I visited the local Disney Store and picked up a Mickey's Challenge puzzle for
$10. It's really cute, and the book that it comes with is excellent.
Included are color photos of Christophe Bandelow, Uwe Meffert, and the puzzle
disassembled into all its parts. Plus it gives a solution for the puzzle and
has a short bio on Uwe Meffert. It also shows color photos of the Megaminx,
Pyraminx (not the Tomy version, but a black one), and the 5x5x5 which they
refer to as "Professor's Cube."
Some general notes on Mickey's Challenge. It is a spherical Skewb, and it
actually turns much more smoothly than my cubical Skewb. It has the same
delightful "clicking" mechanism that the Skewb and original Pyraminx had.
It is a bit easier than the Skewb, since there are a few blank pieces that
can be exchanged without noticing the difference. In fact, the book's solution
actually leaves Mickey intact while solving Donald. After you're bored with
solving it, the concept of making patterns takes on strange dimensions, as you
can make Mickey and Donald exchange body parts and look like Disney on acid!
All in all, it is an excellent little puzzle and I am very glad to see the
Skewb widely available to puzzle enthusiasts everywhere.
One final note: the booklet gives no credit whatsoever to Tony Durham, who
was credited with the Skewb's invention in Hofstadter's Sci Am articles years
ago. They instead credit Meffert, since the Skewb's mechanism is based on