Recently, I purchased Quest Trio. The trio is comprised of Jewel Quest Expeditions, “a classic matching game with over 180 unique jewel boards to choose from”; Mahjong Quest, which allegedly “brings the ancient game of mahjong to life, with a captivating storyline and over 64 tile layouts of increasing challenge to unravel”; and Jewel Quest Solitaire, in which the user gets to “Play tri-peaks solitaire…in a new way using jewel-themed card decks…114 layout and 684 possible card playing scenarios.” I’m tired of the Bejeweled-Bedazzled-Jewel Quest-type matching games, and bought this game specifically for Mahjong Quest. There are three choices here, “Puzzles,” “Classic,” and “Kwazi’s Quest.” I am thrilled to report that all three are visible to the elder eye. The included solitaire is not like any tri-peaks solitaire I have played (on Facebook or DS), but it offers a challenge and a change. I play it more than I play mahjong.
Another senior-friendly game is Touchmaster; it offers a variety of short games ideal for the gaming granny or granpa with attention deficit disorder (yes, some of us are so afflicted). Touchmaster includes 23 card, skill, and puzzle games, and I have played or attempted to play all of them. Mah Jongg Pairs offers two sets of tiles, but the characters on the classic set are much too small. Mahki is a colored tile game somewhat reminiscent of Tetris; card games Target 21, Triple Elevens, and 3 Peak Deluxe are usually my bedtime story. There are nine card games, including a few classics. Touchmaster passed the old-eyes test.
One of the problems in picking games is not knowing what’s inside that tiny cartridge. The blurb on the box sounds wonderful (surprise! surprise!) and I’ve often fallen for the old “if you love [fill in the blank], then you’ll love this.” After buying the game I find I do but I don’t, and I’ve another bad investment on my hands which I can’t even pawn off on my granddaughter, Chloë. Chloë illustrates another problem. She was adamant that I would love Animal Crossing as much as she and her mother do. I made sure I had it before her next visit, and my reaction, once she taught me the game, was “what’s the point?” That’s not Chloë’s fault. Just because your best friend, husband, or beloved granddaughter loves a game doesn’t mean you will, too. The absolute best place I've found to see if a game might be for you (without trying before buying) is the user reviews and screen shots on Amazon. Since these games are not being given away, I won’t buy a game that doesn’t have user reviews or is poorly rated. Professional reviews and product blurbs do not sway me. I want to know what people like me have experienced and think. Most people are very candid. Very.