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Inked Gaming Mats going beyond cards

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My name is Shawn Boucké. I run the website and YouTube channel SpeedCubeReview. Speed cubing is pretty much what it sounds like, solving something like a Rubik’s cube as fast as you can. There are many different puzzles beyond just a basic Rubik’s cube. There are different sizes such as a 4x4, 5x5, pyramid shaped ones (Pyraminx), 12-sided ones (Megaminx), or you can just up the challenge and solve it blindfolded. The community is quite large with currently over 100,000 members in the WCA (World Cube Association) and growing daily.

So… what does this have to do with Inked Gaming mats?

I have my very own Inked Gaming mat that I use when solving a cube at home. Although I have used it for multiple card-based games it is primarily used for speed solving. During a competition you would be allowed up to 15 seconds to inspect the puzzle until you must start the timer and begin solving. Once you complete the solve you stop the timer as fast as you can which usually results in just dropping the cube allowing the mat to cushion the fall. Competitions are great places for the community to gather and no matter if you are an experienced solver or just beginning I encourage anyone to attend. 

There are many different brands of puzzles out there with some being more flexible, some having colored plastic instead of stickers, and some even having magnets to enhance the turning qualities of it. My first cube was a Rubik’s brand from my local corner store but most of my puzzles I now get are from online shops like SpeedCubeShop which are specially designed for speed solving. 

It is a wonderful, albeit a bit addicting hobby to get into. My original goal was not to try and solve fast. I was just happy to be able to solve it at all. Through the years of practice I have both developed the muscles for moving the cube faster as well as learned countless number of algorithms (patterns) to make my solves more efficient. No, there is not just one pattern you can do over and over to solve the puzzle. It is different every time and there is always more to learn.

Thank you very much to Inked Gaming for inviting me to write this blog. If you are interested in how to solve the cube I have a beginner tutorial I would encourage you to check out!