Kids and adults were fascinated with and quickly became addicted to playing Otrio which seemed simple at the start but really required great concentration, memory, and critical thinking to strategize offensive and defensive moves. What appeared to be a quiet game quickly turned into a frenzy of fun as parents and kids made their moves and started to catch on how to block opponents. My 12 year-old friend declared “I get it! It’s such a clever name. It’s a lot more complicated¬† than Tic Tac Toe.” Each player has a trio of small, medium, and large colored rings to place on the board in one of three configurations to win the game–three in a row of the same sized pieces, three pieces in ascending or descending order or three concentric pieces in the same space. The chat began shortly after the game started as players were learning strategies to advance their rings or block other players. In fact as Mom was considered the biggest threat, Dad and son teamed up, “So you and I need to work as a team to block Mom. ” Players were explaining their moves and usually surprised when someone won as if they’d snuck up on them. You are so deep in thought plotting out your next move that you miss what is happening in front of you. “Uh huh, I see that now. You blocked me here so now I have to double block him.” “Do you know why I went here? Because if Dad went here, I’d win.” Tapping language, visual memory, spatial, and critical thinking skills, Otrio stretches the brain through fun competitive play!

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