Did you know it’s possible to introduce an educational game to the family at game night and still have a rousing good time? I have to admit when I first learned of this government game I thought it would be great way to allow my son to explore a variety of government forms in a more hands-on way. But, I also thought that a game about democracy, republics, monarchies, and theocracies might be, well for lack of a better word, a bit dull.
Boy was I wrong!
I received this game for free in exchange for my honest review of this game. All opinions expressed are my own and I was not required to write a positive review. I am not being compensated for the review of this product. This post contains affiliate links to 3rd party sites where products purchased may result in paid compensation for this blogger.
Family Fun with a Government Game
Civitas by Bright Ideas Press is more than just an educational game. It’s a game that brings much laughter around the table.
I no longer think of it so much as a government game, although it is fully an educational game. Instead I think of it as a He who Rules the World Wins the Game kind of game.
The goal of the game is to be the one with the least points at the end of the game. At the end of each round points in your hand are added up. But if you hold leadership cards you have an advantage that reduces the points you are holding. That’s why holding power is important in the game.
To do this you collect cards representing different forms of government. The game is played similarly to UNO, in that the play of game is constantly changing. But instead of changing colors you’re changing forms of government.
One minute you might be King of the Monarch, and the next minute you might be locked in the tower, while a revolt is taking place and someone is changing the form of government to a Representative Republic and takes control of the game.
The game is fast-paced and uproariously funny as players find themselves declaring laws on a whim. Or, with the right card in your hand you can declare anarchy and ignore the laws altogether.
We had so much fun playing together as a family that we have since invited friends over to play and we all had a lively time taking on our various roles of government.
It’s in these role reversals that boisterous laughter ensues.
Your Need to Know Facts about Civitas
An Government Game that makes for a fun family night.
The game uses 8 different sets of cards as a means to teach 8 different forms of government. Each set has its own set of rules but they can be mixed and matched to create entirely new games each time you play. These are the government types available.
Guess what? Civitas also has a set of cards that is blank. Which means, your family can create your own form of government with your own set of laws, and rules for how your government will operate.
In our family we like to choose 4 sets at time. We choose 1 by random draw, and then each of us selects one, to make up the four. It takes us about an hour to play depending on how many points we choose to be the amount needed to end a game.
One thing I’ve noticed is that because we are a family of 3, some governments are much more difficult to play with than others. For example in a republic you have a president and representatives. Since in our family, that would mean each of us would be participating it’s just not really an accurate portrayal of how a republic works. So we’ve opted to not utilize the republic cards when we play just the 3 of us. However, when we had friends over, it worked great.
For this game we think, the more the merrier!
- Civitas is available from Bright Ideas Press.
- It’s just $24.95, very affordable for an educational game.
- It’s listed for ages 10 and up, but I do think children under 10 can play the game easily, they may just need some help to understand the roles of government officials a bit.
- Game play can be a quick 5 or 10 minute single round game, or take an entire evening depending of the choices you make. The more sets of government you use, the longer the game takes.
You know a game is good when your 13-year-old son says, “Hey, mom can we play that government game with my friends when they come over to spend the night?”
What about you? What’s your favorite form of government?
How do you teach your kids what it’s like to live in a Republic, or what a Monarch might be like?
Have you given Civitas a try? I’d love to know what your family thinks.
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