet). She also enjoys calling out the tiles as they come out of the dispenser, which makes her feel like she is in charge of the game.

While the cards and the dispenser seem to be able to put up with a bit of wear and tear, it is only a matter of time until tiles begin to disappear. ThinkFun has a decent website, and replacement parts can be ordered through the customer service department for a nominal fee.

Based on our Zingo! experience, we will be branching out to other ThinkFun games as we expand our game library.

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This Weeks Tip

Leave the beach at the beach

Kids covered from head to toe in sticky sand? Reach in your diaper bag for the Baby Powder, give them a good shake-down (with the powder, that is) and “Poof!” they’ll be clean as a whistle (and smelling powder fresh to boot!)