The Ortega Method, also known as the Varasano Method, is a 2x2 and 3x3 speedsolving method. If used to solve a 3x3 shape modification, extra algorithms may have to be used. It is named after Victor Ortega, and is mostly popular today for being an intermediate 2x2 solving method.
Victor Ortega is often credited for creating the method. While it is true that Victor popularized the method, he cannot be said to have created it, similar to the naming dispute with the CFOP method. The popularity of the method dates from December 2001 when Josef Jelinek added Ortega's Corners First method (as a solution for 3x3x3 cubes) to his website. (Jelínek himself had already outlined a Corners-first approach comparable to the Ortega Method.) His website has always stated that Ortega's method was "based on Minh Thai's Winning Solution" (from 1982). The method got picked-up by 2x2 cubers and became widely known as the Ortega Method.
In 2015 competitive cuber and YouTuber Christopher Olson researched the creation of the Ortega method. He found an original 3x3 method in a book by Jeffrey Varasano, the 1981 US record holder for the Rubik's cube, explaining how he solved a Rubik's cube in under 45 seconds. His was a Corners-first method similar to the method used by Minh Thai to win the World Championship 1982. But the method for solving the corners turned out to have the same steps as the "Ortega" method. This led to Chris creating a video to rename the Ortega method to the Varasano method. However, the naming change did not stick and the majority still call it "Ortega", although "Varasano-Ortega" is sometimes used.
As a 2x2x2 Method
Using Ortega as a 2x2x2 method first involves solving one face intuitively; don't worry about solving an entire layer, because the face will be permuted later. Second, orient the opposite face, either by using the same OLL algorithms as on 3x3x3 or by using more efficient ones made for 2x2x2 (see below). Finally, you permute both layers at the same time by using PBL. The last step may sound difficult but there are only 5 possible cases, so it is quick to learn. In total, there are 12 algorithms to learn (11 without reflections).
For the first face, without colour neutrality, the average move count in HTM is a surprisingly low 3.97, and no cases require more than 5 turns. Because of this inspection is just a few seconds, advanced users benefit from that and uses the remaining inspection time to predict the OLL case, or even the whole solve.
The case shown in the picture in the method information box is known as Sune, one of the OLL cases.
As a 3x3x3 Method
Using Ortega as a 3x3x3 method involves first solving the corners completely, followed by insertion of the D layer edges, and 3 of the U-layer edges. The mid-layer edges are then oriented during placement of the final U-layer edge, and finally the mid-layer edges are permuted. @see rubikscube.info link below..
- Why the Ortega method was renamed to the Varasano method
- Martijn Bakker's Ortega doc
- Bob Burton's Ortega page
- Youtube: 2x2 Ortega Method Tutorial by theWestonian
- Youtube: 2x2x2 Ortega outline
- Youtube: 3x3x3 Varasano with L6E Tutorial
- Youtube: 3x3x3 Ortega Video Tutorial
- Ortega method in Swedish
- Ortega method in French by speedcubingtips.eu