Wednesday, August 5, 2020
A Non-Conventional Puzzle - Geneva
This puzzle is different! … It includes some very unique rotations and coordinate motions! … I went back to bashing my head against the desk!
With comments like these (from puzzlers who shall remain blameless), who could resist taking this puzzle for a spin. William Hu has been producing several new interesting designs lately and his puzzle Geneva is no exception. In addition to the comments above, the Cubicdissection site also entices you with the warning that the level of difficulty is 9.3.4 and that rotations and coordinate motion are involved.
Geneva was released by Cubicdissection in May 2020. It is made from Curly Ash and consists of 4 pieces that interlock to form a 4x4x4 cube. This puzzle is larger than you would expect from recent Cubicdissection releases. I’m guessing that this was done since there is no fancy joinery and the butt joints would benefit from the additional surface area.
With only 4 pieces, it’s easy to determine how the pieces would be positioned within a 4x4x4 cube. Getting them together - therein lies the difficulty. Interestingly enough, getting 2 of the pieces together, took me a few of minutes. At first it doesn’t seem possible, and then it was. Getting all 4 pieces together entails a very well designed rotational sequence. It is this movement that everyone is thinking about when they comment on Geneva. It reminded me of something that you would encounter in a Gregory Benedetti puzzle.
You may have noticed that the solved cube has some visible bits missing. That’s the price you pay for getting that nice rotational sequence. Some designers add pieces to fill those holes and some don’t. Jeff Namkung is a good example of a designer who developed some 4x4x4 cubes with voids like this to achieve a higher degree of complexity.
Expect to see more great things from William Hu. I have a feeling that he is just getting started.