Published on December 20th, 2017 | by Dean Love


Puzzling cards

This is a neat little thing.

Puzzle Card is a new site that’s launched recently, offering, well, birthday cards with puzzles on them. We had a quick look at their first one which is literally an escape room puzzle card. As in, you open it up and read a story that basically tells you that you’re imprisoned in a room, and need to solve some puzzles to get out. An odd choice maybe – real life escape rooms use scenarios like that as they don’t have many options (without spending tons of money on building amazing sets). A puzzle card could literally be set anywhere, but why not a room? And it does work. And if you have a friend who is a huge fan of escape rooms this is probably the card for them.

The puzzles won’t keep you busy for too long, I solved it in around five minutes, with much of that spent on the one more clever puzzle that’s in there. But it was a fun five minutes. It’s certainly more of a novelty designed to be solved when you open the card, rather than a puzzle you’ll take home with you and sit down to enjoy the next day. The experience falls down a little when it comes to entering the solution. You visit a website, which is sensible, but then for some reason you just click one of twelve possible answers, instead of typing the answer into a text box. It also makes it trivially easy to see which answer is right (clue: it’s the one that links to a different page than all of the other ones). Though it should be fairly trivial to fix this in the future. Also disappointing are the clues that the site offers, which aren’t clues, just a page that explains all the solutions. It doesn’t even hide the solutions to the parts you’re not looking at, so there’s no way to see the “clue” for, say, the third digit without seeing the answers for one and two also. Again, it’s a quick fix to improve the web page, and adding graduated clues that nudge you in the right direction before giving away the final answer will hopefully be something that’s improved in the future.

Perhaps the real stand-out thing about this though is the price. It’s not brilliant, but at £4.75 delivered, it’s not really much more than a regular birthday card, and certainly cheaper than a novelty card that plays music or smells nice or has a badge or whatever. So if you have someone in your life that enjoys puzzles, it would seem a no-brainer next time their birthday comes around.

About the Author

Dean is a professional writer who has worked for The Mail On Sunday, The Digital Fix, MicroMart and others.

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