Twister Review

by Julia DeKorte | 31 Oct 2023

Book Reviews


Twister is a physical game played on a large plastic mat spread on the floor. The mat has four rows of six large colored circles, with each row a different color: red, yellow, green, and blue. There’s also a spinner that’s used to tell players where to place their hands and feet. The spinner is attached to a square board that’s split up into four quadrants—right hand, left hand, right foot, left foot—with each quadrant divided into four colors. So, one player spins the spinner and announces the direction (for example: right hand red), and the other players must place the appropriate hand or foot on the appropriate color. Players are eliminated if they fall or if their knees or elbows touch the ground, until there is one player standing. Be careful though, falling players might accidentally take out other players on their way down!


To learn more about Twister, visit the brand's POP Profile or Reyn Guyer's POP Profile.



Twister was co-founded by Charles Foley and Neil Rabens, and was originally called Pretzel. Foley was hired by Reyn Guyer Jr. and Sr. as a toy designer for their design company, Guyer Company. The father-son pair was interested in creating a small toy division, with Foley as the head. Foley then hired Rabens after negotiated a royalty agreement with Guyer company for all toys and games that the pair created.


Foley was the mastermind behind using people as “game pieces,” and it was Rabens who came up with the idea of using a colored mat so people could interact with one another. Together they designed the game, and with the support of Guyer Sr., obtained a patent for the design. Foley then brought the game to his friend Mel Taft, the Senior Vice President for Milton Bradley in 1966, who absolutely loved the game, but suggested changing the name to Twister.


Twister’s success story started when actress Eva Gabor played it on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson on May 3, 1966. It was very popular, but also rather controversial, because it was the first game to humans as game pieces and was thought of as rather scandalous.


Twister also found success in Japan, where it was licensed to in 1966. In 1984, Hasbro acquired Milton Bradley, becoming Twister’s parent company, where it remains today. The Reyn Guyer Creative Group continues to work with Hasbro to develop new additions to the line of Twister products.


Charles Foley passed away on July 1, 2013, at the age of 82.



“Blindfolded Twister” is an accessible variation of the game that has four different tactile symbols rather than colors, so players must feel around for the symbol while blindfolded. There are also instructions on how to alter an original Twister game to work for color-blind individuals and blind individuals.


Reception & Awards

Twister was inducted into the National Toy Hall of Fame in 2015. Games magazine included Twister in their “Top Games of 1980,” “Top Games of 1981,” and “Top Games of 1982.”

twister twister game

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