Wednesday, December 9, 2020

They’re Everywhere! But This One Is Special! - ACorn

ACorn by Andrew Crowell
This time of year, there is nothing but acorns everywhere you look.  They cover the yard, they cover the sidewalk, they cover the street, and you can hear them raining down on the cars.  You have to be especially careful when you are out walking to avoid having them roll your feet out from under you.  You also learn pretty quickly to cover your head anytime there is a slight  breeze.  Even as we near the end of this year's acorn barrage, I was still happy when one particular ACorn hit my house.

This new ACorn is one of Andrew Crowell's new Apparent cube puzzles. It’s 3D printed with a light brown frame with the name debossed on the side.  Like ManiAC, which was the subject of last week's post (Apparently Another Crazy Puzzle - ManiAC Shuffle), it has 2 separate challenges.  Each challenge involves taking a set of pieces and packing them into the seemingly wide-open frame so that it appears to contain a squat 3x3x2 cube.

The first challenge uses a set of 3 marble pieces debossed with the number 1 on them.  This challenge is a warm-up and much easier than the second challenge.  The rotations required were fairly simple and didn’t require any dexterity to accomplish.  If you’re new to these types of puzzles, this is the one to start with!

On the other hand, the second challenge consisting of 4 black pieces debossed with the number 2 was a real challenge.  Although there is a rotation, this one is not about rotations.  There are only so many ways to insert the largest piece and I found myself going around and around and doing the same things over and over.  I finally gave up and started to think about the problem.  The key thought that led me to the solution was a[sigjfi[j giegr[erjoier gjerg [eji9g[e9jge[ 9rjgeg ijergad fgjldjgioe wrkj gioekr kgjdgj;ek gjrkiejg  - Sorry, nodded off and my forehead took over the typing.  Where was I?  Oh, yes - this second challenge is what makes this puzzle a must-have and the first challenge is simply an added bonus.  

ACorn is a great puzzle with both an easy and difficult challenge.  Something for everybody!

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