Hanayama continues to strongly support their beloved flagship Cast Puzzles with the first one released for 2013, the Cast Delta. Designed by Hong Kong native Kyoo Wong, the Cast Delta is a symmetry beauty with its identical three pieces. The theme for the Delta is simply “number three”.
The Cast Delta really stands out by its simple and yet elegant design. The construction looks to be brass, which personally is not my favorite metal, because of that characteristic smell that it leaves in your hands. It does has its advantages, though, due to its rugged texture it hardly gets scratched, unlike some puzzles that have an extra coating finish. The size is small, but feels sturdy and comfortable to handle and maneuver. It measures 5.7 x 5 x 1cm (2.2″ x 2″ .4″).
When first looking at the Cast Delta, one wonders how it is possible for the three pieces to come apart, since each one seems to be blocked by the other two. Continuous fiddling with the puzzle doesn’t seem to do much good, because you end up in the same state whatever you do. It can get frustrating after a while, believe me.
Before attempting to solve it, I thought the solution was a simple coordinate-motion technique – Just separate the three pieces pulling on them simultaneously. When I noticed the hooks on each of the pieces I immediately knew that there was something else to it other than simply pulling on the pieces at the same time, although this is partly true. The ingenious part is, however, hidden from view inside the puzzle, so you need to figure out how the pieces must be separated. All you can see is a slight view of the inside just a few millimeters long. The rest has to be filled by your imagination… Or frustration. I went for the latter instead the former, since I was becoming impatient after almost half an hour. What’s more surprising is that the puzzle is rated as a level 3/6, so it shouldn’t be this difficult, or am I missing something.
Warning! The following paragraph contains spoilers.
Turns out, to solve the puzzle you actually need a substantial amount of force applied to the pieces. Something I wasn’t expecting from a Cast Puzzle. I solved it merely out of frustration, when I was about to give up on it and had tried almost anything I could think of. Using the force was the last resort and, ergo, it was solved in an instant. I was actually disappointed with the solution. It goes against what I think Cast Puzzles are, which have elegant solutions that mainly use your intellect instead of just your strength. I believe there’s only one other Cast Puzzle that needs a considerable amount of force to be solved, and that’s the Cast Helix.
Solution: Click here to download the solution for the Cast Delta.
The Cast Delta is certainly not perfect and surely not among the best in the vast Cast Puzzle family. Nevertheless, for its simple and stylish design it still deserves a place in your collection and it’s worth a try… Or should I say force…
Availability: The Cast Delta is available from PuzzleMaster at $12.95 CAD. For all the others in the Cast Puzzle family, check out their dedicated page.
Links:Hanayama Cast (in English) - Very useful website in English, with plenty of information on all things Cast.
Hanayama’s Factory Visit (Many thanks to Roxanne Wong for sharing these pictures)