Go Away Monster! Review
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Players: 2-4 (ages 3+)
Playing Time: about 10-15 minutes

If you’re the parent of a preschooler, there’s a pretty good chance that all of his or her greatest fears and phobias come out at bedtime—usually as an excuse to stay up a little longer. But with a little help from Gamewright’s preschool game Go Away Monster!, you might be able to remove the fear of monsters under the bed from your nightly list of excuses.

Game play is simple but fun. Each player begins with a colorful game board featuring a picture of a bedroom with four items missing: a bed, a lamp, a toy, and a picture. These pieces—along with a plethora of monster pieces—are placed in a bag. Players take turns reaching into the bag and taking out a piece. If that piece is a bedroom piece, the player places it on his or her board. If it’s a monster, it’s then tossed into the middle of the playing area (or something more creative, if you prefer), and the player shouts, “Go away, monster!” Players then take turns choosing pieces until their game boards are full.

Since this is a game for preschoolers, there are two options for ending the game. The non-competitive game allows players to help each other fill their game board, while the competitive version has players racing to fill their board first. Having both options is perfect for young players. The competitive version will help them learn to play competitively without winning every time—thereby teaching them to be both good winners and good losers. And the non-competitive version encourages sharing. If you have four players, you could even try playing in two teams of two players each to encourage teamwork.

The game pieces, meanwhile, are colorful and cute—imaginative monsters and bright-colored bedroom sets with patterned bedspreads and cool accessories. That alone is enough to keep kids entertained for a while. And while the simple rules probably won’t hold young players’ attention for long, it’s still a fun way to pass the time on a rainy day.

Best of all, though: Go Away Monster! makes monsters something that are colorful and silly—not scary. Here, they’re pieces that you simply toss aside (or sit on...or hide). In fact, my daughter actually likes the monster pieces, and she takes her time to study them and line them up as they appear. And while that won’t stop her from asking for a drink of water or just one more story at bedtime, it does keep her from worrying about the monsters that may be under her bed.

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