I love nothing more than a good challenge. It’s the only type of game I play: word games and puzzles. Initially, I saw the GiiKER Smart Four as a little challenge similar to Connect Four. The tiered aspect gave me more of a challenge than I expected. Find out more in this GiiKER Smart Four review.
Configuring GiiKER Smart Four
Unpacking the GiiKER Smart Oven box, you won’t find much, but you don’t need anything more:
- Board Game
- Black and white tokens
- Charging cord
- Quick Start Guide
- User’s Guide
The game board needs to be loaded before using it, so this is the first thing you’ll want to do. A full charge takes approximately 90 minutes. Plug the USB-A end of the supplied cable into a charging brick (not supplied) and this USB-C end into the back of the game board. This will cause the center square to light up and flash.
To help you choose certain aspects of the game, you will need the Smart Fur app. The user manual provides a QR code which allows you to scan it to be transferred either to the Google Play Store or to the App Store for direct download. Click on the Bluetooth symbol at the top right of the app to connect the game board. Creating an account is not essential, but you will need it to play online battles with other Smart players Oven.
Playing with the GiiKER Smart Four
The GiiKER Smart Four allows you to play two different games: Connect Four and Lights Out. With Connect Four, you can either play a person with you physically, against the “Robot” or against a random Smart Four player. With Lights Out, you are the only player.
You can either launch and play without interacting with the app, or press “AI Master” on the app. Whether or not you do it via AI Master, long press the center square of the game board to turn it on. The Connect Four sets are on the left side and Lights Off is on the right. To play Connect Four against the Robot, choose Easy, Medium, or Hard with the first three squares lit on the left side or the bottom square for one-on-one mode with someone who is with you.
If you are playing a head-to-head battle, it doesn’t matter who goes first. You just have to choose both your chip colors: white or black. If you are playing Robot, choose your color and the Robot will let you know after choosing which game will move first.
If you are playing Robot, it flashes a square where it wants to play. You must put a token of its color on this square and press down. This prevents it from blinking. You are then free to put a chip of your color wherever you want. Again push down. This tells the Robot where you played and it’s his turn again. Play continues in this manner until there is a winner.
The goal of Connect Four is, of course, to get four tokens in a row. Where it gets tricky is that it can also be on different levels, as they can be stacked. The four can be across, down, diagonally, all on the same level, or even going up, like one down, the second level on the next square, etc.
This is where I would make up for it at the start. I would look at it in three dimensions when deciding where to play next. I just had to take my time and consider all the levels. This is also where it takes you and becomes compulsive.
You can also participate in an online battle against another Smart Four player. Tap Online Battle on the app and you will find a worthy opponent.
The app will tell you who’s the turn, and unlike playing Robot or one-on-one, there is a 30 second time limit for your turn. As with playing Robot, the board will light up a square where your opponent has played, and you must put a token on that square and press down. Frustratingly, sometimes the game froze and the other player was declared the winner. This only happened in online combat mode.
If you tap the trophy icon on the app, a ranking will be displayed. Below the trophy icon is a camera icon. If you tap on it, it will display videos of your game against your opponents so you can review your game and see where you went wrong… or right! You can also see the same on the games against the Robot if you played through AI Master.
Lights Out is a much less complex game, and there are no options for color pick, head-to-head, or online battle.
The board will light up a random set of squares, and your goal is to turn them all off. When you tap any square, the squares surrounding it turn off or light up, depending on its current state. This continues until all the lights are “off”.
GiiKER Smart Oven is available on Amazon for $ 79.99. As an electronic board game this is a fair price, but considering that there are certainly similar digital games without a physical board for much, much cheaper, the value can be reasonably questioned.
Play can be a great way for your child to spend some time brain training this summer. It is designed for ages 6 and up, but is also fun for adults too. If you like strategy games, they will keep you and your kids entertained.
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