Posted on Jul 23, 2019 by Gabriel | 0 comments
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CubiKo is another interesting concept from Colombian designer Nelson Robayo. A few months ago I reviewed Nelson's Boli-Loco, which was also a pleasant surprise.

CubiKo, as the name suggests, is a cube with 12 interconnected tubes that move in three directions. Each color group only moves in two directions, but when combined with the others, you can move the small sphere inside in all directions, navigating in a see-through maze. The goal is to go from A (Start) to B (Finish). Sounds simple enough, but there's a lot of planning and strategy involved.

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Each tube has at least one opening, which allows for the sphere to travel across the cube. You can look at the cube as a tall skyscraper, and the tubes as a series of elevators that can get you anywhere around the building. It's a very clever design that you will surely have lots of fun with.

The challenge in itself is a bit difficult. Even though the cube and the tubes are transparent, sometimes it's hard to find a clear path and see where exactly is the entrance to a particular tube. It's not frustrating to the point of giving up, but don't expect an easy ride. The tubes move smoothly, but the ball seems just a bit too large. At times you need to jiggle the puzzle a little to make the ball fall inside.

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Closing Comments:

These puzzles from Colombian designer Nelson Robayo are a real treat. I like his fresh ideas and the puzzles are really fun to play with. CubiKo, in particular, is a puzzle that will appeal to all ages, especially young and curious minds. Highly recommended.

Availability: CubiKo is available to purchase at PuzzleMaster, along with others by the same brand, Mind Matters Toys.

Secret Opening Box - Spring Time

Posted on Jul 9, 2019 by Gabriel | 2 comments
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It's not Spring anymore, but that doesn't mean it's not puzzle time. PuzzleMaster has a new series of six Secret Opening Boxes, and judging from the Spring Time puzzle box, it's certainly something to look forward to.

Each of these boxes have their own design and solution, so you'll probably want to be collecting all of them to have the full experience. The boxes have really good sizes, which means more objects can be hidden inside. The Spring Time box measures 15.1 x 10 x 5.5 cm (5.9" x 3.9" x 2.2").

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The box is really well made with some good finishing touches. Although it's not hardwood, it's still looks sturdy enough and the decoration is very pretty, resembling the patterns you usually find on the Japanese Puzzle Boxes. Inside there are various hidden sections, which I think is a very clever design feature, which means that you can have more than one object hidden.

In total, there are five removable parts, following a sequence in which one part has to be removed before the other. The top lid can move somewhat freely from side to side, but it's not the first part to be removed, so a bit of thinking is necessary to overcome that first challenge.

Overall, it's not very difficult to open this puzzle box. Even though it's rated as a difficulty level 7/10, I believe this is no more than a 6. Or maybe, because I've solved many Japanese Puzzle Boxes already, this one seemed easier. Nevertheless, it's not a frustrating puzzle by a long shot.

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Closing Comments:

The new PuzzleMaster series of Secret Opening Boxes really surprised me. From the first impression I got with the Spring Time box, I can certainly recommend them, not only for their puzzle factor, but also as a beautiful decorative object.

Availability: You can find the Spring Time box and the others from the Secret Opening Box series at PuzzleMaster.

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