John Spilsbury, a London engraver and mapmaker, is said to be the first person who created a jigsaw puzzle by cutting a hardwood map with a marquetry saw. That was far back in 1766. The rest as they say is puzzle history.
If you are starting to get the first tinges of enthusiasm for puzzles and jigsaws, you can get an overview about it on Wikipedia.
As you start putting the pieces together, you will see that there’s a lot of frenzy over this humble game. From varieties of home board games to clubs and societies that passionately follow the game. There are championships held around the world too with cash prizes galore.
You might ask what the fuss is all about? Well, try out your endurance and perception skills on these ten websites that let you play free jigsaw puzzles online.
We have covered this site before: you can create your own jigsaws from searchable Flickr and Google images. Or do a random jigsaw. The challenge is to solve an N x N jigsaw in N2 moves. If a jigsaw has 5×5 tiles, you have to complete it in 25 moves or less.
JigZone is an online jigsaw puzzle site where you choose from any of the jigsaw puzzles on display. Next, you can choose the level of difficulty from the 6-piece classic to the monumentally arduous 247-piece triangle. There’s a daily puzzle, a huge puzzle gallery with categorized jigsaws to pick from, and also upload your own photos and turn them into cool jigsaws to send to friends.
A very simple site but it gives you all the online jigsaw puzzles you want to play without the clutter. If that’s too much to think about, you can create your own jigsaw puzzles by uploading a photo, setting the number of tiles and their shape. Plus set the rotation to make it more difficult.
What’s the connection between National Geographic and jigsaws? It’s the rich images, which get turned into cool jigsaws with the Jigsaw Puzzle Generator. Lots of categories and 545 pages worth of puzzles to choose from. Choose one, then click and time yourself as you try to beat the clock. You can tweak a few settings in the Options to make the puzzles more difficult or easier.
This puzzle website is simple in its looks, but it sure has a large number of jigsaw puzzles (1,800+). The Flash jigsaw puzzles are made from licensed royalty-free images. You can make your one time puzzles too by uploading an image or putting it online on Flickr. While playing, you can set the level of play with a slider along with a couple of other options.
From simple 9 piece puzzles to ones that have 100 pieces, take your pick of tiles. The tiles come as straight rectangle pieces without the interlocking shapes. The site has a lot of categories (there’s one on the military). Each day you can play a puzzle with a different theme, just to keep things interesting. You can also compare your solving times with average times and the best time.
Sign in and create a profile to play jigsaw puzzles in an interactive interface. You can play a variety of puzzles by moving the tessellated pieces on the full span of the browser. The larger jigsaw puzzles go up to 240+ pieces. There is a simpler “˜For Kids’ category too among the others. You can also create your own puzzle.
Apart from the regular fare of jigsaw puzzles and jigsaw puzzle galleries, the site also hosts a jigsaw puzzle contest. Solve jigsaws and earn puzzle points, which can be redeemed for raffle tickets monthly. The next one is a 1,000 piece jigsaw puzzle. The puzzles are free but the site also has a paid premium plan which gives more benefits to the user like full screen puzzles etc. The free membership limits the player to fewer jigsaw playing options like selected puzzle cuts.
The site gives you 3,033 assorted jigsaw puzzles to choose from. You don’t need to log in but only provide a player nickname before you start playing. The puzzles open in a full screen browser. You can go as high as 1,200 pieces with some puzzles. Toggle the sound effects and play with the clock in mind.
132 jigsaw puzzles and counting for kids should be enough to get them started off. The puzzles are really simple, and even then they are ranked with options of Easy, Medium, and Hard. Pre-school and juniors can enjoy the colorful cartoon images of the puzzles.
Jigsaw puzzles like all puzzles are brain exercises. They rank right alongside the ones we have covered before. Jigsaw puzzles can be a useful educational tool too that stimulates lateral thinking in kids. The most valuable lesson it teaches is one on patience. Do you like playing jigsaw puzzles online and getting the whole picture? Let us know.
Image Credit : Horia Varlan