I nabbed two Lost mystery jigsaw puzzles, and while I’m about 15 years late to the game, I really appreciate the level of effort put into making these a worthwhile mystery experience.
Lost #1: The Hatch
Manufacturer: TDC Games
Lost #2: The Others
Manufacturer: TDC Games
The Lost series of puzzles capitalized on the mysterious nature of the series by having a jigsaw puzzle that would challenge puzzlers on every level.
The images for the puzzles weren’t shown on the box. I had never done a mystery puzzle like this with 1000 pieces (I’ve done several 500 piece mystery puzzles blindly), and it was quite the challenge.
One element I found interesting is that the piece cuts were different for the two puzzles. The Hatch used a standard ribbon cut, with traditional piece shapes, whereas The Others used a random cut with many larger pieces, offset by a few very small pieces to maintain the 1000 piece total.
I preferred the traditional ribbon cut between these two puzzles. While I appreciate the concept of random cut, many of the smallest pieces often combined with 2-3 others to make the shape of a conventional piece, meaning that even with unorthodox piece shapes, I’d often end up on a fruitless search for one piece when I should have been looking for three fragments.
As an added layer of mystery, the back of each puzzle has hidden with glow-in-the-dark ink 1/4 of a map of the Dharma Initiative stations from Lost along with a secret code that can be cracked to get nuggets of plot elements from the upcoming season of Lost. Given that I’m well past that deadline, I just read online the answers to these riddles (it would have required me to pick up a copy of The Turn of the Screw!), but had I been following the show right when this came out, I would have been all over solving the full series and finding all the mysteries.
The final images for each puzzle were fine- nothing terribly special, just screens from Lost. I liked the Hatch puzzle better of the two, not just because of piece cut but because there was less dead space between TV screens. The amount of generic foliage and borders in the Others puzzle killed me a little, and I felt like 75% of my effort came after getting the photos together.
Lost was a fun show that captured a lot of imaginations, and I was really excited to see the amount of thought that went into a TV show tie-in puzzle. When I saw the “warning: spoilers for future seasons!” tags on the boxes, I assumed these were cheap cash-ins, but instead I found an impressive amount of puzzle content.
Given that the series has been over for more than a decade, I’m not going to be actively seeking out the remaining two puzzles in this series, but I’m glad to have taken a closer look at these clever games!
Piece total since 3/20/2020: 15045