Sunday, 3 January 2016

Results are in...

Thanks to everyone who took the time to send in an entry... and for all the abuse that came along with it - you know who you are - and I know I'm doing the right thing by getting some of my puzzling friends around the world to wrack their little grey cells to identify some really obscure low resolution pictures of (alleged!) puzzles. 

First off the mark with a really early entry was Will Hu from Australia - he improved his entry a couple of times over the course of the week, but sadly, didn't stay at the top of my leaderboard for very long... he did end on a very creditable 40.5 - Well done Will!

Georg and Astrid put in a joint entry and scored a jolly fine 42 - good number that! Coincidentally, Brett scored exactly the same... and then a day later spotted a Loki in there, sadly a day too late. Oli managed to tear himself away from child-minding for a few minutes to put in an impressive 46 correct answers.

For quite a while I had a tie on 46.5 between Nick, Chris and Steve and only a late burst of inspiration when he woke up on New Year's Day gave Nick Robert Rose's Double Semi-Maze to put him in the lead at 47.5 ... good thing puzzlers aren't at all competitive. 

So this year's winner (again!) is Nick Baxter - I shall be posting you some Strijbos heavy metal, that I'm assured you don't have, in due course... Well done Nick!

I need to add a footnote in here and give a shout-out to Mike from Hawaii who put in an entry that made me revisit all the scores (and remove half a point from everyone else!) ... he'd listed a designer for The Brain and I'd always thought the designer wasn't known... a "fact" that seemed to be borne out when none of the other entrants had a name in there - just Mag-Nif who were the manufacturers, a scan through Rob Stegmann's online compendium didn't list a designer and neither did the manufacturer's website... so I quizzed my mates at the EPP yesterday and they didn't know, and it was only this morning that Google pointed me at Goetz's website (and a Martin Gardner archive) that confirmed that Marvin Allison Jr designed The Brain - thanks Mike.

OK - here are all the answers to my holiday challenge... the numbers came courtesy of Brett (thanks!) - and the answers were mainly culled from Nick's entry, with a little editing... :-) 

I gave credit for either Fisher or Rubik on 3... pretty much everyone got 14 right - tribute to the instantly recognisable colour scheme on Derek's puzzle. Yes Rotary Box II did look quite a bit like Pentagon... 24 was probably a step too far... it was virtually impossible to tell that the black bit toward the back was an arrow on the sticker and not a division between cubies - no-one got that one... but it was the only one that nobody managed to get right - so I don't feel too bad! The Kaldeway at 33 is the simpler one in the series. At 43 I deliberately went for the variant and not the original, 'cos I'm horrible! Someone suggested that I should have been really strict and insisted on the full name for the designer at 48 - but I didn't, because it's Christmas! :-) 

Hope you enjoyed that... same again next year?


1 Slideways Burr
Ray Stanton

2 Cable Car (IPP17 Host Gift)
Gary Foshee

3 (replica of original) Rubik's Cube
Erno Rubik / Tony Fisher

4 Stickman No. 7 Puzzle Box 
   (Beast Box)
Robert Yarger

5 Extreme Torture
Frans de Vreugd

6 Sandfield's Secret Folding Hankie
Sandfield, McDaniel, Liange

7 O Canada
Nick Baxter

8 Butterfly Lock Box 
   (or Pleasure and Pain)
Wil Strijbos

9 Half (J)
Hideaki Kawashima

10 Irmo Puzzle Box
Eric Fuller

11 City Maze
Raf Peeters

12 Octo Burr
Stewart Coffin

13 Cross Links
Mike Toulouzas

14 Helical Burr
Derek Bosch

15 Pipes in Pipe
Kunio Saeki

16 Rotary Box II
Akio Kamei

17 TrickLock 2015
Louis Coolen

18 The Brain
Marvin Allison Jr. [manuf. by Mag-Nif]

19 Uri Three Bars
Dario Uri

20 Power Tower
Goh Pit Khiam, Jack Krijnen

21 Wanderer
Oskar van Deventer

22 Three-Piece Blockhead
Bill Cutler

23 Ring Box
Gary Foshee

24 Latch Cube
Katsuhiko Okamoto

25 Loki
Anthony Evans and Lee Raspin

26 Texas Coin Puzzle
Mineyuki Uyematsu

27 Stickman No. 12 Puzzle Box 
    (Cross Box)
Robert Yarger

28 Stickman No. 28 Puzzlebox 
Robert Yarger / William Waite

29 Katie Koala
Brian Young

30 Cooksey Cylinder
Richard Cooksey

31 Egg
Wil Strijbos

32 Double Semi-Maze
RD Rose

33 Orion
Peter Kaldeway

34 Ze Orange
Stephen Chin

35 Stickman No. 18 Puzzle Box 
   (Sphere Box)
Robert Yarger

36 Hard-Boiled Coin
Mineyuki Uyematsu

37 Fire Plug
Marcel Gillen

38 Stickman No. 1 Puzzle Box 
   (Oak Wood Slide Box)
Robert Yarger

39 Ze Eggs!
Stephen Chin

40 Oskar (a.k.a. Cast Oskar 
   or Oskar's Key)
Oskar van Deventer

41 Golden Ratio Box
Peter Wiltshire

42 Rhombic Maze Burr
Derek Bosch

43 Matchbox Play Six
Olexandre Kapkan

44 Twin-Lens Reflex Camera
Hideaki Kawashima

45 Square Dissection 
   (a.k.a. Square Deception)
Nick Baxter

46 Naked Secret Box "PURPLE"
Akio Yamamoto

47 Jugo Flower Puzzle
Wil Strijbos (original designer unknown)

48 Stecker
Roger D

49 Visible Burr
Bill Cutler

50 Stickman Magic Tile Lockbox
Robert Yarger

51 Minimal Twist
Oskar van Deventer


  1. Awesome! I didn't do too well but not too bad either! Great fun - look forward to the same next year!


    1. Thanks for playing along Kevin! Here's to next year...

  2. Congratulations to Nick! Same again next year and I'll try a little harder. There was at least one more in there that I coulda/shoulda got. Thanks for the entertainment Allard!

  3. Fun, as always, though I spent far too much of New Year's Eve trying to ID the hard ones.
    Also, Rob Stegmann spotted the Loki and mentioned it to me. I had no idea they even existed.

    1. Hopefully it didn't get in the way of more important things! Loki is a rather handsome puzzle - still on my unsolved pile after almost a year though... :-(

  4. Thanks Allard! I love it that you inspire everyone to think more about the's a nice tribute.

    1. Thanks for playing along Nick and WELL DONE!