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Valdir Jorge
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Introduction

According to its publisher, Zen Blocks is a cube game for thinking and intuitive players. Upon "playing" it, it feels more like a puzzle than anything else.


Game components

There are two versions of this game: in one there are 27 wooden cubes (basically six-sided dice with one Japanese/Chinese character on each side) and in the other one, 26 of these cubes are replaced by thirteen square-based prisms that look like two six-sided cubes fused together. The copy that I had access to was this second one with 13 prisms and one cube. The symbols on the wooden pieces depict the ideograms for Lamb/Lion, Earth/Heaven and Rain/Sun.

Other than the cubes and prisms the game comes with a rules page and a felt pad where the wooden pieces are supposed to be stacked to make up a bigger cube.


Game playing

Even though the rules mention that from 1 to 13 players can take part in this endeavour, this is really a puzzle, so it’s best solved by one person. There are many different games on the rules sheet but all boil down to building the big cube with the wooden pieces. This reviewer was not able to build the cube and is thinking that it may not be possible at all to do it. I have even considered writing a computer program to prove that there is no solution to this puzzle, but I gave up the idea. If you came up with the solution, please upload a few pictures showing how to do it. I may bestow a few geekgold on you if I find the solution usable.


Game end, scoring and the usual nit-picking

Well, the “game” ends when you complete the cube or when you give it up, the scoring is just "successful"/"unsuccessful". My nit-picking this time is that maybe the whole thing is just impossible to do!
 
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