Frequently Asked Questions
I’m glad you asked! After the puzzle boards are cut, dust accumulates when the pieces get split up. The solution is to put all puzzle pieces in a big box and gently sift them by hand. Once the dust settles on the bottom, the pieces have to be picked up by hand, not poured out, to keep the dust separated. It’s a tough and labor intensive process, and we’re paying a lot for it. Why don’t other puzzle companies get rid of the dust in the box? Who can say. Probably because they’re cheap.Last updated:
On the box, it says ages 15+ because we don't want to be liable if children eat the pieces. But the art is appropriate for people of all ages.Last updated:
We are using Kickstarter to raise money to print these puzzles. The puzzles are finished and have already been completely designed, but they have not been manufactured yet.
This project runs for 30 days, ending on 6/3/20. At the end of that period, we will use Kickstarter's "backer survey" tool to ask which puzzle you want to receive, and request your shipping address. This request should come to your email and be visible on your Kickstarter account page.Last updated:
After the our project is complete, we will send you a "backer survey" through Kickstarter. You'll use that to tell us your shipping address and select the puzzle you want.
Some Kickstarter projects use complicated third party tools called "pledge managers" to organize all this information. Our goal is to keep this project simple and ship you your puzzles as quickly as we can. So for that reason we are hoping not to use a pledge manager.Last updated:
We worked for a long time on these puzzles so that every aspect of experience from opening the box to finishing the puzzle was as exciting and smooth as possible. If we start coming up with new ideas and adding random stuff to the project now, it will complicate our manufacturing process and delay production. Our goal is to keep things simple and get these puzzles to you as soon as possible.
In short - if you like the puzzles we came up with, we would love to have your support to make them as is. If you don't like what we came up with, we also respect your decision not to back the project.Last updated:
We love independent game stores, and Ben and Max even started one in Chicago. But unfortunately we are not equipped to run a wholesale program for retail stores from this Kickstarter project. Right now we are just trying to raise money to print these puzzles, and ship them directly to backers. After the project is done we would love to find a way to get these puzzles into local game stores, book stores, and hobby shops. But we haven't gotten that far yet.Last updated:
We are only offering one puzzle or three puzzles. Our goal is to keep this project extremely simple and get these puzzles to you as soon as possible.
We strongly encourage everyone to just get one set of puzzles. However, if it's very important for you to order multiple sets, just pledge for 2x or the normal price and just pay for shipping to your country once. We’ll sort out the details with you after you fill out your backer survey. Please note that this might delay your order because we’ll need to manage it by hand. We do not encourage people to get multiple sets of puzzles.
EDIT: Some people are taking advantage of this offer to try to save on shipping on a large number of orders. If you are bundling more than two orders, you will have to pay the additional shipping costs after the project is complete. Also please note that this will delay your shipping date since we'll have to work this out with you on a case-by-case basis.Last updated:
We're surprised that this project has taken off like it has, and grateful for everyone's support. After we launched, Magic Puzzles quickly became the most-backed puzzle project ever on Kickstarter!
When any Kickstarter project becomes much bigger than the original plans, it can create all kinds of logistical problems. We're in communication with our manufacturer every day, and as of today (5/12/20) we think we will be able to hit our original October delivery date. We're lucky that we did a lot of work in advance of launching the project to secure freight and production materials like puzzle cardboard.
However please keep in mind that Kickstarter is not a store - these puzzles do not exist yet. You are not buying a puzzle, you are funding the process that will allow us to create the puzzles for the first time. And like with any Kickstarter project, a million and one things might go wrong and cause a delay, including disruption to manufacturing and shipping caused by Coronavirus.
The best we can promise is to keep you updated through regular backer updates as we learn more about our manufacturing timeline, and do everything we can to get these out to you as soon as possible. If you're not comfortable with the risk of a delay, we completely understand if you decide not to back this project.Last updated:
Right now we are focused on funding our first print run using Kickstarter. We haven't figured out anything after that. We hope to make these puzzles available in stores some time in the future.Last updated:
We're planning to ship to European backers from the U.K., and honestly we don't understand what that means for taxes and tariffs and stuff. We will try to work this out and keep you updated as the project progresses.
UPDATE: Our current understanding is that Brexit won’t affect shipping and tariffs until January 2021. So there shouldn't be any additional fees if you order from the EU. For further information please contact:
10 Downing St
United KingdomLast updated:
Our current estimate is that these puzzles will ship to you in October of 2020. Please keep in mind that there is serious potential for Coronavirus to disrupt global manufacturing and shipping. If that happens, we will keep you updated through regular backer updates.Last updated:
- We're shipping with USPS and FedEx in the U.S. depending on where you live
- Canada will be either USPS or Canada Post; we don't know yet
- We're using Royal Mail for most overseas shipments
- We can ship to APO addresses using USPS
To see the shipping cost for your country, click on the reward you want, and select your country from the drop down menu.
There is no way for us to accommodate individual shipping preferences. If you have particular shipping needs or need special shipping accommodations, you might want to skip this project. Every shipping company in the world is under tremendous pressure right now, so we're doing the best we can with what we have.
We know that international shipping is expensive, and we completely respect your decision not to back this project if the rates are too high. Those rates reflect our costs and we are not making any profit on shipping. We wish it was cheaper too.Last updated:
Shipping is a "fixed cost," meaning it doesn't go up or down no matter what else happens with our project. We are shipping these puzzles to you "at cost," meaning we are not making any money on the shipping. USPS (or whoever) charges us a certain rate, and we pass that rate on to you.
We know the international shipping costs are a pain point for people, and we wish they were lower.
*Unfortunately there is no way for us to lower the shipping costs, and we will not be changing them on this project.*
If you choose not to back the project based on those high shipping costs, we completely respect your decision, and we're sorry to lose you as a backer. If you do back the project, please know that you are accepting the shipping costs AS IS and we will not be lowering them.Last updated:
We worked with one of our favorite designers, Susan Kare (http://KarePrints.com), to come up with the logo for the Magic Puzzle Company. We can’t say enough good things about working with Susan... it was an incredible opportunity for us. For a graphic designer this was like getting to play guitar with Jimi Hendrix.Last updated:
The tracks in our video are all by a band called Lullatone. They make the most chill, peaceful, and focused music and we listen to it all the time when we're working. We used the following tracks with permission from the band (thanks Lullatone!):
- “Adventure Music for Migrating Birds (Piano Version)” from Music for Museum Gift Shops
- “Skipping Ahead” from Thinking About Thursdays
- “Polyphonic Ping Pong” from Thinking About ThursdaysLast updated:
Magic books have an important tradition of citing the lineage of an idea, to honor the work of those who came before you, and leave a trail of breadcrumbs for future magicians. The exact provenance of this type of illusion is unknown, but we're standing on some pretty impressive shoulders here.
Martin Gardner called the basis for this illusion “the Principle of Concealed Distribution,” and noted that it was “very old.” (“Mathematics, Mystery, and Magic” by Martin Gardner, 1956). Gianni Sarcone told us that he believes the first example of a vanishing area puzzle was discovered in the book "Libro d’Architettura Primo" by Sebastiano Serlio (1475c - 1554), an Italian architect of the Renaissance.
While the “concealed distribution” illusion date back hundreds years, we drew direct inspiration from the following implementations:
- Sam Lloyd’s “Get off The Earth” Illusion (1896)
- Theodore L. DeLand’s Card Paradox (1907)
- Paul Curry’s Missing Square (1956)
- Pat Lyons’ Vanishing Leprechaun (1968)
- Winston Freer’s Tile Puzzle (1976)
- Gianni Sarcone’s Vanishing Egg (1990)
- Mark Setteducatti and Ton Onosaka’s “Face-Off” (1994)
- Steve Wagner’s Cheshire Cat Illusion (1996)
- Chris Kenner, Homer Liwag, and Dan Ferrulli’s “Mac King is Gone!” (1989)
- Adam Rubin’s “The Butterfly Collection” (2003)
- Brian Daniel’s “Bermuda Square” (2010)
- Jordan Gold and Simon Coronel’s “Dani Card” (2017)Last updated:
All of the "series one" puzzles have the same illusion, but the details and story are unique to each puzzle. Sorry to be vague about this - we want to make it as much of a surprise for you as we can.Last updated:
No! The illusion at the end of the puzzle will work for everyone whether you have good eyesight or not. It's a physical illusion, not an optical illusion. We can't see those Magic Eye things either.Last updated:
My expectations for the illusion are too high. Do I need an app? Does it transform into a drone and fly around the room? Is it alive?
People are coming up with some wild theories about the illusion, and we want to encourage you to keep your expectations in check. The puzzle is not a computer, it doesn't involve electronics or technology. It's basically an optical illusion and a neat surprise at the end. If you think the puzzle is going to fold itself into a robot and walk about the room you are setting yourself up for disappointment. Please remember it costs $20 and is made of recycled cardboard.Last updated:
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