Smartegg®, the new three dimensional logic and skill improving toy – 100% handmade out of wooden – won the Jury Grand Prize at Nob Yoshigahara Puzzle Design Competition in August 2012. Developed by Andras Zagyvai, this new toy is suitable for all ages, genders, intelligence levels, etc. Smartegg comes in different difficulty levels and so there is always the next stage to work yourself up to.
But what is the Smartegg? Well, it is a toy – actually a toy family, but it is much more than that. The more complicated eggs consist of an outer part where so-called labyrinths have been cut out by hand with the help of traditional wood-processing machines. There can be one or multiple inner layers within the egg – depending on the difficulty level. These inner parts – also with labyrinths – can be moved independently from the outer part with the cap of the egg. The task is to twist and turn the outer and inner parts so that you can move your stick through the labyrinth and get it from the starting point (marked red) to the finish (marked black). You can only take your stick in & out of the egg at the starting and at the finishing points – not in between, because it is locked. It might sound easy, but it is totally not. I think this is ingenious.
To play the game it requires 3D and spatial memory, dexterity, excellent logic and problem solving skills, one has to think on different levels and first and foremost it requires patience! There is of course a simple version for very young children. This version lacks the inner part and small children have to lead the stick through the labyrinth to succeed.
What I like about this toy is that for one it is completely made out wooden (a nice change to all the plastic toys available these days), it is handmade without computers and robots, only with the help of human logic, mathematical knowledge, pen & paper as well as traditional craftsmanship. Furthermore it has several difficulty levels, so that you can improve your skills continuously, and it is for the whole family.
Smartegg comes in limited edition, only ten pieces are produced in a batch and they are numbered. It comes in a cute canvas bag with a small booklet. The manufacturer also takes special orders, as the Smartegg can be produced in different shapes and colors, etc. – whatever you fancy. Oh, and if you have a great idea, Andras Zagyvai, the inventor is more than happy to be challenged – give it a go! :)
If you have some time (about 8 minutes) have a look at the Movie how Smartegg is made and how to play with it. (Should you lack time just fast forward it to approx. the middle and watch it from there. It’s really worth it.)
Source of images: courtesy of Smartegg.
Have a look at the below pictures. Do you think you could solve one instantly?
Update January 13, 2013: Movie is now available with English subtitles – click ‘cc’ in the footer to activate subtitles.