Thrift Treasure:  u-build Connect 4

Thrift Treasure: u-build Connect 4

If you haven’t figured it out by now, our family loves to play board games. We also love constructing things from sets of Legos, Lincoln Logs and K-Nex. This week’s Thrift Treasure combines both of these loves into one very engaging game and building experience: “u-build Connect 4” by Hasbro.

I’ll be honest, when I first saw the “u-build” line of games on the shelf of our local Target, I poo-poo’ed them for just being another attempt at rebranding an old classic and getting you to buy another copy of a game you already have. While there may still be some truth to that thought, the reality is (at least in this Connect 4 version) it creates a whole different game. But first, let’s look at what’s in the box.

Imagine having to build your board before you play a game! Crazy, right? Not so crazy with the u-build series, see it at“Some assembly required” is an understatement, but is also the exact reason to purchase one of these. In every other game out there you open the box, distribute the required pieces to each player, lay out the board and then play. Not so with the “u-build” line. Before you can think of playing you must build your game board!

Imagine having to build your board before you play a game! Crazy, right? Not so crazy with the u-build series, see it at SahmReviews.comThe instructions are very clear and was easily followed by our 9 & 11-yr olds. It took them around an hour to completely assemble the entire game, and once complete were raring to get to it!

Imagine having to build your board before you play a game! Crazy, right? Not so crazy with the u-build series, see it at SahmReviews.comWhat makes this variation of the Connect 4 that you know is the addition of random obstacles that alter the path of your dropped piece. Imagine Connect 4 crossed with Pachinko.

I rarely play Connect 4 with my daughters because it is such a strategy game that it becomes unfair to them (and heck if I’m going to sluff off or throw a game!). With the “u-build” version, since your chips fall somewhat randomly, lining up four in a row is more left to chance than skill – evening the playing field for players of different abilities.

Imagine having to build your board before you play a game! Crazy, right? Not so crazy with the u-build series, see it at SahmReviews.comI’m surprised this game wasn’t rated higher on Amazon, but in looking at the comments you can see a number of frustrated adults – and this isn’t who the game is designed for. Let the kids build it themselves, even if they get frustrated. The box is large enough to house the game once assembled so you don’t have to build it each time. The kids should pick up a lot of ideas about gravity, angles, etc. by taking the time to construct it on their own.

Check out Hasbro’s other “u-build” offerings and see what they’re up to by following them on Twitter. Can you imagine a “u-build Twister”?!

Scott Brady

About Scott Brady

A former manufacturing executive, Scott now balances his family life with ownership and backend administration of websites such as, and a number of other online properties. He also is an award-winning board game designer with notable titles such as Hues and Cues and boop.

49 comments on «Thrift Treasure: u-build Connect 4»

  1. Cyndie Norell says:

    I love this game. I also like that all the pieces can be stored in one unit.

  2. This is such an exciting game, my little ones would love it! We also play Lego (as in they play Lego) a lot, they love building (and then destroying) things.

  3. Lisa Jones says:

    This Looks Like Such A Cool Game I Bet My Kids Would Enjoy Thank You

  4. I’ve never heard of this version of Connect Four! I wonder if my kids would be interested in it.

  5. LydiaF says:

    My brother and sister and I would have loved this game. As would my nephews. Good find!

  6. Trisha says:

    This looks like so much fun! I love the original connect for but this looks like it adds a bit of a real challenge!

  7. I remember an easier more basic connect game from my youth.
    Glad we can still relate with easy fun game boards despite all the technology

  8. Wow, I remember playing Connect 4 when I was a kid. It has certainly come a long way now that you can build your own game board using legos.

  9. Dawn Lopez says:

    Wow, this looks like a seriously fun game! Connect 4 was always my favorite growing up, I need to grab one of these. Sounds like game night in the making!

  10. Heather says:

    I used to love connect 4 as a kid and absolutely loved legos. Sounds like the best of both worlds!

  11. This looks like a fun re-make of the game. My youngest will probably like it when he is a bit older. I think it is funny about the reviews from the parents, sometimes we forget who the games are for!

  12. I didn’t even know they made anything like this, but now I want to run out and get one for my boys. They love building things and Connect 4 is one of their favorite games, so this would go over big.

  13. Terry says:

    This kind of reminds me of slinko, only different. I rememeber the Connect 4 from years ago but never played it. How fun for your Daughters that you play games with them

  14. I remember playing this back in the 80s when I was a kid, Loved it! So I was thrilled to get it for my children as well. A fave in our home! (Kim)

  15. What a blast from the pat with this game! I love the updated version and building it is part of the experience!

  16. I loved Connect 4! I think it’s neat that you build the game!

  17. Oh how fun! I have a whole collection of old board games to play when I have company over!

  18. Roechelle says:

    I am sure my daughter would love this version of Connect 4.

  19. susan says:

    I have never played this version, I have played the classic version it is a lot of fun, and this looks like a great twist on the game.

  20. My kids would absolutely LOVE this game! We have played Connect Four at home but with the Build it feature, it makes it so much more fun for them.

  21. That game looks so fun. I bet my family game night would be more interesting with this game floating around. Love that you found it at a thrift store.

  22. Jhady says:

    My kids will enjoy this game, they love their creativity being challenge. Although they haven’t played connect before but I am pretty sure they can easily learn this game.

  23. Pam says:

    I used to love Connect Four. It’s a really fun game, I bet this version would be nice too.

  24. Veronica says:

    Looks like a fun and exciting game. Kids will love this

  25. Amanda @ Erickson & Co. says:

    This looks like a super fun twist to a classic game. I love playing board games and when my kids get older, I will get more. Thanks for sharing.

  26. becca says:

    wow what a cool version of connect four. I use to play connect four all the time as a kind.

  27. I love it, I haven’t thought about connect 4 in years now I really want to have a game 🙂 x

  28. This looks like fun! What a neat variation on Connect 4! (Which I haven’t played in years…)

  29. This would certainly make Connect 4 more interesting! My too cool for board games kids would love this!

  30. I used to play connect 4 all the time! I loved it. I will have to check this one out for my girls, it sounds fun

  31. Pam says:

    Now this is one game that I have heard of before and my kids played when they were younger. They had lots of fun with it too.

  32. Kristen says:

    I LOVE connect four! I used to play ALL the time when I was a kid! ( 20 years ago). Nice to know you can still find it!

  33. I haven’t played this in years!! I should get one for my son I’m sure he would love it!

  34. This is awesome and interactive for the young ones.

  35. Rosey says:

    Gah, I agree some changes are almost silly, but this one looks exciting! I KNOW my son would love it, and I bet my daughter would too. I may pick one of these up!

  36. Jenna Em says:

    Interesting twist to build the game and then play it! Looks like lots of fun!

  37. Angelica says:

    Great review, I’ll have to show this to my sister who has kids.

  38. Woah.. you just blew my mind. I love Connect 4 while growing up! I had no idea there was a new version!

  39. I love connect 4! Simple, but fun.

  40. This version looks really neat. We love board games too!

  41. Toni says:

    That was a great find! My kids and I all love Connect 4, it’s such a fun game.

  42. This looks like a fun game. My kids would love it.

  43. What a fun modification of a classic game – takes a game I already love to a new level – must try it out!

  44. Mommy2jam says:

    This is so cool, I really like how you get to build this. My boys would enjoy this, they love games like this.

  45. Mommy2jam says:

    This is so cool, talk about a hands on game, LOL! My boys would enjoy this especially since they would have to put it together. I will have to get this for them. Thanks for sharing

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