At the 2014 Sweet Suite I was introduced to the wildly addictive Bananagrams. Now I have seen these bag full of banana-shaped tiles out and about in my many toy fair visits, however it wasn't until Sweet Suite (which I attended with TMG member Brittany) that I really was introduced to the game. The employees at City Office are avid enthusiasts of the game my neighbors and friends play and I was out of the loop damn-it.
I am happy to say I broke into that loop and holy cow I'm an addict. The game goes up to seven players with each getting a certain number of letter tiles. Each player has to make words out of the tiles by connecting the letters like a crossword puzzle. The words can be placed horizontal or vertical and each player can rearrange them at their whim. You can throw back troublesome tiles and replace them as long as you yell " Dump!" And when you use all your tiles successfully you yell "Peel" and you and everyone else pick a new tile! The game ends when the number of tiles that are in the pile are less then the number of people that are playing. The winner yells, you know it, "Bananas!" But the game isn't over then. Everyone else playing gets to check the words you play, and if there is a word that is not acceptable you are a "rotten banana" and are disqualified from the game and must place all their tiles back into the pile for the remaining players to use.
Now what makes the game great is the versatility of how you play. You can play like Scrabble and use Webster's Dictionary as your guide or you can make themes like movie titles and actors. For a couple you can play words that associate places you have been, words that have special meaning or (barf) those cute nicknames you call each other. The replay value is endless!
You can even play with the young ones that are learning or conquering the spelling world. Make practicing for spelling bees and tests much more fun by using their spelling list as a guide for the words they have to spell in the game. You would do this by having one person playing be the word master and calling out the words that are on the list. The game play would be the same only you will have to get some or all of the words on the child's spelling list along with other valid words to win the game. What a great way to learn.
So whether this is a gift for an adult or child, if the person likes having fun they will love Bananagrams! The cute packaging serves as a great way to bring the game anywhere you go and the fact that it fits perfectly in a Christmas stocking is also a huge plus in the shopping department as well!