Valen Brost began designing games and puzzles at the age of 16. Through his later teens and early 20's, he test played and refined concepts of which SolarQuest was one of his favorites. Mr. Brost was in his mid-20's when he first introduced the game to the market. In 1994, Parker Brothers considered but subsequently turned down the concept. Mr Brost went on to produce the Apollo 13 Edition of SolarQuest, and subsequently a few other paper based products, under the private label "Universal Games" in the late 1990's and early 2000's.
Mr. Brost married at the age of 19 and found himself surrounded by eager test play subjects. His newfound endorsers inspired and encouraged him to focus his attention toward toy design. In the year 2001, he started another small family business under the label "Universal Toys" and began manufacturing, importing and distributing toys via wholesale only. Both companies, Universal Games and Universal Toys, were successful over the years. In the mid 2000s, Universal Toys acquired the Universal Games label, and now both labels are sold by Universal Toys. The downturn in the economy has proven to be a challenge, but Universal Toys has survived and to date remains a small family business.