Jigsaw puzzles are a time tested pastime that can appeal to all ages, and provide a neat challenge each time as you find where every piece goes. The problem with jigsaw puzzles is that they end up taking up a whole table in the house with no easy way to move them. There’s also the chance to lose pieces, and you feel obliged to get it done asap before a piece is lost, or a table is cluttered for too long. Ravensburger is the best known name in jigsaw puzzles, and they understand these real life jigsaw puzzle limitations, so now they’re bringing their jigsaw prowess to the iPad. Ravensburger Puzzle gives you the ability to make jigsaw puzzles on your iPad that are all self contained on the device so that you can play whenever, and where ever you want.
There are plenty of jigsaw puzzles in the App Store, so it takes more than Ravensburger’s name to stand out. The best part is that Ravensburger Puzzle seems to emphasize the interface above all else. You’re given the obvious advantages of digital jigsaw puzzles so that you never lose a piece, or take up table space, and you can work on your own time. It’s more than that though, as everything is designed for touch to give you the best of a real world jigsaw puzzle combined with the benefits of the iPad version. The app includes over 150 different puzzles, and you can play each one in different piece arrangements from 20 to 500 pieces with multiple intervals in between. You choose the difficulty for each puzzle, and then the pieces are laid out on the screen, and then you can start solving the puzzle.
The app makes it effortless to tap, and drag pieces around to separate the edge pieces, or sort by colors, and then you can rotate pieces 90 degrees by tapping, or holding a piece, and swiping with a second finger. The interface really becomes transparent, so you get to just focus on the puzzle at hand. Another benefit is that you get to punch to zoom to see the whole puzzle, or individual pieces, and you can always drag in the main picture at any time. One of the best aspects is that correct pieces snap together with a rewarding click, and you no longer have to think a piece goes together, and possibly smash it into place. There’s just a whole lot to like as you get to make authentic puzzles in a natural way, while at the same time have the ability to work on multiple puzzles at once with the ability to save your progress.
At first glance, it seems like any other iOS jigsaw puzzle app, but once you start interaction with it, all others pale in comparison. Ravensburger has done a great job of improving upon the jigsaw puzzle formula with the iPad version, and it’s just a great way to make puzzles. Occasionally, it can be a bit tedious to drag a group of pieces around since you can only pick up one piece at a time. Luckily, there is a neat shelf feature allowing you to drag in a group of similar pieces to drag back out on to the board later. It’s also worth noting that you’re given six puzzles included in the price of the app with enough in-game coins to unlock five more of your choice. Additional puzzles cost coins, but they’re a lot cheaper than the real deal, and you’re given the benefit of multiple choices for number of pieces, and the ability to work at your own pace anywhere you take your iPad.
Ravensburger Puzzle ($2.99, iPad) isn’t just the best jigsaw puzzle app in the App Store, it makes jigsaws even more enjoyable with greater convenience for a must buy app.