Rubik’s Gridlock Challenges You With 88 New Puzzles of Varying Difficulties

No matter how many variations of the Rubik’s Cube they make, they will never recapture the magic of the original. It’s one of those things that just came at the right time and stuck with people through the years. However, that doesn’t mean they can’t make equally fun and engaging games inspired by the classic disentanglement puzzle, which is definitely what they did with the new Rubik’s Gridlock.

No, it’s not a mechanical 3D puzzle like the original Cube. Instead, it’s a 2D tiling game similar to jigsaw puzzles. Instead of irregularly-shaped tiles, though, it uses rectangular tiles of different sizes and colors, which you can arrange in a variety of ways across the included board.

The Rubik’s Gridlock consists of a board, 11 blocky tiles, and 44 double-sided challenge cards, all of which are housed in a compact carrying case around the size of a thick CD case from over 20 years ago. To play, you start by choosing one of the challenge cards, each side of which contains a different layout of the tiles on the board (so there’s a total of 88 challenges). However, you can only see the placement for the three white tiles, requiring you to figure out how to place all the colored tiles to replicate the layout. According to the outfit, there’s only way to solve each layout, so you’ll have to find the exact tile placements required for each one.

To solve it, you start by placing the white tiles on the board, since you know their exact locations. From there, you have to figure out how to place the remaining eight, so that everything lines up with no free spaces. Game ends, of course, once you figure out the correct placement (or give up entirely out of sheer frustration). Sadly, there are no included cheat guides, so you’ll really have to figure each of the 88 challenges individually if you want to know the correct layouts.

The Rubik’s Gridlock’s challenges come with four levels of difficulty, so you can start out easy and move on to tougher ones if you find yourself quite adept at the game. How hard can it be? We’re not sure, but it looks just challenging enough to keep you busy without making you pull out your hair. The tiles, by the way, snap into place on the board similar to LEGOs, so you won’t be able to accidentally knock them off in the middle of solving a really hard challenge. While this is clearly intended for one player, you can, of course, solve it as a group. You can also get a second set and compete with a friend to see who can solve each challenge faster.

We love the fact that the game is all housed in a small box that can easily fit in most bags and even on some exterior backpack pockets. This setup keeps everything neatly bundled together, so your whole puzzle game sits snug in just a single place any time you get the itch to play.

Want one? The Rubik’s Gridlock is available now.

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