(Tower Puzzle)

Translated by Mark Green (Probably)
Distributed from The Rules Bank by Mike Siggins

A gripping word game with 4 variations for 2-8 players or teams, aged 8-99.


Object of the Game

A tower puzzle consists of counters of different colours stacked on top of each other. Each colour represents certain letters. When read from top to bottom, the tower makes up a word which the players must discover by cracking the colour code.


Each player receives a colour code card showing which colours stand for which letters. (Certain letters, not commonly used in German, do not appear on the card. Nor, surprisingly, does the letter 'J' which is quite common. It is suggested that you add the letters J, Q, X and Y to the cards or, alternatively, agree not to use words including these letters.)

A pencil and paper are needed for scoring.

The players agree whether to use words of 3, 4, 5 or 6 letters. The more letters, the more difficult the game becomes.

Course of the Game

The player whose name starts first in the alphabet beg,ins the game. He secretly thinks of a word, e.g. BEAM. Now he builds a tower, reading from top to bottom, by using colours in accordance with his code card. In this example, GREEN, YELLOW, GREEN, BLUE.

The other players now all look at the tower and try to name a valid word. A word is valid if it can be formed by the tower's colours in the right order. In this case, for instance, the word BEAK would also be correct. The first player to call out a valid word receives one point. It is then the next player's turn to build a tower.

If no player finds a valid solution within an agreed time (e.g. I minute), the puzzle setter names his word and receives one point himself.

End of the Game

The first player to obtain 5 points wins the game.


Two players compete against one another by each, at the same time, building a concealed tower behind one of their hands. The towers are revealed simultaneously and the first to find a word for the other's tower receives a point. The player or team wins a second point if the opponent is then unable to provide a valid word within the next 30 seconds.


A clever player can overcome the obstacle of having no opponent as follows. Without looking, he takes 4 or 5 counters and builds a tower. He now tries to find a valid word using the colour code. Of course, one can also use more than 5 counters.


For 3-5 players, the aim of this game is to be the first to guess the words of the other players.

Each player needs a pencil and paper.

The players decide whether 4 or 5 letter words will be used.

All the counters are available to all of the players. Each player builds a concealed tower behind one of his hands and all the towers are revealed at the same time. Each player must now work out the words of the other players and write them on his piece of paper. As soon as a player thinks he has finished, he puts his paper face down in the middle of the table. The next to finish puts his paper face down on top and so on until all the papers except that of the last player to finish are heaped in the middle.

The quickest player with a correct solution receives 4 points, the second quickest receives 3 points, etc. Only papers which have all the correct answers count. Otherwise they score no points. The winner is the player with the most points after an agreed number of turns.


For 2-5 players. Now each player may cheat to his heart's content, but must take care not to get caught!

The aim of the game is to be able to think of a word which gets longer and longer - or at least act as if you can!

The first player lays a counter on the table, i.e. he has a word in mind which begins with a matching letter. The second player lays another counter underneath. This signifies that he can name a word which starts with the first two letters of the tower. The next player lays a third counter under the two already there, etc. When a player is unable to think of a suitable longer word he has two options:

(1) He can simply lay another counter at the bottom of the tower and hope that the next player falls for the bluff.

(2) He can challenge the previous player's word. If he cannot name a suitable word, the previous player receives a "cheat" point. But if the previous player can name a word, the player who issued the challenge receives a "cheat point".

The game then continues with the first letter of a new word.

TIP: Short words can be amusing but it is more exciting to build longer words or combinations, e.g. GREENHOUSE.

The winner is the player with the fewest "cheat points" after an agreed number of turns.

The Game Cabinet - editor@gamecabinet.com - Ken Tidwell