Monday 5 June 2017

Penguin Pile Up Game (age 5+) From Ravensburger Review

I spotted Penguin Pile Up on the Ravensburger stand at Blog On Conference and really wanted to try it, so I pestered the poor man until he handed it over. A balancing game which can be played solo or by up to 6 players aged 5+, this is one I knew my 7 year old would love.

Everything fits neatly inside the box and there's no waste packaging or plastic aside from the outer plastic wrap and the bags for the separate penguin parts.

The iceberg is in two pieces and wobbles (a lot) on a small peg underneath.

There are 24 penguins which need to be constructed before first play. They click together really easily and it only takes a few minutes. They're pretty cute too, although my son says they need eyeballs...

Before I move on to gameplay, the Penguin Pile-Up game box also has a bonus example of why sometimes it's best not to photoshop, and that eyeballs are trickier than you might think. Probably wise not to draw them on the penguins. My children actually laughed for about an hour on and off. Simple pleasures.

Gameplay is intuitive, easy to understand and skill raises with play, although there's a huge element of luck! All you have to do is add a penguin at a time, in turn with the other players, until you have none left. Any that slip off during your turn are added to your pile.

It's much trickier than it looks at first and our 7 year old was far better than the rest of us - it's a fabulous game for helping younger children practise their fine motor control.

The penguins are quite tactile and having a whole waddle of them meant that my 7 year old plays with them too. You'll note the Lord Of The Penguins there on his giant podium - accepting his offering of popcorn. My son is studying the Mayans at school at the moment.

We introduced a 'no-one touch the table' rule unless it is your turn, because our jumpy children constantly knocked all the penguins off when it wasn't even their go! We also added a rule about all penguins which fall off before the next person touches the table are yours. Clarity is always useful to prevent arguments and whining, and the occasional all-out brotherly brawl.

Our 7 year old has won most times we've played and our 8 year old is easily as good as the grown ups, so this is a great multi-generational game with a level playing field. There is enough skill that you feel competitive and enough luck that you don't get upset when the penguins fall. The difficulty is just right. The maximum number of penguins we've managed at once is only 14.

Penguin Pile-Up is suitable for 1-6 players aged 5+ and is available to buy now rrp £14.99 from all good toy shops instore and online including Amazon. You can find out about all of their games on the Ravensburger website.

We were given our copy of Penguin Pile-Up by Ravensburger for review.


  1. This looks like so much fun. I love your son's comment about the eyeballs :-)

    1. It is a really 'fun' game - active without being fast-paced and frantic! He really is disturbed by the lack of eyeballs :D


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