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Denver, CO (July 20, 2012) – Toy competitions typically have a long list of must-haves to be considered the best in their crowded field of play things. One toy maker created a no brainer moment for judges of this summer’s Tillywig Awards as they searched for exciting products that energize the mind while seamlessly blending fun and learning. They uncovered not one but three great card games — Array, CUBU and Spectrix — and granted Funnybone Toys three (!) 2012 Summer Brain Child Award.

Judges happily worded their reviews with phrases like “gets your mind moving” and “full-brain workout.” That’s exactly what Funnybone Toys’ creators hoped for when they launched each of the three card games at the start of this year. Beyond brainy, these cards are truly beautiful with colors, hues and play patterns that could be shown in a museum. In fact, the Denver Art Museum has just created an exhibit dedicated to Funnybone Toys’ design team leader. And the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City and the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C. recently added the games to their museum shop shelves, just two of dozens of major museum shops, nationwide, to feature the Funnybone Toys line.

For the perfect entertainment with friends and family this summer, look no further than these award winners. Here’s how the Tillywig judges described each of these fun and stimulating games:

ARRAY • Ages 8 and up • $14.99
2012 Summer Tillywig Brain Child Award
The language of Array is color and connection, but its defining characteristic is the way it gets your mind moving, assessing possibilities and weighing options. There are often several choices available on any given turn. Unless you are able to see and play them through in your mind, you are liable to make the poorer ones. Array is played in quick-moving rounds, with players placing multi-colored cards from their hands next to ones on the table whose colors match at the point of contact. This is called a Splice. Players can also do a Slice and Splice, breaking apart an existing connection and then building on the two severed cards. The goal is to be the first player to rid your hand of cards, ending the round with cards left in other players’ hands counting against them. There are also special Splatter and Slam cards that can be used to put other players at a disadvantage. The beauty of Array is that the sometimes intricate thought processes that come into play unfold naturally and pleasurably, kicking your mind into high gear in the service of fun and games!

CUBU • Ages 8 and up • $14.99
2012 Summer Tillywig Brain Child Award
Playing CUBU is like thinking in several languages at once, albeit ones in which we’re firmly grounded from a young age – size, color, position, and direction. It certainly gets your brain moving, requiring players to create sequences by adding cards from their hands to ones already in play. Each CUBU card contains multiple rectangles of varying size and color, nested within one another like Russian dolls. Players take turns creating sequences using the color and position of any rectangle they choose as a starting point. You score points by being first to rid your hand of cards, so the trick is in choosing the one that will allow you to play the most cards. For example, if you see that the 3rd rectangle from the center is red, you could either play a card from your hand that has a red rectangle 2nd from center or one with red 4th from center. Inspect your entire hand to see which direction would be a better choice, since you can’t change direction in the middle of a turn. The deck also contains action cards that throw curve balls and can wreak havoc on players’ progress. You can also play SPEED CUBU, a faster free-for-all in which players race head-to-head instead of taking turns. Either way, you’re in for thrilling competition and a full-brain workout!

Spectrix • Ages 8 and up • $14.99
2012 Summer Tillywig Brain Child Award
Spectrix is a quick-moving, easy-to-learn game that gets your mind working in new and different ways. The Spectrix deck contains 96 cards, each of which is a single color on the playing side, with 12 different colors in the deck. Everyone is dealt a hand, and the goal is to be the first player to get rid of all your cards. On your turn, you can place combinations face up on the table consisting of 3 or more cards of the same color or 3 or more cards containing consecutive colors (based on the color spectrum found on a special guide card). You can also use cards by adding to existing combinations on the table. Or, and this is where real skill comes in, you can reorganize any and all of the current cards on the table to form new combinations that help you play cards from your hand. For example, you could break up several sets of matching colors and reorganize them into valid color sequences, or vice versa – whichever helps get the most cards out of your hand. This is where your thinking cap really comes in handy. Your ability to survey the table, to see and weigh the possibilities in your mind, can win you the game. Whether you’re dabbling for the sheer fun of it, or on your way to becoming a Spectrix master, Spectrix will keep your mind sharp and engaged, open to a world of possibilities!

This is not the first time all of the games were recognized by one industry competition. All three card games won a Creative Child magazine nod in their annual Family Card Games – Stimulation Creativity Category. Honors included Array™ being named 2012 Game of the Year Award winner; CUBU™ called 2012 Preferred Choice Award winner and Spectrix™ also earned a 2012 Preferred Choice Award. Additionally, Father’s Day 2012 Mr. Seal of Approval and GreatDad Recommends bestowed their award to thought-provoking Array card game.