Xmatrix Quadrus (Labyrinth Puzzle) by Jeremy Goode
2011 - 2012, Golden A' Toy, Games and Hobby Products Design Award Winner
Influences include puzzles and games I played with as a child, as well as a graphic interest in pattern and illusion. I wanted to design a serious self-contained challenge that you could look at again and again. It had to be simple to understand, fun, beautiful, difficult and yet affordable. So I experimented by cutting-out pieces of card, recycled CD boxes and sweet wrappers and developed the concept by hand into what you see today which looks computer designed.
The Xmatrix Quadrus is a quality new, beautiful and mesmerizing three-dimensional ball-in-a-box puzzle. It is unlike any puzzle you have ever seen before, being a cross between game and art-piece. The translucent, pixelated, crystalline layers play with light in a stunningly sculptural and interactive way. Most puzzles of this type are visual mazes. Quadrus is visual as well as mental, in that the path only reveals itself during play. Remember the shape of this invisible path and you can find your way. The puzzle looks and feels elegant and luxurious and is self-contained with no pieces to lose. It has small raised corners to help prevent surface scratching and stop it slipping out of your hand. The handy size makes it easy to hold, easy to stack in-store and easy to transport. The name was developed from the qualities of the product. X (marks the spot, and is the unknown factor), Matrix (cavity in which something is formed, and elements in rows and columns). The unique ambigram logo was developed to fit onto the product and the packaging, so that it always reads correctly and plays on the idea that you have to 'turn it upside-down'. The packaging allows maximum visibility, so the customer can see and try-out the product. The instructions are simple to understand and the overall concept can be developed. An affordable addictive futuristic gift, a collectable coffee-table conversation piece or an artistic object of contemplation?
Design Challenges
The hardest part was trying to find out if anything like this had been made before, oh, and finding the money to pay for the tooling and start it as a business. I have designed absolutely everything myself and learned a lot in the process. And this is just the beginning!...
Production Technology
Injection moulded acrylic box, into which is put three injection moulded GPPS layers (with added florescence so it glows in UV light), two frames -gold and silver plated, white X platform, four gold foil side logos and chromed steel ball. Box is ultrasonically welded shut. Sliding drawer window-box packaging, recycled and recyclable card, 3 colour print with gold foil and UV varnish. (Printed internal drawer for enjoyment factor). Sealed in a shrink wrap with 'Shortlisted Gift of the Year' label applied.
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