Monday, September 23, 2013

The Presidential Game - Review

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We love games especially when they are educational as well. So when we were offered the chance to review The Presidential Game we jumped at the chance. 

If you have been reading my blog for a while then you know that I immigrated from England. I was a little confused about the electoral vote situation the first time we followed an American election. After playing this game I was able to help my kids to understand the American electoral process.

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When you open the game you will find;
A Game board
6 Dice
80 Politics Cards
40 "Write-Your-Own" Politics Cards
150 Red Vote Chips
150 blue Vote Chips
1 Score Pad
1 Electoral Web-Map Calculator Access Code

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  About the Game...

This game is played in two teams, Republican and Democrat. So the first decision that has to be made is who is who...When Boo and Jam play we have to shake a dice to determine the teams.The Republican team take the 150 red chips and 3 red dice and the Democrat team take the 150 blue chips and the 3 blue chips.

When the teams are decided and the chips distributed the Politic cards need to be placed face down on the playing board. We decided to use the Web-map Calculator by using the free code included in the game. It was very easy to use and really made the game play smoothly.

This game is aimed for kids 11 and up however Boo is 10 and had no problem playing or understand the game.

Each State is given a value to count towards the electoral vote. This is the part that always confuses me when it comes to the electoral vote in the US. I am from England, the votes get counted and the party with the highest vote wins - simple right. After playing this game I now understand the US system a little better. 


Game play is very easy at the beginning of each teams turn they need to decided if they are going campaigning or fundraising. Each chip is worth one vote. Votes are gained by rolling the dice and using the Politics card. Politics cards have different instructions / scenarios on some can be held and used later and some have to be used immediately. However Politics cards are only earned when the team chooses the Fundraising option for their team. Politic cards are mainly positive and give rewards and extra votes to the team but there are also negative ones - Which Jam learned very quickly during our first game.

Campaigning

If team who's turn it is chooses to Campaign they have to select and tell the other team which 3 States they choose to Campaign in. The team then rolls 3 dice. The number on each die represents the amount of votes they get to place in there chosen States. Each State can only receive the number from one die however, it is up to the team, for example if the team chooses to Campaign in Texas, Missouri, and Kansas and they roll a 6, 5, 1 they can choose to put 5 votes in Texas, 1 vote in Missouri, and 6 votes in Kansas - or any other order they wish but the votes on the die can't be split.

Fundraising

If the team decides to go fundraising they can choose from 4 States, California, New York, Florida, and Texas. They have to announce which State they choose at the beginning of their turn. The Team then rolls 2 dice. Half of the rolled votes have to stay in their chosen 'Fundraising State' and half of their votes 'may' be allocated to a different State. For example; If I rolled a 6, 3 votes would have to go to the Fundraising State and 3 could go anywhere. Or all 6 could stay in the Fundraising State if that's what the team chooses. After the votes are distributed the team draws a Politics card at the end of the turn.

We used the Electoral WebMap Calculator which was SO easy. Every turn it is easily updated to show which States have been won or lost. With a couple of clicks the State can change from Red, Blue and Neutral.

At the beginning of the game you decide how many 'weeks' till the Election (this means how many turns each team has.) We have had a really quick game 5 weeks till the election or a longer game 16 or 20 weeks. The kids loved it both ways. So this game is really versatile and you are not limited to a set time frame.

What the kids thought

Jam and Boo really like this game we have played it numerous times since it arrived in the mail. The first time we played I had to help and keep score, now they can play it all by themselves. They are planning to invite friends over to play soon. Boo also thought it would be fun to play on the next General Election. You never know we may make it into a party!

This game retails for $35.00 check it out here.

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