Symmetrick was a Top 10 Vote Getter during the IPP33 Puzzle Design Competition in Japan. It was also Vesa's exchange puzzle during IPP32 the previous year. In case you didn't know, vesa is a very prolific designer with a number of Hanayama Cast puzzle designs to his name.
Comprising of just two irregular shaped pieces made of Finnish Curly Birch wood in a raw finish, the goal here is to form a symmetrical shape. The instructions are clear....to place the two pieces on a flat surface to form a symmetrical shape...no tricks, no silhouette, hole in centre and the like.
One would wonder how difficult can that be with just two pieces right? Wrong...it is in fact a rather difficult puzzle, more so if you don't even understand what a symmetrical shape refers to.
During IPP33 itself, I had already seen quite a number of puzzlers in the competition room trying to figure this one out.... and many couldn't solve it even by the end of the event. All round it received a lot of positive comments. I took about a couple of hours before hitting the jackpot. Please PM me if you would like to see the solution...it's really quite unexpected.
Symmetrick IMHO is really an example of a great puzzle design, so simple and innocuous looking with just two pieces, yet very challenging. For those who love this sort of shape forming puzzles, its a must have. Available from Mr Puzzle Of Australia and Sloyd of Finland.
Four Triangles Five Shapes
This puzzle came courtesy of Emrehan Halici. I had a privilege of meeting Emrehan the second time during IPP35 in Ottawa last year and his Four Triangles Five Shapes (FTFS) was his exchange puzzle to me.
The FTFS is made of 3mm red laser cut acrylic. The four pieces comprise of four triangles of different shapes. Nicely cut and pretty large pieces so easy to handle.
There are five different tasks here (hence the name "five shapes"). Using all the triangles to make the following shapes:-
1. 3 different Pararellograms
2. An Isoceles triangle
3. A Square
I was able to make just one of the parallelograms, the isoceles triangle and the square...or so I thought. I shot an email to Emrehan for the solutions to the other two parallelograms and when he replied I was in for a shock; I had only gotten the square correct!
How difficult is the FTFS? Well, I only managed to solve one of the five shapes, despite just four pieces. I would rate it as very challenging indeed. As this one is an exchange puzzle, it's only available from the designer (assuming he has any left), so please PM me if you would like to get a copy and I will link you up with Emrehan.