We don’t just sell games. We want to help people play better and more often. As part of this mission, we created our own proprietary Caliber Rating System. The “CRS” analyzes five key attributes of game products to help customers find products that best fit the unique needs of their family or friend group.
The Caliber Rating System assigns a 1-5 rating, which is an average of 1-5 ratings for each of the following categories:
- Setup and Portability
See the example rating below:
Each of these qualities can add value and potential enjoyment for our customers. Of course, these aren’t the only facets of a game’s benefits, but they offer a helpful guide for our aim to offer high-quality games that are accessible for different play scenarios.
It’s worth noting low scores in any of these individual categories don’t necessarily mean the game is “bad.” For example, an expensive product may score low in the price category, but have high ratings in durability, gameplay, or setup/portability. For families looking to invest in a higher-grade product, a high price tag may be well worth it.
Whatever your needs, our Caliber Ratings content will provide valuable insights that can guide your choices to find the best game for you and your group. You can watch videos and see how we’ve rated game products here. Or, to learn more about how we assign scores for each rating category, read on…
Setup & Portability
For the Setup rating, we consider the ease of any necessary installation, play area setup, breakdown, and transportability. We ask questions like, How much assembly is required? Is it easy to pack up, pick up, and move around? Are the pieces complicated or difficult to keep together?
In our reviews, we also often discuss the packaging and product unboxing experience. Though these factors don’t necessarily weigh into our rating, it’s important to know how easy and enjoyable it is to unbox a new game, especially if you’re considering giving it as a gift.
Here’s the general guide for how we give ratings for yard game Setup and Portability:
- Not portable and involves strenuous setup
- Not easily portable, involves a difficult setup/breakdown routine
- Portable but bulky, heavy, or otherwise complicated setup/assembly
- Portable but requires some degree of setup/breakdown
- Easy Portability and storage with minimal setup
The gameplay rating summarizes how easy it is to teach the game and start playing. Our philosophy is that the best games are inviting and simple, not intimidating and complicated. A perfect game is accessible to different levels of age, fitness, and athleticism rather than limited to high-level athletes. It should also have intuitive, straight-forward rules that are easy to learn, even for new players. Here’s how we break down our scoring rubric:
- Highly strenuous activity and complicated to learn
- Requires breaking a sweat to play OR a steep learning curve
- Requires mild physical activity OR has a mild learning curve
- Easy to play but requires a little practice or skill to be competitive
- Almost anyone can learn fast and start competing
Yard games tend to get put through the ringer… Whether they’re withstanding harsh weather conditions, rowdy kids, or a clumsy part foul, the best games should be heavy duty enough to take a beating and stay playable. Especially if a yard game is a big monetary investment, you’ll want some assurance it will last longer than the first little accident that occurs. To us, a five-star in durability means that the game should survive any normal gameplay and come with a lifetime warranty:
- Easily breakable
- Possible to break during normal gameplay
- Materials will likely wear down and break over time
- Very unlikely to break during normal use
- Nearly impossible to break in normal use + Lifetime warranty
As a family business, we believe the best value game can provide is to bring the whole family together. The ultimate family-friendly game is one that can facilitate both intense adult competition as well as safe, engaging fun for children. To achieve at least a 3 family-friendly rating, games must be safe for children with minimal supervision. A perfect score in this category is a game that’s able to be enjoyed safely by all ages:
- Dangerous/Inappropriate for small children
- Only safe for kids with close supervision
- Safe for kids over 5 with minimal supervision, though not necessarily age appropriate
- Enjoyable and safe for kids but targeted more towards either adult or child age groups
- Safe and fun for all ages!
Our final category is price. We pay attention to the price because, while we believe in investing in high-quality products, we know budget is a major factor for most families, especially when trying a new game for the first time. We aim to offer games that can fit a variety of financial constraints, whether you’re on a tight budget or want to invest more in a high-grade game that could last a lifetime. Our price rating is pretty straightforward, with optimally-priced products being listed at under $50:
- Under $250
- Under $200
- Under $100
- Under $50
The Bottom Line
Thanks for your interest in the Caliber Rating System. We look forward to continuing to expand our game catalog and helpful content that can help your family and friends have more fun playing together. If you have any questions or feedback about how we rate products, feel free to send us a chat here, or a support a message here. Or to explore Caliber Ratings for real products, click below!
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