Thursday 24 October 2013

Orchard Toys Spooky Steps Review

When Orchard Toys got in touch with me in regards to Unique Young Mum's Halloween feature I was extremely pleased when they arranged to send Spud their Spooky Steps, Halloween themed educational game. Me and Spud have not worked with Orchard Toys before so we was eager to try out the company that is loved by many!

Spud was appealed to the box straight away just from its appearance and tag line ''One, two, three four...Dare you take one step more?

Inside the impressively small sized box is a jigged game board (jigsaw puzzle style), two slot together walls, a 3D magic cauldron with spinner, 4 frog playing pieces, 4 plastic character stands, 42 footstep cards, 6 ghost cards, 6 cobweb cards, a ghost board and a instruction leaflet.

A lot of the board games Spud has requires me to set them up, this irritates Spud as he has to sit and wait, I know patience is virtue but children like to get involved and help. Spud was able to help me set this game up and prepare us for our first round, he was pleased to be apart of the initial set up process and quickly got to work sorting the jigsaw style game board.

Once I assembled the cauldron, slot the two wall pieces into place, shuffled the cards together (footprints, ghost & cobwebs), and got the four colour frog cards each onto a character stand we was ready to play the game! Spud chose to play as the blue frog whilst I went with the yellow one. 

The game is suitable for 2-4 players so I decided to play along with Spud as he is a only child and none of his cousins were around the day we received it, Spud being eager did not want to wait a day longer to try the game out! The youngest player starts the game off by turning a card over from the face down shuffled pile.

If the player turns over a foot print card containing either one, two or three footsteps, the player can keep the card and can decide weather to pick up another card, or move the amount of spaces the card/cards add up too. However, if the player decides to take the risk of picking up another card and picks up a cobweb card, the player can only move to the amount of footsteps they have received and it then becomes the next players go. If the player picks up a ghost card on its round of picking up cards, they will have to move backwards the amount of spaces as they have footsteps and again it becomes the next players go.

The ghost card is the worse card in the game, for once a player reveals one of the six ghost cards, you have to go backwards when the aim of the game is to be the first player to reach the witches cauldron. The ghost cards have their very own board and when each ghost card is revealed its placed on the ghost board so the players have a rough idea of how many ghost are left in the pile.


There are four 'rooms' to get around, each room with a different theme and colours, but of course, keeping it spooky at all times. There is no dye or dice to predict how quickly you can get around this board, it is all down to the players decision. Do they risk picking up a few cards each time, or will they stick to picking up one or two cards?


The winner of the game is to be the first person to get to the witches 3D cauldron and to successfully get themselves turned back into a human. To get turned back into a human, the player must spin the spinner and hope it lands on a human and not a frog. If the spinner lands on a frog, the spell has been unsuccessful and the player must wait till their next go to spin the spinner again. However if the spinner lands on a human, the witches spell has been broken and you have been transformed back into a human and announced the winner of the game!

Orchard Toys fun learning games encourage children to communicate, share and play together. The Spooky Steps game has been designed to do the following;

* Encourage observation and strategic thinking.
* Develop social communication
* Link with Early Learning Goals
* Link with National Curriculum Maths Key Stage 1
* Teach the use of number in meaningful context.

I personally as a parent enjoyed playing against Spud and letting him make his own decision. I let him choose whether to take the risk of collecting more cards or not. Spud thoroughly enjoyed the game and has made me promise we can play it again during Halloween evening!

Orchard Toys Spooky Steps game is suitable for ages 4+ and is available to buy with a suggested RRP of £15.95 from Orchard Toys directly, Boots, Amazon, Tesco and educational websites.

To find out more about Orchard Toys and to view more of their fabulous product range check out the official website here.


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