A Good Snowman Is Hard to Build

Game review by
David Wolinsky, Common Sense Media
A Good Snowman Is Hard to Build Game Poster Image
Challenging, fun puzzler also becomes repetitive.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Positive Messages

Determination, resourcefulness, patience rewarded.

Positive Role Models & Representations

There's a monster building snowmen. Not much in the way of characters or morals here, but it's peaceful, calm, and serene.

Ease of Play

Simple controls, easy to learn.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that A Good Snowman Is Hard to Build is a simple, though challenging, downloadable puzzle game where you wander around a garden arranging and rearranging snowballs, rolling them, and plunking them on top of each other to make a perfect snowman. In this garden, there are many "rooms," with different obstacles that make it increasingly more challenging to accomplish this uncomplicated task, such sa narrower spaces filled with benches. If your child appreciates brainteasers, this game will scratch that itch.

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What's it about?

In A GOOD SNOWMAN IS HARD TO BUILD,  you play as a blobby, cranky, though determined monster who repeatedly builds many snowmen in the many "rooms" of a walled garden labyrinth. There isn't more to the story here than that. Use the snow and use your mind to make snowmen. Repeat, repeat, repeat.

Is it any good?

A Good Snowman is enjoyable to play but only in short bursts. It's not the sort of game you can play in marathon sessions, as eventually your mental capacity for this narrow set of problem solving will wear thinner and thinner. Not that that's a bad thing -- it's just a fact that you can only sustain this single-minded thinking for so long before you need a palate cleanser. Think of this as a great end-of-the-evening game or a just-waking-up game, something to stimulate your mind or help slow it down for 15 minutes here and there. Approach it like you would a Sudoku or crossword puzzle.

If you play past that point, the game will become frustrating in an unsatisfying way, where you will feel you have exhausted every possible avenue of action or tried every combination of moves and just feel stuck in every direction. If you can stay in the groove, though, A Good Snowman is rewarding and a simple joy, something children and adults alike will savor and appreciate.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about problem solving, especially in instances when you know the solution to something but can't quite seem to say it or do it. What do you do in those situations? 

  • When you use trial and error as a problem-solving technique, how do you gauge what "failing" looks like? How do you learn from that?

Game details

Themes & Topics

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For kids who love puzzles

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