First up are three fine products from my friends at ThinkFun, the people who made Rush Hour and all its multiple sequels and variations.
This is a great little combination teaching tool and puzzler. It comes with 2 pawns, 2 bishops, 2 rooks, 2 knights, 1 king, and 1 queen, all in blue plastic. There are 60 puzzles on double-sided cards, each depicting a 4x4 chess board and the starting positions of certain pieces. The goal is to capture all the pieces so that only only 1 remains. I've already spent a bit of time with this, and I'm loving it. The early puzzles are pretty easy, but there are some real challenges here.
I haven't had a chance to test this one yet, but it looks promising. It's a game for 2-4 players in which you place tiles to complete shapes for points. Using four different Trango tiles, each player attempts to create a particular shape, while other either work on their own shapes or try to block.
Knot So Fast
This one is going to be a big hit at our Scout meetings. Seriously, if ThinkFun isn't heavily marketing this to the Boy Scouts of America, then they're missing a golden opportunity. The game comes with ropes, a scoring device, a timer, and 40 different knot-tying challenging. The game is a race to see who's the fastest at tying the knot shown on the card.