Wednesday 7 June 2017

Review - PLYT Board Game

“Hi Boys, let’s get excited and do some maths!” is a sentence that is usually met with eye rolling and sighs or annoyance from my two!
It is a lesson in Home Ed that I honestly struggle with. The different topics we cover create imaginative and interesting pieces of work and alongside that we can include other subjects like Literacy where we document and describe; something which is often difficult with numeracy and maths.
I think aside from the fact that I get frustrated trying to find something to engage, occupy and be fun, it also upsets me that they don’t love Maths as much as I do! I know, I must be a little weird for loving it but it does get me a little excited.
Subsequently, I am always looking for some fun and engaging ideas for the boys to make them become more interested and mostly ever come up with a 5 minute warm up activity. That was until we were sent the PLYT game!

PLYT is a numbers game for all ages from 4 upwards and for 2 to 6 players. Initially I thought it looked complicated to play; I mean how many Math board games would you assume would be easy?  Yet, I was wrong and it is easy to play.
The game offers a varied amount of room from engagement, great competitive fun between players and allows each of the players of different ages and abilities to compete against each other with everyone being challenged and interested.
PLYT is about challenging the player to correctly combine a number of dice together within the time, thinking strategically and being the first to reach the middle of the board and the “top of the PLYT Mountain”.  
The rule book is only 4 pages long and really simple where it mostly covers the different ways you can play. Along with this you get a playing board, chance cards, 6 counters, 30 second timer (or longer if you want to adjust for ability) and a dice tray which holds 6 12 sided dice one black and 5 red.
Playing the Game
Before the game start each player chooses the number of standard dice. So in each turn you multiple all the dice used together; in the use of primary school aged children I would suggest a simple 2 or 3 dice combo. However, for adults or children with greater maths understanding you can expand the number of dice included higher.
Each turn you must use the “master” black die and at least one red die. Let’s now say for example that you are using 2 dice and I will explain the game from that point.
Player 1: The player rolls the master die and the red die and for example rolls a 11 (black) and 5 (red) the timer is flipped and the player must complete the multiplication in the given time. If the player completes the sum correctly then they move forward the number of squares on the board according to the number given on the black die. So, in this case, the player answering 55 would move 11 places forward.
Does that make sense? Easy right?
Now, obviously they multiplication can be harder and more complicated with the number of dice included to multiply but the movement shouldn’t change as the master die will always still be singular.
So, for example, 3 dice used: Player rolls a 2 (black) 5 (Red) and 6 (Red) creating the sum 5 x 6 x 2 = 60 and then moves forward 2 squares.
PLYT squares and Chance Cards are also an added feature to the game to allow a more fun and competitive feature to learning and playing. The chance cards offer such moves as “Moving an opponent forward the Master Die number”, “Move forward a level” and “Go back the number on the Master Die” and, as with the dice movement, this can be varied in game play depending if you are playing the card immediately or if you want to save it and play tactically.
What do we think?
We played as family a few times to start so we could get a good feel of the game. Yet, once we got the hang of it we had adjusted the rules to match and got going fairly quickly.
The reaction, interaction, knowledge and understanding quickly showed and we, expectedly, became quite competitive especially where I was struggling multiplying a 5 dice roll and making the “odd” mistake. (I hate losing, especially at Maths and even more so against an 8 and 6 year old!)
As a parent it was great to see the boys getting involved and I can see this becoming a great game to play even when we are on our Home Ed breaks.
As a teacher and Home Educator I think this is one of the best interactive educational games that I have come across in the 13 years I have been teaching! The complexity and adjustment allows all ages and abilities to play and more importantly enjoy! I wish more games like this were around to make learning, especially in difficult subjects like numeracy, more fun and engaging.
Combing the both parenting and teaching I can see this as a great game for everyone to invest in over the summer to keep the cogs turning every so often too!
This is now going to be a staple game in our lives and education and I could praise it any higher!
For more details you can find them here on Twitter, Facebook and their Website.
 (I was given this product for free to review. My opinions, geeky nature, love of Maths, board games and education are my own and I am under no obligations to give a positive review! Please see my full disclosure at the bottom of my blog)




Lisa PLYT said...

Thank you Martyn for your lovely review.
We are so pleased that you and your boys love playing PLYT - sure you'll see their confidence with numbers grow the more you play.
Happy Plyting!

Relentlesslypurple said...

This looks really fun! I think Eva would enjoy PLYT

Anonymous said...

Oh I am one of those people who hate maths. I can do it, I just dont enjoy it. Would be interesting to see what my niece and nephew make of a game like this. I am aslo a terribly bad loser too. Mrs A x

Hannah said...

I still need wayyy more convincing as a maths phobe and I'm not sure I can be convinced by people who love maths that this maths game is ace..however, as an educator I can see that this game would be really beneficial, Midge had a good grasp of times tables and this game would be great fun for her, she'd be on my die than me!!

Kim Carberry said...

We reviewed this game a while ago and it is brilliant for helping with maths. My girls get it out every now and again and play it themselves. They are learning without even realising x said...

What a brilliant game, I love the fact that it has age appropriate dice and that the boys were kind enough to adjust the rules to allow you to have a nice easy ride so that you could join in too. I hope the game helps the boys to teach you some basic maths.