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Usually, when I get a certain puzzle, I'm not that interested in similar versions. The main reason is that the challenge is exactly the same and you get nothing new from it, but also the lack of space to store them is getting smaller too fast. The only time I went "off-course" was when I got a large amount of Bedlam Cubes, which is the main culprit for my lack of space. This whole rambling is just to introduce the C-Box that I recently got with my latest package from Brilliant Puzzles.
The C-Box is nothing more than an alternate version of Jean Claude Constantin's Hercules. Well, actually it's a bit "more", because the Hercules that I reviewed a while ago was manufactured by Bits and Pieces, and we all know that the quality of their puzzles leaves a lot to be desired. For this reason, I didn't think twice to include the C-Box to my order when I saw it at the Brilliant Puzzles website.
If you don't know Constantin's Hercules, the C-Box has the same 5-piece set. Each piece is basically two C's joined together at a right angle. The goal is to be able to pack all pieces into the tray in such a way that it's impossible to slide or move them around the frame, although with the C-Box you still have a little wiggle room left, as its tolerances are less tighter than its aluminum cousin.
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There are a few differences between these two versions: the C-Box is made from wood and the Hercules is made from aluminum; the C-Box is also fairly larger at 14.5cm, while the aluminum-based version is only 12cm; as mentioned above, the tolerances are a bit different as well. The Hercules' are tighter, while the C-Box has more room for the pieces to move. Not sure if this was done on purpose to make it easier or just bad design, though.
The C-Box is not that complicated to solve. It's a level 3/5 and, even though it looks hard when you see the pieces outside for the first time, the pieces interact in a more or less intuitive way. When I solved the Hercules, I found that there were two solutions, one more elegant than the other. You can see the elegant solution below.
|(Click to Enlarge) - Side-by-Side Comparison: Left - C-Box; Right - Hercules|
Solution: Unless you have completely given up, don't look at the solution.
Even though the C-Box is a low-end wooden puzzle, it's still a much better quality than the Bits and Pieces' version. If you currently don't own any version, I'd recommend the wooden one. Even if you have the aluminum version, I still recommend the C-Box. For the low price, it's definitely worth it.