Sliding Puzzle

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One possible starting configuration of the 15 puzzle

Slide pieces on the board so that they reach the given end configuration.

Rule variations[edit]

  • Identify which arrangement of pieces can be slided to form the given configuration. (from WPC 2017)
  • Identify the minimum number of swaps required to achieve the given configuration. The swapped tiles need not be adjacent to each other. (from WPC 2017)

History of the puzzle[edit]

Most famous and earliest of sliding puzzles, the 15 puzzle, was invented by Noyes Palmer Chapman (USA) in 1874. The game was already popular in America in the 1880s. [1]

Since then, many variants have emerged. To name a few, Klotski was patented by Lewis W. Hardy (USA) in 1909. On-Off puzzle by Nob Yoshigahara (Japan) was used in a single-puzzle round in WPC 1992.

Appearances in the past WPCs[edit]