Posted on Jan 6, 2014 by Gabriel | 0 comments
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Sliding piece puzzles have always been one of my favorite types of puzzles. They're easy to pick up, sometimes quite challenging, and there's such an incredible variety of different designs and concepts that you'd never feel bored. Schiebung (German for 'shift'), designed by Jürgen Reiche and produced by Siebenstein-Spiele, is an intriguing design, confusing at first, but visually stunning.

This odd puzzle is comprised by three groups of pieces: four light brown ones engraved with 0s; three medium brown ones engraved with Vs (one of them is actually two pieces joined together); and finally a single piece, dark brown, engraved with an I. The pieces slide along the length of the puzzle with three separate slots above the common space.

The Schiebung comes already solved with a pattern, with the light colored group on the left, the medium colored one in the middle and the dark piece in the right. Your task is to shift the pieces' positions and put the dark piece on the left and the light colored ones on the right. The medium colored pieces stay unchanged in the same position. You could try an easier pattern, with just a few moves, which is to put the dark piece in the middle of the two groups.

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As for the design itself, Siebenstein delivers yet again a beautiful example of their perfect craftsmanship, an utmost attention to detail as seen by the decoration of the sliding pieces and the actual overall shape of the puzzle covered with acrylic for an extra shiny effect. The wooden frame is deep dark red, very elegant which also works well with the contrasting colors of the pieces. The movement of the pieces is rather smooth and loose. I haven't had any problems while I was playing with it.

Difficulty-wise, it looks harder than it actually is. The manufacturer rates it as a level 3/7 and I completely agree with them. I found it to be fairly easy and was able to solve it within five minutes on my first attempt.  I believe the inclusion of three slots made the puzzle quite easy to solve. Maybe with just two slots it could've been a little more challenging, although I'm not sure it would be solvable that way. I actually tried this by not using one of the slots, but couldn't solve it so, unless I was doing something wrong, it's possible it had to be done with a minimum of three slots.

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Closing Comments:

Unlike many other easy puzzles, I actually don't mind the easiness of the Schiebung. I really liked the concept and love to play with it just to keep changing the position of the pieces. It's an excellent puzzle to keep around just to unwind.

Availability: I got my Schienbung copy from Brilliant Puzzles, but unfortunately it's currently out of stock. Check back again soon or browse from other available Siebenstein-Spiele puzzles.


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