Board games, tabletop games and card games are excellent fun, and we play them all on our family game nights. The playing of board games is excellent for some quality family time. But we also like to play games that educate as well as well as entertain. One such game that we have been enjoying playing is a maths game called Möbi. Möbi is a tabletop game that uses numbers and operations tiles to create basic maths equations, a game that puts basic maths skills to the test.
Möbi is an educational game that focuses on basic maths skills and having fun. It is a fun, fast-paced numerical tile game where young children can learn and apply basic maths skills whilst playing with their friends and family. Think Scrabble combined with Bananagrams just with numbers instead of letters.
Most games come in a box of sorts but Möbi is supplied in an extremely funky bag that looks like a blue whale.
In the zip-up whale pouch:
- 162 Tiles – number tiles, operation tiles and wildcard tiles
Möbi is a game for 1-6 players aged 6+. It is a quick-thinking numeracy game that puts maths skills to the test in a crossword pattern of mathematical equations. Whether you use simple or complex equations (rules of operation must be followed), to win you must be the first player to use up all their tiles once the tiles in the middle of the table have been used. And the equations you create must have the right answer!
With no board to play on, Möbi can be played anywhere – you just need a flat surface. That makes setting up to play very simple. All you need to do is unzip the whale, remove the tiles and place all the number tiles (blue tiles) face down in the centre of the playing surface and placing all the double-sided operation tiles within easy reach of the players. If playing with 2-4 players, each player takes 7 number tiles. If playing with 5-6 players, each player takes 5 number tiles. No player has any operation tiles, they are accessible to everybody and can be used when needed.
This isn’t a game of turn-taking, all players play at the same time. The idea is to build pods – a collection of equations that looks like a crossword puzzle. Players must build functioning equations with the correct answer with each equation having at least one operation sign (+, -, x or ÷) and an = sign, and the answer to be correct (e.g., 2+2=4, 2+2=3+1, 2+2=9-5 etc.). When building equations with more than one operation tile, the correct order of operations (BODMAS) must be followed – so 2+2×3 would equal 8, not 12. When a player has one tile remaining in their pile they shout out “Flip” resulting in All PLAYERS taking 3 more number tiles from the communal pile in the centre. If a player can’t use a number tile they can shout “SWAP” and change that number for TWO other tiles from the communal pile. Play continues until there are no tiles left in the communal pool and the winner will be the first player to use all of their tiles. The first player to use up all their tiles shouts out “MÖBI” bringing the game to a pause whilst their equations are checked – if all their sums are correct, they are the winner, if any sum is incorrect then they are disqualified, and their played tiles are placed back into the communal pool and play continues with the remaining players.
The above is the standard way to play Möbi but there are also five other fun ways to play, from solo play to team play, children to expert:
Möbi for Children: Want to make Möbi more kid-friendly? Remove the multiplication and division tiles from the game. In addition, feel free to take out the number ‘11’ and ‘12’ tiles if you wish. Follow traditional game play once these tiles are removed.
Möbi for Experts: Want to make Möbi more challenging? When ‘FLIP!’ is called, adjust the number of tiles picked up from THREE to ONE or TWO. This will ensure that with each ‘FLIP!’, all players must rearrange at least one of their existing equations.
Solo Möbi: Want to play by yourself? Challenge yourself to a time challenge. Start with 7 tiles and follow traditional game play. Take new tiles (‘FLIP!’) only once all your tiles have been used. Time yourself to see how fast you can complete your ‘Pod’! Feel free to remove a portion of the communal ‘number’ tiles to speed up the game if you wish.
Chill Möbi: Too much stress with all this ‘FLIP!’ and ‘SWAP!’ business? Try starting the game with all the ‘number’ tiles distributed equally among players. This way players don’t need to ‘FLIP!’ or ‘SWAP!’ throughout the game. Players compete to finish their ‘Pod’ first.
Team Möbi: Prefer to play in a pod of your own? Form teams of two or three. Each team takes 7 tiles. One player from each team starts the team’s ‘Pod’ upon ‘GO!’. Once the first ‘FLIP!’ is called, the second player from each team jumps in and takes over. If there is a third player, they take over after the second ‘FLIP!’ and the team cycles through turns until the game is complete. Note: Each team is only working on one ‘Pod’ throughout the entire game.
Overall, Möbi is an excellent fun game that helps to improve and reinforce basic maths skills – not just the basics of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division but also BODMAS. As a family we have loved it, despite the kids not wanting to do maths (once they started playing, they really got into it).
We love that it is a quick game to play (around 15-20 minutes) and that it can be played almost anywhere – with no board needed and the zip-up pouch it makes it extremely portable. No turn-taking and everybody playing at the same time speeds up the game and there are no arguments as to whose turn it is or who starts first.
The rules of the game are simple to understand with the game easily adapted for different age groups or skill levels. The number tiles range from 1 to 12, so you can’t make massive sums which does somewhat limit the equations you can make but makes it easier for children to work out the correct answers (although they may a calculator present just to check when answers are in dispute).
When playing as a family with a variety of age ranges, adult and more confident players may have to make some allowances for the youngest players as their maths skills might be at slower pace. You can easily adjust the rules to suit your family needs.
We loved playing Möbi. It really is a fun, fast and fantastically entertaining game. It is lots of fun when playing as a competitive game between family and friends and it is also excellent to use as a teaching tool or getting children to practice their maths skills.
An excellent addition to the game cupboard. A great game for family game nights.