I love the Dick Calkins box graphics on these puzzles sets from Hake’s. We had some old Buck Rogers stuff laying around my house when I was a kid, stuff that belonged to my father when he was a kid. I always wondered what happened to them, they just seemed to disappear one day. I was cleaning out the basement at the family homestead recently, when I found a bundle of them, ruined and warped, stuck in the bottom drawer of an old dresser. I was majorly bummed and tried to reclaim anything I could, but they were pretty far gone. For the life of me, I cannot figure out how they made it there, I assume he might have put them there, because nothing I would have treasured would have ever left my room if I tried to hide them. They were near his basement work bench, so maybe he was hiding his treasures near where he could find them.
I do puzzles. It’s kind of lame, yes. There’s never a puzzle I do during which I don’t at some point think, “This is a waste of time.” But I do them in autumn and especially around Halloween. This started way back when I was grounded for some reason during the fall of my sixth grade year. I spend my two grounded weeks in my room alternatively working a puzzle and reading Stephen King’s It (here and here). Since that time, doing puzzles has just been an Autumn thing for me. It’s part of how I enjoy Autumn, imbibe Autumn. Working a puzzle while listening to a great horror movie I know well and munching on Halloween candy? Yeah, that’s Autumn. A waste of time, but that’s Autumn. Making it even more Autumn-y are the great Autumn and Halloween puzzles as like these from my collection:
This is just a generic Halloween puzzle, but it is just filled with Halloween atmosphere. Every section of the puzzle has pumpkins, witches, and trick-or-treaters. And at 500 pieces, it won’t take too much time away from seasonal slasher flicks.
These puzzles are by Charles Wysocki. He’s done dozens of general Autumn puzzles and specifically Halloween puzzles. Some of these are very difficult to get, such as Hellraisers on Halloween (the blue one).
You have to have some Peanuts puzzles in the mix. Charlie Brown pretty much owns Halloween, and he stakes his claim on the holiday even harder with these pumpkin-shaped puzzles, one of which is taken directly from The Great Pumpkin and the other of which is inspired by it. They come in regular cardboard boxes as well as collectors tins. Making these puzzles extra-hard is the pumpkin shape. You can’t do the outline of these puzzles like you can with the square ones. You have to do the kids and then work out. It was also while doing these puzzles that I realized what a strange head Linus has. Seriously, that can’t be normal.
Waste of time? Maybe. But then considering all the enjoyment and atmosphere I get from doing these puzzles at this time of year, maybe not.
I am a big fan of Muttley and was looking at a kite safety book that was issued in 1969. When I stumbled across this brilliantly tinted Panorama, that challenges you to find at least 11 “perils”. Can you spot 11?
Kickstarter is full of worthy projects, both retro and modern. The project that I am most interested in this week is Skull Island for the Atari 2600 by Shawn Setnicky. The Project only had 2 days left and needs some help, so if you can, drop by and pledge your support and if you have the means, help spread the word.
Here is a little info from the projects Kickstarter page: The game is called Skull Island. It’s a puzzle game with 40 levels ranging from beginner to expert. You can see a sample video I’ve attached here, but it’s had some updates since that video, mainly the title screen has changed.
The money will be used to make the cartridge cases, labels, manuals, boxes, game circuit boards, and assembly. The cases are quite costly to produce as they’re all made by hand. The first prototype will take a little longer to produce, but as the wood carver learns shortcuts he’ll be able to make them faster.
No more will be produced after this, so this will be extremely collectible and I’m sure will go up in value. Each limited edition cartridge will include: a cartridge label, instruction manual, and box.