Invented in 1974, the Rubik's Cube was released worldwide in 1980, and quickly took Canada, and my elementary school classroom, by storm. I remember many hours spent twisting and turning the colourful cube in my (futile) attempts to solve the puzzle. I eventually mastered the top level. And by 6th grade we'd mastered the art of popping off the middle white square to un-do the whole thing with a screwdriver and take it apart. Surefire way to get it all back in the right order!
The Cube has evolved over the years, and now there's a board game version. Rubik’s Race is a head-to-head Rubik’s Cube game where 2 players race to be the first to complete a set pattern on their board. The game comes with a shaker enclosing a 3x3 grid of colour-sided cubes. Give it a good shake to mix up the cubes, then get to work sliding your tiles to match the pattern displayed. Each player's board is a 4x4 grid, and the goal is to slide the tiles around until you create the displayed pattern in your middle 3x3 square. When you're done, you flip down the frame separating the two boards to announce your victory.
Little Boo and I had fun playing this game. The basic instructions are very straighforward, and there are options for other patterned play suggested as well. I did have to laugh when LB got a bit frustrated trying to make the pattern, and he picked up a couple of the tiles and manually jumped them elsewhere on the board. It so reminded me of me and my screwdriver back in the day!
The game is fast-paced (it is a race after all!) and so it is great for shorter attention spans. You can actually finish a game or 3 before your 5 or 6 year-old wants to move on to another activity. (If, you know, you have a child like my little darling.)
Rubik's Race is suggested for ages 5 and up, and it retails for $19.99. It would make a fun gift for a Rubik's Cube enthusiast, or really any kids who enjoy puzzles or fast-paced competition. You can get more information, and check out a video, on their website www.rubiksrace.com.
Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this game to facilitate my review. Based on our positive experience I chose to include it in my gift guide. All opinions on this blog remain my own.