Asmodee, 2008

How well do you know your history? Think you’re pretty good? Then this series of lightweight fast paced games might just be for you. Timeline is a small game with a little over 100 cards in each set, each card has two sides. One side says the event/item/idea, the other has the year that that event/item/idea happened or was created. Each player has 4 cards in front of them, date side down. On their turn, the player picks one of their cards and adds it into the timeline on the table. Once placed, the card is flipped to see if they were correct in their placement. If correct, play continues to the next person. If they were incorrect, they have to draw a new card and try again on their next turn.  Easy, right?

There are currently 7 different timeline sets: Inventions, Discoveries, Historical Events, Diversity, Music & Cinema, American History and Americana. These sets are easily mixed and matched because each set is color coded. The Small (5” square) tin has a color on the top right corner of the lid, which matches the color on the dates on the cards. So you can easily mix sets to make a bigger pool of cards with different subjects, and just as easily sort them into their individual sets when you are done.

This deceptively easy concept can be fiendishly hard as you try to remember if Friends premiered before or after Tiger Woods became the youngest Masters champ. (It was before) It can also be very easy: Friends premiered after the first Stetson hat was sold. (Both examples from the Americana set.)

The artwork on the cards is nice, and can help you (or not) as you try to decide where in the current timeline to put your card.

A minus on this game is that eventually, you may learn the dates on the cards enough that the game becomes too easy. Wait… A MINUS that you learn historical dates? Yes, this game could be used for the nefarious purpose of TEACHING kids (and adults) about historical events and times. AND it’s fun as well. So go buy this as a stocking stuffer for those middle grade kids. It’s priced right and you will be giving them something worthwhile and fun. And while you’re at it, check with your kids’ teacher and see if one of these sets would be good for their classroom as well. Great teacher gift! Highly Recommended.