The Magic Puzzle Company [Overview]

It’s not just a puzzle. It’s a transformer.

Location:  at home

Date Played: January, 2021

Team size: we recommend 1-4

Duration: ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Price: $20 per puzzle

REA Reaction

I’m loving what The Magic Puzzle Company is doing. As an avid jigsaw puzzler, I am always on the lookout for puzzles that do a little more than simply ask me to assemble the picture. It’s a difficult challenge and we’ve seen mixed execution.

Puzzle closeup of segments of the Mystic Maze.

The Magic Puzzle Company has happened upon something that is really clever and elegant. Nothing in this review will spoil what that is, beyond telling you this:

It’s cool, deliberate, and unique… but it isn’t going to completely melt your brain. We spent a lot of time as we assembled our first Magic Puzzle speculating and fantasizing about what might happen, and it was truly cool, but don’t let hype bring down the moment.

Box art for The Magic Puzzle Company's The Mystic Maze 1000 piece jigsaw puzzle.

Of the available products from The Magic Puzzle Company, I’d rank them in the following order:

  1. The Mystic Maze (Review)
  2. The Happy Isles (Review)
  3. The Sunny City (Review)

If you only ever do one of these, The Mystic Maze was a knockout of a puzzle.

Who is this for?

  • Jigsaw puzzlers
  • Any experience level

Why play?

  • Beautiful art
  • High quality components
  • The concluding magical twists

Setup & Gameplay

At surface level, jigsaw puzzles from The Magic Puzzle Company function as normal jigsaw puzzles.

Puzzle pieces in a paper envelope.

Each game contains the same core components:

  • An envelope of 1000 cardboard jigsaw puzzle pieces
  • A letter with a scavenger hunt for things within the puzzle
  • 2 full images of the puzzle for reference
  • An envelope to open when the jigsaw puzzle is fully assembled. I won’t discuss what’s in it.

My only word of caution: speaking as someone who likes to assemble puzzles without looking at the image, I’d recommend at least occasionally referencing the image. Failing to do so might lead to unnecessary confusion.

Puzzle pieces being poured from a paper envelope.

Analysis

➕ The puzzle art from The Magic Puzzle Company was original art designed by different artists explicitly for use in a jigsaw puzzle. The level of detail and styles lent themselves to the medium.

➕ The presentation, packaging, and components were surprisingly refined. Everything came in beautifully packed, resealable envelopes. Instruction components were concise and clear. The velcro envelopes were a great touch.

➕ The instruction material was clear, lean, and well written.

➕ The backing to these pieces was smart and ensured that at no point did we ever confuse a back for a front.

Closeup of a puzzle piece with a very narrow and fragile section. It is clearly damaged.

➖ One piece cut that recurred a few times in the series had a stem that was far too thin and came out of the box already bent and flimsy. These didn’t break fully on us, but it was probably because we were gentle.

➕ I’ve never seen a cardboard jigsaw puzzle come fresh out of the box with this little puzzle dust. That alone demonstrated the level of care that went into this product line.

➕ The magical twist concept at the heart of this product line was a lot of fun.

❓ The magic twist is still cool after you’ve seen it done the first time, but it isn’t surprising.

➕ There were lots of interesting details tossed in, like an oversized piece. We also appreciated the two complete puzzle images that limited struggling over the box art.

➕ Resetting the puzzle and the magic was simple. It was effortless to pass these puzzles on to friends.

Tips For Players

  • Space Requirements: a reasonably large table. The puzzles measure 21” x 28.”
  • Required Gear: none. Puzzle trays are helpful, but not necessary.

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3 thoughts on “The Magic Puzzle Company [Overview]

  1. Is there any other puzzle company that does anything like this??? I did all three magic puzzle company puzzles, and I’m desperate to find something next for our merry band of pandemic puzzlers.

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