And so it was with eager anticipation that young Nick Witton excitedly ripped open the parcel on Christmas morning.
"But Mum, I wanted that cute platformer with the big guns and little men".
"No son, you are going to learn how to play Chinese Chess today, Bridge tomorrow and Othello by Tuesday week".
Also included in this package is the 'game' of the moment, Chess. Budding Nigel Short's across the country are busy getting up at four in the morning and practising their skills. The once sneered-upon school chess club is now a hive of lunchtime activity. Kids straining in the queue at the door, desperate to become the next Grandmaster.
"Bags I Nigel Short," is an oft heard cry at the start of the match. Other favourites include Backgammon, Draughts (also known as Checkers, because the Prime Minister plays it at weekends, apparently) and Bridge.
This is a solid enough package, nicely presented and with two-player options. And it still cannot win a game of 4-in-a-line. Not that I was trying of course. Damn.