SOMA Crystal
SOMA News 03 Feb 2011

BABYLON Another puzzle ?

2011-04-26 Breaking news at the end.
2023-08-21 MORE Good breaking news HERE at the end.

You know how we tend to think that all has been found. That no news will probably come. And then suddenly, something appear that you would never have thought.

Well this just happened. Another puzzle description appeared. In a row of mails from William "Bill" Kustes.
I will let you follow the correspondence.

From: William

As I was again perusing the Soma pages, I recalled a SOMA-like puzzle I have had for a long time. I do not recall where/who I got it from.
The set includes the 7 soma pieces, plus the 1x3 block and the2x2 block, 2 dice, and a box. Almost a SOMA-plus set.
You roll the 2 dice. The red die shows white or black, which tells whether to leave out piece 1 or the 1x3 block.
Piece 3 is always used. The color on the white die shows which 4-cube piece to leave out.
Then your challenge is to make the 3x3x3 soma-type cube with the 7 pieces that remain.
The game is called BABYLON, and it was produced by LORENZ, in Germany.

I did'nt quite think this was SOMA related, so I answered:

Hello Bill

Thank you for your interesting mail.
The game sound really special, not like anything I have seen before.
Unfortunately, When I search for "" and "spiele",
I only find a childrens play company, and nothing about BABYLON.

If you ever find something more about this game, then I will surely be interested.

But then the photos arrived, and my pulse grew. These WERE SOMA related.

The Babylon Box [Big] Opened [Big]

The Babylon puzzle pieces [Big]

Hi Bill

Wow - Thank you for those photos.
They are indeed interesting, I have never seen this puzzle before.
The Photos are very clear and give an excellent view to the “thing”

I see that the box is foldable.
Is it possible that you might make two high resolution Photos of the flattened box ??

And a few days later they arrived

The Box outside [Big] And inside [Big]

Hello Thorleif

Let me know if it all arrived.

The game text reads:

Babylon - The master builder's puzzle cube
The tower of Babel was built by many peoples. In the evenings the workers spent their
time with their favorite game, putting together a cube from various building components.
Each group built their cube different to the other. The master Builder observed each
group closely and tried endless combinations until he found the MASTER BUILDER'S
PUZZLE CUBE, a game which could be played by everyone.

2 coloured dice
7 large building bricks of 4 dice, colours: lilac, yellow, red, orange, green, blue, natural
2 small building blocks of 3 dice, colours: white, black

Each building block is a different colour. A complete dice always consist of 6 large and one
small building block. The natural coloured building block is always used.
1. Roll the two coloured dice and lay the two building blocks which are the same colour as the
eyes on the dice to one side.
2. Assemble the magic dice from the remaining 7 building blocks. t doesn't matter which two
building blocks are missing, the MASTER BUILDER'S PUZZLE CUBE can always be
assembled from the remaining blocks!
3. Keep calm and have fun!
You can build MASTER BUILDER'S PUZZLE CUBE alone or play against one another.
One player rolls the dice and everyone with a complete puzzle cube starts. The quickest "Master
Builder" wins. Either points, a prize or a reward.

It turns out that this puzzle, which in some ways exploit an idea similar to the SOMAplus set,
Also include the very interesting aspect of a dice game, suddenly making this not only a puzzle but also a game.
   See: Newsletter 2000.08.14 Is there a SOMA+plus ?, by Thorleif Bundgaard.

The product is indeed originally German, produced by:

   Verlag: Heinz H. Lorenz KG
   Straίe: Elbestraίe 45
   Ort: 82538 Geretsried
   Land: Deutschland
   "Babylon, der Rδtselwόrfel der Baumeister"

However the production has stopped, and the puzzle is now unavailable, although it appear randomly on auctions and EBay.
Babylon on Ebay

Breaking news. 2011-04-26.
2023-01-28 Unfortunately, all these links went dead somewhere after 2011, a problem that often occur with links pointing to games.
However, I have left the links here. In some cases they can be retrieved with the use of "Wayback Machine"

From a News-Letter reader "Frank Griese", I have just received the information that the Babylon game has been re-issued by the compagny Jumbo as part of a three solitaire games collection.
Frank has even supplied a number of interesting links:

An article in the SPIELBOX in 2002 prior to the "Essen fair" where the three games were released.
Dead Link :-( Do a search for "Babylon"

Dead Link :-( A picture of the 3 games.

There are three dfifferent games that "Jumbo" has combined in a collection, these three separate games can be combined to play three additional games.
Almansur Dead Link :-(
Babylon Dead Link :-(
Stern von Basra Dead Link :-(

And then the largest picture on the net for the 2002 Jumbo edition of the game
Dead Link :-(

I have tried to find the game on Jumbo's homepage - but they dont advertize it, so... You will have to try your luck on "" or in the German stores. "Karstadt, Kaufhof, Toys 'r' Us, Vedes".

Today is 2023-08-21
Back in 2023-02-05 I discovered PAPPP's Rambling, a really nice webpage at
Here Pappp (Paul) talk about the game Babylon The Master Builder’s Puzzle Cube and also that it seem to no longer being for sale.
I of course wrote to Pappp.
Hi PAPPP, I am supporting a website for the SOMA puzzle, In my Newsletters I also describe the Babylon puzzle here.
I have the problem that I can guess the colors of the two dice.
BUT I don’t know if my guess is right. Can you confirm (or correct) the following.
White dice:
——-: green:——- :——–
yellow: red :purple:orange
——-: blue :——–:——–

Red dice:
——: black :—— :——
black: black :white:white
——: black :——-:——

Thank you for your fine webpage on Babylon
Friendliest Thorleif
Unfortunately I had too much other things to do (not SOMA) so I forgot my question for several months untill after the summer
vacation where I again began to look at a few things here. and discovered that Pappp had answered already 2 days later
(Sorry about that Pappp)
The answer was:
I think you have them right, modulo a typo.
Red die is all white and black, unfolds
– w – –
w w k k
– k – –
White die is 6 of the 7 4-cells, you got it right, unfolds
– G – –
– B – –

So, this means that the two Dice are looking like this:
Red die is all white and black – w – – w w k k – k – – White die has the colors of 6 of the 4-cube pieces      – G – – Y R P O – B – –

The remaining pieces are 9 of the 11 SOMAplus/Herzberger set of pieces (Not using the D and Q pieces)
Though with a different coloring, like this
You can read more about the SOMAplus in the Newsletter 2021.04.05 (an update of 2000-08-14)
Thank you to Paul Selegue Eberhart

many thank's to Bill for informing about this puzzle, and allowing us to share these wonderfull pictures.
Submitted by William Kustes <>
Edited by Thorleif Bundgaard <>

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