Here’s a game for the kids that I’d not seen before, and will be showing my kids this afternoon. Playing Shakespeare (that name is used so often I can’t really title my posts with it!) is a simple logic game where 6 characters from the plays are pictured, and “Shakespeare” gives you clues like “The person I am thinking of is not in Macbeth.” You then cross out all the people that he’s not thinking of and reveal the mystery character.
It’s certainly simple, but it’s not for us adults. It does show a very simple way to integrate Shakespeare into a simple game, though. Instead of characters like mailman and fireman, the kids get to see Claudius, Romeo, Witches, and so on. Throughout the game, “Shakespeare” occasionally gives clues and bits of trivia. After the final character is revealed, something is told about that character and his play.
The only thing that I think they cheaped out on was “Shakespeare” himself. A fixed image of a young black man, dressed in fancy Elizabethan stage garb (I’m sure there’s a better description than that), is moved back and forth in front of a background. It’s not even animated, his lips don’t move or anything. They should have punted on that and animated and actual cartoon Shakespeare. [ Is it racist to point out that they’ve got a black guy playing him? I think it’s just an inaccuracy worth noting. I certainly would have said “The woman playing him” if they’d equally inaccurately made him female.]
Other than that, though, it’s cute enough and I can only hope that my kids don’t exhaust all the “facts” in a single day.
UPDATE: Don’t forget to hit the “Flip” button on any card to learn the facts it expects you to know. I was wondering where the base Shakespeare knowledge was expected to come from.
I’m wondering if this could be turned into a card game of some sort? The idea of character cards with ‘stats’ like what play they were in, and major plot points, could make a great deck. But what could the rules of the game be?
I suppose you could pair up the cards (either as marriages/couples, or murderer/victim) and then treat it like any other “find the pairs” game. Got any Juliets?