Hoppers: Peg Solitaire Jumping Gameby Myra Wolfe
Totally cute and totally fun, this game is a great brain workout that's hard to stop playing.
Hoppers is an extremely cute, surprisingly challenging game for one player. It's a more colourful, more fun take on an old favorite -- peg solitaire. The pegs, in this case, are friendly-faced, googly-eyed frogs, and the playing field is a spread of lily pads. There are twelve frogs -- eleven green and one red -- and the player makes them hop over one another until only the red one is left standing.
Forty challenge cards, ranging from beginner to expert, are provided; players start by arranging the frogs on the playing field the way they're shown on the card. Then they get hopping!
Playing this game is a great way to get some good "slow down and think" practice that so many kids -- and adults -- need. Strategic thinking is definitely required; impulsiveness will get you nowhere. If, despite that careful thought (and repeat tries), the player can't find the solution, it's diagramed on the card's other side.
The frogs and challenge cards are stored inside a sturdy little plastic box, and the slide-on lid doubles as the playing field. It's a really nice, self-contained set-up that makes clean up simple -- and sort of fun! Only one of the challenge cards requires the use of all the frogs -- most require a lot fewer -- so if any of the frogs are lost, there's still plenty of fun to be had.
The suggested age range is 8 and up, but my six-year-old played many of the cards without frustration, even when she had to try and try (and try!) again. Even my three-year-old had fun moving the froggies around.