It’s Follow-Up Friday: Rubik’s Explosion edition!

Welcome to Follow-Up Friday!

By this time, you know the drill. Follow-Up Friday is a chance for us to revisit the subjects of previous posts and bring the PuzzleNation audience up to speed on all things puzzly.

And I’d like to return to the subject of twisty puzzles.

I’ve written before about the 3-D printing revolution and its effect on puzzling; now creators can customize puzzles like never before, designing mind-blowing puzzles and games unlike anything you’ve seen before.

And twisty puzzles like the Rubik’s Cube are a favorite of many 3-D puzzle designers.

You may remember last year when I wrote about the world’s largest Rubik’s-style puzzle, a 17x17x17 twisty puzzle known as the “Over the Top” Rubik’s Cube, created by Oskar van Deventer.

Well, Oskar’s masterpiece has been one-upped by the folks at Coren Puzzle, who have created a 22x22x22 Rubik’s-style cube!

Composed of 2,691 individual 3-D printed pieces, they’ve had some difficulty bringing their new puzzle to fruition, as you’ll see in the video below, posted a few months ago:

Yes, the first attempt to assemble this monstrous puzzle literally exploded in their hands. (Twice!) But they persevered, and now, please feast your eyes on the new record holder:

And here I sit, having never solved an actual Rubik’s Cube. This one might be a bit too much for me.


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It’s Follow-Up Friday: Rubik ‘Round the World edition!

Welcome to Follow-Up Friday!

By this time, you know the drill. Follow-Up Friday is a chance for us to revisit the subjects of previous posts and bring the PuzzleNation audience up to speed on all things puzzly.

And today, I’d like to return to the subject of twisty puzzles and the Rubik’s Cube!

history

[Picture courtesy of Rubiks.com.]

It’s been over 40 years since Erno Rubik created the first working prototype of the Rubik’s Cube, and over the decades, these unmistakable little cubes have changed the face of puzzles and games.

We’ve seen the world’s largest Rubik’s-style cube being solved, a building turned into a solvable Rubik’s Cube, and just this year, a new speed-solving world record of 5.25 seconds became the mark to beat for competitive puzzlers.

This puzzle has truly global appeal, and perhaps no video provides more telling proof of that fact than the one I have for you today.

A globe-trotting YouTuber named Nuseir Yassin brought a Rubik’s Cube with him as he explored eleven different countries, and he accomplished something I’ve never seen before: an international group solve of a Rubik’s Cube.

Not only that, but each person who participated was only allowed 1 move before passing it along. One twist, one turn, one shifting of blocks. That’s all.

And guess what? It worked.

Just watch, and marvel at a truly unique and inimitable puzzle-solving experience:

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: puzzles make the world a better place.

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It’s Follow-Up Friday: Rapid Rubik edition!

Welcome to Follow-Up Friday!

By this time, you know the drill. Follow-Up Friday is a chance for us to revisit the subjects of previous posts and bring the PuzzleNation audience up to speed on all things puzzly.

And I’d like to return to the subject of twisty puzzles.

Obviously the most famous twisty puzzle of all time is the Rubik’s Cube. It’s one of the most recognizable puzzles in the world, and there are entire tournaments dedicated to speed-solving those signature cubes.

As you may recall, I’ve written about Rubik’s Cube world records before, but you’ve never seen a solve like this. Collin Burns set a new world record for speed-solving a 3×3 Rubik’s Cube.

His solve was so fast that he could’ve solved a dozen Rubik’s Cubes or more in the time it’s taken you to read this far. Check it out!

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=huh4GEPKYt4]

Collin’s solve took 5.253 seconds, shattering the previous record of 5.55 seconds. Absolutely mind-blowing.

I wonder if Erno Rubik had any idea his eponymous cubes would’ve inspired something like this.

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It’s Follow-Up Friday: Rubik Ridiculousness edition!

Welcome to Follow-Up Friday!

By this time, you know the drill. Follow-Up Friday is a chance for us to revisit the subjects of previous posts and bring the PuzzleNation audience up to speed on all things puzzly.

And I’d like to return to the subject of twisty puzzles.

17x17x17_rubiks_cube_11

Last week I wrote a post discussing how 3-D printing is changing the way Rubik’s-style puzzles, or twisty puzzles, are being constructed.

One of the puzzles I mentioned was a monstrous 17x17x17 cube known as the “Over the Top” Rubik’s Cube, created by 3-D puzzler Oskar van Deventer. It’s the world’s largest Rubik’s-style puzzle, and a visually staggering artifact.

Well, as it turns out, not long after that post went live on the blog, I discovered a video of a twisty puzzle enthusiast SOLVING the 17x17x17 Over the Top puzzle:

Solved in seven and a half hours over the course of five days, this puzzle whiz (who goes by the YouTube handle “RedKB”) documented the entire process, then did a time lapse to compress the video into six minutes, as you can see in the clip above.

(For the fascinated, he’s also uploaded the entire seven hours of solving so you can see the complexity of the cube in its full, mind-boggling glory.)

It’s one thing to discuss these puzzles, and quite another to watch someone accept the challenge and then conquer it. A truly impressive puzzly effort.

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A New Dimension of Puzzles

[A 3-D printed puzzle from Instructables.com.]

3-D printing is the next big technological leap forward, and although the technology is only a few years old, it’s already responsible for some amazing advances.

You may have seen the story in the news recently that NASA “emailed” a new wrench to the International Space Station. For the first time, plans originating on Earth were sent electronically to the ISS and built in a 3-D printer, giving an astronaut the specific tool he needed while saving literally thousands upon thousands of dollars. That’s mind-blowing.

Every day, new stories are emerging from the medical field about the benefits of 3-D printing. A close friend of mine recently had brain surgery, and they used a 3-D printer to manufacture a new piece of skull specifically for her. That is a phenomenal thing.

And puzzles aren’t immune to the march of progress. Enterprising designers are creating new puzzles with increasing complexity, allowing them to build on existing models and add previously impossible variations and details into their designs.

I’ve previously featured the specialized twenty-sided die created by the folks at 64 Oz. Games, which were made with 3-D printers and feature braille renderings beneath every number.

One of the fastest growing fields in 3-D printed puzzles is known colloquially as the twisty puzzle, the numerous variations, expansions, and extrapolations from the Rubik’s Cube twisting/turning style of puzzles.

Check out this article about George Miller and Oskar van Deventer, who are pushing the envelope of twisty puzzles with some ingenious designs.

Meticulously designed and realized through 3-D printing, these puzzles have set world records — one is a 17x17x17 Rubik’s Cube with over 1,500 parts! — and taken twisty puzzles to unexpected places.

As 3-D printers become more affordable and more puzzlers embrace the technology, there’s no telling where puzzles will go next. But I cannot wait to find out.

Thanks for visiting PuzzleNation Blog today! You can share your pictures with us on Instagram, friend us on Facebook, check us out on TwitterPinterest, and Tumblr, and be sure to check out the growing library of PuzzleNation apps and games!