Posted on Mar 17, 2014 by Gabriel | 0 comments
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Geranium is one of the most fascinating Rotational/Rearrangement puzzles in years. It's as hard as it looks, and with reason, since it will require a courageous mind to get it completely mixed and solved. The puzzle was designed by Leslie Le and it was released by VeryPuzzle in June 2013.

A good way to describe the Geranium puzzle is as if it was a Twisty puzzle flattened into a 2D surface. The logic and techniques you use on Twisty puzzles will surely be very useful here, to understand the movement and permutations between the five intersecting circles.

Built with a mixture of materials, such as ABS, PVC and Stainless Steel, the puzzle looks gorgeous with a slick and elegant design. The transparent frame covers much of the top surface, and you can only rotate the edges of the circles. The movement is smooth, but you need to ensure the circles are well aligned or they won't move at all.

One of the most famous puzzles in the Intersecting Circles category is the Hungarian Rings. In it, you only have two intersecting rings that share two common points where the beads can be shifted from one ring to another. If I were to classify the difficulty levels of both puzzles, I'd say the Hungarian Rings would be a 1/10 and the Geranium puzzle would be a 10/10. That should give you an idea of how complex and difficult this puzzle is.

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As mentioned above, the Geranium puzzle consists of five intersecting circles with 25 pieces of various sizes and shapes, although each circle shares many pieces with other circles. However, among all the pieces, there's only one that's shared by all the five circles, a pentagon-shaped piece. The colors are distributed around as a half-moon shape, with each circle also sporting all five colors in different amounts. The goal, like any other in this category, is to simply mix it and then return it to its original pattern.

As you mix the puzzle, the color distribution will vary, depending on which circles you rotate at any given time. Every time you rotate a circle you'll block certain movements in the process due to the different shapes of the pieces, preventing other circles from moving afterwards. It's up to you to evaluate and study which circle to move, anticipating which moves will be subsequently blocked. Conversely, when you have a blocked circle and you need to rotate it, you need to understand which other circles you need to move in order for it to be unblocked. It's this constant block/unblock moves that makes the puzzle so difficult. So far, I only had the courage to partially mix it and return it to the start, which was already pretty scary. Nevertheless, if you're confident enough at solving any complex Twisty puzzle, then I'm sure you won't have any problems with the Geranium.

Closing Comments:

The Geranium puzzle is such an original design it's hard to find a similar one in the market, and an equally difficult one for that matter. The colors and shapes in the puzzle provide a beautiful visual effect that will even captivate the attention of the most distracted puzzlers.

Availability: You can find the Geranium puzzle at PuzzlesdeIngenio.com for €40.


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