Cast Seabream (鯛)

Posted on Aug 10, 2012 by Gabriel | 0 comments
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Last week, I reviewed Hanayama's fifth Cast Puzzle from the Marine Series, the Reef, and today I will finish the task by showing you the last in the collection, the Seabream. As the other five in this collection, which were first released between 1999 and 2000, the Seabream was re-released in 2008 in its full glory with a shinier finish. Akio Yamamoto is the designer behind the Marine Series.

The Cast Seabream shows two fish getting tangled up together, and as you'd expect, you have to separate them and then join them together again. The shape of the two fish are almost identical - except for a couple of dissimilarities in their back fins - which hints that they share  the same point of exit. As a nice finishing touch (a Hanayama hallmark), the two fish are coated with two contrasting colors, gold and silver.

This is one of the easiest Cast puzzles, rated as a 1/6, so unless you like to collect them, there's really no challenge in solving it. When I picked it up for the review, I didn't remember which level it was, as I have the entire Cast Puzzle collection, and with time it's hard to remember all of their correspondent levels. Nevertheless, when it took me about a couple of minutes to solve, I suspected that it was indeed a level 1 or 2, at the most.

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As I pointed above, the fact that both parts are practically identical, the way they're solved is pretty much symmetrical - Not that this would be true for all puzzles, though. When I first tried it, I didn't notice this symmetrical feature immediately and focused on just one of them to try and free it. After rotating one of the fish to get both bottom fins lined up, the puzzle all but solved itself. Getting it back together was equally unchallenging, because it's like when you know how to do a trick - Once you see it, it's as simple as connecting two Lego blocks... And even if you'd do it a year from now, you'd still remember how it's solved.

Solution: Click here to see a video solution of the Cast Seabream.

Closing Comments:

The Cast Seabream, despite being a level 1, is not a puzzle to be missed, especially if you're a fan like me. It's a nice puzzle to get started into the Cast Puzzle craze.

Hanayama's Marine Series was never about tough and complex puzzles. They're more like collectibles and a complement to the main Cast Puzzles. The first thing you notice when you see a Cast Puzzle is its flawless appearance, almost like a piece of art, and the Marine series accomplished this perfectly. I would love to see more Cast Puzzle themed collections in the future. I know that there's the Disney themed puzzles, but they're not new puzzles per se, only design modifications.

Availability: You can find the Cast Seabream at Finland's Sloyd, as well all the other Cast Puzzles.

(Click to Enlarge) - The Marine Series (from left to right to bottom: Starfish, Seabream, Reef, Claw, Shark, Seahorse)

Hanayama Cast (in English) - Very useful website in English, with plenty of information on all things Cast.

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


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