August 27, 2010

New Move Puzzle Box

Jeff Chiou of recently loaned me a number of puzzles, mostly boxes, from his collection. The next few entries will be about the puzzles he loaned me. The first of which is the "New Move" puzzle box by Yamanka Kumiki Works. Check out Jeff's entry about it here.

As you can see from this lovely photo by Jeff, it has a very nice yosegi pattern on the outside. I like how it doesn't really leave the eye a good place to rest, it makes it look quite dazzling.

This one appears to operate like a normal Japanese puzzle box, but after the 3rd move, it seems to lock up! I fiddled with it for a few minutes before I discovered the solution, which is pretty clever. It really takes advantage of your expectation for how a box like this should work.

Once I had solved it, I noticed that there was a rattling noise coming from somewhere, but I couldn't figure out why. After pursuing it for a few minutes, I decided that it was just a red herring and closed the box up.

A few days later, while I was at the Rochester Puzzle Picnic, I was trying out Hexagon by Hiroyuki Oka. I had seen it before at Brett's house, but decided to give it another try. I opened it after a few moments and noticed a rattling noise, didn't make anything of it. However, somebody pointed out that there was actually a second compartment if I kept looking! Sure enough, there was a second compartment that contained a tiny little puzzle box, and I vowed to never leave a mysterious rattle so lightly.

When I returned home, I revisited New Move box and the mysterious rattle. I examined it very closely and couldn't possibly imagine how an additional compartment could be hidden, since the main compartment fills the entire volume of the box. However, sure enough, there is one!

Overall, a very cool box! I checked their website, and it doesn't look like they have any quite like this available, but they have one on their products page called New Trick. Perhaps it is the same, but it is hard to tell.

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