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I get so Haunted that I fall in your dreams

Why, hello there!

My name is Phil, and I’m going to be talking about a spooky new puzzle type in a moment, but I thought I’d take a moment to introduce myself first. You may have seen my name already associated with a couple of recent additions to the Krazydad oeuvre; after being in contact with Jim off and on over the course of a few years, helping a bit here and there with new puzzle types, our benevolent site-runner brought me on board earlier this year to help in a more official manner. Most of my work before this point was on behind-the-scenes stuff you aren’t likely to notice–improved page load speed, backend systems work, that sort of thing–but I led a lot of the work on this new puzzle type, and you’ll be seeing more of my efforts in the months and (hopefully) years to come, so I thought it was well past time to say hello.

If you have any questions about my credentials when it comes to puzzles, let me give you the briefest of anecdotes. When I was a wee lad, I had exactly two prized possessions. One was a copy of The Official Nintendo Player’s Guide:

My copy was much, much more beat up than this one.

…and the other was a big brown bag, nearly as large as my diminutive frame, chock-full of puzzle magazines from Dell and Penny Press that I had successfully wheedled family into buying me almost every time we went to the grocery store or corner shop. My mother threw away the contents of that bag in the mid-’90s, and if I’m perfectly honest I still haven’t quite forgiven her for that. (Or for the destruction of one of my 5.25″ floppies for Pool of Radiance, but that’s another story entirely…)

I miss their old tagline: Penny Press means Puzzle Pleasure!

But entirely too much about me. You’re here for the puzzles, right? And we’ve got an exciting new one for you:

See, I told you it was spooky. Spooky cute.

Haunted (sometimes known as Haunted Mirror Maze or Undead) is, well, a mirror maze puzzle. You’re trying to find the locations of ghosts, vampires, and zombies by peeking into the maze from the sides; each monster behaves differently depending on whether you’re seeing them in a mirror or not. The details can be found on the instructions page that fronts each booklet, but trust me when I say that it’s the sort of puzzle that follows the how the heck does this work? to oh, NEAT! arc perfectly. (Or, you know, don’t trust me, and find out for yourself!) The puzzle type was invented by Dave Millar of The Griddle, who has allowed us to use it with generous permission. Thanks, Dave!

Something new for this puzzle type is the heavy use of custom art, made for us by the incomparable Catherine Yi (@canowerms), which captures a certain coloring-book aesthetic that I absolutely adore:

Look at those adorable vampires. Just look at them.

We’re hoping that these puzzles will be a big hit with teachers and kids alike, along with those who are still kids at heart. The currently available puzzles are therefore intentionally skewed to the easier side of things, but don’t let that fool you: even simple puzzles can require surprisingly challenging logic!

You can dive into these spine-tingling puzzles right now for yourself, and we’d love to hear what you think of them! And thanks again to both Dave and Catherine for their critical work, without which we wouldn’t have this spooktacular variety for you to enjoy.

See you again soon, I hope!

(P.S. If you think the blog title looks suspiciously like a song lyric… you’re not wrong.)

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