Invented in 1974 by a Hungarian sculptor and professor of architecture Ern Rubik, the Rubik’s cube is one of the most recognized puzzles in the world. It is traditionally designed with six faces in a 3x3x3 dimension. Each of these six faces is covered by nine stickers in solid colours – white, red, blue, orange, green and yellow.
However, over the years, several versions of the Rubik’s cube have been designed. Additionally, there are also several art forms, mods, concepts, gadgets and designs that are inspired by the traditional model of Rubik’s cube. Here is a list of fascinatingly the coolest and most interesting Rubik’s cube puzzle games of all times.
X coolest and the most interesting cubes of all times
1. The Gear Cube
It was a historical moment when Oskar Van Deventer presented the prototype of the Gear Cube for the first time in 2009 on YouTube. This announcement marked the beginning of a new geared puzzle era. The solution to solving this cube was not that hard. This is because only 1800 turns were allowed. This roughly means that there weren’t many permutations to the puzzle.
There are two upgraded versions of the Gear Cube – the Gear Cube Ultimate and Gear Cube Extreme. These versions allow the player to make 900 turns on two faces thereby making the puzzle all the more interesting. The notation required to solve the Gear Cube is the same as the classic Rubik’s Cube.
2. The Mirror Cube
In the solved state, this puzzle resembles a simple Rubik’s Cube but with a uniform colour. The Mirror Cube is also known as the Bump Cube or the Mirror Block and is a difficult, yet rewarding 3x3 puzzle. This cube has a unique mechanism. It is essentially made up of different sized blocks. Therefore, as you execute algorithms, these blocks move around and create confusion! It is only after the puzzle is solved; can it be returned to its cube form. There is no denying that a scrambled Mirror Cube puzzle looks extremely challenging. The solution to solve this puzzle is similar to that of a Rubik’s Cube, except that you need to know what you are especially looking for!
3. The Megaminx Speed Cube
The Megaminx Speed Cube is also known as the Magic Dodecahedron because of its shape. There are many variations of the Megaminx. However, the most common version of Megaminx has 12 different colours, with 11 pieces in a star-pattern, five corner pieces and a fixed centrepiece.
The idea behind solving the puzzle is to scramble these colours and then restore them into the original state encompassing one colour per face. The Megaminx is also an official WCA Competition event (World Cube Association).
4. 13x13 Power Speed Cube Puzzle
Creators have strived to develop new and harder twisty puzzles as a version of the original Rubik’s Cube. The most common type of the Rubik’s Cube is like the 3x3 but bigger. They can be 13x13 or N x N, also known as ‘Reduction’ or ‘Redux’. These puzzles appear complex and are challenging to solve, as the number of layers increases. However, the foundation to solve these puzzles is relatively the same. Once you understand the algorithms and methods to solve the 4x4, 5x5 and 7x7 cubes, you can solve any N x N puzzle.
5. Da Yan Gem Puzzle
The Da Yan Gem Puzzle encompasses eight variants. The only distinction among these variants is the turning quality, vinyl stickers and the experience of solving the puzzle. The design of each of these variants also varies immensely. The Da Yan Gem 6 (in image) has 30 faces and six large octahedrons with 24 small faces. On the other hand, the Da Yan Gem 3 is a tetrakaidecahedron-shaped puzzle. All the DaYan Gem puzzles together make a great collection.
The Quadruple Cube extends far out of the boundaries of the Rubik’s cube. It is a unique modification of the traditional Rubik’s Cube. To say the least, it shaped like a cube within a cube within a cube and so on! This definitely is a challenging puzzle with impressive aesthetics.
6. The Braille Rubik’s Cube
The Braille Rubik’s Cube makes it possible for the visually impaired to enjoy the puzzle. There are many versions of this cube as well. One version of the cube includes different patterns on each face similar to the sides of a dice (in image). These patterns resemble braille as they are raised on the blocks. The other version of this puzzle includes letters of the colours written on the cube in braille. Both these versions make it possible to solve the puzzle by reading braille.
7. Kilominx Cube
The Kilominx Cube is also called the Flowerminx Cube. It is a 2x2 variant of the Megaminx. The edges of the Kilominx are internal and non-coloured. This prominently means that the puzzle can only be solved once all the corners are aligned and permuted correctly. The original model of Kilominx was first announced in 1982, and the biggest leap happened in 2016 when ShenShou launched their own version of the Kilominx. However, if you are familiar with the algorithms and patterns to solve a megaminx, you can easily solve a Kilominx as well.
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8. Dino Cube
The Dino Cube was invented by S. Y. Liou in 1995. The puzzle was originally referred to as the ‘corner turning cubes’. The Dino Cube is quite easy to solve. However, there are four variants of this cube – 2 colours, three colours, six colours and the dinosaur version. The notations are quite different as the letters here represent corners rather than faces in the case of a Rubik’s Cube.
9. Cube Shape Mods
Rubik's Cube Shape Mods work on the same mechanism of the classic 3x3x3 on the inside. However, on the outside, they seem to have different shapes and designs. To solve these Shape Mods, you would need to learn new algorithms which rotate the centrepieces. This is because even though the faces have solid colours but in some shape mods, the centrepieces can be textured. Some most common variations are the Mirror Cube, Ghost Cube, Fisher Cubes, and Mastermorphix.
10. Magic Clock
The Rubik's Magic Clock was invented in the 1980s. It is arguably one of the simplest puzzles that are currently speed solved in the official WCA competitions. The design of this puzzle is what makes it completely unique as compared to other WCA events. It features nine clock faces on each side in a 3x3 grid and four pins that can be pushed in or out. There are also four gears which control the movement of the clocks. The puzzle is in a solved state only when all the clocks face 12 o'clock.
Square-1 was previously called Cube 21 and Back to Square One. It is a shape-shifting puzzle and the solution to solve this puzzle is also quite unique. This is because it has kite-shaped corners and triangular edges which are indistinguishable to the puzzle's inner mechanism. Therefore, the corners can be swapped with the edges! It is an official WCA competition event, and Martin Edgal currently holds the record at 4.59 seconds!
12. Locking Puzzles
This is a puzzle that entertains people of all ages. This wooden football-only seems easy to assemble. But it requires careful thinking and understanding of its internal structure. This puzzle is a perfect brain teaser and improves problem-solving skills.
13. Fruit Puzzles
The Fruit Puzzles is a great brain teaser cube puzzle toy. Whether you are a beginner or a professional, this puzzle will prove to be a challenge. To solve the puzzle, you need to twist and rotate the pieces. The Fruit Puzzle comes in many shapes and does not have one solution. There are many combinations and permutations that can lead you to the solved position.
14. Magnetic blocks
Magnetic Blocks can be used as building blocks that come in happy colours. These blocks come with built-in magnetics. The magnetics make it easier to stack the blocks and build any shapes. It also helps in enhancing and developing hand-eye coordination, concentration and provides a fun challenge.
Wrapping it up!
There are tons and tons of variants of the Rubik’s cube! Starting from the basic 2x2, 3x3 all the way to 11x11 and then a huge leap to N x N x N cubes there are regular Rubik’s cubes with multiple layers and then there are mirror cubes, pyramid cubes, cubes for the visually challenged, and thousands of mods. Enthusiasts create their own version of the puzzles which might seem bizarre but are some of the coolest and some of the most interesting inventions!