Melissa & Doug's Shut-the-Box is an eye-catching version of a classic game with appeal to all ages; children will love the counting aspect, while older kids and adults will enjoy the blend of chance and strategy.
Begin the game with all the numbered tiles, in the box, flipped up to be visible. On the first player's turn, they roll both dice and then flip down any combination of numbered tiles that match the total of their roll; i.e. if the dice roll totals five, the player can flip down 4 & 1, 2 & 3, or just 5. Their turn continues until their roll can not match any of the numbers still showing. When that occurs, the player scores one point per tile flipped down. If all 9 tiles have been dropped, they've "Shut the Box" and their turn ends with a full score.
Play continues, from player to player, until everyone has completed a set number of turns, at which point the scores are added up and the highest score wins.
The game's popularity, and the simplicity of its foundational concept, make it easy to invent variations to suit different players' skill level or increase the level of strategy. For instance, instead of scoring one point per tile, each tile can be worth its numerical value and a bonus (e.g. extra points or a continued turn) can be assigned for "Shutting the Box". More variations can be found right here.
Setup time: 1 Minute or less
Playing time: approximately 5-15 minutes per player, per turn
Hand crafted, wooden box with a transparent, shatterproof, latching lid
9 Flipping, numbered tiles
1 Drawstring bag for the dice
1 Instruction Booklet
Not only is this a game with endless re-playability and wide-ranged appeal, but it's also beautifully crafted with an heirloom aesthetic that makes it an appealing decorative accent as well!
Small parts make it not suitable for children 3 years old or younger.