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



Spring 2014 Games
Ages: 7 & Up
Manufacturer: Smart Toys and Games
Price: $19.99

Quadrillion is a solitaire logic puzzle that is great for beginners and lifelong logic-enthusiasts alike. To play, one snaps the four (double-sided) magnetic grids together in any arrangement and then attempts to fit all of the twelve puzzle pieces onto the game board. The puzzle pieces consist of rigid Tetris-like configurations of three, four, or five marbles that settle neatly (or often chaotically) into the wells on the board.

The game comes with a challenge booklet to get puzzle solvers off the ground. Even very young players should be able to manage the "Starter" puzzles, which, by means of pre-placing many of the pieces, help guide one's thinking to make advanced puzzles more accessible. When the sixty puzzles with solutions in the book are exhausted, there are still an effectively unlimited number of puzzles that can be created spontaneously; the designers promise that all puzzles are solvable, some more easily than others.

This game proved equally appealing to younger and older testers; our youngest found the dozen starter puzzles to be food for thought for several evenings of play, while older children could fly through the starter puzzles and found more challenge further on. If you have more than one child, you might need more than one game: competition for game time can get fierce! That is, until the puzzles get especially challenging -- then, suddenly, collaboration seems like the better option, and "solitaire" changes to "sibling-friendly."

Emily Crawford   ©2014 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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