Age level: Early Elementary, Upper Elementary
Description: Gobblet Gobblers is one of my all-time favorite family games. First of all, the pieces are adorable and silly. Second, it’s incredibly easy to learn how to play and motivating for a wide range of ages. And third, one game usually takes less than five minutes to play (though without fail the kids I play with insist on another round!)
The game is based on tic tac toe, but takes it to a whole new level. The goal is to be the first player to get three pieces in a row. The twist is that you can place your Gobbler on an empty square or on a smaller Gobbler, and you can also move one of your Gobblers that’s already on the board to an empy square or smaller Gobbler. This twist on the game makes it simultaneously more complex and sillier.
Skills & Modifications: For young learners, I usually introduce Gobblet Gobblers by just letting them explore the pieces. Just set out the materials and watch as your learner explores “gobbling” Gobblers and moving the Gobblers around the gameboard. I also don’t introduce this game to learners who have never played tic tac toe. It’s very easy to introduce tic tac toe, then move up to this more complex version of the game.
Scanning – This is a great game for practicing scanning skills. The Gobblers are motivating for many of my learners and the very act of “gobbling” increases motivation for scanning the field of play for something to gobble up!
Seriation – The fact that seriation is built into this game is fantastic. My students love the different size pieces, and the ability to “gobble” up different pieces helps solidify understanding of size in a series, as well as maintaining motivation to practice the skill.
Memory – This is a great game for helping learners with autism and other developmental delays who struggle with recall. Many of the learners I work with are highly motivated by this game, which provides lots of opportunity for recall of very recent events, such as “Does that Gobbler have smaller Gobbler underneath?”
Strategy/Logical Thinking – This is an easy-to-learn game of strategy. Players must remember where smaller pieces are hidden once they’ve been gobbled, and try to plan ahead to get three in a row. It’s simple to break down strategies for winning (such as when to use your biggest pieces) and teach them one at a time.
Taking Turns – This is a great game for teaching taking turns because each turn is relatively quick and it’s very clear when a turn is completed.
Pros: This game is incredibly easy to learn and can be enjoyed by individuals of all ages. It’s great for peer play and sibling play. Also, as usual, Blue Orange puts out games with high quality materials.
Cons: The only possible con I can think of is that only two players can play. But that’s easily remedied by holding a Gobblet Gobblers tournament, and each round is so fast that there’s not a lot of wait time between opportunities to play.
Cost: $24.99 You should invest in this game if: you are seeking games to introduce skills related to strategy, you are looking for games for sibling play or family game nights, or you just like to have fun.
ABLLS: A10, B25, K15
VB-MAPP: Independent Play 1, Social Behavior & Social Play 8, Social Behavior & Social Play 10
Gobblet Gobblers was provided to me for free by the company BlueOrange to write about here. This did not influence my opinions on the game. The thoughts and ideas above are all my own.