When board game enthusiasts think about their favorite childhood activities, playing Connect Four games often tops the list. Want to play Connect Four with your own children or with relatives and friends? Learn more about this fun kids' game.
What Is Connect Four?
Game company Milton Bradley began selling Connect Four in 1974, and it quickly caught on. Also called "The Captain's Mistress," the two-player game uses two colors of checkers, which the players drop into spaces in the vertical game board. The object of the game is to connect four of your own color of checkers before your opponent. Rows of four can be made horizontally, vertically, or diagonally.
Game play typically takes about ten minutes, and the game is best for children over the age of six. Because of the strategy involved, this game can be fun for adults too!
Alternative Connect Four Games
Besides the original method of game play, you can play other fun games with the Connect Four board and checkers. Looking for a new way to play? Check out some of these alternatives:
- Pop Ten: To get started, players take turns filling the bottom row with their opponent's color of checkers. When the bottom row is full, they move on to the second row and continue until the entire game board is full. Then players alternate turns, each removing his or her own color of checkers from the bottom of the game board and placing it in the top. If a player removes a checker that is part of a string of four, that checker is placed aside. The player then takes another turn. When one player has accumulated ten checkers, that player wins.
- Connect Three: Just as the name implies, this version of Connect Four is far simpler than the original. Instead of connecting four checkers, players simply need to form a string of three pieces. This is a perfect variation if you are playing the game with a younger child, since game play goes more quickly.
- Pop Out: In this version of Connect Four, players take turns placing their own pieces in the slots. This is like traditional Connect Four, except instead of placing a piece in the top, a player can choose to pop his or her own checker out of the bottom. Removing checkers from the bottom gives the board a different alignment, providing another chance for the player to connect four checkers.
Where to Buy Connect Four
Connect Four is an immensely popular game and is still being produced. Since the name is not proprietary to the well-known Milton Bradley version, you can actually buy Connect Four games from many different manufacturers. There are wooden versions, travel versions, and even variations featuring cartoon characters like Spongebob Squarepants.Feel nostalgic for the Connect Four of your childhood? Be sure to look for vintage versions on auction sites like eBay. However, if you plan to play one of the variations that involves popping checkers out of the bottom of the board, keep in mind that only new versions of the game allow this activity.
If you're interested in buying a new Connect Four game online, you can find some great options at the following websites: