My youngest son has been playing Crab Stack every day after school since Blue Orange graciously sent us a set to try out! It has been interesting to watch his strategy evolve over time as he figures out the most effective ways to win the game. It was the obvious choice for my November game of the month.
(Note: this post contains affiliate links. Blue Orange sent us a game for review purposes, but all opinions are my own — of course!!)
How to Play Crab Stack:
Crab Stack Board Game consists of a hexagonal board and 4 sets of crab tokens in 3 different heights. Tokens are placed randomly on the game board and players try to immobilize opponents’ crabs by landing on top of them. Crab tokens can move 1, 2 or 3 spaces depending on their size but only smaller tokens can land on larger tokens. (Each token has 1, 2, or 3 stars on it, corresponding to its height.) Tokens can also be washed away in a “wave” when groups of crabs are separated from the main pack. Game play takes about 10-15 minutes.
Benefits of playing Crab Stack:
- First of all, it is FUN.
- Crab Stack requires kids to focus (don’t let your crabs get washed away!), something my youngest is always working on!
- Crab Stack also engages kids’ visual perception skills and requires problem solving.
- The strategic thinking required in Crab Stack is excellent for beginners, or kids who may struggle in this area. It is important to game play, but not as intense as many other board games of this nature. I think that is why my 6 year old likes it so much. He is not at such a disadvantage against his brother, yet it is not a game of chance.
Tips for Playing Crab Stack with Young Kids:
- Blue Orange recommends the Crab Stack game for kids ages 8 and up. My almost 7 year old easily grasped the concept and I suspect younger 6s could play as well. Experienced game players ages 5 could also play and younger kids can understand how to move the pieces, but may not be as adept at strategy.
- If there are fewer than four players, preschoolers at the family game table can practice stacking and sorting with the extra set of crab tokens.
- As with most games, younger kids can play on a team with adults and practice quantity recognition. They will also enjoy sweeping tokens of the board during a “wave”!
Do you love family games as much as we do? Here are some more of our favorites to check out: