There are 18 transparent squares – nicely sized (more than 3 inches square), clear, and sturdy. A different, solid colored, geometric shape is printed on each square. There’s a tray for stacking the squares you are using to solve the puzzle. And there’s a spiral-bound booklet showing 100 different puzzles, of one of four different levels of difficulty (starter, junior, expert, and master). And yes, the solutions are compassionately included at the end of the booklet.
In each puzzle, you must first select which tiles you think you will need to solve the puzzle. And then figure out which way each tile should be positioned (they are square, so there are four different orientations), and in what sequence. The sequence part is frequently the killer to speak, because the art (and much of the delight) of solving each puzzle comes from figuring out how to use tiles to cover or reveal parts of the tiles below.
Designed by Kris Burm, and originally produced in Belgium, Color Code will engage your eye and mind in many, many hours of sometimes excruciating and often surprisingly delightful puzzling. Kids will probably cheat (look at the answers) a lot. Don’t let that worry you. They’ll still get a lot out of the puzzle, and, eventually, master it sufficiently to discover that the puzzles are more fun when you save the cheating for the very end.
Color Code is the second of the Smart Games collection to have received a Major Fun award. Well-made. Easy to understand. Inviting for even a five-year-old. Challenging to the grandparents of that five-year-old. Durable. Colorful. Unusual. Major, like we said, Fun.