Cast Amour (愛)

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This is the Hanayama's Cast Amour, released almost 20 years ago, back in 1992 and designed by Akio Yamamoto. Back then, there wasn't so many Cast Puzzles being released like today, and between 1983, the year of the first ones and 1992, only about 9 puzzles were built, which is an average of one puzzle per year. Now you can see on average, four Cast Puzzles per year.

The objective of the puzzle is to remove the two golden loops, which both carry the symbols for male and female from the heart-shaped silver plate. The history behind the puzzle is to represent Adam and Eve (the male and female symbols) and the "Forbidden Fruit" (the silver apple).

The difficulty is rated at 5 (out of 6) by Hanayama and 9 (out of 10) by PuzzleMaster, so it's supposed to be a very tough puzzle. I only agree in part with the ratings, because it's a two challenge puzzle, meaning that after you remove the loops, you have to place them in the same starting positions. Solving the first part isn't that hard, as your only concern is to just separate the loops from the plate, without acknowledging the steps that you're making to achieve this task. When you're trying to return the loops to their positions it's way more difficult to remember the exact way used in the process, so in this situation, I agree with a difficulty of 5 out 6. I would say that the difficulty for the first challenge could be 4, maybe a 3 depending on your puzzle solving skills. To get a solution, go here.

Closing Comments:

The originality behind the concept of the Cast Amour is amazing, only possible by the genius mind of Akio Yamamoto, also designer of other Cast Puzzles like the Cast Vortex, Cast Seahorse and Cast Claw to name a few. It's proof that when you have a concept for a puzzle, it doesn't only matter its functionality, but also how you present it to the general public in order to captivate their interest in an otherwise ordinary idea.

The Cast Amour can be purchased from the PuzzleMaster store at CAD $12.95.

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Links:

Hanayama's Factory Visit (Many thanks to Roxanne Wong for sharing these pictures)

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