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Vertabelo Challenge #1: database model for the game of Set

Today we publish the first Vertabelo Challenge. Vertabelo Challenge is a fun and educational way to earn a discount for Vertabelo. Complete four challenges and we’ll email you a coupon for 50% off your Vertabelo subscription.

The game of Set

Set is a card game that you play with a special deck of cards. Each card has four features:

  • shape (oval, diamond, squiggle),
  • color (pink, purple, green),
  • number of figures (1 to 3),
  • shading (solid, opaque, hollow).

The deck consists of 81 cards.

set consists of three cards which satisfy all of the conditions:

  • All cards have the same number of figures or they have three different numbers.
  • All cards have the same shape or they have three different shapes.
  • All cards have the same color or they have three different colors.
  • All cards have the same shading or they have three different shadings.

The following pictures show examples of sets and a non-set.

An example of set

This is a set because each card has:

  • different number of shapes,
  • different shape,
  • different shading,
  • different color.

Another example of set

This is a set because each card has:

  • the same number of shapes,
  • different shape,
  • different shading,
  • the same color.

Example of a non-set

This is NOT a set because:

  • two cards are diamonds and one is a squiggle,
  • two cards are solid but one is opaque.

If you want to practise recognizing sets, there is a Daily Set Puzzle quiz on the vendor’s website.

The game of Set starts by shuffling the cards in the deck. In each round, 12 cards are laid out on the table. The first person who sees a set says “Set!” and collects the set. Three new cards are then dealt onto the table. If there is no set on the table (or the players cannot find one), three additional cards are added (making 15 cards on the table). If the players still can’t find a set, an additional three cards are added, and so on. The game ends when there are no more sets on the table and no more cards to be added. The person who has collected the greatest number of sets wins.

The challenge

Your task is to prepare a database model for an online version of Set. The database should store info on the whole game: the order in which the cards were dealt, which sets where collected by which players, and so on.

When you complete the challenge, email us at to share your model. (See the detailed rules.)

Sign up for Vertabelo and have fun completing the challenge!


You might want to watch our Database Academy videos, or read our tutorial on creating models before you complete the challenge.

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