Spoiler alert – the completed puzzle is pictured at the bottom of the page. If you don’t want to see it, don’t scroll down. If you want to pretend that you haven’t seen it, quickly have a look – no one will ever know!
Wasgij (pronounced ‘Woz-gidge’) are my favourite kind of jigsaw puzzles. As you might have worked out, the name is jigsaw backwards, and these puzzles are backwards too. In the ‘Original’ series, the picture on the front isn’t what the picture in the puzzle is. That would be far too easy! Instead, the puzzle you’re putting together is actually what someone who’s depicted in the picture on the front can see. The sizes range from mini versions (around 54 pieces) to 1000 pieces. They have different concepts too – like ‘Destiny’, where the picture will be a modern-day version of what the scene on the box shows.
Although these puzzles are a bit like Marmite – you either love them or hate them – I think they’re pure genius. They’re drawn in such a way that there might be similar colours in different areas of the puzzle, and there will always be little surprises. For example, you’ll be looking for a missing piece that you’re sure is blue and green, only it’ll have something extra in that piece to throw you off track.
There are clues on the box, like whose perspective the picture is from and the positions of some main items. Extra clues are available at http://www.wasgij.co.uk, although it might take a bit of searching to find the puzzle you want. A lot of the time you’ll think that a piece could fit but if you’re not sure then it’s probably the wrong one. You’ll know when it’s right as it’ll fit perfectly.
I’ve completed a few Wasgij puzzles now and, although The Mouth of the River was ok, it wasn’t my favourite. I’m all for puzzles being hard, but if you say that the picture will be what a particular person can see, then make sure it is what they can see. This one wasn’t. At the end I was left with far too many yellow and green pieces too. It became more of a hassle at this point than an enjoyable challenge. But I got there, and here is the end result…