How to Unlock a Chinese Puzzle Box

Written by jon stefansson
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How to Unlock a Chinese Puzzle Box
Puzzle boxes tax the mind and test problem solving skills. (Thinkstock Images/Comstock/Getty Images)

Chinese puzzle boxes, often called Japanese puzzle boxes, are only accessible by moving parts in a particular direction, in a specific order. The aim of the game is to open the box by trial and error and access the prize hidden inside. Each puzzle box is different, posing a unique challenge to the person trying to crack the combination. Opening your puzzle box tests your persistence, memory and puzzle-solving abilities.

Skill level:
Moderately Challenging


  1. 1

    Squeeze the box in various places, feeling for movable parts. Some boxes are simple, requiring only a single movement in a particular direction, while others require a combination of moves. Parts of the box might slide apart or move inward.

  2. 2

    Think logically; examine the position of the pieces after each move to see if the box suggests the next move. Try moving pieces more than once in different directions. Pieces may not move in the direction you expect; try sliding, push and pulling.

  3. 3

    Make notes or use your memory; challenging puzzle boxes involve several hundred subtle movements in a certain order. Remember the moves you have already made or refer to your notes and try them out again if you get stuck. Be persistent.

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