Oskar van Deventer has done it again. Cast Twist is his latest puzzle for Hanayama’s flagship series which makes him one of their biggest partners with 12 designs in his name already. Released last October, the Cast Twist, formerly known as Snake Ball, is a level 4/6 and its theme is “Tangle”.
The puzzle consists of two apparently similar, but distinct parts that start out entangled in each other. Since the two parts appear almost identical, Hanayama chose to coat them in two different colors, silver and gold. The contrast also looks gorgeous and gives the puzzle a shiny and elegant appearance. The size is slightly bigger than the Cast Donuts, with a diameter of 4cm (1.6″).
The goal of the Cast Twist is somewhat straightforward, but still a bit overwhelming due to all these grooves that criss-cross the entire surface of the puzzle. There’s a protrusion in each piece that you’ll be able to use in order to navigate both mazes, so you should pay attention to their position at all times, albeit being difficult at times, because of the tight tolerances between the two pieces.
The first movement that you’ll be able to perform will be to slide the gold piece across the silver one, but you’ll be immediately stopped with almost nowhere to go. The only course of action is to study which path the silver piece should take, and at first your options are limited. As you move further along more paths will open, but so will do many dead-ends. It’s here that the puzzle becomes tricky, and solving it will require a good dose of trial and error, but that alone won’t get you far. You need to figure out how to get to the exit.
As mentioned above, the difficulty level of the puzzle is 4/6, but after spending almost an hour solving it and putting it together, I honestly think this one deserves a higher rating. A 5 would most certainly be a better fit for what you should expect when you try it yourself. Putting it back to its original position won’t be a walk in the park either. It’s equally challenging due to the long path you must take from start to finish.Solution: If you feel your brain “twisted”, you can download the puzzle’s solution here.
Oskar’s Cast Twist follows the Hanayama tradition perfectly. A superb design, combined with a fun and challenging solution, and made with high quality materials at a competitive price. It’s no wonder that they sell like hotcakes. Highly recommended, as usual.Availability: You can find the Cast Twist, and all the others in the Hanayama series at PuzzleMaster.