Just like many games which have been in existence for a long time, it is not clear when the game was invented.
One theory is that Captain Cook the explorer invented this game - playing it in his cabin for hours upon hours - forging the name 'Captain's Mistress'. This is thought to be the case, through a game sold in Washington in 1987, of which a copy by a British company was made.
Wooden versions have been seen in books, one in particular called 'Four Balls' where the pieces are balls dropped into wooden runners on a box lid. The estimation is that it is Edwardian from around 1900.
In more recent years, Milton Bradley started producing the game Connect 4 in Britain in 1974. Up until 2015 Hasbro licensed Garden Games Ltd to make a Giant version which was the only official version made. Garden Games now make the Up 4 It which shares the same tooling and moulds so should you need any spares or replacements then you can be rest assured the Garden Games Up 4 It replacement parts will fit your Hasbro Giant Connect 4.
Why is Connecting 4 in a row so popular?
This game has no barriers - and is inclusive in all situations, walks of life and understood by the majority of people!
The beauty of connecting four counters in a row, is that there is no language barrier in the game. The game can be played in any language or even between people that don't speak the same language as the rules are the same wherever you are.
There are sometimes slightly different variants of the rules, but generally they remain the same and therefore no linguistic communication is needed during the game in order to play it successfully.
The game also has a similar appeal to games like O's and X's where it can be played simply on paper, so it translates well into a computer game and we have seen this rise in popularity in recent years.
The game has no physical bounds and as long as you can lift the pieces and slot them into the board, anyone of any age can play the game.
It is also a very quick game, so if you have lots of people around and you wish to take turns, nobody will be hanging around for too long before they get a go.