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The Seemingly Impossible Guess The Number Logic Puzzle

Long time readers may recognize this previously posted problem as will people who have read my book Math Puzzles Volume 1.

Alice and Bob are on a game show. Each is secretly told a whole, positive number. They are told the two numbers are consecutive, but neither knows the other person’s number. For example, if Alice is told 20, she does not know if Bob was told 19 or 21. And if Bob is told 21, he does not know if Alice was told 20 or 22. The point of the game is to guess the other person’s number. The game works as follows.

–Alice and Bob cannot communicate with each other, and they are not allowed to plan their strategy either.

–The two are in a room where a clock rings every minute.

–After the clock rings, either player can call out a guess of the other player’s number, or they can stay silent.

–The game continues until Alice or Bob makes a guess. After the first guess is made, the game ends.

–Alice and Bob win $1 million each if the guess is correct, and they lose and get nothing if the guess is incorrect.

How should Alice and Bob play this game to have the best chance of winning? Each knows the other person is perfect at logical reasoning.

Watch the video for a solution.

The Seemingly Impossible Guess The Number Logic Puzzle

Or keep reading.

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Solution To Seemingly Impossible Guess The Number Logic Puzzle

At first it seems like Alice and Bob can do no better than random chance. If Alice is told 20, for instance, there is no way to know if Bob has 19 or 21. But since Alice can limit Bob’s number to 2 possibilities, she can at least have a 50% chance of guessing correctly.

Bob has the same issue. If he is told a number N, then he cannot be sure if Alice was told N – 1 or N + 1. If Bob guesses between the 2 possibilities, then he also has a 50% chance of guessing correctly.

It would seem Alice and Bob are stuck. Neither person has can do better than random chance, so regardless of who guesses, it would seem they are limited to a 50% chance of winning.

But remarkably they can do much better than random chance! They can actually increase their odds of winning to 100%. That is, they can win the game for sure! The trick is that they can use logic and the ringing clock to coordinate which player guesses.

The strategy

The answer lies in the subtle rule that the clock rings every minute. The clock essentially serves as a signal between Alice and Bob that allows each person to reason inductively.

One key detail is the two are given positive consecutive numbers. When Alice gets a number N, she usually has to consider Bob has N – 1 or N + 1. But this is not always true. Suppose that Alice gets the number 1. She would have to consider that Bob got 0 or 2. But since 0 is not positive, she knows that Bob must have gotten 2.

So if Alice gets 1, then she would know Bob has 2 for sure, and she would answer on the first ring of the clock. Similarly, if Bob got the number 1, he would know Alice must have 2, and he would answer after the first ring of the clock.

Now consider instead that Alice was given 2 and Bob was given 3. Alice would be wondering if Bob has 1 or 3. But Alice would think, “If Bob has 1, he surely will answer after the first ring of the clock. Therefore, if the clock rings and he does not answer, he must surely have 3 instead.” So the clock will ring once, and then after it rings a second time Alice will answer and guess Bob has 3. (If instead Bob was given 2 and Alice was given 3, then Bob would answer after the second ring and guess Alice has 3.)

This reasoning can be extended inductively. If Alice and Bob are assigned N and N + 1, then the player with the lower number will answer in exactly N rings of the clock and correctly answer the other person has N + 1.

They win every single time!

The connection with common knowledge

The puzzle illustrates the game theory concept of common knowledge which is distinguished from mutual knowledge.

An event is mutual knowledge if each player knows the event. An event is instead common knowledge if all players know the event, all players know that all players know it, and so on ad infinitum.

Here is how the two concepts work in the game. When Alice is given the number 20 (and Bob could have 19 or 21), it is mutual knowledge that neither player has the number 1, neither player has the number 2, or so on, up to neither player has the number 18. But that deduction is not good enough to solve the game.

That is where the clock ringing provides a helping hand. When the clock rings the first time, and no one answers, the fact that neither player has 1 transforms from mutual knowledge into common knowledge. This seems like a trivial distinction, but it is an important one that allows for the building up of logical deductions. Each time the clock rings, the set of excluded numbers becomes common knowledge to both players, which eventually allows the players to win for sure.

Source of puzzle
Impossible?: Surprising Solutions to Counterintuitive Conundrums by Julian Havil. The puzzle is called “consecutive integers.”

Link to Amazon: http://amzn.to/2rLqjNu
(I may get a small percentage of a sale)

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The Seemingly Impossible Guess The Number Logic Puzzle

Brain Power – BQ Live

Susanne Mitschke looks much younger than 27 but when she starts talking about MindMate, a free app designed and developed in Glasgow to help people affected by dementia live more independent lives, she exudes a maturity beyond her years. Dementia is a serious subject and one the award-winning entrepreneur wants to see more widely discussed.

Mitschke, MindMates German-born chief executive, and her co-founders Rogelio Arellano, 29, from Mexico and Patrick Renner, 27, also from Germany all graduates from the universities of Glasgow and Strathclyde are quietly focused and ambitious.

The fact the app already has more than 150,000 monthly active users and is ranked in 17 countries as the number one health app in Apples store is remarkable given it was only launched last September. It has also claimed a clutch of prestigious awards.

Mindmate won last years much-lauded Converge Challenge, the business creation competition open to staff, students and recent graduates from Scotlands universities and research institutions. The fledgling company won 30,000 in cash and 14,000 in business support, sharing the top prize with Edinburgh-based MicroSense Technologies, a company that has developed a sensor system aimed at reducing waste in the food and drink industry.

Last summer, Mitschke and her co-founders won a place on Techstars, billed as the worlds top tech accelerator programme, in New York. MindMate was one of only 15 early-stage companies selected for the renowned scheme, which saw the team spend three months receiving mentoring from some of the tech worlds leading entrepreneurs.

According to Techstars, more than 90% of firms accepted onto the programme go on to receive more than US$2m in follow-on funding. Techstars really opened our eyes to what is possible, says Mitschke. We are building a global brand and an international product so exposure to the great contacts we made during our time on the programme was invaluable and has helped us fast-track our entry in the United States market.

With 850,000 people in the UK suffering from dementia and numbers set to increase to more than one million by 2025, its certainly time to talk about the disease for which there is currently no cure. According to the Alzheimers Society, one in six people over the age of 80 have dementia and there are more than 40,000 people under 65 with dementia in the UK. Alzheimers disease is the most common type of dementia, affecting 62% of those diagnosed.

The facts and the figures are stark, says Mitschke, who studied business and economics in Vienna before completing a masters degree in international management and leadership at the University of Glasgow. In the US, there are more than five million people suffering from dementia. Its a very cruel disease that affects families and carers too and it was our own different experiences of cognitive decline that led us to develop MindMate.

While Renner, the companys chief operations officer, had experience of working in the care system in Germany and Mitschke developed expertise in both digital health and Alzheimers, Arellanos association with the disease is particularly close to home his grandfather had the condition and he helped care for him for seven years, witnessing first-hand the everyday struggles not just of his grandfather but his family.

We had a whiteboard on the wall with family pictures on it to help my grandfather remember who everyone was, explains MindMates chief technical officer. He would sometimes forget who I was, or confuse me with my father. It was very difficult for all of us. He would see that board every time he went into the kitchen and there would be sticky notes reminding him to take pills or eat breakfast that type of thing.

So, we thought if we could put all these prompts into an app and make it interactive with games, reminders things like that it could be such a valuable tool in stimulating peoples minds and helping them stay active. We didnt have anything like that to help my grandfather.

The trio, which founded the company and started developing its app two years ago, carried out market research and found that, while there were several apps designed to help people with memory loss, there wasnt one that provided a one-stop shop solution in a user-friendly way that was also intuitive and medically backed. Thats our point of difference, Mitschke points out. But, in particular, we were determined it had to be easy to use.

MindMate has several features, including interactive games to stimulate a users cognitive abilities, as well as chat and video functions to help family and carers keep in touch with dementia sufferers. People suffering from dementia can be very lonely and confused, says Mitschke, and this leads to isolation.

We describe MindMate as a guardian angel, a friend who is always there to help you by giving you everything you need at your fingertips. Other apps provide brain games or advice on nutrition and exercise but if you are struggling with memory loss and are using several apps for different things and maybe Spotify for music then it can be overwhelming.

With MindMate, you dont have to use different apps for music, games, photographs and so on because you can access it all on our interface. Its an empowering tool because it helps people manage their lives without having to rely on family, friends or carers all the time it increases their quality of life and that of the people around them.

One of its many features is a My Story area that allows users to store happy memories photographs of family, friends and pets, for example. Click on the music button and theres a host of great tunes going back to the 1930s. There are also healthy recipes, games designed to improve your brain health and exercise workouts. Reminders to help manage hospital appointments, to-do lists and a notes section are also invaluable tools for people with early-stage memory loss.

While MindMate is targeted predominately at the baby-boomer generation who like the convenience of having everything they need in the one app, it has wider appeal because everyones brain health can be boosted by keeping the mind active. Its benefits have also been recognised by the National Health Service, which became its first paying customer after NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde bought the care home version of the app to run on iPads following a two-month trial with a post-diagnosis dementia support group.

MindMate is currently based at the University of Glasgows Thomson Building in the citys leafy West End, but would Mitschke be tempted to relocate from Scotland and the UK in light of Brexit and the wider political uncertainty? Absolutely not, she states emphatically. Scotland is the best place to start a business, she believes, pointing to the early support from Enterprise Campus West, linked to the University of Strathclyde. In Germany, for example, it is very difficult if you dont have loads of cash but theres excellent support in Scotland for start-ups and its also easy to recruit because of all the talent coming out the universities, and cheaper.

Scotlands very innovative when it comes to encouraging start-ups the University of Glasgow has supported us with premises for two years, which has allowed us to get on with developing the business, she adds. There are very high levels of collaboration and that encourages you to think beyond your own ideas and consider going in directions you hadnt previously thought of.

Mitschke also points to the many inspiring people here who have started from very small beginnings and now run global organisations. Many Scottish businesses are very well respected around the world and that opens doors, she says. The trios time spent in the US, meanwhile, taught them to be more confident about scaling up. Theres such a can-do attitude there, says Mitschke. The people are so enthusiastic and that helps you believe in yourself and your capabilities. After Techstars we felt that anything was possible.

Having already raised funding of 1m, Mitschke, Arellano and Renner make no apology for their lofty ambitions. Were a high-growth business and we want to see a MindMate app on the iPhone or iPad of every 60-plus person in the world, says Mitschke. Were collecting a massive amount of data on people who have dementia and Alzheimers and the number of sufferers is going to double until 2050.

People are getting older and living longer so we shouldnt be surprised, she says. Its not just dementia sufferers our apps can help older people also need help to live independently and there are people who have been ill and still want to live at home but need help. Thats where we see MindMate developing in the future.

The rest is here:
Brain Power – BQ Live

Game Day: Framed 2 – MacStories

In 2014, Melbourne-based Loveshack released Framed, a comic book-style puzzle game that requires manipulation of panels to guide the main character through a noir spy story. The game struck a chord for its novel combination of puzzles, narrative, and hip, silhouetted spy style. This week, Loveshack released Framed 2, an excellent prequel to Framed that delivers more of what made the original version a hit, but as part of a deeper and more refined experience.

Framed 2 jumps into hard puzzles quickly, seemingly assuming familiarity with the first game. Therefore, if you havent tried Framed or dont play a lot of puzzle games, you may want to start with the original game first. I enjoyed getting into more challenging puzzles early, but its an approach that could be frustrating to beginners.

The mechanics are still simple, though. The narrative plays out across comic book-style panels with the black silhouetted characters animating from panel to panel as they move through the story. Your job is to reorder, rotate, and reuse panels so the characters can make it through the scene to the next set of panels. The obstacles you face along the way vary from holes in a boardwalk to police officers on the beat.

One way Framed 2 adds complexity to its puzzles this time around is by occasionally requiring you to get multiple characters through the scene. The game also has more puzzles that require the reuse of panels, which is something that wasnt used as often in the original game. Combined with rotating panels, Framed 2 makes you consider the timeline of the story as it plays out as well as the spatial relationships among the characters, which adds to the challenge. This version also adds collectible Polaroid-style photos, which provides an incentive to go back and play levels again.

The action pauses as you move panels. After you’re finished dragging panels around, sit back and watch the story unfold to see if your setup works. There is no penalty for failing a puzzle other than having to start the scene over, which is not a big deal because the scenes are short. Its a trial and error process thats focused on the narrative and puzzles, not a scoring system.

The games visuals have been kicked up a notch from the original game too. The settings are more varied, and the art is more refined overall. As with Framed, the prequel includes a great 60s-style jazz soundtrack that complements the artwork perfectly and adds atmosphere.

Framed 2 wont be the same delightful experience that the first game was for anyone who played it simply because the prequel wont feel as surprising and new. However, Loveshack has taken what worked in that original game and extended it by adding more of what worked the first time, along with new layers of complexity. The result works to make Framed 2 feel simultaneously familiar and fresh in a way that should appeal equally to existing fans and newcomers.

Framed 2 is available on the App Store.

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Game Day: Framed 2 – MacStories

You Asked: How Can I Use More of My Brain? – TIME

Its a myth that humans only use 10% of their brains. That idea is not only inaccurate, it doesnt make any sense, says Earl Miller, a professor of neuroscience at the Picower Institute for Learning and Memory at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. “Even the simplest behaviors engage much of our brain.”

But while that old 10% dictum is bogus, its true that many of us have some untapped reserves of mental acuity that, if harnessed, could sharpen our powers of insight and analysis. The key to accessing those reserves, Miller says, is to stay focused. The main thing that impedes our cognition is distraction.”

Distractions are powerful drains on the brain’s ability to focus, and one of the best ways to get more from your mind is to give yourself the gift of uninterrupted stretches of time.

Think of your mind as a muscle that can be strengthened with exercise. But the latest science suggests that “exercise” doesn’t mean app-based brain games or activities like Sudoku, but bouts of prolonged, uninterrupted concentration, Miller says. Put simply, a distracted brain is a dumb brain. Unfortunately, our brains are curious and are always interested in whats going on around us, so its very hard to ignore all that and to stay focused.”

Distractions are ubiquitous, popping up as email alerts, text messages and social network updates. People think that they can multitask and check these things without losing their focus, but we have lots of studies showing that task-switching leads to mistakes and back-tracking, and that it wastes a lot of time, Miller says. And all of these interruptions seem to be getting in the way of more creative, profound insights. When your brain is bombarded by distraction, your thoughts are more superficial, and youre not getting as far down that path to where new ideas emerge.”

Other experts agree. Switching between tasks can result in a phenomenon called attention residue, according to the work of Sophie Leroy, assistant professor of business at the University of Washington. When you ask your brain to quickly shift from one task to another, it struggles to cleanly discard the first and move on to the next. Lets say I work on a project right up until I have a meeting, she says. I may be at the meeting, but my brain is still trying to find closure on that project I was working on, so questions and ruminations about that project are interfering with my ability to concentrate.

The more tasks you ask your brain to perform in a short period of time, the more that cognitive clutter accumulates, and the more your performance declines. Calvin Newport, associate professor of computer science at Georgetown University and author of the book Deep Work, puts that performance decline in real-world terms. Anecdotally, it seems like most people experience a 50% drop in productivity and cognitive capacity when in a state of distraction, he says. And even though a quick peek at your inbox or social feed only takes a second, “the duration of those checks does not correlate to the magnitude of the distraction, Newport says.

MORE : Are My Devices Messing With My Brain?

Newport realized just how much those quick checks were tanking his brains performance when he wrote his last book. In an effort to be more productive, he started scheduling blocks of time to check his phone or email, while committing the rest of his day solely to his book or his research duties as an academic. I should have had less time for my usual work because I was also researching and writing this book, he says. But the number of peer-reviewed papers I published that year went up by a factor of two.

One of the best ways to sharpen your focusand therefore enhance your brainpoweris to schedule this sort of uninterrupted time to focus on the cognitive tasks that matter to you. Its not uncommon for people who do this to talk about their productivity increasing, Newport says. Research suggests that meditation may be another way to strengthen your brains ability to concentrate.

It’s also important to complete one mental task before moving on to another. If you have a meeting at 11, most of us will work until 10:59 and then rush to the meeting, Leroy says. That doesnt give the brain time to figure out what its accomplished or what else needs to be done, and so theres no closure. Your brain needs that closure, she says, in order to transition effectively to its next chore.

MORE : Cell-Phone Distracted Parenting Can Have Long-Term Consequences

She recommends taking some time between mental taskseven a minute or twoto consider the work your brain just performed. “Write down where you are and what you want to do when you return to the task, she says. In one of her experiments, people who followed this protocol improved their performance on a decision-making test by 79%, compared to people who hadnt taken any time to collect their thoughts between tasks.

Another simple-soundingyet challengingrecommendation is to inject more boredom into your life. Dont pull out the phone when standing in line, and if youre sitting alone somewhere, try it without looking at a screen, Newport says. Most of us need these breaks if we hope to stay focused on anything for longer than a few minutes. The brain has to be comfortable not getting some shiny new stimuli from a device every few seconds,” he says.

Indeed, a little digital break goes a long way. I think being connected all the time is a lot like sugar: its easy for us to get accustomed to it and to want more, Leroy says. If youve been spending a lot of time multitasking, its going to take time to teach your brain to maintain focused attention.”

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You Asked: How Can I Use More of My Brain? – TIME

‘Neo Angle’, a Vibrant Puzzle Game From the Creators of ‘Blyss’, Is Looking for Beta Testers – Touch Arcade

Dropout Games have quickly developed a reputation for beautiful minimalistic puzzle games, and their emphasis on accessible gameplay that becomes deceptively difficult is one that suits mobile gaming to a tee. Last year the developers released Blyss [$0.99], which layered an ethereal aesthetic similar to indie hit Firewatch on top of an intuitive dice puzzle mechanic, and in practice it worked rather well. To keep up this momentum, Dropout Games have announced their latest title called Neo Angle, and while its vibrant neon style contrasts that of their previous title, the peculiar pattern-making gameplay looks incredibly cathartic. Not too many details have been released about Neo Angle as of yet, however the developers are looking for beta testers to help try out the game on our forum thread.

Despite not divulging information on gameplay or content for the title at this relatively early stage, the preview gifs give a good idea of the sort of puzzle gameplay that can be found within Neo Angle. Through manipulating an isosceles triangle around a map, you’re tasked with filling in a skeleton of a shape without going back on yourself. However, teleportation triangles and other quirky tiles can either get in the way as obstacles, or serve to aid your triangular protagonist in making it around the peculiarly shaped templates and painting the world in neon. Neo Angle is still firmly in development and so no release date has been specified as of yet, however stop by our forum thread for further details as they break, and sign up for the beta to catch an early glimpse of Neo Angle in action.

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‘Neo Angle’, a Vibrant Puzzle Game From the Creators of ‘Blyss’, Is Looking for Beta Testers – Touch Arcade

Slayaway Camp is a slasher-inspired puzzle game, would you believe? – Android Community

From the title alone, Slayaway Camp gives you an ominous, gory feeling at the onset. And thats ok because this is indeed a game inspired by 80s slasher movies. But its a puzzle game, so theres a friendliness to it, if you can believe that. Rarely do puzzle games feature murdering teenagers as the objective, but hey, to each his own.

Slayaway Camp was originally launched on Steam and iOS, and players are given control of Skullface, a serial killer whose sole objective is to kill teenagers; stabbing them, shoving them into wood-chippers and throwing them under lawn mowers. Pretty gory, but the cubic artwork (think Minecraft), and the comedic script does take the edge off the game.

Slayaway Camp was developed by guys who know their puzzle games if you remember like Bejeweled and Peggle. Only a great team can make a sliding tile puzzle game with suspense and horror overtones actually great to play with.

The game will cost you USD$2.00 to download, but thats really a steal if you see what a great puzzle game this is. The game has received critical acclaim for the over 140 levels of fun it provides. So we suggest you jump in.

DOWNLOAD: Google Play Store

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Slayaway Camp is a slasher-inspired puzzle game, would you believe? – Android Community

Russo brothers to adapt spooky puzzle game Little Nightmares for TV – A.V. Club

After the last two Captain America movies, directing duo Joe and Anthony Russo (a.k.a. the Russo brothers) have become a pretty big deal in Hollywood, and like a lot of big deals, theyve now decided to see if they can use their new clout to actually make a good adaptation of a video game. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the Russos are going to develop and executive produce a TV show based on spooky puzzle-platformer game Little Nightmares, with A Nightmare Before Christmas and Coraline director Henry Selick on board to direct the pilot and possibly other episodes.

The original game is about a nine-year-old girl named Six who finds herself trapped on a scary ship of some sort called The Maw. While trying to escape, Six has to fend off evil characters who have names like the Janitor, the Twin Chefs, and the Ladyand she also has to try and avoid starving to death, because video games are kind of fucked up these days. The Little Nightmares TV show is also being developed by DJ2 Entertainment, a production company that is also working on adaptations of Life Is Strange and Sonic The Hedgehog.

Submit your Newswire tips here.

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Russo brothers to adapt spooky puzzle game Little Nightmares for TV – A.V. Club

She Remembered Caterpillars Review A Fun(gal) Puzzle Game – Fortress of Solitude

Overall: 7.8 A few months ago, jumpsuit entertainment UG released a rather peculiar indie game on PC, She Remembered Caterpillars. No caterpillars are involved in the game, nor hurt during the making of the game (I assume). Instead, it is a puzzle game which tests your problem-solving skills from the point of view of fungi.

In terms of the dynamic of the game, the official synopsis reads as follows:

A fungipunk fantasy about love, loss, and holding on, told in the format of a color-based puzzle game. A tale of the bond between parent and child, this lush and bewildering title will have players testing their wits against a variety of challenges, all beautiful and very strange.

On the most basic level, you control different coloured sprites (based on the three primary colours red, yellow and blue) and direct them to move around on a tiny island made up of different bridges and gateways. Your aim is to set each of the sprites on the screen on a type of mushroom, which then completes the level as the sprites develop propellers and fly off. Although my description here does seem a bit abstract, its fairly straightforward once you play the game.

On a more complicated note, each coloured sprite is able to cross a bridge of the same colour, but all other colours are able to pass through the gateways except the corresponding colours. To make things a tad more complicated, the sprites can be combined to form new colours red and blue produce purple, red and yellow make orange, blue and yellow make green, etc. As you progress, the levels become increasingly challenging, as youll have to mix and match the different colours to follow certain paths as you attempt to set each sprite onto the mushroom.

On a side note, although the majority of this game is based on matching colours and following paths by means of those colours, She Remembered Caterpillars is also aimed at colour blind gamers. Youll notice that each of the colours have an associated shape to them, with blue being the circle and red the square, for example. This is quite an impressive addition to the game, which I can appreciate, and Im sure a few visual impaired people can too.

From the shapes, the sprites, to the environments and background music, the overall feeling of She Remembered Caterpillars is very calming. The friendly feel of the game is extended by means of the animations scattered throughout, from how each of the sprites behave, them combining and splitting, as well as the interaction of the bridges and gateways as it stops you from being able to pass. The nature of the surroundings is in contrast to some of the frustration that may build up as you attempt to solve each puzzle, often times complicating matters to the point where only a reset of that particular level is an option going forward.

Apart from simply being a simple problem-solving game, She Remembered Caterpillars has an underlying story in the form of silent narration told from the perspective of a few characters. Before each of the new levels, the chat unfolds between two characters at a time, at certain points as a father would speak to his son, and on other occasions between friends and other loved ones. I cannot tell if all the characters are the same for each new world, but the tone is quite different for each. There are a few topics covered, as stated in the synopsis, such as love and loss, which you can actually feel some connection to. This narration will possibly carry different meaning and depths to each individual playing it, as we dont all have the same experiences and relation to it. Where the background story lost me, however, is that it feels separate to the puzzling. The only relation is that theyre both artsy and strike similar tones, but thats stretching it quite a bit.

Still, it isnt a total waste, and I do believe that the actual game is a side note to telling these stories and providing a brief escape as you uncover what it means to you. Reading through some of the details about the games development process on the official website, youll come across the change in the actual story of the game, with the introduction of a new writer. Switching from a story on Isis and Osiris, as was originally planned, to something more along the lines of real world emotions and experiences shortly after her dad passed, brings a lot more reality to it.

Im very much at home when it comes to problem-solving and puzzle games, and I felt at ease for the most part as I played through each of the levels. As with each individual who achieves a sense of calm and joy in their own ways, such games provide small achievements through each level. I really enjoyed She Remembered Caterpillars as a standalone away from the story. The story itself could feature as a standalone too and, in the end, also played out quite well, both alone and coupled inside the game.

She Remembered Caterpillars is available on Steam Store and Itch.io.

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She Remembered Caterpillars Review A Fun(gal) Puzzle Game – Fortress of Solitude

E3 2017: Pictlogica Final Fantasy Announced for Nintendo 3DS in Japan – IGN

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Square Enix has announced its free-to-play mobile game,Pictlogica Final Fantasy, will release next month for Nintendo 3DS in Japan.

As reported by Gematsu, the puzzle game, which launched in Japan for iOS and Android devices back in 2013, will be available for download through the Nintendo eShop starting July 12.

In Pictlogica Final Fantasy, players must complete various illustration puzzles and take on quests that feature classic turn-based battles. Over 300 different puzzles are included in the game, as well as more than 160 characters from the long-running RPG franchise, each of which can acquire new skills, level up, and be customized with new weapons.

This 3DS release isn’t the only upcoming Final Fantasy release, as Square Enix also just recently announced Dissidia Final Fantasy NT, a PlayStation 4 version of its popular arcade fighting game, which will release for the console in early 2018.

Additionally, Final Fantasy XII: The Zodiac Age is headed to PS4 next month. For our thoughts on the updated version of Square’s PlayStation 2 RPG, read IGN’sFinal Fantasy XII: The Zodiac Agehands-on preview.

Alex Osborn is a freelance writer for IGN. You can follow him on Twitter and subscribe to his YouTube channel.

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E3 2017: Pictlogica Final Fantasy Announced for Nintendo 3DS in Japan – IGN

Conshohocken Free Library launches puzzle exchange – The Times Herald

CONSHOHOCKEN >> During the Great Depression of the 1930s, jigsaw puzzles were valued as inexpensive entertainment, and with disposable income in short supply, libraries rented them to patrons, while some retailers gave them away as buying incentives.

Conshohocken Free Library Branch Manager Marija Skoog is currently looking to build a puzzle exchange at CFL. But Skoogs motivation isnt economics. In fact, the reasoning behind her ongoing effort to add to the local librarys jigsaw stash would have been pretty baffling during the Depression era.

To be clear, although Skoog is well aware of the scads of online jigsaw puzzles and puzzle apps available, shes talking about the traditional, hands-on variety.

The great thing about [puzzles], theyre a screen-free, battery-free, family friendly activity, she continues. In a world where technology is so dominant, I think a lot of parents are looking for a way to unplug their kids, and this is a good way to do that. Doing a puzzle is fun, but it also involves problem-solving. Someone has to study a picture and figure out how to put it together. Trial and error. The same thing is true with board games, and in the future, Id like to add them to the library as well even have board game nights here at the library.

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Actually, one of my friends came up with the idea for the puzzle exchange. I wasnt sure how it would go over, but we got a bunch donated, and people started coming in picking up a puzzle, bringing it back and taking another one. It caught on.

Onetime area resident Brian Turtle isnt surprised. Turtle co-founded Matawan, N.J.-headquartered Endless Games, which produces approximately 25 party and family games and a popular Broadway jigsaw puzzle. Although he has donated merchandise to other local causes and intends to support this one, area residents might better know the 1991 Archbishop Kennedy High School alum from his days as an AKHS football player. Turtle is even more recognized as one of the three guys behind pop cultures Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon game based on the six degrees of separation theory that none of us is more than six connections away from everybody else in the world.

The Bacon concept emerged one snowy night in 1994 when Turtle and Albright College classmates Craig Fass and Mike Ginelli found themselves watching Footloose and The Air Up There both Bacon star vehicles in quick succession. A few notes on a cardboard beer case led crazily to Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon and a book, several talk radio and TV appearances and a slew of other publicity ops, a number of them with the actor.

Two decades-plus later, the story is part of pop culture history, and Turtle is sold on the value of basic board games and puzzles despite the proliferation of electronic gaming.

When TV became popular, there were plenty of people who thought that would be the end of radio, but that didnt happen, and I think you have a similar situation with all the electronic games, he says. Today, I think theres definitely a need to unplug a basic human need to unplug from all the apps and electronics, and I think board games are one of the last ways to have direct human communication and interaction.

The father of 10- and 7-year-old daughters, Turtle figures with board games, its more about the journey than the destination.

For example, our Name 5 game Name 5 Pearl Jam songs, or whatever topic that comes up gets everybody talking, conjures up memories, creates conversation. Thats very cool, and I really believe theres something positive to be gained from that that the family that plays together stays together. This is gospel preaching to me, man. Whether youre talking about board games or card games, doing puzzles together I believe in the power of play.

Apparently, he has lots of company. Countless puzzle-doers mark Jan. 29 as National Puzzle Day, test their prowess during regularly scheduled competitions and compare notes at invitation-only international puzzle parties. Jigsaw puzzles entertainment value was also recognized with their induction into the National Toy Hall of Fame in 2002.

Backtracking, historians generally attribute the invention of the first such puzzle to London engraver and mapmaker John Spilsbury in the 1760s. Earlier puzzles termed dissections were made from maps affixed to wood and cut into pieces for use as teaching tools. Unlike their contemporaries, those early puzzles didnt interlock or include pictures of the end result. Not all vintage puzzles were fun, either. The Feature Profile Test, a puzzle Ellis Island immigrants were required to solve in the early 20th century (now included in the collections of the Smithsonian National Museum of American History), was used to determine feeblemindedness.

Like Skoog and Turtle, the president of CFLs board of directors sees all kinds of benefits from classic, old-fashioned puzzling.

With my two children, we encourage them to play with physical toys that require touching and maneuvering and using their fine motor skills to get a result not some digital bounce-back, Brian Coll says. Working as a bartender, Ive watched lots of parents hand their kids a phone or iPad to keep them busy Ive done it myself, and realistically, its the world we live in today but I do try to limit it.

Skoog welcomes puzzle donations at all levels of difficulty. CFL is located at 301 Fayette St., Conshohocken. Additional information is available by calling 610-825-1656.

Here is the original post:
Conshohocken Free Library launches puzzle exchange – The Times Herald


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