# I make puzzles, try them out!

Encouraged by Pi Han Goh. Don't blame me. :P

I make puzzles! You've seen several of them here on Brilliant.

I make games, too. 12345 in January 2014. Repel in June 2014. Rock, Paper, Scissors in August 2015. That's from earliest to latest, which also means in increasing order of quality (RPS is the best one in my opinion).

I'll put more things here if I can think of them.

I guess this can also double as a message board of anything puzzle-related to me.

Note by Ivan Koswara
2 years, 10 months ago

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Oh, I had a lot of fun with rock paper scissors. The red gems weren't easy. I managed to get 2 of them!

Staff - 2 years, 10 months ago

There are 17 red gems in total (18 levels except the first one), so good luck with the rest! Which 2 red gems?

- 2 years, 10 months ago

Nice. Getting the red gem in 5 was annoying and getting the red gem in 8 was brutal. Anyways, a few questions,

1. Is there a way to restart a level? Other than holding down the "Z" key?

2. Is there a way to choose which level you want to play? Other than starting from the beginning and skipping?

- 2 years, 10 months ago

Press R to restart.

Yea, I was wanting to see my score, and a level select.

Staff - 2 years, 10 months ago

1. Z to undo, R to restart, X for "action" (but in my case it's simply a way to skip level), Esc to return to the main menu. You can see Z/R/X instructions at the main menu.
2. Unfortunately not; this is a limitation of the engine. No states are saved whatsoever between levels (which also means no red gem counter or anything). No way to choose levels, too.
By the way, PuzzleScript is a beginner-friendly engine; you can make your own puzzle games (and probably non-puzzle games too) in no time!

- 2 years, 10 months ago

You are an awesome guy!

Here is a bunch of questions/comments for you:

1. Where should aspiring puzzle/game makers look for inspiration?
2. A puzzle is a game with a dominant strategy. By that note, your proclaimed games are puzzles too.
3. You posted many difficult puzzles under ComputerScience. Should I solve them with pencil and paper or would I have to write programs?
4. Have you read The Art of Game Design: A book of lenses?
5. Where should one look for inspiration when he/she is stuck with a puzzle?
6. Do you like carrots?

Staff - 2 years, 10 months ago

1. To be honest, I can't say. Making puzzles and games are pretty similar to making math problems; inspiration comes from nowhere. Usually I restrict myself to a specific thing (for example "Fillomino" or "Rock, Paper, Scissors"), and then toy around with making random things until I find some idea worth exploring.

2. My games are puzzle games; in fact, I'd be fine with them called "interactive puzzles". After all, Sokoban is essentially an interactive puzzle too, no?

3. I don't think I've ever posted puzzles under Computer Science. However, some problems have inspirations based on puzzles (the "count the number of Fillomino grids" and "count the number of loops" sets, at the time of writing). Since they are posted in Computer Science, you're allowed to write programs. In fact, except for the easiest version of each set, I did need to program it. (I also programmed the easiest version, just to check that my program works correctly for an easy case, so I don't have to spend much time running for the other versions just to find that my answer is wrong.)

4. I haven't.

5. I assume you're talking about deductive pencil puzzles (like Sudoku and Fillomino), since those are my forte. (If you're talking about puzzlehunt-style puzzles such as MIT Mystery Hunt, I can't do them well either.) Puzzles are pretty similar to math problems. Sometimes, it's just a sequence of small steps, with perhaps a little "aha!" moment here and there. (Both my Fillomino puzzles here are pretty much that, small steps strung together.) Small steps are easy to learn; just practice puzzles to learn the tricks. (For example, in Slitherlink you sometimes notice two 3s that are adjacent, either orthogonally or diagonally; both of them are small-step patterns that you can notice as you do more puzzles involving them.) Sometimes, it's a giant step, requiring global-scale logic: seeing the whole board at once, instead of fixing attention to just a small piece. This part is difficult to train precisely because there's no exact way to tackle them; such puzzles involving large steps are unique because of that reason. If you're stuck, try looking at any possible small-step logic; if there's none, it means you'll need a large-step logic, so zoom out from the puzzle and take a look across the grid. At the worst case, just try bifurcating, trying every possibility. (Even bifurcating has its own technique to avoid too much branching.)

6. Yes, somewhat.

I don't know what I just typed.

- 2 years, 10 months ago

Apologies. I edited the comment, can you check it?

Staff - 2 years, 10 months ago

There we go.

- 2 years, 10 months ago

Thanks!

Staff - 2 years, 10 months ago

I really enjoyed playing this game... I was stuck well it doesn't say the level onscreen but I've got three different coloured blocks and 5 "warps" in a cross. And I'm not sure where to go with it.

Great game!!!

- 2 years, 6 months ago

Same

- 2 years, 7 months ago

Hey if you like puzzles, can you give me feedback on a problem solving book I am developing? Sample puzzles (that are explained as a series of problems) are here: http://www.problemsolvingpathway.com/pspsamples/PuzzledProblemSolving.pdf http://www.problemsolvingpathway.com/pspsamples/sudoku.pdf

Feedback from anyone is welcome. Thanks

- 2 years, 10 months ago

The first link: I read the first few pages and skimmed the rest. It's closer to a general puzzle book (each "rule set" gives only 1-2 puzzles, closer to a math problem if recreational) than the one I'm used to (Sudoku, Fillomino, etc; each genre gives a bunch of puzzles, each with its own unique characteristics). The puzzles are pretty nice. Some of the solutions are fairly convoluted (e.g. for Problem A on Page 3, I used this simpler method: if there's a 3 in the corner, the solution is unique; otherwise, each of zero, one, two, three 2s on corners gives one solution; for Problem A on Page 9, it's actually a standard exercise in coloring combinatorics instead of casework); I'm not sure which is easier to read.

The second link: The first thing I notice, strangely, is the fact that 9x9 and 3x3 appear in Times New Roman instead of LaTeX. Also, you probably don't need to say that all Sudoku puzzles with less than 17 givens has not unique solutions (either many or none); you may give it as a trivia, but it's otherwise not particularly relevant. But I suppose it's nitpicking, so let's get to the contents. It's essentially a walkthrough of a few Sudoku puzzles, stating applying this strategy here and there. I'm not sure that your claim of the book not teaching you Sudoku techniques to be valid, although you can also reply "it's basically 'look for some trick you know, if you can apply it somewhere', applicable to all problems" which I can't refute either. I don't think I have any further comments for this.

- 2 years, 10 months ago

- 2 years, 10 months ago

How do you do that

- 2 years, 10 months ago

Awesome

- 2 years, 10 months ago

This is fab dude!

- 2 years, 10 months ago

@Ivan Koswara Man, I salute you. This is fantastic! You're absolutely great.

- 2 years, 10 months ago