# Personal puzzle challenges

#### unirox13

##### Member
Aside from time, what are some new puzzle challenges that you create for yourself?

I'm not really big into speed solving anymore. As I started getting new, different puzzles I lost interest in solving fast and started becoming more interested in learning how the puzzles worked and how to solve different ones. A few months ago, I developed a really fun way of solving big cubes layer by layer. It's fun and not as challenging as you might think once you grasp the general idea of how things move. I've managed to solve all of my base cubes, 4x4 through 12x12 layer by layer. Today, I managed to translate that into a layer by layer solve on my 5x5 Megamorphix puzzle. It was a little challenging but I had fun figuring things out.

I also enjoy reducing even numbered big puzzles down to a 2x2. It's a little tough to keep track of once you get above 6x6, but I've also managed to do this on all of my even layer cube puzzles.

Just recently, SuperAntoniovivaldi (https://www.youtube.com/c/SuperAntoniovivaldi) an awesome puzzle solver who knows a lot about how these things work, started a new series on his YouTube channel about the new(ish) ShengShou 4, 5, and 6 layer tetrahedral Pyramid Tower puzzles. In those videos he equates those puzzles to skewb variants. Because of those videos I was inspired to take another look at my F- Skewb and Master Skewb puzzles. I managed to use his logic and some patience to solve those puzzles in a completely new to me way.

So yea, when I'm in the mood for a new challenge I like to try and figure out a different way of approaching a puzzle that I can already solve. How about you, do you have any unique puzzle challenges that you enjoy taking on?

#### qwr

##### Member
Since I've forgotten how to solve, I'd like to figure out myself how to solve 4x4 and squan.
I make it a point to always solve new puzzles I get myself and never use solutions unless I absolutely have to. I also want to come up with my own 3x3 method which is pretty hard because I already know the CFOP algs.

#### Aglet

##### Member
A very interesting question! Personally I've been spending a lot of time working on getting better at solving the ghost cube. I use a layer-by-layer technique with lots of keyhole for the first two layers, then my own take on modified CFOP last layer. And I'm becoming more and more familiar with the pieces to reduce the trial and error in the solve. There are some tutorials on speed solving the ghost cube, but I prefer working out my own approach, informed only by what I know about 3x3.

I'm not generally that interested in speed in solving, but in the case of the ghost cube, it's not really something you finger-trick or have high tps (at least not me at the point I'm at), so I time myself occasionally to see how I'm going, and I feel like it's more a reflection of improvement in my solve technique, efficiency and recognition. At the moment I'm firmly sub-5 minutes, and around 3 minutes isn't unusual for a good solve, so I'm pretty happy with my progress : )

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#### unirox13

##### Member
A very interesting question! Personally I've been spending a lot of time working on getting better at solving the ghost cube. I use a layer-by-layer technique with lots of keyhole for the first two layers, then my own take on modified CFOP last layer. And I'm becoming more and more familiar with the pieces to reduce the trial and error in the solve. There are some tutorials on speed solving the ghost cube, but I prefer working out my own approach, informed only by what I know about 3x3.

I'm not generally that interested in speed in solving, but in the case of the ghost cube, it's not really something you finger-trick or have high tps (at least not me at the point I'm at), so I time myself occasionally to see how I'm going, and I feel like it's more a reflection of improvement in my solve technique, efficiency and recognition. At the moment I'm firmly sub-5 minutes, and around 3 minutes isn't unusual for a good solve, so I'm pretty happy with my progress : )

Very cool! I recently got courageous enough to play with my Ghost Cube again. I solved it once many years ago and hadn't touched it since. The first solve years ago took me nearly a month to solve. It's amazing how much my puzzle knowledge has increased in that time. I solved it this time in about an hour. I guess that I just had more patience tied with a much better general knowledge of how the puzzle works. I'm looking forward to doing more solves on it soon. Maybe I'll do an actual timed solve just to see how well I can do.

#### Halqrius

##### Member
Everyone's tried to solve the cube with only half turns (if you haven't, then give it a try), but another fun challenge is to only use quarter turns. It isn't super difficult, but last layer can be annoying.
Another fun challenge is to solve a cube layer by layer, but make each of the layers in layers, and then make those layers in layers (eg, for 3x3, start with a corner. Then attach an edge to make a 1x1x2, then make it a 1x1x3, then attach an edge to that like a 1x2x3 minus a centre and edge, then attach the centre then another edge, and so on). I've only ever tried it for 3x3, but it's kind of fun.
Centres and edges are functionally the same on a mix-up cube, so why not try solving it without starting with cube shape? I think it's a pretty common thing, but it's fun if you've never tried it.

#### unirox13

##### Member
Everyone's tried to solve the cube with only half turns (if you haven't, then give it a try), but another fun challenge is to only use quarter turns. It isn't super difficult, but last layer can be annoying.
Another fun challenge is to solve a cube layer by layer, but make each of the layers in layers, and then make those layers in layers (eg, for 3x3, start with a corner. Then attach an edge to make a 1x1x2, then make it a 1x1x3, then attach an edge to that like a 1x2x3 minus a centre and edge, then attach the centre then another edge, and so on). I've only ever tried it for 3x3, but it's kind of fun.
Centres and edges are functionally the same on a mix-up cube, so why not try solving it without starting with cube shape? I think it's a pretty common thing, but it's fun if you've never tried it.

Very awesome! That layer by layer method sounds like a lot of fun. I've never even thought of that, I might have to give it a shot.

I just managed to solve my Master Kilominx by reducing it to a Kilominx. Kind of a 4x4 to a 2x2 type of thing. The last few corner/edge matches were a little tough. Once I figured out a 3- cycle type of thing for them it made sense though. Makes me wish I had an Elite Kilominx just for another similar challenge.

#### cuberswoop

##### Member
2x2-5x5 FMC has always been a time killer.

Most of the time I just count the moves in the solves, making sure I'm effiecent.

qwr

#### Halqrius

##### Member
Very awesome! That layer by layer method sounds like a lot of fun. I've never even thought of that, I might have to give it a shot.

I just managed to solve my Master Kilominx by reducing it to a Kilominx. Kind of a 4x4 to a 2x2 type of thing. The last few corner/edge matches were a little tough. Once I figured out a 3- cycle type of thing for them it made sense though. Makes me wish I had an Elite Kilominx just for another similar challenge.
Ooh, I should try that Master Kilominx thing! I saw a video by Blobinati cuber that mentioned a type of reduction where the layers of the reduced puzzle are interlocked(?) Like R l' U d' (small letters are slice moves) on a 4x4 would be like R U on a 2x2. It's strange to explain in text, but it makes me wonder if there's some sort of equivalent that you could do with with Elite Kilominx+

#### abunickabhi

##### Member
Aside from time, what are some new puzzle challenges that you create for yourself?

I'm not really big into speed solving anymore. As I started getting new, different puzzles I lost interest in solving fast and started becoming more interested in learning how the puzzles worked and how to solve different ones. A few months ago, I developed a really fun way of solving big cubes layer by layer. It's fun and not as challenging as you might think once you grasp the general idea of how things move. I've managed to solve all of my base cubes, 4x4 through 12x12 layer by layer. Today, I managed to translate that into a layer by layer solve on my 5x5 Megamorphix puzzle. It was a little challenging but I had fun figuring things out.

I also enjoy reducing even numbered big puzzles down to a 2x2. It's a little tough to keep track of once you get above 6x6, but I've also managed to do this on all of my even layer cube puzzles.

Just recently, SuperAntoniovivaldi (https://www.youtube.com/c/SuperAntoniovivaldi) an awesome puzzle solver who knows a lot about how these things work, started a new series on his YouTube channel about the new(ish) ShengShou 4, 5, and 6 layer tetrahedral Pyramid Tower puzzles. In those videos he equates those puzzles to skewb variants. Because of those videos I was inspired to take another look at my F- Skewb and Master Skewb puzzles. I managed to use his logic and some patience to solve those puzzles in a completely new to me way.

So yea, when I'm in the mood for a new challenge I like to try and figure out a different way of approaching a puzzle that I can already solve. How about you, do you have any unique puzzle challenges that you enjoy taking on?

I am somewhat into solving Pyraminx ultimate puzzle for some weird reason,