Archive for the ‘Puzzles’ Category


If someone’s coming to visit you one night and they’re late or just don’t show up, maybe they’ve run into a nurikabe (塗壁)…

In Japanese folklore, originating from Fukuoka, Kyushu, there’s a “wall spirit” that appears at night, blocking the destination of its victims. It can’t clearly be seen but it’s got arms and legs. One may hope to run around it but the nurikabe can extend in all directions… and, if you’re hoping to use this as a chance to test out your testosterone reserves, it’ll simply use its weight to crush you like an obstinate vending machine.

Anything sound a bit familiar?
Well, here’s a statue of the wall ghost in Tottori prefecture…

If I was ever made to guess which character from a Mario game was from Japanese folklore, I never would have guessed that annoying grunting wall, affectionately known as Whomp :o)
What a better way to get some free character design than from folklore :o)

Well, I was intrigued… and set out to find other well-known characters but quickly got side-tracked when I realised nurikabe is also a kind of puzzle. I went to the website, saw that they’d already published seven collections of them for about $6, and thirty minutes later I was in the bookstore.

Here’s the wikipedia site with a list of the rules…
if you want to play it online, I’m sure google can take it from here :o)



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