“My wife and I have played several ThinkFun games at Mensa MindGames over the years, and we recently bought RushHour for our 3 kids. We’re homeschoolers, and your puzzles are part of our curriculum.
I have attached a shot of our 4 year old Autumn playing Rush Hour. (The 8+ age on the box is a standing joke in our house.) Autumn is up to card #14, and Laura (age 5) is into the low 20′s already. Santa brought them packs 3 and 4 in their stockings this year. Thanks for some amazing games. You guys do great work.”
We often hear from fans who report that the recommended ages on some of our games don’t apply to their kiddos. With Rush Hour in particular, parents tell us their children as young as 3 are already taking on early challenges. I’ve wondered what it is about this particular game that makes it such a natural for young minds to understand and take on.
In part, I think it’s because the goal is straightforward and the same for every challenge. If you get the red car out, you’ve won – no need to check a solution or try another possible path. The movement rules are also very intuitive – cars move like regular cars, forward and backward in a lane, with no fancy jumps, turns, exceptions, or “flying cars” allowed. Finally, the entry point to play (setting up the board) is something very young children love to do and can become comfortable with at a young age. I’ve seen 2 year olds take huge pleasure in accurately setting up the vehicles to match the challenge card, a great spatial puzzle in itself!
With more and more young kiddos playing Rush Hour on the iPhone and iPad, this game is reaching more young minds than ever! With the quick flick of a finger, kids can test new paths, get comfortable with the movement rules and patterns – very satisfying, and very easy to reset again and again without loads of tiny plastic trucks strewn on the rug!
Have you found games for which the “recommended age” is too old/young for your children? Please share!