Nervous System – Radial Puzzle [Review]

A snowflake.

Location:  at home

Date Played: November 24, 2018

Team size: we recommend 1-3

Piece Count: ~80

Price: $65

Publisher: Nervous System

REA Reaction

Nervous System’s Radial Puzzle was a fairly quick solve at 80 pieces. The unusual piece shape, however, made for an interesting puzzle.

The colorful, circular, assembled puzzle.

Each Nervous System puzzle is programmatically generated and laser cut, meaning that each is unique.

It’s a lovely gift for a jigsaw puzzler, but at $65 for less than an hour of puzzling, it’s probably not an everyday purchase.

Who is this for?

  • Jigsaw puzzlers looking for something a little different
  • Laser cutter fans

Why play?

  • It’s beautiful
  • It’s strange
  • It’s a quick yet satisfying solve

Story

The Radial Puzzle was a generatively created jigsaw puzzle “based the simulation of dendritic solidification, a crystal growth process similar to the formation of snowflakes that occurs in supercooled solutions of certain metallic alloys.”

Additionally, this colorful puzzle featured whimsy pieces that were inspired by microscopic lifeforms.

The entire puzzle inverted showing the unusual cut pattern.

Gameplay

Nervous System’s Radial Puzzle was a small but unusual jigsaw puzzle with a higher degree of difficulty when compared to other similarly sized puzzles.

An assortment of pieces, with two whimsy pieces flipped. One is signed by the artist, the other is marked with the Nervous System brand.

Analysis

➕ Radial Puzzle, like everything we’ve seen from Nervous System, was a work of art.

➕ The strange, organic-looking pieces required a mindset shift when it came to puzzling approach. I enjoyed working with pieces that had so many little variables.

➖ The many tendrils of each individual piece were fragile and required more care than most puzzles.

❓ I enjoyed a quick an interesting solve… and part of me even preferred a quick challenge. If you’re looking at value specifically as a function of time / money, however, then you’ll likely find the Radial Puzzle wanting.

Tips For Player

  • Space Requirements: A small table
  • Be gentle with the pieces; the tendrils can be fragile
  • It’s not a difficult puzzle, but it will require far more effort than your average 80-piece puzzle

Buy your copy of Nervous System’s Radial Puzzle, and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.

Thank you to Amanda Harris & Drew Nelson for loaning this puzzle to us.

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