When Bedtime Board Game debuted at Denver Family Fest this winter, our team had the pleasure of meeting more than 100 children and families who played with us throughout the event. We learned (and laughed) a lot that day, but there was one outcome in particular that really surprised us. Our little play testers all grabbed for the shiny, colored glass gems as soon as they sat down at our table. They did this before they knew a single thing about the game. It happened nearly every time.
Founders Michael and Kelly put so much love and care into designing the cute character game pieces. (Look! The bunny is wearing jammies!) And the Cloud Card conversation questions. (So thoughtful! And look at the rainbow!) And the game board itself. (You get to travel the dreamy path to tuck your little guy into bed!) And the kids liked all of that, too… eventually. Like, once they had their favorite colored gem – or five – clutched tightly in their hands.
I’d seen this behavior anecdotally in my own family. The first several nights my daughter played Bedtime Board Game, she proudly kept her hard-won gems in a small porcelain dish on her nightstand so she could see them. Family Fest showed me that the obsession was universal. Young kids will do almost anything to get their hands on those gems.
They will even put their own pajamas on. They will even brush their teeth. THEY WILL EVEN PICK UP THEIR TOYS.
One Bedtime Board Game mom loves to tell how her toddler son had never picked up his toys without wailing before. But the first night he played the game, he happily did it right away so he could earn that little gem. Then it was the mom who nearly cried tears of joy!
Of course, there are lots of other things to love about Bedtime Board Game. Many parents we met at Family Fest were especially charmed by the Cloud Cards. Others really liked that they could customize the game path to suit their family’s particular routine. And everyone loved the accomplishment kids and adults both felt after happily and quickly completing evening tasks.
But, when it came to which game element motivated children the most, there was no contest. Or, as one little play tester aptly put it, “Wait. If I brush my teeth really good every night, then I get a gem every night?!”
Maybe our new friend in the tutu was right – the gems really do have magical powers.
One important safety caveat – the circular gems are about half an inch in diameter, so they’re not intended for children younger than 3 (or any child who might mistake them for candy or try to put them in their mouths).