Sunday 15 July 2018

Stickman no.33 Hexagram Puzzlebox

Unless this is the first post you’ve ever read on my blog, you know I’m probably going to say nice things about this puzzle… Spoiler alert: it’s my blog and I choose not to write about puzzles that I don’t like – simples!

So let’s get that bit over and done with: this is a neat little box that surprises(!) throughout its solution – there may only be four moves(!) to solve this puzzle, but they are all interesting and unexpected in their own way… it’s clever.

Now that we’ve dispensed with that, if you’re still reading, let’s go back to the start…

For a while now Rob has been randomly selecting names from his ever-growing mailing list to offer his new batches of puzzles to… that’s become a mounting headache and generally results in piles of emails from people who weren’t on the list this time. With the release of no.33, Rob’s headed in a different direction and added a shop to his website, and let market forces / collectors’ eagerness take care of the rationing for him.

I got lucky this time as the email arrived pretty much as I was getting up for the day, so rather than head into the shower, I headed for the PC, hit up Rob’s shop and ordered a copy… others weren’t quite as lucky: many American collectors were blissfully in the Land of Nod as all this was unfolding, and as a result when they headed for their PC’s rather their showers, quite a few found the batch had been sold out… I’m guessing that there’ll be swings and roundabouts on this one and things will even out over time…

Fast forward a couple of weeks and I have a lovely little puzzle in my hands and I find I cannot get it to do anything interesting… Rob tries to help by suggesting it might have jammed up a bit on the trip across the ocean – Yeah, right! I tell him it’s almost certainly down to operator error.

It took me several days to stumble upon the first move… it worked exactly as it should – it certainly wasn’t jammed, I just didn’t try the right thing… the first move is interesting… definitely not what I’d anticipated!

The next few moves rattled out reasonably soon after the first (albeit eventual!) discovery, resulting in a little open puzzlebox just begging to have something put inside it to annoy / confuse the next puzzler who has a bash at it… ‘cos I’m nice that way. :-)
This modestly sized little puzzle certainly packs a lot of surprises into a small form factor… I’m still trying to imagine how the mechanism works for one of those unexpected moves…

[If you don't just want to take my word for it, see what renowned-puzzlebox-collector-in-denial Kevin has to say about it over here.]

1 comment:

  1. I am NOT a puzzle box collector but I will obtain as many Stickman PUZZLES as I can get my hands on! A few of my other puzzles happen to have cavities but I can't help that can I?