Tuesday, November 20, 2012

3x3x3 Camouflage Cube

The 3x3x3 Camouflage Cube is a bandaged and extended twisty puzzle in the shape of a cube. It is a fiendishly difficult puzzle, not least because unless you "see" what's actually going on, figuring out a solution will be nigh impossible. 

And then there's the issue of colour. Witeden decided not to make a consistent colour scheme, which means that the colours on your cube, while being the same as on mine, will correspond to different piece types.

The Basic Plot

  1. Reduce the first layer.
  2. Reduce the second layer.
  3. Solve the reduced 2x2x2.
Step 1: Reduce the First Layer (with the fully bandaged block)

* Don't skip the next bit! *

Before we begin, please watch this preliminary video about the cube. I'll explain how to view the cube as well as the strategy we'll use to solve it.

Moving on...

I prefer to start by solving a complete layer which contains the fully bandaged block. On my cube, this is the white-orange-blue piece. This means I would theoretically start with either the white layer, the orange layer, or the blue layer. I like starting with the white layer, so that's what I'll do in the following video. I find that it also helps being able to deal with one colour first.

The basic strategy is to reduce each of the blocks and then store them on the D layer. The fully bandaged block is always reduced, so we can store the other ones on the same layer.

On this layer, there are two corners with an extra edge needing to be attached, and one corner with two extra edges and a center needing to be attached. It doesn't matter which order to solve these in, but I normally solve the simpler pieces first. (I reverse this on the next layer).

To reduce each block, we need to locate the corner in question and its matching edge (or edges and center). We then rotate blocks so that we can turn the corner onto its matching pieces.

This video will make the above quite clear.

Step 2: Reduce the 2nd Layer (with the fully extended block)

Reducing the 2nd layer is more difficult than the 1st layer, but not by much. This time, I like to first solve the most complicated piece, which is the fully extended block. This block contains

1 corner + 3 edges + 3 centers

All these pieces go together to make a reduced block. We use similar principles to the 4x4x4 AI cube to make one part and store it on the u layer (the middle layer) and then move the other parts onto it.

Once this piece is done, the others almost always solve quite easily.

This video will go through the process.

Step 3: Solve the Reduced 2x2x2

This is pure relief after the challenge of the reduction process. We now solve the reduced 2x2x2 blocks, by treating each of them as one corner on a 2x2x2 cube. The method is exactly the same.

And that's it. Your 3x3x3 Camouflage Cube is now solved. I trust this site has been helpful. If you have any questions or want some clarifications, please use the comments to do so.


  1. Great tutorial as usual.
    Using the same method I managed to solve the 3x3x4 camouflage but often I end up with this (parity?) configuration: https://dl.dropbox.com/u/90782180/camouflage_3x3x4_parity.jpg
    Can you help me? Thank you. Giorgio

  2. Hi Giorgio

    I had a look at your photo. I don't actually own the 3x3x4 camouflage, so I can't help for sure. I would imagine that you'd need to "undo" some of the work you've done, to get those centers where they need to be. I realise this isn't overly helpful. You could try contacting Kevin (puzzlemad) on his blog. I know he has this puzzle and really enjoys it. He may be able to give you more clues.

  3. Hi there, does anyone know how to assemble a Witeden 3x3x3 camouflage cube or tell me where to look for a way to fix it? Thanks.