Hanayama's Mushroom Mountain

Posted on by Gabriel | 0 comments
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The Mushroom Mountain by Hanayama is a Slide Puzzle with an added difficulty.

The area of the puzzle is a 3x5 rectangle with mushrooms on each sliding piece. Each piece has a different number and orientation, except for the middle four pieces, which have two for both left and right directions. When you first unpack the puzzle, you see that every piece is pointing outwards from the center, and the goal is to get all of them pointing into the opposite direction, which is to point to the middle of the board.

Now, the puzzle could be much simpler if it were possible to just slide every piece to wherever you wish, but that's not the case. Some of the mushrooms will block each other's movements, because, as you can see from the pictures, they go outside the boarders of their own sliding piece and can sometimes overlap with another mushroom that's on its way. This will make many of the otherwise simple moves an impossibility, so you'll have to find an alternative route to get a specific piece to the desired place. Such movements can be sometimes, quite a pain to overcome, because as you work your way around those pieces already in the right place, you'll often find yourself forced to move them of their correct place, just to move another piece that can only pass through that path.

The difficulty is rated by PuzzleMaster as a level 7 out of 10, although I found it to be more frustrating than difficult. If you're a slide puzzle wiz, you'll solve it eventually, but the bottom line is that it's not so straightforward as you'd expect a slide puzzle to be. There's many methods and techniques to solve a puzzle like this: mine was to start first with the bottom line, then get the four pieces from the right middle line and upper line in their correct order, and finally use the remaining five pieces to work as a 3x2 puzzle.

The package of the puzzle comes entirely written in Japanese along with its instructions, but you can figure out what you're supposed to do by the pictures, and there's also a diagram at the bottom of the puzzle with the numbers in their correct order for both objectives.

Closing Comments:

I liked the Mushroom Mountain puzzle. It's a little challenging and frustrating at times, but not so much that'll keep you from solving it. It's nice to see other original ideas used in this classic and simple concept, for a change. Highly Recommended.

The Mushroom Mountain can be ordered from the PuzzleMaster website for CAD $11.99.


Note: There's another version of this puzzle, also available at PuzzleMaster, called "Bamboo Shoot Village", which has bullets instead of mushrooms.

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