IQ Twist is a challenging little puzzle, a series of challenging little puzzles. In fact, a series of 100 increasingly challenging little puzzles.

There are seven pegs – two yellow, two green, two blue and one red. There are eight shapes, two of each color. The shapes look like clusters of loops – some loops are open (just wide enough to fit around a peg), others are closed.

Each puzzle begins by positioning an array of pegs according to the diagram for that puzzle. Since there are four rows of eight holes in the puzzle board, there’s a veritable myriad of different peg-arrays possible. After the pegs are positioned, all you have to do is fit the eight pieces back into the puzzle board. One more thing: a peg can only be looped into a puzzle piece of the same color.

This turns out to be the most fascinating aspect of the puzzle, because every peg becomes a hint – if you see a yellow peg, you know that one of the two yellow puzzle pieces belong around it. You don’t know which piece, and you don’t know what position it will be in, but it turns out to be all you really need to know to solve the puzzle. The rest, you can find out pretty quickly, especially if you’re trying to solve one of the ten starter puzzles – or looking at the answer in the puzzle booklet.

The puzzle comes in its own travel case. Like most puzzles, it isn’t as much fun when you lose a piece. And though the manufacturer recommends the puzzle for children as young as 6, we would qualify with a recommendation that those children be somewhat passionate about putting everything away in its proper place before moving on to the next game.

Designed by Raf Peeters, available from SmartGames, IQ-Twist is major fun of the intensely focused kind.

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