By now you know that board games are the reason we make regular trips to the thrift stores. We’re always on the hunt for good (and bad) games at discount prices. There are so many different that many we find have never even been written about before! Unless you’re brand new to SahmReviews, you also know we enjoy hunting for puzzles.
Usually we’re looking for puzzles of the jigsaw kind. We really scored with a full collection of Wentworth Puzzles that we’ll hand down to our grandchildren someday. Any time we run across round puzzles, which were all the rage 40+ years ago, we make sure to grab them. We’ve even picked up metal horseshoe puzzles and gotten very good at solving them quickly.
This week we found a puzzle of a different kind. Made by ThinkFun, known for their single-player puzzle games which get harder as you progress through the challenges, Color Cube Sudoku is one I saw on the shelves at Christmas last year and almost bought it for myself. Thank goodness I waited, because this copy only set us back $2.88!
Unlike the other examples by ThinkFun, Color Cube Sudoku doesn’t have challenges or difficulty levels. It is a one-off puzzle that asks you to arrange nine colorful blocks into a 3×3 grid. Each block hosts four of the six colors present with each side having them in a different configuration.
You are trying to place them so they create a final pattern much like that of a game of Sudoku. If you recall, in Sudoku you cannot have the same number twice in a column or row. The same goes for Color Cube Sudoku – a color may only be present once in a row or column.
I’m sure you’re thinking that it sounds easy. Believe it or not, there are over 2,000,000,000,000 (two trillion) possible block combinations. Fortunately, there are also over 500,000 possible solutions and you only have to find one!
We put the puzzle in front of our resident puzzle savant and she made quick work of it. She was able to solve it in under 10 minutes the first time and only needed a few more minutes to find a different solution. It was then she saw a pattern for solving the game, sorting the blocks ahead of time by included colors. Utilizing this method, she averaged under three minutes for each subsequent attempt.
Even with her being able to solve it easily, we don’t believe this would be typical. If you like Sudoku puzzles or are a fan of ThinkFun’s other titles, this would be a different title for your collection. With it being in mass-market, I’m sure you’ll start to see more pop up at thrift and the inventory count is very easy. Just make sure there are nine blocks and the board to hold them! Alternately, you can find new copies on Amazon for under $20.
What type of puzzles do you like?