On a rainy cold day, with a pumpkin-scented candle on the window and a mug with hot cocoa and cookies at hand, you’re about to immerse yourself in an enjoyable, soothing, and…wait a minute. Why on earth is that logical game that you bought to relax making your brain get fried? Piecing together wooden jigsaw puzzles is a pastime that you were so confident about! But as you try to take a new brain teaser, you wonder more and more, “Why is the puzzle so tough to solve?”

Whether you’re a skilled dissectologist with tons of impossible puzzles on your record or new to the jigsaw world, sooner or later, you’ll have to face the hardest jigsaw puzzles. And it depends on you whether you’re going to win this battle. By some trial and error today, you’ll soon overcome all those extremely difficult jigsaw puzzles woes. After all, Tim Fargo was right when saying, “Who you are tomorrow begins with what you do today.” 

Clarity in Clear Puzzles  

If you’re looking for difficult jigsaw puzzles as a fun time during self-isolation or an entertaining activity at your next family gathering, clear puzzles are beyond competition. These impossibly difficult jigsaws frighten and hook at the same time. In contrast to the conventional puzzles featuring flowers, landscapes, and kittens, transparent items have no clear pattern on the surface. In other words, it’s your task to figure out where the back or front actually is. Make sure to check twice.

one color puzzle

There’s no guide to help you put clear fragments together, no reason, no picture. Still, people are obsessed with these mind-boggling games! Why?

First of all, as they say, curiosity killed the cat, but satisfaction brought it back. Both beginners and pro-puzzlers are surprised and curious to get clear puzzles done. They’re unusual and are far from what traditional jigsaws look like. Second, the feeling of both accomplishment and pride after the last fragment finds its location seems to be more intense than when you’re done with a standard puppy or Eiffel Tower puzzle. The holy grail in the world of puzzles, ladies, and gentlemen!

The predominance of One Color in Solid Color Puzzle

Known as a fun pastime, jigsaw puzzles seem to turn into a diabolical process of trial and error (errors, as a rule) when you get your hands on a so-called one-color puzzle. Because every piece is the same color, a solid color wooden jigsaw puzzle is a hard game to play.

gradient puzzle

At some point, you find yourself staring at a bunch of pieces not knowing where the frame or the central part is. What is even more difficult is that there’s no sense of where each segment belongs. Compared to conventional jigsaws where you have a specific reference image that guides you through the creative process, a solid color puzzle is similar to groping clumsily in a dark room with your eyes shut.

Make sure the lighting is good if you’re brave enough to try one color mystery.  

The gradient in Gradient Puzzle

Part a focused meditation, part object d’art, a gradient puzzle will soon make you want to pull your hair out in anger. Not only puzzle geeks, but also color lovers and designers are amused by this alternative to traditional jigsaws.

All the difficulty is that without the presence of the final cover image, an already difficult jigsaw puzzle becomes a brutal challenge that requires patience, attention to detail, and intuition. Moreover, your inner sense of color is required to tell the nuances between lighter and darker colors. This is when magenta and bubblegum colors are different, not just pink.

already difficult jigsaw puzzle

Needless to say, things like a two-color gradient puzzle are a real test of patience. With only two colors grading from the darker to lighter hues, you’ll soon find yourself laughing, walking away, threatening to give up for good, and getting back again until the job is done.

The tip: each color is always concentrated in one part of the image. For instance, if you start assembling the yellow section and finish it, you know there is no other yellow in the puzzle. That is why the fragments are easy to separate. Quite challenging but definitely doable.

Unique Shaped Puzzle Pieces

This is where real brain-teasing fun starts! The good news is that you can find all sorts of cuts out there that excite the imagination of puzzle hunters if you really want to go there.

With each fragment cut irregularly, random-cut wooden jigsaw puzzles take the difficulty to the next level. Not only is a puzzle with whimsy pieces a real work of art, but it also has a mischievous twist that leaves you with a question, Puzzles with pieces shaped like butterflies? Where am I supposed to start?”

two color gradient puzzle


Nobody knows!

That’s the main challenge of the game and the hook that captivates puzzlers at first sight.

Then there’s the added difficulty of the random-cut jigsaws without identifiable borders. You never know if it’s the center of the image or the frame area fragment.  

When choosing a fun family activity, keep in mind that younger puzzlers and puzzlers with dexterity or visual issues should deal with easier alternate versions.

In general, uniquely shaped puzzle pieces include the following shapes and contours so loved by many: 

  1. Animal-shaped puzzle pieces. Ingeniously shaped fragments with the contours of animals are entertaining for adults and kids in need of fun mental stimulations. From butterflies and horses to turtles and whales – jigsaws include all your fauna favorites.
  2. Jigsaw puzzles with uniquely shaped pieces Christmas style. When it comes to jigsaw puzzles with uniquely shaped pieces Christmas tops the list. Gingerbread man, Christmas tree, Santa hat, Rudolf – all the features of the festive season are in one box!
  3. Puzzles with pieces shaped like butterflies. A uniquely shaped puzzle looking like a butterfly is one of the most popular options among those looking to intensify the jigsaw ante.
  4. Puzzles with fun-shaped pieces. A tiny silhouette of a guitar or a man carrying his luggage will add a refreshing twist to the traditional puzzling!

Absent or Indistinct Texture in One Texture Puzzles

One of the hardest puzzles that you may get your hands on are those with absent or indistinct textures. The color transitions, the shades, the contrast, and the lines on the one texture puzzle are very blurred. The complex image usually goes hand-in-hand with indistinct color contrast and shade. This, in turn, gives your eyes loads of blinks to figure out what fragments should be put together. Colors and shares may simply blend with each other to make the image more eye-catching and mind-boggling at the same time.

Where to start? That’s a philosophical question. It’s mainly going blind until you can finally see the contours of inter-connected patterns of a complex image.

Unclear Separation Between Elements in Jigsaw Puzzles

What else makes jigsaw puzzles difficult? The other thing that doesn’t let you do puzzles in one go is an unclear separation between the jigsaw fragments. A lot of manufacturers produce wooden jigsaw puzzles for adults with a special technique that adds the spice of a mind-blowing riddle to the process. It is an unclear and hard-to-notice separation between the elements of the image that slows down the game and yet makes it immensely fun. Using logic alone, you need to figure out which fragments match this or that puzzle area and which should remain untouched until the hidden image is exposed completely.

Detailed and Small Textures in Jigsaw Puzzles for Adults

A real masochistic puzzler will be stunned by the unique jigsaws for adults with detailed and small textures. As a rule, these jigsaws attract by engaging details crafted mostly in surreal and abstract styles. The so-called “battle of the smallest” isn’t for the faint-hearted but for those who can boast of good eyesight, patience, and delicate fingers.

puzzle with whimsy pieces

The key issues that make building, assembling, and solving jigsaws trickier are mentioned here:

  • No distinct sections.
  • Usually so much is happening in the image (small characters, people, animals, objects – all are unique!).
  • Loads of small sections of different colors and patterns.
  • The entire image is a very similar texture.
  • No clear line differentiating the sections.
  • There’s no way to do large sections of the puzzle and then put them together to fill in between them – you just work bit by bit.
  • The process requires a lot of free time and patience.

When it comes to detailed and small textures jigsaw puzzles, the number of fragments plays zero role in the puzzle difficulty. It’s all about the texture, guys.

Repeating Patterns in Difficult Jigsaw Puzzles

Even with a pretty clear separation between the different elements of the puzzle image, a lot of the details or colors are so similar across different parts of the image that it’s hard to tell which fragment would go in which section. Even if you’re done with one of the identical elements of the image, you can’t tell what part of the image it is taken from.

Jigsaw Puzzles with Pictures at an Angle

If straight-across vertical or horizontal grids are quite easy to deal with, the diagonal grids seem to break all the rules. If you’re crazy enough to try it, you have to keep in mind that all the grids are at an angle. In this case, the number of pieces doesn’t really matter since both 500 and 1000-piece puzzles will be equally tough due to the peculiarities of the design.

Puzzles with pieces shaped like butterflies

Okay, puzzle nerds. Whatever your creative plans and preferences are right now, there’s an option out there for everyone. Whether you go for difficult jigsaw puzzles colors only or the ultra-busy ones with numerous figures, you’ll find the brain teaser tough enough to drive you mad. All these difficulty levels may be annoying or irritating at times but let’s face the ultimate truth. They give us a lot of joy and satisfaction once we combine all elements altogether appropriately. And is there a greater sense of accomplishment?