Sunday, May 27, 2012

Cast O'Gear Puzzle

Here is another cool Hanayama Cast puzzle called O’Gear by Oskar van Deventer.  I received it from Puzzle Master and you can find the solution on their webpage.  I really wanted to get my hands on this puzzle but I was kind of surprised with the size of this one.  I was expecting something that could easily fit in my pocket.  A bit of a disappointment but the puzzle is still a bucket of honey.  This is an interesting puzzle because the “gear” that you are suppose to detach from the cube looks as if it could easily come off.  If you are looking for a record solve then a sledgehammer might help.  The gear movement is kind of awkward and not very smooth at first.  However, after playing around with it for a few minutes, I understood how to quickly move the gear around the cube.  This seems like another maze puzzle and that is just fine with me.  A worthwhile puzzle if you can get past the idea that it isn’t as portable as the other Cast puzzles.  If you do decide to go with the sledgehammer method then be ready for flying metal, getting hurt, and regret.  In other words, not recommended.

I guess PuzzleMaster is having a father's day sale on the Cast O'Gear.  This is a cool puzzle to get for Dad because it is fun to solve and would look nice in any man cave.  

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Cast KeyRing Puzzle

The puzzle I’m going to talk about today is the Cast Keyring.  Oskar van Deventer designed this puzzle and I received it from Puzzle Master.  If you need the solution then check out the Puzzle Master solution webpage.  There is also a video solution on youtube.  Please note that you can also find this puzzle at other online stores.  The Puzzle Master store rates this a 6 out of 10 as far as difficulty.  In other words, it’s not super hard.  I would agree that it wasn’t very difficult but that doesn’t mean it isn’t fun.  The objective of the puzzle is to take the gold and chrome toned pieces apart and then put it back together.  Taking it apart doesn’t take a very long time but putting the puzzle back together might take a bit longer because you have to meet a certain requirement for the right solution.  Each piece has a word on it.  The way the word is written is very interesting because when you look at the word one way it will read as “Key” but when you turn the word around the same word will read as “Ring”.  See the images.

The pieces must come back together in a way in which one pieces reads as “Key” and the other reads as “Ring” without having to turn the puzzle around.  While this puzzle is easier than some of the other puzzles found in the Cast series, I think it is worth getting because of the unique solution requirement.  If you are looking to increase the challenge then I would suggest trying to solve this puzzle with your eyes closed.    

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Cast Duet Puzzle

I’ve had a revelation this week that I wanted to share it with you.  I’ve come to terms with being utterly confused while solving a puzzle and I’ve learned that it is ok to dwell there for a while.  I say for a while because entering a state of insanity is acceptable for the creative process involved in problem solving but it isn’t preferred when you are checking out of your local grocery store and the cashier asks if you are ok.  She asked if I was ok because I was rolling my eyes and twirling my hands like an amateur composer.  I couldn’t help but laugh.  I was just trying to mentally find one of the many solutions possible for a puzzle called Cast Duet.  I guess there are 28 solutions according to George’s excellent solution guide.  If you are stumped and only interested in the first five solutions then check out the solution webpage located on the Puzzle Master website.  One solution involves separating the ring from the 3x3 grid.  Doesn’t sound too bad does it?  Well the ring that you need to remove has to be split into two halves.  Each half has a gap and a notch in which the ring slides through the grid.  When navigating one half through the grid the other half can block your progress so a little planning is helpful.  In essence, this is a maze puzzle. 

I have been able to find a few of the solutions but not all 28.  It can get a little repetitive after you find the first solution but it’s a great little puzzle to have in your pocket while you are standing in line, waiting to get your haircut, etc.  Many of these types of puzzles only have one solution, which is a good thing as far as puzzle mechanics, but the replay value might not be very high for some puzzlers.  This puzzle provides an a lot of fun and gives you a reason to come back for more punishment.  This puzzle is available at PuzzleMaster, Amazon, and other puzzle stores.    

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Two Keys Puzzle

Hello puzzlers!!!  Back for extreme close ups and bad jokes I see.  Well I can’t really see you…. Or can I.  I’m looking at you one eyed purple people eater.  As you can tell, I carefully plan my intros.  So, the puzzle hidden behind door number three is called Two Keys by Jean Claude Constantin.  In a nutshell, this puzzle is what happens when a laser gun asks an innocent piece of wood for all its money and the wood refuses…. Ok ok what I mean is that the wood is laser cut to form the two mazes found on this puzzle.  However, if we lived in a world where laser guns and wood had human characteristics then my scenario would be perfectly plausible.  

The objective of the puzzle is to remove the metal peg from the puzzle by navigating it through the two different puzzles.  The maze on the front is different from the one on the back.  The maze found on the front can slide left or right.  You can also move the metal peg.  I really like maze puzzles because they are not very hard and they don’t take a long time to solve.  This is also the case for this puzzle.  I welcome this characteristic of the puzzle because my brain is still recovering from some of the other puzzles I tackled a few weeks ago.  Overall, it is a good puzzle.  The sliding action is nice for a wooden puzzle and it’s something that can easily fit in your pocket.  

I got this puzzle from PuzzleMaster.  Although, as of this moment they don’t have it in stock and I was not able to find it elsewhere.  Please leave a message in the comments section if you know where the puzzle can be purchased.  I would like to open up the comments section for this post to random topics.  Go nuts people but keep it clean.  I’ll start it off.  I wish they had a White Castle burger restaurant in my town.  What fast food joint would you like in your city?  Let us know.   


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