Back from the Klondike

The Back from the Klondike puzzle is a game that involves moving pieces of ice up and down on a grid to reveal hidden phrases. It was created by Sam Loyd in 1989. The object of the game is to uncover all four corners of every row on the board at least once before any pieces can be moved again. With unique gameplay and an entertaining story, this game provides hours of fun for players who want something new!

This game is great for players of all ages and skill levels. It also helps with problem solving skills, spatial reasoning, and developing a sense of logic.

In 1738, the great mathematician Euler discovered a rule for solving all manner of maze puzzles. This is because working backwards plays a key role in this puzzle and any good puzzlist knows that!

The irony is that Loyd created this maze to outsmart Leonhard Euler’s strategy for solving mazes. And this puzzle is the only one that has defeated Euler’s rule. It was purposefully built to do so, and it took many attempts for this successful result!

It was possible to solve the original puzzle which was published in the Advertiser and New York Journal newspapers with multiple solutions. The one in the image above is the fixed modern one with only one way out.

How to play the game

Sam Loyd’s original instructions:

Start from the heart in the center. Go three steps in a straight line in any one of the eight directions, north, south, east, west, northeast, northwest, southeast, or southwest. When you have gone three steps in a straight line you will reach a square with a number on it, which indicates the second day’s journey, as many steps as it tells, in a straight line in any one of the eight directions. From this new point, march on again according to the number indicated, and continue on in this manner until you come upon a square with a number which will carry you just one step beyond the border, thus solving the puzzle.

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