Games World of Puzzles June 2020

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…From the Editor

We were working on this issue back in mid-March, when daily life suddenly changed. And just like you, we had to readjust to a new reality overnight.

As everyone hunkered down, we couldn’t help but notice how many people turned to games and puzzles, either as a momentary distraction or simply for sheer enjoyment. For some, that meant a quick game of Go Fish with the kids; for others, it was solving the New York Times crossword puzzle on their iPad.

The breakout sensation was undoubtedly Animal Crossing: New Horizons. When Nintendo released the latest installment of its popular social simulator on March 20, players around the globe flocked to the video game, which offered a brief respite from daily cares.

We hope that the June issue of Games World of Puzzles provides something similar. To begin with, you might enjoy Jonathan Schmalzbach’s in-depth look at a particularly tricky competition among trivia mavens: “The LearnedLeague: Trivia Crusaders” (page 40). This website, founded by Shayne Bushfield—aka Thorsten A. Integrity—has been perplexing and delighting competitors since 1997. Fortunately, it’s a friendly rivalry. As Schmalzbach testifies, members are mainly competing against themselves.

Games and puzzles also offer some a way to express their creativity or immerse themselves in a satisfying project. That’s certainly true of the AFOLs (adult fans of Lego) whom Andrew Parr writes about in his latest piece, “Tricks in the Bricks” (page 34). In the second article in Parr’s series, we meet a select group of builders who use these popular snap-together bricks to create intricate puzzle boxes.

After that, we suspect you’ll want to flex your powers of deduction. So it’s a good thing that this issue includes plenty of puzzles for the logic-minded, like “Flustered” (page 50), Joel Nanni’s clever mash-up of Boggle and logic. It’s an excellent warmup for “Honeycomb Hotel” (page 64), a clever logical path-finding puzzle from Everett Kaser.

Don’t worry, crossword fans; there are plenty of puzzles for you, too. To begin with, regular contributor Mike Nothnagel serves up two brand-new Mixed Doubles puzzles (pages 3 and 22). You also won’t want to skip “Some Assembly Required” (page 54), Patrick Berry’s tricky crossword variant with a jigsaw twist.

Speaking of twists, savvy solvers will notice that “Change of Art” by Mrcela Mladen appears on page 33, which is usually reserved for “What’s Happening,” our regular listing of upcoming events. But with so many fan cons and gaming get-togethers being postponed or rescheduled—at least for the time being—we thought one of Mladen’s charming, colorful spot-the-difference puzzles would be a welcome diversion. Of course, we expect “What’s Happening” will resume sometime soon.

In the meanwhile, stay safe, be well, and happy puzzling!


Jennifer Orehowsky
Senior Editor

CONTENTS

IN THIS ISSUE

Tricks in the Bricks
Exploring a specific niche of Lego design: puzzle boxes
Your Word Against Mine
Try these Scrabble puzzles to improve your game
The LearnedLeague: Trivia Crusaders
Your brain is the only reference tool allowed in this online trivia league
This Old Game: The Comical Game of “Who?”
Vintage games from the collector’s closet

PLUS…

Wild Cards
A potpourri of amusing little puzzles for your solving pleasure
Change of Art
Find the 10 differences between these illustrated scenes
Contest: Coded Crisscross XI
Contest Results: Fill in the Details (from October)
Electronic Game Reviews
Untitled Goose Game, Seven Scrolls
Tabletop Game Reviews
Copenhagen Roll & Write, Detective Club

PENCILWISE

    • Bank Withdrawals
    • Either/Or Puzzles
    • Flustered
    • Mathematical Bull’s-Eye 20 Questions
    • Pencil Pointers
    • Syllabism
    • …and More!