Candyland, one of the most popular and enduring children's board games of all time, was first published in 1949 and became an instant success. Easy to learn with a minimum of rules, it appeals to very young children and has a lasting quality and simplicity that keeps kids intrigued as they grow.
Candyland consists of a wandering path made up of 134 spaces in different colors. Each player takes one of the six color markers and moves are decided by drawing from a deck of cards printed with colors corresponding to the spaces on the board. If the player draws a green card, for example, he or she moves to the next green spot on the path. There are some double cards as well, allowing the player to move up two color spots. Some color spaces have a black dot on them, which means the player has to draw that particular color again before they can advance.
Other features of classic Candyland are different candy-themed destinations along the path: Peppermint Stick Forest, Lollipop Woods, the Ice Cream Floats and others can either advance the player or send them backwards, depending on their position on the board when those cards are drawn. There are also two short cuts, and milestone signs indicating how far the Candy House at the end of the path is.
Candyland has gone through about four different versions since first introduced, with different features being added to enhance the game and challenge the players. Rules have been altered and are played with different variations. For example, some rules allow for the player to win if they can pass the Candy House at the end of the trail, whereas others state that the player must land directly on the final square.
One of the unique features of Candyland is that there are no dice or spinners or other methods of determining the forward advance of the marker. A large part of the appeal for the very young player is that the simple method of identifying through colors allows the child to see where they get to go without any help or coaching. The theme of sweets and candy has always been part of the appeal of Candyland, and is undoubtedly one of the reasons for its continuing success and popularity.