Moving Week Sale

Moving Week Sale

Moving Week Sale

Moving, again?

Only a few months from reopening Gamers@Hart we’re moving – but not too far!

In fact, only downstairs. We’ll be moving into Unit 1, Bovis House, directly underneath our current shop.

The good news is we get more space! Which we’ll be using to introduce some play space in the shop again.

But we have a LOT to move – and it’s an expensive business too – so we have a sale going on until Saturday, because it’s much better to sell now and move fewer boxes!

If you buy anything in stock online you can use the code ‘buynotmove’ to get 10% off.

If you buy anything in store, that becomes a 15% saving!

T&Cs:

Sale ends at the end of Saturday 12th March

Does not include preorders or restocks, in stock items only.

We reserve the right to end this promotion early.

Sushi Go Score Sheet

Sushi Go Score Sheet

We love Sushi Go.

A quick fire, easy to learn game, with sneaky maths undertones.

We’ve used it at our holiday clubs, it’s a favourite for our weekly Pokemon Battle Academy, and it’s one of the first games we teach families when we run games nights.

In Sushi Go you’re given a hand of cards, each of them represent a famous Japanese dish. Then you choose one – one you think will score you the most points – and pass the rest of the cards to the next person. Then, you pick up the cards from your other neighbour, choose a card, pass on, etc, etc, etc until there’s no cards left.

But each card scores differently and provides a different opportunity for practising some basic numeracy. Wazabi, for example, needs multiplication to figure out. Maki Rolls compare numbers. Dumplings score according to a particular sequence.

Then at the end of the round you add up all the scores. You do that for three rounds, add everything together, and compare scores.

None of this maths is ‘hard’ (by adult standards), but holding all theses different scores in your head can tax your working memory – especially if mental maths is a skill you’re still perfecting as a child.

So we created some simple score sheets to make it a little easier to see how the maths works. You’re welcome to download and print them out from the file below!

The Games from our Pokemon Club

The Games from our Pokemon Club

The Games From our Pokemon Club

This Christmas time we had over 230 children join us for at least one day of our Hartlepool-based Pokemon maths holiday clubs!

Alongside teaching the Pokemon card game, we had small-group maths tuition and introduced a range of other board and card games, for children aged 5-11. These are the games we played, and why we chose them. The main purpose of all the games was that they would be enjoyed – there might be excellent games for practicing maths out there, but if they don’t bring children back for more, they’ll be less effective than those that you play for fun and the maths practice is incidental.

Pokemon Trading Card Game

Gather your Pokemon and pit them against another trainer – make use of special item cards to give you an advantage, and evolve your Pokemon as you go. Having just finished it’s 25th anniversary, the Pokemon TCG has been around for a long time now!

We use this every day in the club, for a few reasons. Firstly, many kids love it! And loads of kids have picked up the cards, but don’t really know how to play – so showing them the game brings their whole collection to life! It also includes loads of maths – just working out the damage at the end of every turn involves around 20-30 mental calculation.

Ideal age, 7+, 2 players

Dobble

A twist on ‘snap’, a quick fire matching game, where every card has exactly one symbol matching. Not so much maths here, but spatial awareness, reaction times, and concentration are all warmed up with this 10 minute icebreaker.

Most of all though, it’s fun and fast, and appeals to the children who prefer a quicker pace with their game.

Ideal age, 5+, 2 or more players

Ligretto

Based on ‘Dutch Blitz’, you take your deck of cards and attempt to play them in the centre of the table, where there are multiple stacks of cards starting at 1 and moving up incrementally. All players are placing cards together, so this is another very fast game, that needs quick reflexes and fast number recognition.

Ideal age, 5+, 2-4 players

Hey, That’s My Fish

We chose this game because it has a chess-like strategy feel. You move your penguins (they can only move in straight lines) to collect fish from an ever-shrinking iceberg. Then, some simple addition at the end is perfect maths practice.

Ideal age, 5+, 2-4 players

Sushi Go

Perhaps the best family ‘pick and pass’ game. You get a hand of cards, pick one to score, and pass the rest on. Each type of card scores differently. Some just give you points, others you need to collect sets, or that you get points depending on how many of a type you have collected. We chose it because it uses numbers in lots of different ways – sometimes cards are added together, sometimes multiplies, and sometimes in simple sequences.

Ideal age: 7+, 2-5 players

Barenpark

Create the best zoo, by adding tiles to your board. This polyomino game uses strange shaped pieces you need to fit together most efficiently.

We chose it because it’s easy to make a shorter or longer game by removing some of the boards, it’s a great game for spatial awareness and shape and space, and practicing addition.

In our weekly Pokemon club this is one of our most played games!

Ideal age: 8+, 2-4 players – If you like this, the sequel Llamaland is now available too!

Machi Koro

Machi Koro is often compared to monopoly – you roll dice, collect money, and buy properties. But there’s no pieces to move, it’s the roll of the dice rather than the movement of a piece, that triggers the payments.

We chose this game because it’s a fantastic example of probability in action. The cards you have might make it worth rolling one or two dice, and do you pick the card that’s worth more but only triggers on a roll of 11 or 12?

Ideal age: 6+, 2-4 players

Kingdomino

Kingdomino is all about multiplication and shape and space. You take a tile, place it in a space on your large square (your Kingdom), and at the end you count up now many tiles of a particular type you have, and multiply it by how many crowns you have.

Ideal age: 6+, 2-4 players

The Pokemon Christmas Club was part of Hartlepool Holiday Fun, funded by Hartlepool Borough Council and the DfE.

New Afterschool Club

New Afterschool Club

New Afterschool Club

Gamers@Hart are delighted to announce their first after school club!

Every week at Throston Primary School (Hartlepool) we introduce 24 pupils to new games, like Just One, Braggart, and Zombie Dice. Most of our children have experience of playing popular board games like Monopoly, Chess and Jenga. However the board game industry is currently thriving with huge diversity and creativity in the theme and design of games, and it’s our purpose aim to show the best that the gaming world has to offer.

We’ve embedded peer-learning strategies, with eight year six pupils who are our ‘ambassadors’ who learn new games. Then, they split up and teach a group of four pupils from across Key Stage 2.

The main purpose of this club is to have fun! There’s no particular curriculum aim, although many games we use do contribute to developing confidence in maths, problem solving, and literacy. However through the use of ambassadors, we are encouraging the development of communication skills and leadership, we are also practising concentration, listening, negotiation, and cooperation.

If you’re part of a school and would be interested in using gaming to support your curriculum, you can contact gamers@hart on info@gamersathart.co.uk

Battle Academies: What do we do?

Battle Academies: What do we do?

What do we do at the Battle Academies?

This September we launched our new ‘Battle Academies’. These clubs use games to develop confidence in maths – they’re run by qualified teachers and tutors.

So far we find they appeal to two types of people: children who love maths and want a challenge; and parents of children who aren’t so keen on maths, and want to offer more practise without is feeling like maths.

We have three age groups. 2 for 6-9 year olds, and 9-13 year olds based on Pokemon. Then an older group that uses Magic: The Gathering for 11-14 year olds. Each group happens in central Hartlepool on Saturdays.

But what do we actually do in these clubs? Using last week’s sessions, here’s a brief overview to see if you think you’d enjoy it:

When you enter

If you haven’t been before, you’re given a label to decorate and a box with your deck in for Pokemon or Magic: The Gathering. At the end of the term, you get to keep this deck and take it home.

Play Pokemon/MTG

The first thing you do is play Pokemon or Magic: The Gathering (depending on which age group you’re in).

If you haven’t played before, that’s great – most of our members start like this! We teach you how to play in your first session. A leader teaches you, and we match you up with one of the members who will act as your ‘buddy’ and help you to play.

Everyone that knows how to play, will play 2 games with 2 different people. We keep track of wins for a term-long league.

Our clubs are run by trained educators because we want to use playing games to develop maths. It’s easy to play games like Pokemon on a ‘gut feeling’, without doing many calculations – however having someone ask questions during the game really helps to bring out the potential for maths practise (e.g. how much life to do you have left? How many turns until your Pokemon is knocked out?).

This take around the first 40-50 minutes of the session.

Trade cards

We provide a deck that’s great for new people to learn with.

But over time, you might want to improve your deck – using cards that are a little more complex, but are more competitive. We have trade folders, and every week you get to swap 2-4 cards. Our folders are full of cards from the Evolving Skies set.

Snack

We offer a piece of fruit, and biscuit, and a drink as a snack.

Maths Tuition

Then we do some direct maths challenges. We keep these as interactive as possible, and feel like problem solving as a team.

Often these focus on strategies for the games – it gives the maths tuition a sense of purpose. This week, with the younger groups, we looked at two pokemon cards and asked ‘which one will get knocked out first’. To begin with, most of our members took a guess. Then we talked about how we could calculate this, and whether it made a difference which Pokemon attacked first. We worked these calculations out together, and then individually members did the same with their own cards. Finally, we considered how the ‘losing’ Pokemon could get the advantage, and members provided a list of ways to help the Pokemon last an extra turn – sometimes, keeping a Pokemon in the game for one more turn is enough to win the game

The older group solved some probability problems based on the game Machi Koro. They calculated the probability of a card triggering on their turn and when it was best to swap from rolling one die to two dice, based on the probability of any card triggering and whether it’s worth the risk to try and get a big payout from a card with a lower probability of triggering.

Playing another game

Then we choose another game to play. Again, these will always have a maths theme. This week, the younger Pokemon groups played Kingdomino for the first time (we play a game for two weeks, then swap to something else). This game involves scoring points by multiplying the number of crowns you have gathered with the number of squares of a particular type of landscape you have. To help make the maths of the game more explicit we provide score sheets at the end, with the equations that children complete to find their score.

Join us!

The first session is always free, with no obligation. After your child(ren) has attended the first session we email payment instructions. If you would like to continue, you just need to fill those out. Otherwise, we hope they enjoyed their first time with us and might be interested again in the future.

If you would like to join us for a free first session, you can register here.

September Newsletter

September Newsletter

Reopening plans!

We have the keys for our new rooms – units 14 and 15 in Bovis House (next to LilyAnne’s coffee bar). A wall has just been knocked down – everything’s looking great! Next step: decorating, then furniture, then we open J  

We’re now aiming for 25th September for our first day – but that depends on all kinds of other things going on and we want to make it look awesome! So, basically, it’ll be ready when it’s ready 🙂

Games nights and opportunities to play

We’re not open yet, but we have opportunities to play again!

Magic: The Gathering

Friday Night Magic has started again. Magic: The Gathering is the oldest and most-played trading card game. We’re currently running Modern format for more experienced players, and an Intro League. Intro league, as you might guess, is perfect for people who are relatively new to the game or looking for to play with a ready-made deck (rather than build your own). Every week, you’re given a booster pack, and allowed to tweak the deck with those cards – gradually improving your deck over the weeks! FNM is hosted by LilyAnne’s Coffee Bar.

Other events – including Commander and weekend events will follow shortly, when the shop’s open.

Pokemon/MTG Battle Academies for Young People

We’ve started a new set of clubs for kids!

We cater for all ages from 6 to 14, and every week we teach and play Pokemon (younger groups) and Magic: The Gathering (older group), then have some fun, interactive, problem solving maths activities, and end with other games that also develop maths skills.

These clubs are ideal for kids who love extra maths challenges, or find maths a little too abstract and want to see how it works

Games nights, RPGs, YuGiOh, and more….

Are you wondering about what’s happened to all the other events we used to do? Sunday afternoon X-Wing? Thursday Night LCGs? Wednesday RPGs? Tuesday YGO?

Well, things may look a little different, but we’re committed to bringing back as many of these as people want to play, using community venues.

We also have People’s Meeples – the community organisation that’s run by some of our regular customers, that used to organise the Autism Friendly Nights. They have funding to restart games nights and RPGs post-lockdown.

Facebook groups

If you want to meet like-minded people, keep updated about events, and share in general gaming chat, we have these Facebook groups. For some of the most in-demand items, we also have special offers, so our regular customers don’t have to play inflated prices for rare games:

LCGs (including Keyforge)

Magic: The Gathering

Pokemon

RPGs

General board gaming

YuGiOh

Top sellers

What we’ve sold most of this August:

Marvel Champions: The Mad Titan’s Shadow was our biggest seller in August, thanks to Marvel Champions being our largest subscription. We get 1 MC release a month – usually a hero pack, with cards that you can use to play as a hero and defeat one of your favourite Marvel Villians. These twice-yearly campaign boxes introduce a whole new story arch, and this time we take down Thanos (or not).

Hoenn – Every month in 2021 Pokemon are launching large-format, special edition collectible cards for different regions in the Pokemon lore. Hoenn became a biggest seller in August.  

Marvel Crisis Protocol – thanks to our new subscription service you can expect to see the latest Marvel Crisis Protocol expansions near the top of pretty much every month now. Create your set of superheroes and battle in a duel, throwing cars and jumping off buildings, recreating your favourite Avengers moments. August saw the release of Captain America, Jean Grey and Red Omega.

Lord of the Rings: Journey’s in Middle Earth is probably our favourite of the new wave of app-based campaign games. While you move around, exploring a physical board, interacting with tokens, and battling enemies – the app provides the story and the consequences for your actions (like a virtual games master). Shadowed Paths was the first large expansion, virtually doubling the content of the base game. This restock sold out before we’d even received the stock in! If you missed out don’t worry, the second expansion is coming soon.

Some random things sometimes hit our top sellers in a month just because a few people buy up our stock a game becomes rare – that’s exactly what happened here. Star Wars Legion Snow Troopers – no longer in stock (reprinting soon though), and a little hard to find in other places too.

Kickstarters

We’re now taking preorders on these games from Kickstarter:

Isle of Cats: Don’t Forget The Kittens kickstarter, with various expansions and ‘Explore and Draw’.

Canvas Reflections (expansion)

So, You’ve Been Eaten

On The Underground

Stroganov (Standard and deluxe)

Cult of the Deep (standard and deluxe)

Return to Dark Tower plus expansions

After the Empire Deluxe Kickstarter Edition

Streets standard and deluxe

Kickstarters we’ve recently backed

Flamecraft delux, standard, and extras

Doomtown Weird West Edition

SHASN and SHASN: Azadi

August Newsletter

August Newsletter

What’s coming up soon? Lots!

New shop news, new clubs, new games nights… it’s all happening! Read on to find out more.

A new shop

Early September we expect to be opening a new shop! We’ve secured a unit in Bovis House – a business centre in the heart of Hartlepool, on Victoria Road. It’s an ideal location, near buses, a five minute walk from the trains, and round the corner from our old premises.

This’ll only be a shop – we don’t have cafe space, but LilyAnne’s Coffee Shop is right below us – and we’ll have space for smaller events in the building, with larger events at another venue (see below).

Most importantly, it’ll be a place you can come for all your gaming needs!

A new series of gaming clubs

Following on from two incredible successful sets of holiday clubs over Easter and Summer, and building on an idea we almost started back just before Lockdown 2.0, we’re proud to announce Pokemon and Magic: The Gathering maths clubs!

A large part of these clubs is playing games – but they’ll be run with teachers who will provide small group tuition that will gently support children who find maths tough, and provide a satisfying challenge to those maths-fiends who can’t get enough. These, with the games, will provide real-world example of how maths works!

They’re available in three groups, for children up from 6 to 14, and you can find out more here.

New Games Night with People’s Meeples

People’s Meeples is a community group managed by regular customers and owners of gamers@hart – it specialises in promoting the social and educational benefit of gaming. In the past, we ran autism friendly nights at the old tea room, and we gave out bundles of literacy games throughout lockdown. This organisation allows us to run events that may not work commercially, but are needed and valued, and allows us to search for funding.

Thanks to the NHS resilience fund, we’ve been awarded nearly £30,000 to run RPG groups and weekly games nights!

We’ll be releasing more information when we know about it, but we’ll be renting a town centre location large enough to run several games and events at a time. What’s really important is that by October, we’ll have regular gaming of all kinds running again!

New ‘Battle Academies’

New ‘Battle Academies’

Supporting Maths Through Gaming

We’re delighted to offer three different ‘Battle Academies’, for children and young people aged 6 to 14.

The aim of these clubs is to support school maths curricula, develop problem solving and strategic thinking, and promote social skills, within a friendly, fun, affirming atmosphere.

These clubs will appeal to two groups of children: those who loves maths, who can’t get enough of it, and thrive on being set extra challenges; and those who find maths tough, perhaps too abstract, and want some support disguised as playing games.

We summarise our aims in three words. We want children and young people to:

  • Learn – develop new maths skills, learn new games, create new strategies and tactics.
  • Challenge – members will be given a suitable level of challenge, gently challenging those who speed through maths, and supporting those who need more help.
  • Grow – socially, as well as academically, we support young people’s communication, leadership, and problem solving skills.

Sign Up – your first session is always a free taster session!

Small Group Tuition

Each group is run with a qualified teacher, and will include direct tuition on areas of development for each member of the club. These sessions will be personalised to the needs of the group, and include engaging and imaginative activities members will love! For children who love maths, this will offer tailored challenges to stretch their ability. For children who find maths tough, this will offer gentle support to bolster the work they complete through school.

Pokemon Trading Card Game/Magic: The Gathering

Pokemon is a perennial favourite amongst children, and Magic: The Gathering is the worlds most popular collectible card game, with an increased level of strategy for young people. Each week children will either learn their game, or spend 45 minutes playing other members in a league.

We use Pokemon partly because children love the game – but also because through playing children are making at least 40 calculations, mostly addition, subtraction, and simple multiplication. However these calculations are often simultaneous, putting demands on the player’s working memory. And these calculations are useful – by adding up and comparing multiple options they develop a strategy for how to play well. Although it’s possible to play the game without doing calculations in advance, players will be encouraged to think through their strategy and plan several turns ahead, according to their ability.

Magic: The Gathering is suitable for older players as it has more possibilities for deck building (creating the deck of cards that you play with). It moves beyond basic operations, and introduces concepts like algebra and algorithms. In the game, the player takes the role of a powerful magic-wielder (a Planeswalker), who summons creatures and casts spells in battle against another planeswalker. It’s the oldest, best known, and most popular collectible card game in the world!

Both games require an understanding of probability for deck building – they’re also both easy to differentiate, making this club suitable for children of all abilities who are looking for a challenge. For some children, practising calculations as they come to them will be a challenge; but for others we’ll encourage more advanced strategies.

Maths Games

Every week we’ll introduce new games that put maths into practise, drawn from our experience using tabletop games over the last seven years. Children will also have the opportunity to borrow games to take home and teach the family!

Details

Your child will receive:

  • Personalised, small group tuition in maths
  • Training in Pokemon or Magic: The Gathering
  • Entry into a league for their card game
  • Every 12 weeks children will get own deck and equipment to keep, worth over £20 for Pokemon and £40 for MTG.
  • A drink and healthy snack
  • Opportunity to build friendships and develop confidence in social situations
  • Games to loan

A typical session will look like:

  • 45 minutes: Pokemon/MTG League
  • 30 minutes: Personalised small group maths tuition
  • 45 minutes: Other maths games

Timings for each group:

  • Pokemon for Years 2-4 (ages 6-9), 10am – 12pm
  • Pokemon for Years 5-8 (ages 9-13), 12:30pm – 2:30pm
  • MTG for Years 7 – 9 (ages 11-14), 2:45pm – 4:45pm

Location: Hartlepower – A large white building next to The Causeway Pub: 81 Stranton, TS24 7QT

Costs:

Every child can try their first session, free!

If they enjoy it, you can pay in four or twelve week blocks. This club runs through most holidays, except Christmas.

  • Pokemon: from £9.50 per week (£39 for a block of four weeks; £114 for a full term of 12 weeks).
  • Magic: The Gathering: from £10.75 per week (£44 for a block of 4 weeks; £129 for a full term of 12 weeks).

Did you attend our Pokemon Summer Club? We have a special offer with 15% off!

Pokemon Summer Club

Pokemon Summer Club

We are delighted to offer, in conjunction with Hartlepool Borough Council, Pokemon themed holiday clubs across Hartlepool for four weeks over the summer holidays – and we need up to forty new members of staff to help!

Go on Poke-Walks with Pokemon Go, learn to play the Pokemon Trading Card Game, get creative with Pokemon crafts, and there’ll be all kinds of other games, fun, and, of course, a healthy lunch!

These clubs will be happening in different venues throughout Hartlepool, aimed at children aged 8 (i.e. end of year three) through to 11 (i.e. end of year 6), and we have free places available for children in Hartlepool!

More information will come soon – if you want to keep updated, and be the first to hear when registration opens, submit your email address here*:

Vacancies

We have positions for up to forty members of staff: up to five co-ordinators and 35 support workers. If you are looking to build experience of working with children, you are over 16, and can show dedication and enthusiasm, there are also opportunities for training and volunteering!

We will provide full training on Pokemon TCG, other games, and the curriculum for the club. We simply need people with experience of teaching or tutoring with primary aged children (for the coordinator positions) or experience of working with children (for the support workers).

This club is using the maths inherent in Pokemon (and other games) to develop children’s confidence in numeracy. We know that children’s schooling has suffered over the last 15 months, and the gap between the most and least disadvantaged children’s maths progress has increased by up to 24%. This club is aiming to be a fast-paced, fun-filled, Pokemon themed educational extravaganza – which gently promotes and practices maths skills with real-world (well, game-world) applications. To make the most of this opportunity to help disadvantaged children ‘catch up’, we are looking for people with experience of teaching maths to primary aged pupils – this may be teachers (qualified or working towards a qualification, with experience), tutors, or HLTAs with experience of classroom teaching to act as coordinators, or anyone with experience of working with children to act as support workers. We would also be delighted to train and support anyone with an interest in working with children, and offer volunteer placements.

You can now apply for these positions – more information here.

Please note: our safeguarding policy requires DBS checks and satisfactory references before working with children. If you are unwilling to undergo necessary checks, please do not apply.

*you will only be contacted about the Pokemon Club, this will not be used for any other purpose or passed on to any other organisation

15% off Thank You Sale!

15% off Thank You Sale!

We did it! We’ve now smashed 1500, thanks to all our Drax preorders ready to ship!

And as promised, we have a flash sale. 15% off all board games and miniatures, for 2 days only, if you spend £50!

That includes classics like Ticket to Ride, the best of this week’s new releases like Destinies, and kids games like Fossilis.

And it includes all D&D miniatures, Marvel Crisis Protocol, and Star Wars Legion!

Use the code ‘1500ThankYou’

T&Cs

What’s the offer? 15% off anything in the ‘board game‘ and ‘miniatures‘ categories.

How do I get the offer? Spend over £50 and use the code ‘1500ThankYou’ on the checkout page before 11:59pm, 16th June 2021.

What’s not included? Preorders and sale items.

Can I use this with other offers? Sorry, no, one voucher code at a time.

We reserve the right to end this promotion at any time.