Love is in the air! And you know what that means. The day that you can’t be caught playing with puzzles is fast approaching. Yes, Valentine’s day is almost upon us. You only have 1 more day before the puzzle fasting begins. In the spirit of this holiday, I decided to present a lovely heart puzzle that you might be able to safely use by offering it as a gift to your significant other if caught.
This fickle heart has gone by many names. I’m sure every puzzle collector recognizes the frustration of trying not to buy multiple copies of the same puzzle with different names. It’s hard enough to keep track of a puzzle collection if every puzzle just had a single name. So how about some of those names for this fickle heart:
- In 2006, the Russian puzzle designer, Kirill Grebnev, designed a heart shaped wire puzzle with a little rope loop that had to be removed. He called it Love Secret and entered it in the 26th IPP Nob Yoshigahara Puzzle Design Competition. It didn’t win. Was it the name?
- After the competition, Kirill had a change of heart and decided to call it Clear Heart. You can read about his decision on his web site.
- Several years ago, I purchased this puzzle on the Etsy GiftforSoul shop. The paperwork that came with it identified it as In Inima. Not knowing what that meant, I dropped those two words into Google Translate and it informed me that it means In The Heart and that it’s Romanian. Way to go Google! If you don’t know the URL for Google Translate, you can Google it. No, seriously - Google “google translate” and the translate app will be running at the top of the google search results page.
- The GiftforSoul Etsy shop is currently empty, but you can now buy it from Puzzle Master. Is it called Love Secret, Clear Heart, or In Inima? Of course not! It’s now called Panic Attack. It breaks my heart to say that the Puzzle Master version looks nicer with the two ends of the wire welded together instead my copy with the ends looped together.
Now that we have the name of the puzzle sorted out, how is it as a puzzle. I first saw it at one of the puzzle parties years ago and was impressed with the way it looked and how approachable it was. Although it isn’t difficult, it could throw an inexperience puzzler for a loop. You can tell it’s an easy puzzle from the packaging once you realize that Nivel Simplu is not the name of the designer. Another huge clue is the size of the loop. It would be very difficult to tie this one up in knots. However, taking the puzzle back out after a couple of years for this post, it still took me a couple of minutes to remove the rope even though I knew the exit strategy. I think it’s a perfect puzzle to give to a beginner puzzler interested in wire disentanglement puzzles or that significant other if you're caught red-handed instead of with red roses.
If you’re interested in acquiring your own copy, you can get it from Puzzle Master here.