Toddler Tabletop: ‘Go Away Monster’

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GoAwayMonster-Box

Go Away Monster is a fun toddler game from Gamewright that helps kids learn shape recognition by feel and how to stand up to bedroom monsters!

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Go Away Monster contents. Photo by Will James.

Go Away Monster is for ages three and up and for two to four players. The box includes instructions, a fabric bag, four game boards, and three sheets of punch out cardboard pieces. The game boards and cardboard pieces are all made of nice and thick stock–perfect for longevity in a kid’s game.

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A game board with four spots for room pieces. Photo by Will James.

Each player chooses a game board, and while they are all technically identical, the artwork and color of each game board varies. All of the room pieces can fit with any of the boards.

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Some of the monsters are similar in shape to the room pieces. Photo by Will James.

In addition to the pieces that go on the game board, there are a bunch of funny monsters. While many of them are completely different shapes, some are similar to the room pieces. This gives an extra level of difficulty for small children on trying to figure out what a piece is by feel alone.

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Game setup takes about 30 seconds. Photo by Will James.

Setup is very straightforward as well. Each player takes a game board, then all the monsters are placed into the draw bag. Lastly, one set of room pieces per player is placed into the draw bag.

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Look at that smile while yelling at a monster! Photo by Will James.

Gameplay is very straightforward which is great for a small children’s game, but packs in a lot of fun and learning experience. Each player takes a turn drawing a game piece from the bag. The goal is to fill a game board with the missing items–a bed, a stuffed animal, a lamp, and a framed picture. If a monster is drawn, the player yells, “Go Away Monster,” and throws the monster into the pit (the box), banishing the monster from the room. If a piece is drawn that the player already has, the player can choose another player to give it to. Play continues until every player finishes their room, and all monsters are banished. In the advanced, competitive play mode, the first person to complete their room wins. This gives an obvious advantage to older players who can more easily feel which piece is which.

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At the end of the game, the instructions recommend actually removing the pit of monsters from the room to help the idea of getting rid of monsters. Thankfully, we haven’t had to deal with any “monsters in my room” issues as of yet, so the learning to boss around the monsters and kick them out of the room isn’t something we dug into very much. That doesn’t change the fact that my son loved pointing at each monster and yelling, “Go Away Monster,” before tossing them into the pit.

One additional way to use the game not mentioned in the rules that I came up with is to use the game boards as a fun little “what’s different and what’s the same” exercise. My son had a lot of fun finding the differences and similarities in the toy boxes, book shelves, and slippers.

If you have a toddler or preschooler who loves games, and especially if they have a problem with bedroom monsters, Go Away Monster is a great game. You’ll soon find yourself laughing and yelling, “Go Away Monster,” right along with your child.

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