The head-scratchy, rolly, twisty-turny physical puzzle thread.
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  • davyK
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    As much as I like a video game, and a good video puzzle game, I am also a fan of physical puzzles. From the old Solitaire & marbles game, through classic rolling marble games, to modern head scratchers such as Rush Hour.

    I am currently attempting a full run at Addictaball (Original version) and have my eye on its big brother - Perplexus Epic. (Perplexus is the US name for addictaball - the epic version hasn't been released in Europe for some reason). It's a bit of a bast of a puzzle and requires a deft touch and in some cases a little bit of 3D-inspired lateral thinking to figure out the path. Helpfully it is split into 3 sections that act as continue points. Having diffs at the end of the 2nd section and the end of the 3rd section is so complex that I haven't even figured out the path to the end yet.

    Around this time of year I like to pick a toughie like this and set a target to have it done by end of the year. Last year I tackled a 2D marble maze called MasterMaze which is a basic labyrinth with 100 checkpoints and more than 100 holes in the surface to avoid. It requires a fair degree of skill and patience but is constructed to a very high standard - when you fall down a hole a quick tilt of the game brings the ball back to the start (no restart points here!). I managed to get to the centre of it last year but when I went back to it over the summer I had lost my Mojo. A complete run is to reach the centre and then do a reverse run back to the start - not dissimilar to performing a 2nd loop in an STG for the true ending.

    Old favourites include the pentominoes ripoff called Multipuzzle which I'm thinking of getting again as its been rereleased to the same quality of the original and is cheap as chips on Amazon.

    Rush Hour was nice but it took too long to get hard. I never invested in the expansion set -maybe I should have?

    Any other fans here? Any recommendations?


    The ball ache that is Master Maze:
    MAZE-001.jpg


    And the wondrous looking Perplexus Epic:
    Perplexus-Epic-3D-Puzzle--pTRU1-11382185dt.jpg
  • acemuzzy
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    Good use of ball ache btw
  • I used to love the games where you had to get a steel ball bearing up a wall of moving platforms.
  • Can't find an example, I'm sure I didn't imagine it. Screwball scramble was a favourite, so much so I mastered it with one foot.
  • davyK
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    Pocketeers were a big deal back in the day. Little hand held games that comprised of various mazes etc. Some of them have clockwork actions in them and they were rather clever within the limits of the format.

    Steeplechase was one of the better ones:
    obstaclecourse.png

    Rock n Roll was another:
    jmRockNRoll.jpg
  • I kinda want a Perplexus Epic now.
  • davyK
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    So do I. I want to wait until I master the original. But I can see me ordering it before too long. i prefer the more sober colour scheme with it. The original and rookie versions are quite child like in their colour scheme - they aren't kids toys though such is the difficulty once you get past the 1st section.

    For those with deeper rockets, what about commissioning one of these?

  • davyK
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    Have been jousting with the Rubik 360 too. It's an exercise in finding and manipulating the centres of balance in the different layers.  There is a knack to it - but I haven't quite got it yet.

    9114rubik360_6.jpg
  • davyK
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    I used to have this - was pretty simple but the kids loved it and my elder daughter has a yearning to play it again so it's in the post. It's a basic Solitaire peg jumper but the presentation elevates it for younger folks and there's a selection of starting positions for varied play.

    DownsizePhoto.jpg

    There's a frog based variant that might suit the target audience better. Though the single red frog suggests there's a higher level of challenge by having to finish with that one on the board.
    513hDWFtxJL._SY355_.jpg
  • davyK
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    The aforementioned Rush Hour. It inspired plenty of apps this one.

    A thing I like about physical puzzles is the opportunity for well thought out design that doesn't require you to hold onto the box. I like them to be little self-contained units. Neat little pieces of design like this bring me joy. I have always liked looking at little travel chess sets and things like that.

    rushHour.jpg
  • davyK
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    Multipuzzle is a redux of the original pentominoes which itself inspired Mr Pashitnov to create Tetris.

    This is the 60's version I remember.

    Multipuzzle-Spear-ca.-1960s.jpg

    This is the modern remake…same contents just slightly less naive packaging.

    61Rb0Oq0OPL._SL1500_.jpg
  • davyK
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    Then there is the ancient tangram puzzle which after all these years I still find to be quite fascinating. A more elegant version of pentominoes; the aim is to create a picture out of just 7 basic shapes - what can be done with them seems to be limitless. 

    Again - this has inspired a thousand digital ripoffs but the physical puzzle is preferable - though the Wiiware variant of this, called Neves Plus*, is quite excellent and content packed. It appears to have hundreds of puzzles, benefits from the wiimote control scheme,  and has multiplayer modes for up to 4 - well worth a look.

    * A google image search nets you screenshots but some bonus material consisting of a young lady with a lot to offer. Just be careful.


    headingpicture.jpg

    Wiiware version:
    neves-plus-20090622055155371-2902844_640w.jpg
  • TopSpinPhoto.jpg

    Topspin was a favourite, the top piece rotates , the aim was to get the numbers in order.

    I loved anything like these as a kid (except rubiks cubes) .
  • davyK
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    That's a new one on me…

    Yeah - I didn't click with the cube either. I ended up getting a "how to" book. Don't think I ever got under 2 mins though.

    Old puzzles are ripe for implementation as apps nowadays. The trick is to find one sufficiently obscure to tweak and make a winner…anything but another match 3 game please!
  • Bought this for my dad a couple of years ok, he still hasn't managed it
    l_bedlam_retro1.jpg

    Perplexus epic looks brilliant.
  • davyK
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    It does….have added a pic to the OP. I even like the little stand it comes with.

    Here's a pic of the Addictaball original model I'm working on. You can see the 3 start points in this pic. The European version has some colour changes and no natty stand! Only the epic has the two-tone "I'm all grown up" look.

    Addictaball.jpg
  • I've just added it to my Christmas wish list.
  • davyK
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    I'll be doing that too - maybe if enough of us do so we can have a perplexsus helpline thread..
  • davyK
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    If someone did a pocketeers emulator using smartphone tilt…….
  • davyK
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    Wifey got me a Perplexus Epic. Marvellous. It's rock hard - very exacting and much more challenging than the version known as Addictaball in the UK (which is a notch lower in the Perplexus series).

    Have only managed to get to marker 25 out of 125..
  • I was playing my dad's addictaball today that I bought him after this thread, an even harder version would have me punching walls I think.
  • davyK
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    Addictaball is tough enough - I haven't yet done a clean run on that one either. I'm close though.
  • Looks really fun. Quite like the X wing gimmick.
  • davyK
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    Feck it. Bought it.
  • i think i was intrigued by this when the thread was last active, and interest has been renewed...i've now got addictaball on the list as a b'day pressie for someone (preferably someone where i can then get access to it!).
    "Like i said, context is missing."
    http://ssgg.uk
  • just bought addicataball
    Currently playing Animal Crossing
  • davyK
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    Welcome to a world of pain.
  • davyK
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    Have got to a bit in the Star Wars Perplexus where I pick the ball up using a magnet attached to the underside of a little x-wing that I move by turning the R2D2 at the top - you have to tilt the sphere as you move the x-wing to make it swing past obstacles. Have picked the ball up but I have no idea where I am supposed to set it down to continue.

    This is lovely.
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