Thursday, 31 December 2015

The oriental toothpick safe

This pretty old puzzle (well it's from 2001, so 14 years ago!) was designed and made by Frank Chambers, with the usual material he used for puzzles: corian.

A pretty small puzzle and a quite heavy one regarding its size. The 3 colors of the puzzle are simple but well chosen in my opinion.

There are 2 goals: first one is to open the puzzle, second one is to make a shape with the toothpicks inside (thus the name of the puzzle).

As you can see on the lid is a black button, you can remove it if you want to see the mechanism. It should be glued but it's up to you if you want to glue it or not. I think better not so that you can admire the mechanism many times. And I feel always frustrated not to be able to see the mechanism for some puzzles.

I did not spend long time before managing to open the puzzle. Actually it's not a difficult puzzle and the mechanism is pretty simple, but well implemented.

For the second goal of the puzzle: making the shape with the toothpick is much more difficult.
Well, I would even say it's fetched, very fetched! And even the solution kept me thinking for some time why this was the solution!...It's a strange solution but yes in reality it would work...
You have to really think out of the box to understand it!

Would this hole give any clue?

Thursday, 24 December 2015

Ring box

This small and cute puzzle was designed and crafted by Frank Chambers some time ago, with corian.

The goal is to open the ring box and to find the ring.

This would be more considered as a secret box rather than as a puzzle because it's more a hidden trick than really many steps to open the ring box.

Easy to repeat, not difficult at all to open, but it may take a bit of time (more than 10 seconds...) for a non puzzler because it's very well hidden!

So better to give to your other half tomorrow than to a puzzle collector ;-)
But of course the puzzle collector would appreciate it a lot in his collection!

Thursday, 17 December 2015

Bon bons #1

The puzzled guy bakery baked you something good for your...collection: the bon bons #1

These puzzles are part of a series of 4 small looking-cake puzzles. And the name is very linked to the shapes of them: they are small, but absolutely well crafted and you really need a lot of precision to craft the pannels !!

Your first impression is that the packaging is very nice: you immediately feel hungry :-)
So you open the box and what's inside? 2 small cakes waiting to be eaten! And look each cake is put in a small piece of paper like in a bakery!!!
So then you put the lid of the box under the box because you want to see these puzzles all the time.

Wait....What? Humm it seems that somebody could not wait and ate a part of the small cake!!!
Now you can see the beautiful inside of the cake with colorful layers of...wood. Very very nice.

Is it just a nice piece of art? Or can it be opened? I do not want to spoil so try to figure out what you can do with it :-)

The second cake is also very well crafted and it's different and looks like more a "regular" box. You will have to slide pannels in a precise order to open the box (the inside is too small to put something by the way) and manage to see your serial number with the signature of Perry.

Nice wood

I cannot say better thing that it's very nice, the color of wood is beautiful. It's not a difficult puzzle, you just need to follow a sequence of steps. But the steps are very well hidden and you could miss some steps with your big fingers :-) So I would better rank as a moderately difficult puzzle: the difficulty is due to the size of the puzzle.

I recommend to be careful when playing with these puzzles, because I tend to think that they are more fragile because they are small. The fit may be a bit tight, but do not apply excessive force, otherwise perhaps you could damage some pannels...which would be a pitty.

The other puzzles in the series will be reviewed a bit later.

 To conclude: I am a big fan of Perry's puzzles!!!

Thursday, 10 December 2015

Shake the shaker

Hey you, metal lovers, this is a quick review that may interest you!

So as you may have recognized, this is a metal puzzle designed and made by the mysterious Roger D.

Again, the goal is never given with his puzzles. Sometimes it's obvious, but not with this one. Thus, I cannot put the picture of the puzzle in the solved state because that would spoil a fun part of the puzzle.

So what can you do with this puzzle? Well, you will try the usual techniques and see that it does not work...Indeed this is a very difficult puzzle that requires several steps. You cannot see very well because it's dark inside.
But you can hear things ratling in the puzzle, how can they be useful?....That's the question!

Obviously you will notice that something moves inside the puzzle, and sometime a bit deeper, but still just knowing that you're a bit far from the solution...

Maybe a hint is from the name ("007") ? Maybe it does something unusual and does not do what it seems to be and what the solution you expect to be?

Actually I was a bit surprised by the goal of this puzzle, even a bit disappointed I must admit, you have to know that with Roger D you may be surprised at any point!

However, I do like the puzzle with its original solution, the smooth material and the unique design!

I know who is Roger D ;-)

Thursday, 3 December 2015

Go tamashido!

Sounds Japanese, doesn't it? Well guess what: it's French!

You're provided with a tray, some marbles, a tool and a booklet. The goal is to try to make the shapes shown in the booklet.

As you can notice at a first glance the tray has 2 sides (one triangular and one squared side) with holes inside, but not holes are the same. Some are "regular" holes and some are a bit bigger. And no it's not a default: it's made on purpose of course. One can ask why. Well, because do make the shapes with the marbles you will need to take out some marbles with the magnetic tool, and thus taking marbles from a regular hole can not be possible all the time...

So the challenges begin on which side of the board you want to make the sculptures and from which holes.

The magnetic tool is useful to take out some marbles. It's composed of a stick with a magnet that you can slide. I was sceptical at the beginning because I thought that it could attract all the marbles and make my solids crumble. But it's not the case. First because it's not a powerful magnet, and then because if you slide the magnet you can "cancel" the magnet attraction of the tool. You will need to get used to it, because it's practical. 

I think you can easily guess why the label is "dexterity". Well, not only dexterity but also patience and thinking. But still dexterity because you need to be careful when you take out some marbles with the tools, you need to take the correct marbles, and sometimes the tool becomes useless and you need to use....your hands!

About the difficulty, it's high: you need to think about how you can create the solids, which balls to take out, etc. And the frustration is when you've almost completed the solids but you make it crumble because of a small move....Better not to play outside when it's windy (even a small wind!).

To conclude: a nice game, available HERE. And for the price you're sure to make a good bargain!
My version is the "basic" version but you can have upgraded versions. Just look at the website what they have to offer.