Hop to It!
English language edition of Hoppla Hopp
List Price: $10.00
Your Price: $7.99
(Worth 799 Funagain Points!)
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Time to get your memory moving with Hop to It! Take a deep breath, get a good look at the row of objects, and then you're off! With only 30 seconds to remember all of the objects, you'll need to be quicker than a bunny as you hop from one item to the next.
I know that many people do not enjoy memory games, but I find them attractive, even if I do terribly at them. At the same time, kids are usually quite good at playing them, which makes memory a more enjoyable mechanic for them. Hop to it! (Playroom Entertainment, 2007 - Reinhard Staupe), an addition to the Bright Ideas line - one made specifically for kids - combines memory and speed to make a frantic, entertaining game.
Now, although the Bright Ideas line is often directed at children, this one is probably too difficult for the youngest set and adults may find themselves enjoying the quick memory elements of the game. I found it extremely difficult to play, yet challenging enough to keep trying again and again. Players are essentially quickly shouting out the next object in a line that they have to memorize simultaneously. A good, unique idea makes this one of the best of this series, and one in which I can have serious competition with my children.
Twenty-one object tiles are mixed up and then arranged face up in a curving line on the table. Two plastic discs are placed near the beginning of the line, and the oldest player takes the first turn. On a player's turn, they have some time to study the object line and then announce that they are ready to begin, placing the two discs on top of the first two tiles in line. The player flips the timer and then attempts to guess what is under the first disc in line. As soon as they guess it, another player (the "Judge") moves the disc to the third object in line. The active player continues to guess, and the Judge continues to move the discs, one at a time. If the player is incorrect, or if the timer runs out, or (doubtful) the player guesses all twenty-one objects, their turn ends. The player scores one point for each object they remembered correctly. All the tiles are mixed up, and the same process is repeated for the next player. After every player has had a turn, the player with the highest score is the winner! Players can also play an "advanced" version using three discs instead of two.
I have to say I was amazed at how hard it was to remember everything in line. I would sit there, concentrating on the object being covered; and yet every time I would miss an object somehow, as the discs kept moving. It's one game in which I can play at top level against my young daughters, and yet they managed to keep up with me and compete on my level. The tiles are a variety of common objects (glove, shovel, crown, pig, etc.), so the game can likely be played in various languages (maybe even have use in a foreign language classroom setting?).
Throw in that third disc, and the game becomes immensely more difficult, with that annoying timer in the background taunting you as you attempt to memorize the line of objects quickly. The concept is good, and the idea of another player moving the discs adds a level of stress to the current player that keeps it from becoming a drawn-out, boring memory game.
But make no mistake, the game IS about memory; and those who aren't a fan of using that skill in games will be disappointed. Kids, on the other hand, will be delighted to try the game out; and since the lineup changes every round, they can never really get into a groove in which they can defeat their opponents too easily. The tiles are slightly thinner than I'd like, but they are of good quality; and the covering discs are chunky plastic pieces that are easily handled and moved. The thirty-second timer flows easily and is easy to see, although it does seem like fifteen seconds on your turn and five minutes on everyone else's.
I'm sure some people can easily list everything in the line (although, can someone move the discs that fast? I can't!), but I found the game extremely challenging and fun. It's one that I would only recommend to families; but I can do so in good faith, because skill levels will be equal between adults and children. The game takes place in a short period of time, and everyone will have a lot of fun. Another winner for Playroom!
"Real men play board games"