“Ubongo! The Brain Game To Go” is a new puzzle game from Thames and Kosmos. This solo version is based on the extremely popular Ubongo! board game which has sold over 5,000,000 copies worldwide. This version of Ubongo is a Single Player Travel Brain Game.
Ubongo! is like a puzzle version of Tetris. You are given a puzzle card plus a few polyomino pieces, and you are asked to fit all the pieces within the puzzle perfectly. The game is slow-paced, and easy-to-learn.
What’s in the Box?
This version of Ubongo is packed into a small travel-sized box that is 3.5″ x 5.5″ x 1″.
The box contains:
- 20 Puzzle cards (these puzzle cards are numbered, and colored)
- 15 plastic tiles (polyomino tiles)
- 1 Plastic Case (with lid and drawer)
- 1 Rulebook (with rules and puzzle answers!)
And everything fits inside the travel case.
The 20 puzzle cards are two sided with an A side and B side. There are 5 puzzles on each side, for a total of 200 puzzles. There are 4 difficulty levels:
- Green Cards are Easy – 3 piece puzzles
- Yellow Cards are Easy to Medium – 4 piece puzzles
- Orange Cards are Medium to Hard – 5 piece puzzles
- and Red Cards are Hard – 6 piece puzzles
The case is very cool and unique. The cards are in the top of the case, and the puzzle pieces are located in a pull out drawer at the bottom of the case. The pieces have dimples on them – similar to golf ball dimples. The top of the is clear plastic, and has raised bumps to hold puzzle pieces in play as you try to solve the puzzles.
How does Ubongo! play?
This version of Ubongo is not competitive. You simply solve the puzzles at your leisure.
First you open the case and pick a card to play. Each card has 5 puzzles on it. So you might decide to do puzzle 1 first. We’re going to use Puzzle 1A as an example, and do the first puzzle on the card. You take the 1A Puzzle card and put it on the top of the stack and close the lid. Then you open the drawer and take the 3 tiles for Puzzle #1. This puzzle wants you to take the 2 of the purple tiles and 1 of the green tiles shown.
Now you take your time, and try to make these 3 tiles fit exactly into the white pattern shown. You can flip and twist and turn the tiles anyway you want.
After you do puzzle #1 on the card, you can move on to #2 on the card. There are 200 puzzles to solve. And if you are having any trouble, all answers are included in the rulebook.
Likes, Dislikes and Final Thoughts for “Ubongo: The Brain Game to Go”
- Easy to learn – This game is extremely easy to learn. Young family members and old family members alike will pick up the gist of the game very quickly.
- Awesome Travel Case – I love this case. The drawer slides well. And I love how the dimples in the puzzle tiles, and and pimples in the case cover fit together to keep things from sliding around.
- Travel friendly – As the game is only 3.5″ x 5.5″, it fits easily in travel bags. It’s perfect to take along on vacations.
- Works that brain of yours – There is very little luck involved in solving the puzzles. Your brain must figure out the right way to insert, flip, rotate and connect the pieces.
- Good Rulebook – The rulebook is 12 pages, in full color, and explains the game very well. And the rulebook also has the answers if you really get stuck on a puzzle.
I wish there were check boxes on the puzzle cards where you could mark the puzzles you have solved solved. My wife and I have decided to mark the puzzle cards we have solved on the cards with different colored markers.
Ubongo: The Brain Game to Go is an easy game to recommend. We absolutely love the case design. The game retails for $14.95 which is reasonable as well.
My wife loves a puzzler called Rush Hour. Rush Hour is a puzzle game with sliding cars stuck in a traffic game, and you solve the puzzle by getting a Yellow Taxi out of a traffic jam. Ubongo: The Brain Game to Go game reminds me of Rush Hour. In both games you try to solve a physical puzzle with your brain, and you can take as much time as you need. No one is going to tell you that you are taking too long.
The puzzles increase in difficulty as you get better at the game. And if you get stuck, you can sneak a peak at the answer guide. Or ask someone to look at the guide for you and tell you where one of the pieces is supposed to fit. 😉