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Game Review: The Genius Square

Disclosure: I received a complimentary game for review from Timberdoodle. All views expressed are my own. 

Did your mother ever make you play the Quiet Game when you were a kid? My mother did! More times than I can count.

Probably, our rowdiness was getting a little out of hand–there were five of us, after all–so, she’d so cheerfully suggest, “How ’bout we play the Quiet Game?” And we’d fall for it! Usually, not for very long, but we’d give it our best shot.

What? You don’t know about the Quiet Game? The rules are super simple. Everybody shuts up, and the first one to speak is out. The winner is whoever holds out the longest without talking. Doesn’t that sound like so much fun? The trick is getting kids to agree to play it.

As it happens, The Genius Square can be played totally without talking. It’s not a rule of the game, but it could be!

No, you don’t have to be a genius to play it. Nor do you have to be quiet, unless your mother says so.

You start by rolling the seven dice all at once. The dice indicate coordinates on the game board. You place a round marker on each square indicated by the dice.

The object is to then place the square pieces on the board in the remaining spaces.


That was easy! Let’s try another round.

I fit in the first six pieces. Can you see where the other pieces go? Boy, you’re good at this!

“But, wait, there’s more!! If you order within the next 10 minutes, you’ll receive TWO FOR THE PRICE OF ONE!!!”

(You like my over-enthusiastic yelling? Just like an infomercial, huh?)

You don’t really have to order within the next 10 minutes. The game actually comes with two game boards and enough pieces for two players. That’s where the real fun comes in: competing against a family member or friend. Who can fit in all the pieces the fastest?

Try adding the Quiet Game rule for even more competition! I dare you!

I love the quality of the game set. The playing pieces themselves are wooden, while the game board and dice are plastic. Everything fits together nicely in a compact little box.

The Genius Square is a game I’ll be keeping handy this summer to play on the front porch of an evening. Each round usually takes less than five minutes, and you can play any number of rounds.

It’s recommended for ages six and up and can be played by 1 or 2 players. Timberdoodle says, “The Genius Square is a STEM board game that promotes problem-solving, spatial awareness, logic, strategic planning, visual discrimination, motor manipulation skills, and concentration.” Way to sneak in a little extra summer learning!

Update, February 2024: Timberdoodle no longer carries The Genius Square. Instead, it’s been replaced with Genius Star. Same idea, different shape. Check it out!

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  • Kathryn

    With 7 kiddos here and it can often times be loud. I like the idea of playing the Genius Square quietly :). That’s a genius idea.

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