I've done a couple of YouTube videos on these puzzles and my shock at finding them. But by now I shouldn't be surprised to find puzzles when I go out. What should surprise me is the type and number of puzzles I can find. I'm a twisty gal at heart, but I don't discriminate, and this posting will attest to that.
So here's two shops finds for you....
And what have we got here? Three Moku moku puzzles from Artbox in Japan, and three puzzles from Lagoon games (Uk originally)
I'll start with the Japanese Puzzles. I found these in a street stall when waiting for Uwe the other day. He is notoriously late-we always plan for 6, but he forgets the traffic that time of day, and Rox of course always remembers and gets there for the appointed dinner time only to wait as usual. So what do I do? Why take a walk around and see if I can spot anything new. These are wooden Jigsaws. Easily done right? Yes. I was hoping they would be along the difficulty lines of the bantam eggs, but sadly, they are just slide jigsaws that really aren't that well cut when I look at them. I put together the coffee cup, and the base is one of those 4 piece puzzles that need to be twisted just the right way to stay in place. Sadly, it's just not tight enough to do that, so it sits on my shelf with sticky tape on the bottom. The globe and the ice cream can wait. But on the plus side, they have a wonderful smell!
On to Lagoon games. I was waiting for Mr. B. so we could have our Saturday night Corona's in the square and dang it all if I wasn't way too early again...so as usual, I started to wander around the area. This time I was in East TST and my meanderings led me to a shopping mall called K11. I noticed there was a Dymocks in there, and that book store usually carries puzzles so in I went.
Up the first escalator wasn't so bad, and the second was ok. By the third I was shaking and needed to find a lift to get up one more floor. I'm not afraid of heights really, but I'm afraid of wide open spaces at heights, and that looking down 4 floors from the side of the elevator was enough to have me quaking. But lucky for me, I found a little shop that was full of gizmos so in I went to get past that bit of nerves I had just encountered.
Ok, so inside they had about 4 different wooden puzzles from Lagoon games, 3 versions of the perpetual puzzles, some illusion jigsaws and a couple of animal stacking jigsaws for kids. Well, since those jigsaws packed a hefty price tag-right around US$50 and they were nothing more than animals sitting on other animals, I passed. The illusion jigsaws while interesting were nothing more than a jigsaw.
Perpetual puzzles, there were three versions available-a cat, a dog, and the parrots that I picked up. Not cheap that is for sure, but not overly expensive and the bug enjoyed the most difficult challenge of no beaks and no tails and no bodies of the same color. It kept her quiet for a couple of hours last night. (and anything that can do that is worth its weight in gold!)
Alcatraz was designed by Ronald Kint-Bruynseels. He of the IPP design competition trophy fame (seriously! he's famous!) Ok, so Alcatraz. I can't tell you anything about it other than it looks to have 7 pieces, 6 of which form a burr and the 7th is the 'prisoner' that needs to escape. I haven't had the time to play with it yet, but it looks like it will be a bit of fun when I do get that time....
Now the Caged knot I have played with. I've seen photos of this one on various webpages and have always wanted one. When I saw it in that shop I didn't think twice and added it to my bag. It's nice. The puzzle was designed by Tom Jolly. For a mass produced puzzle, it's still nice. There are a few sharp edges, and I can see the glue overflow, not all the bits are lined up properly, but it's still a nice challenge. And a challenge it is. It took me a while to solve it (about 3 minutes), and an even longer while to unsolve it. Thanks Tom for letting them do a nice cheap version of this one. Well, cheap as in US$20 more or less.
Videos of Caged knot and Alcatraz can be seen on my YouTube channel. (Including one of me breaking a puzzle!)
As I was trying to solve the puzzle, I ran into a bit of a problem. The pieces came out with no problem. Getting it back together is the real puzzle. This is usually the case isn't it. Big problem though. Earlier I mentioned that the bits weren't exactly lined up. So when I attempted to put the puzzle back together-the burr back into the cage, those tight misaligned pieces had a bit of an accident and one piece snapped. Well, now I have the puzzle of finding wood glue. Does anyone know how to say that in Chinese?????