imgres-6“Show Me the Kwan” is a new entry in Griddly Games’ strong line-up, building cognitive capacity while sparking lots of fun. Generating challenging multidimensional thinking across what appears to be a simple word-dice game, it’s totally portable in a compact soft zippered bag, a little larger than a six-inch Subway. Its richness comes from cooking up creations based on a novel recipe: words from 300 different categories, target letters in those words falling in different sequences (1st, 2nd or last), with an ability to select different degrees of difficulty. Oh, did I mention that the whole affair runs against the clock? The object of the game is to assemble the most high value words in a subject category, from an ever dwindling group of 12 letter die, each with a Scrabble like difficulty number ( “S” is worth 2, “Z,” 4, etc.). So if the category is “On the farm” (from one of 30 cards), and we’re looking (per the roll of another die) to find “farm” affinity words that end in one of the 12 letter die on the board, then a G, could be piG or an N could be a heN. The players, in any order, all go off like popcorn while the micro-timer’s sand trickles down. Each participant takes the die associated with their word (the “N” leaves with the heN so to speak) leaving a dwindling number of possibilities from the original 12 dice. The name of the game comes from the “Grand Slam” achievement where a player looks at all twelve dice, wherever they might be (on the board, in their stash, or someone elses) and finds one letter that can create three affinity words, as the 1st, 2nd and last letters of those words. That might be not only heN, but also the Nanny goat who only eats well if iNsects are sprayed and don’t eat their feed. That’s a “Show Me the Kwan” play, the game within the game. Kwan spells fun, and a lot of great language development. By making players think beyond just the first letter of a word, they build their phonemic, sound sequencing skills. Overlaying great categories on that like “Photography, Dog Breeds, Late Night Talk Show Hosts” and some that are a little easier for a younger audience, “Things That Are Blue, At The Zoo, Human Body,” this game expands vocabulary, with the agility to engage both adults and younger word-o-holics. Watch out Scrabble and Dabble!

Available at Griddly Games. Click here