Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978



Fall 2010 Games
Ages: 6 & Up
Manufacturer: Hasbro Games
Price: $19.99

U-Build CONNECT FOUR is traditional Connect Four with a little bit of Plinko mixed in, all on a game board constructed from LEGO-like pieces. Children had fun assembling the playing area, a system of ramps leading to seven chutes with a movable bumper at the top of each chute. Players drop checkers from any of the adjustable ramps into the grid, positioning the bumper to deflect their checker pieces into (they hope) the correct column. The Plinko-like dropping of the checkers adds an element of randomness (or finesse, for more skilled players!) to the classic strategy-based goal of lining up four checkers of the same color. Older players still have the advantage (in both strategy and checker-placing skill) over younger ones, but even young players can grasp the simple concept, and the luck factor means they now have a fighting chance. Kids had fun playing the game again and again, and when they finished they built towers of checkers in patterns - just like the classic game.

Emily Crawford   ©2010 Parents' Choice
Emily holds a BSE in electrical engineering and computer science from Duke University and a Master's in computer engineering from Georgia Tech. She is a homeschooling parent and lives with her husband, three children, five cats, and thousands of LEGOs in Blacksburg, Virginia.

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