“Katamino” is not a new game, but if you do not have a copy on your game shelf, you should order one right away. “Katamino” is a high quality educational puzzle game that includes 20 wooden pieces, a game board, a wooden slider and a spiral bound set of rules with challenges ranging from simple to a near genius level. Twelve of the wooden pieces are pentaminos, which are actually 5 juxtaposed squares, with each square measuring about ¾”. Each of the pentaminos is of a different shape and can be turned in any direction. The remaining eight wooden pieces are smaller singular and double size squares.
Generally, “Katamino” is a one-player game, although the rules do explain a couple of two-player challenges, including some 3D shape building. The object of the one-player game is to complete one or more of the puzzle challenges using 3 or more of the pentaminos. The game board uses a wooden slider to expand or contract the puzzle area depending on the number of pentaminos involved. A winning challenge is called a Penta, which consists of multiple pentaminos that fit perfectly in the space provided on the game board and are bordered by the wooden slider. “Katamino” can be played by children as young as 3 years old on up to adults.
A very simple challenge might be completed in just a minute or two, while the ultra difficult ones will take far longer. The Penta labeled “Super Slam” are among the hardest and actually requires placement of up to 11 pentaminos to complete a challenge. Playing “Katamino” is an extremely entertaining experience, and one that is also a staple in many school classrooms across the country. “Katamino” teaches students geometric shapes and strengthens their reasoning skills. But most of all this is simply a very fun game experience.