TOS Review – Civilize This by Griddly Games

I was sent a ‘Travel Game & Expansion Set’ of Griddly Games’ Civilize This! game.  We decided since it was nice and portable to take it along camping with us as a special treat for my history loving children (ages 17 down to 6, although the game is for 8+ we figured Mom or Dad could help Miss Chae with her turn.)

My first impressions as we sat down at the picnic table to play on a sunny afternoon was the packaging.  I have other games like this, and they are fun to take around with you, they close up using a magnetic strip on one side so the box doesn’t “just open” on it’s own by accident. Perfect for travel.  Basically the game is like a trivia game.  You roll the colour-coded die and then pick a corresponding card – the choices are Ancient, Medieval, Modern and Wise Alec (kind of a fun option, with things to do like “do your best Egyptian dance for 4 points”) – and the first person to earn enough points wins the game.  A couple nice features are that there are two levels of difficulty in the questions, so you can decide that all questions are worth a set number of points, but bigger people answer the 7-point questions and the Littles only get the 3 point questions (easier ones)… so they have a more equal playing field.

What did we think of the game?  Well… first we were a little overwhelmed with all the Ancient Mayan questions… this is not a typical area of study, I don’t think, and we all basically had no clue and were taking wild guesses.  It made it laughable… but we didn’t progress much in our points (oh, btw, you set a “number” of points or a time period and whoever meets the points requirement first, or whoever has the most points at the end of the set time, wins.)  The Wise Alec cards were funny, especially when my Hunny got do your best Egyptian dance, which he would rather NOT do even though it meant giving up a whopping 4 points, my younger son was thrilled to earn points just for balancing the game on his head for 15 seconds though!

The quality of the cards could be better – they are just printed cardstock… no coating, which made us a little nervous that in wet camping conditions it might have gotten damaged.  One problem we encountered was the fact that once you open the decks of cards, even when it’s closed, the cards slip all over and get mixed up.  There should be a way to keep them contained…maybe a slightly higher lip for each compartment?  I don’t know, but it is definately something Griddly should look at to make their “travel” product more travel-friendly.  We did really like that the instructions were printed on the front flap, so when the game was open, the instructions were facing us at all times, nice and easily referenced.

I think, though, unless your family are HUGE history buffs, this game would lose it’s appeal fast, since it is a trivia game with only one topic, somewhat obscure pieces of trivia from history, which is not everyone’s strength.  Questions such as “Which feline represented the Mayan god of the Underworld” (btw, a jaguar)…. Thank the Lord for Wise Alec cards, I think that’s the only cards we actually got points on.



Griddly Games provided me with a free copy of this game for evaluation and in exchange for my honest opinion, I received no other compensation for this review.

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