Puzzle Solving Tips
These tips are for “polyform” puzzles where the pieces fit in different ways often allowing multiple solutions, but more often leading to a situation where you can’t fit the last piece into the tray.
- Except for the Snowflake puzzle, it is generally not a good idea to fill all the corners first. A better strategy for these puzzles is to start at one end and work toward the other.
- If there is no engraving on the pieces, they may be flipped over to offer more possibilities. A piece with bilateral symmetry will be the same shape when flipped over. But an asymmetrical shape will be a different shape and fit in a different way when flipped over, making an asymmetrical piece essentially two different pieces. Therefore, try to generally use symmetrical pieces first and save the more versatile asymmetrical pieces until last.
- If you keep ending up with the same piece at the end, it must be a hard to place that piece. Start over and place that piece early.
- Watch small children play with the puzzle. They may try some illogical things that lead you to an “aha moment” that leads to the lateral thinking needed for an unexpected solution.
See how the puzzles work in this video:
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