Maze and Puzzle Links: has Andrea Gilbert’s brilliant mazes. See especially her Plank Mazes, which are implemented with excellent graphics in a Java program by Graham Rogers. ThinkFun has turned the Plank Mazes into a hand-held puzzle called “River Crossing.” has many maze puzzles created by James Stephens. But James only created the rules for these mazes. The layouts are all created by his computer program (which is described on the site). My favorite is the Kung Fu Packing Crate Maze. ThinkFun recently turned this maze into a hand-held puzzle called “TipOver.”

Just Skidding is a lot of fun. You’re probably familiar with sokoban puzzles, where a little man pushes blocks. In Just Skidding, a worm crawls across blocks, and when he leaves a block he kicks it behind him. It’s a silly rule, but it creates interesting puzzles. I was stuck for days by level 18 (“Niggling”), level 25 (“Cyclist”), and level 31 (“Mystique”).

Mushroom Man is a terrific game that you can download (for free). It has a small set of basic elements that are combined to create 175 levels of intricate mazes. What I especially like about the game is that even though the graphics are great, the game sticks to a two-dimensional, top-down view. Back in the 1970s, when video games used to be good, most of them used this two-dimensional view.

Zamby is a another terrific game. I learned about it when the creators, Kristanix Games, asked if they could use the Minotaur from Theseus and the Minotaur. Actually, the Minotaur was happy to be in a different game where he could fight someone besides Theseus, though he wasn’t too happy that they referred to him as a Troll. Zamby has a collection of monsters with predictable movements. They range from the weakest, which always moves in the direction opposite to your move, to the strongest, which takes the best route possible to get you. If you defeat that last guy, you feel pretty good. The various levels of Zamby present complex, sometimes even astonishing, puzzles. The game is contained in a download that you pay for, though there is a free demo version.

All the games recommended above are puzzle games. For a general discussion of puzzle games (what they are, and which ones are good) see Puzzling iPhone. That site also has specific recommendations about puzzle games available on the iPhone and iPod Touch. is Ed Pegg Jr’s famous puzzle site. It is sort of a DrudgeReport for recreational mathematics. Ed post the latest information on puzzles and games, but there is also a lot about mathematics in general. I’m proud to say that I can understand at least one-tenth of what he writes about.

Age of Puzzles is about puzzles, and about the people who create puzzles, and also about the companies that publish puzzles. is a general puzzle site with some interesting mazes. My favorite here is the Bureaucratic Nightmare.

John Rausch’s Puzzle World is a huge site devoted mostly to mechanical puzzles, but it also has some intriguing Java applets. My favorite is Lunar Lockout, a rather mazy puzzle. There is more on this site, but you’ll have to spend a couple of weeks to find it all.

The Math Factor has podcasts of interviews with various mathematicians. As exciting as that sounds, it gets even
better when the subject gets around to puzzles.

Telescope Game is weird. It’s meant as advertising for a British brand of vacuum cleaner called “Telescope.” Yet this series of mazes is very good and quite original (though it’s a little like the Lunar Lockout puzzles described in the previous entry). Eric Solomon told me about this maze, and he learned from the webmasters of the site that it was developed totally in-house. But, to quote Eric, “It won’t persuade me to buy a new vacuum cleaner though.”

Erich Friedman’s puzzle page has highly original new puzzles.

Light Force Games is a collection of games from many sources (including and All are re-programmed in Flash, which seems to work better than Java or JavaScript. Someday I’ll try to learn Flash. is the site of the American Maze Company. They build large cornfield mazes, and next to each they build two or three of my walk-through logic mazes.

The MAiZE is a company that has built hundreds of cornfield mazes across the country. They also use my walk-through logic mazes. is the site of Adrian Fisher, the world’s leading maze designer.

Caerdroia is a scholarly British journal devoted to mazes both ancient and modern.

Think Labyrinth has a lot of good general information about mazes. This site has been around since 1996, which makes it ancient by Internet time.

Yoah Bar-David, who is an an Israeli programmer, has created on-line applets that will solve any of my Alice or Theseus maze layouts. The applets have also been very useful in creating new layouts. By the way, if you create a new Alice or Theseus layout, send it to me. If I think it’s really great, I’ll put it on my site.

Game Links:

State of Play has the best writing about games that I have ever seen. It uses a blog format, with frequent updates, but you’ll want to spend hours reading what has already been posted to the site. It is written by Thomas L. McDonald, who is an editor at GAMES magazine.

GAMES Magazine also has its own web page. has chess variants (plus, I’m proud to say, Ultima and Ultima variants) plus analysis, reviews, play-by-mail resources, and computer play. Some of their game descriptions use animated GIFs created by David Howe. A sample is shown here. This is a major advance in the art of technical writing.

David Parlett now has a web site. David is the most scholarly and the most entertaining writer on card games. He has also created several interesting card and board games. His book A History of Card Games had many revelations for me: about the true nature of card games and why there are no such things as “Official Rules.” This book is now out of print, so if you run across a copy be sure to pick it up.

Eric Solomon has a web site. I learned this because he was the webmaster for David Parlett’s site. Eric has been involved in many strange scientific pursuits and he has created many brilliant board games. He invented Black Box, which you probably heard of because on this thieves’ market we call the Internet there are many Black-Box-playing programs. No one mentions the inventor of the game and I’m sure none of the people who wrote the programs even know who the inventor is.

Whatever happened to Michael Keller? He used to publish the ground-breaking World Game Review, whose circulation almost made it to three digits. I recently discovered that he now maintains a web site devoted to the serious study of solitaire games. That will probably interest even fewer people than his magazine did, but if you are one of those few, go to is a site for playing games on-line with other humans. It supports the usual old games, like chess and the various forms of draughts, but it also has modern games, like Claude Soucie’s Lines of Action, Connect 4, and—ta da!—my game Epaminondas.

The Center for Ludic Synergy is Ron Hale-Evens’ site. Hey, I don’t know what it means either, but it has a lot of great stuff about games.

Mark Thompson’s site has a very interesting section on abstract games. See especially his article, Defining the Abstract.

The Great Games of Sid Sackson is a site created by Bob Claster and devoted to my old friend, the game inventor Sid Sackson.

Links That Have Nothing To Do with Mazes, Puzzles, or Games:

The WayBack Machine lets you time travel to view what various web sites looked like in the past. For example, here is the site that developed into

Every weekend, everyone here in America should watch some part of Book TV. It’s on all weekend on C-SPAN2. It is just authors standing up and giving hour talks about their books, but you can learn more from an hour talk than you can by watching a year’s worth of the drivel on PBS. Their site has the schedule for the weekend, but it usually isn’t posted until late on Thursdays.

Jupiter Dunes—Condo B is another web site I created. It’s for the condo complex where I live.

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