They're addictive, engrossing and maddening. Sliders have been around for well over a century, but you still may have a lot to learn about these braintwisters.
It took its name from its 4-by-4 grid with 15 tiles and one empty space.
The pieces of the 15 Puzzle were all squares. Can you imagine trying to slide interlocking triangles?
Exactly half the possible arrangements of the numbers can be returned to numerical order with the empty square at the end.
The 15 Puzzle was a huge sensation in the early months of 1880. Though the craze died down by the summer, the 15 Puzzle is still popular today.
Though Sam Loyd claimed be its inventor, the 15 Puzzle was actually the creation of postmaster Noyes Chapman.
Sliding puzzle pieces can only be rearranged by moving them into an empty space.
Some very simple sliding puzzles are extremely difficult to solve.
Rectangular pieces complicated the solution of the Pennant Puzzle, also known as Dad's Puzzle.
The myriad of movement options and variables of these puzzles are so complex that they present a challenge to computers.
The L-shaped pieces of Ma's Puzzle added a new degree of complexity to its solution.
Sliding puzzles are difficult because there's no key or formula that tells you how to solve them. As with most things, patience is your best asset.
Sokoban is the Japanese word for "warehouse manager." In this puzzle, the manager (player) has to move boxes into their proper position.
Because the boxes can only be pushed and not pulled, it's easy to reach a dead end.
While philosophers and psychologists may find these diversions fascinating, the principles behind solving sliding puzzles have long intrigued mathematicians.
The term PSPACE-complete is a measure of mathematical complexity and difficulty.
Quzzle's inventor claims it is the hardest simple sliding puzzle to solve.
Rubik's Cube was all the rage during the early 1980s. A total of more than 350 million have been sold since the Cube was introduced.
Fischer solved the puzzle in 25 seconds on the Tonight Show.
At a 2011 contest, Latvian puzzle whiz Feliks Zemdegs unscrambled the cube in 5.66 seconds to set a world's record.
Nob Yoshigahara, who died in 2004, was one of the world's leading puzzle designers. The Nob Yoshigahara Puzzle Design Competition is held annually.