You would be forgiven for thinking Catch the Moon was the next game in the really-quite-excellent Little Prince line of kids-games-that-aren’t-really-for-kids (much like the book itself), but despite the evocative box art and title Catch the Moon is its own little universe.
It belongs to the same genre as games like Jenga and Rhino Hero, where you’re trying not to be the person who brings the whole thing crashing to the ground. In this case, the structure you and up to five others are building is made of wonky, delicate, laser-cut wooden ladders. They’re perhaps a little too delicate--I would warn everyone ahead of time.
Two special straight ladders begin the structure lodged into the cloud-shaped base--there are several different configurations to choose from. The rest of them are not identical, and you pick one at random to add on. The roll of a die tells you whether your ladder must touch (exactly) one or two others, or instead make one end of your piece the highest point in the structure.
Fail in your quest and you must take one of seven “tears of the moon” tokens. When all seven are gone the game ends, and the player who had to take the last tear is eliminated (a rule I would ignore when playing with young children) and the remaining player with the least tears wins.
Catch the Moon is what it is: a simple push-your-luck building-stacking game. There are some tips on the last two pages of the rules to if your group is a little spatially-challenged. With players of exceptional ability, though, the ladder structures can become quite beautiful and surreal, like something out of an Escher print, luring passers-by to your table asking “what’s that game?” Start a new round with them and make new friends! And click here to order your copy.