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Research >> HappyGiftsForKids >> Jenga for kids >> What are the official rules of Jenga? >> In Jenga, can you take from the top or bottom?
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In Jenga, can you take from the top or bottom?

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Jenga is very popular because it has its unique charm that could get very addicting. Each game would always be different and unpredictable. Part of Jenga's charm is its simplicity. You just need the wooden blocks to play it.

But even this simple game can teach us a lot about a lot of things from gravity, to building it, to concentration, technique and the right strategy that would work for you.

Every single turn could be nerve-wracking for you if you don’t know where to push and remove the blocks.

What blocks should you take then?

It’s common knowledge that the Jenga blocks are not 100% uniform. Some come in slightly smaller or slightly larger than others. Allegedly, the weight of the tower is not usually even across a row.

It follows that the middle blocks are slightly larger so the sides would tend to be loose because of this. On the other hand, if the middle block is slightly smaller, then it alone will be loose.

Here are the best moves that you can make.

  • Never remove from the bottom because it would make the rest of the tower unstable at once.
  • Jenga’s rules only allow you to take blocks from below a completed row, so the top is off-limits. That would give you exactly three blocks to choose from, all of which are in the second row from the top.
  • You should poke around the middle rows to figure out which one is the best to remove. If the sides are loose then you could take one of them ad likewise if the middle is loose, then you could remove it.
  • As a player, you should also think ahead. In your every move, you should anticipate how your opponent would retaliate from your move.
  • When you take the blocks in the loose middle your opponent would have a harder time picking their next move. There could be no blocks that can be removed in isolation without crumbling the tower.
  • A game gets complicated if the side blocks are loose. If you remove a loose side block your opponent most likely would follow it up by removing the side block remaining. When it’s your turn again, the new top row will still only have two blocks on it. This means you will be forced a nearly impossible task. You might lose here.

The safest moves in the game are to remove all the loose middle blocks as much as possible. After all, you’re only allowed to get below a completed row, and it’s a no-no to get from the bottom of the tower because it would make the tower very unstable.

After Thoughts

People are born with a survival instinct and an intuition that could help them win in Jenga together with their skills and strategy.  At first, it could be a hit and miss turn for you but as you play Jenga, you’ll develop your feel for the game.

Along the way and with a lot of practice you will eventually learn that you need to concentrate on your moves and there's not much strategy to Jenga; it's more about steady hands, dexterity, and being able to tell which blocks are loose!

Click the link for the classic Jenga game on Amazon.


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