We like to play games in our family. Board games, card games, outdoor games; we’ll play them all. And now that my four-year-old is ready to join in the fun, it’s enabled us to take our games a step beyond Slips and Ladders and Candy Land.
Cooperative games have been a big hit in our house because, instead of competing with each other, we all work together to win or lose the game. This makes it so my 4-year-old can play along with us, even if the game might have some strategy that’s a bit complicated for him, because we’re all helping each other along in order to achieve an end goal. Wildcraft! and Cauldron Quest are two cooperative games that have been big hits at our house.
This last week, however, my boys have been repeatedly asking that we play Mole Rats in Space. Mole Rats in Space is a cooperative game for 2-4 players. Each player is a mole rat, and together you must gather the four pieces of equipment you need and make it to the space station’s escape pod before the infiltrating snakes bite you too many times or steal your escape pod. There’s also a possibility that you might run out of time or get shot into space; so be careful.
The rules of play are simple enough that my four-year-old can understand them. Each time it’s your turn, you pick up a card and follow the instructions. Each card contains instructions for moving both mole rats and snakes. You move the mole rat(s) the stated number of spaces as well as moving the snake(s) the stated number of spaces, using the ladders and airshafts to move you (and the snakes) between levels in order to collect the items and reach the escape pod. It’s simple, though some basic strategy skills are needed (and wonderfully developed through play).
The game takes about 20 minutes start to finish, so it’s not a huge time commitment. We’ve both won and lost, so it’s not a given how the game will turn out. And it’s fun that we can all cheer together when we manage to launch a snake into space.
This game is fun, and it’s simple to play. However, it’s not so easy that my husband and I tired of playing it after the first round. Mole Rats in Space states it’s made for ages 7 and up, but a younger child who knows how to count can easily join in the fun. The beauty of cooperative games is that the older players can help the younger players as needed.
You can buy your own copy of Mole Rats in Space HERE.
Have you played Mole Rats in Space or other cooperative games before? What did you think?