Lighthouse - 3D Puzzle Box

Posted on Sep 29, 2020 by Gabriel | 0 comments
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Puzzle boxes are always fascinating objects to play with. They carry a secret that you must unveil in order open them. Some are highly challenging, others are easier to figure out, but still great pieces of art. Such is the example of the Lighthouse Puzzle Box. A true masterpiece in terms of craftsmanship that will certainly delight any puzzle enthusiast.

These puzzle boxes are made in Vietnam and they each have a unique theme. The one above is a lighthouse scene, made from different woods (no coloring) using a woodworking technique called intarsia. With this, the result is a natural looking 3D box where the only finishing touches are the polish and varnishing work.

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To open these boxes you have to find out how its locking mechanism works. It's not a difficult puzzle, but still it has an elegant two-step solution. Inside, there's a small compartment lined with velvet where you can store your valuables - Maybe not so valuable, since this is really easy to open... Perhaps as a small gift that wouldn't frustrate the receiver.

Even though this is an easy puzzle to solve, don't let that stop you from getting one of these. These are unique objects that can light up a space as a decorative object, but also as an accessible puzzle for newcomers who might then graduate to higher difficulty ones. There's so many puzzle boxes out there where the real difficulty is choosing them.

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Closing Comments:

The company that produces these boxes, Jafsons, has a large variety to choose from. Whichever one you end up choosing, I'm sure you'll love it. They are carefully crafted with the utmost attention to detail, so you won't be disappointed. Highly recommended.

Availability: The Lighthouse Puzzle Box is available at PuzzleMaster for $39.99 CAD. Be sure to check out the other available designs.

Night Shift

Posted on Sep 15, 2020 by Gabriel | 2 comments
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Night Shift is one of the most fascinating puzzles from Siebenstein-Spiele I've seen so far. It's visually stunning, it's challenging, but it's a real pleasure to play with.

Designed by Jürgen Reiche and made from a combination of acrylic, plywood and a number of different colors, Night Shift is a gorgeous puzzle to look at. The simple and yet elegant movement of the two platforms that move in perpendicular directions, shift a total of 20 small wooden squares back and forth. The small squares are divided into five different colors, which form five bigger squares, four pieces each. The goal is to mix all these squares and regroup them into their respective colors. Sounds easy, but rated as a level 10/10, you can be sure to have a great challenge in your hands.

With a puzzle of this nature, with moving and crossing platforms, smooth movement will be the key to an enjoying and fun experience. Fortunately, Siebenstein-Spiele knows how to make good and functional puzzles, which means this one is a real treat. The squares have round corners, to minimize being jammed against others, and each platform is held in place by metal screws that slide effortlessly in the wooden tracks. Everything works as it should to bring you the best puzzling experience.

I've been having a blast playing with this puzzle. Even though it's a difficult puzzle, and there's one official solution, you can always try other easier color combinations and keep playing longer. Maybe having each square with two colors instead of one; or having each square with just one of the same color. This kind of puzzle allows for more than one way to be played, which ends up giving you more bang for your buck.

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Closing Comments:

Night Shift is one hell of a puzzle. If you like good-looking puzzles with a real challenge to boot, this one's for you. Don't let its high difficulty put you off from a great puzzle. Try the other easier challenges I mentioned or just enjoy its movement and practice until you solve it. It's worth it.

Availability: Night Shift is available at PuzzleMaster for $47.99 CAD. If you like Siebenstein-Spiele, you should check other interesting puzzles by them.

Rubik's 40th Anniversary Metallic Cube

Posted on Sep 1, 2020 by Gabriel | 0 comments
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(Click to Enlarge) - Stand not included
For many of us, it's been there the whole time. It's been part of our lives and our childhood. To me, it's the puzzle that was responsible for all this - my love for mechanical puzzles. The Rubik's Cube has inspired a whole generation of puzzlers and has proved time and again that entertaining someone doesn't need to be done through a screen.

To commemorate the 40th anniversary of the first Rubik's Cube, they launched a new version with some tweaks that promises to take the Cube to yet another 40 years into the future and inspire another generation of young puzzlers. If you've liked the original, I'm sure you'll love this one as well.

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The first change you'll notice immediately is the metallic stickers, although they can't be called stickers per se, since they seem to be encrusted into the body of the cube. No stickers mean no peeling, no fading and makes it harder to cheat, unless you take the whole cube apart and reassemble it. But you don't want to do that, right? It's much more fun to actually solve it with your own skills.

Movement in the new cube is also smoother due to a new mechanism. Even though it's easier to move, I wouldn't recommend it for speedcubing, since it's still far from the flawless movement of the professional speedcubes you see on the market today. Other than that, it's still nice to play with this cube just for fun.

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Closing Comments:

Twelve years after buying the first cube, which started it all, I was really happy to add another version of the classic cube to my collection. The new metallic design gives it new life and it truly shines beside the original. Two classics that deserve their place in history.

Availability: The Metallic 40th Anniversary Rubik's Cube is available at PuzzleMaster for  just $21.99 CAD. Check out more cubes from PuzzleMaster.

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