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Zig Zag

Zig Zag is a strategy game for two players, though we played it with two teams. The goal of the game is to be the first to line up 4 pegs in a row. The pegs, however, can only be moved along certain "tracks." Tracks that each player has laid down, one turn at a time, patiently, o so patiently.

And that's exactly what they were, our kids' games tasting group, playing Zig Zag: patient. Thoughtful. Focused. And often taken completely by surprise.

Zig Zag is a well-made and well-conceived strategy game that can be played in as little as 5 minutes or as much as a half hour. The sturdy plastic bridge pieces - a longer one to reach diagonally adjacent holes, and a shorter one for the orthagonally similarly adjacent and also holes - fit smoothly into slots alongside each raised peg hole. Storage trays help keep the pieces sorted.

Any invitation for people to think together, kids, adults, is something you almost can't afford to turn down. Especially if it's fun. And challenging. And just complex enough to take people by surprise. And short enough so no one takes it seriously, this winning or losing thing, so everyone can focus, instead, on the fascination, the delight of the game.

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