Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Thinking Game: Mind Your Marbles

Here is the game I've spent too much time playing tonight:  Mind Your Marbles.  It's a deceptively simple game; you merely have to arrange five of the same colored marbles in a row, column, or diagonal line along a 9 square x 9 square grid to earn points.  They then disappear, but unlike many of these matching games, it does not make the other marbles around them "fall" or change position.

So it's not bad at first....but has your board gets filled up, it gets harder and harder to move around.  Plus, you can see the colors of the next set of marbles, but you don't know where they will be placed.  So just as you've plotted a strategy to get that fifth marble in the right place--BAM--the game inserts a wrong colored marble to block your plan.

So it combines forward planning with the element of luck.  It can be frustrating, but you can take as long as you like considering the possibilities, which I think enhances it as a thinking game.  It's a good level for a middle school range student.

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