Wil’s recent announcement of a new puzzle was greeted with plenty of excitement, and more than a few orders.
We’d first been introduced to a Lotus prototype back in the middle of last year when Wil came over to visit us at an MPP. Several people had a go at it and none of us got very far … so he made it a little more difficult and kicked off production!
Lotus is the latest blue anodised aluminium puzzle from the Strijbos stable. From the side it resembles a classic impossible object of a trapped nail in a block of wood with a coin around the nail. On the edge there’s a nod to Wil’s other trademark feature – a dovetail joint running through the entire length of the body. On one end you can see a little black stopper and something rattling behind it… the nail slides in and out, a bit, but not enough to do anything useful, the washer around the nail spins pleasingly and the dovetail joint is resolutely locked… oh, and there’s a threaded hole in the top of the body … but that’s your lot!
Shake it and it rattles – surprise! At least that’s something to work on…
Solving the Lotus is very much a sequential discovery process … and you’ll find some rather interesting and very well hidden and/or disguised tools along the way – working out which ones are useful, and how they can be used is a wonderful little voyage of discovery.
This puzzle is like an onion in the way that it lets you in one layer at a time … and one of the best features is that you can’t see how many layers there are from the outside, so you have to feel your way forward without really knowing how much further you have to go.
At one point you’ll get a little prize for all your troubles, and you may be tempted to think that’s the end of the road - far from it … you need to keep going until you discover where this puzzle gets its name from … or until you’ve disassembled it totally if you’re really curious.
Wil’s helpfully pointed out that the solution doesn’t require any bashing, tapping or knocking (or any other variation thereof!) – so don’t bother investigating that, you won’t solve it that way and you’ll just feel silly afterwards!
Please be careful though, there are plenty of opportunities to launch tools in various directions so please play carefully, and heed Wil’s wisdom and only remove that peg after you’ve solved the entire puzzle and you’re sure you know what’s going to happen…