Title:
Jigsaw puzzle game system
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A jigsaw puzzle game system has a number of inter-fitting pieces which combine to create a finished visual effect. None of the puzzle pieces are interchangeable. All pieces have identical top and bottom surfaces and thus could be used on either side. The pieces do not carry a visual marker or design to assist in determining where the individual pieces fit in the overall puzzle scheme. Each puzzle is a unique design with a combination of pieces that will fit no other puzzle with similar visual appearance. Each puzzle is assigned a serial number and individual part numbers are assigned to each puzzle piece. A puzzle solution map is included with each puzzle. This map includes the unique serial number of the corresponding puzzle along with a completed visual scheme with each puzzle piece indicated with a part number that corresponds with the assigned number for each puzzle piece. A method is provided for computer-generated replacement of the puzzle solution map or individual puzzle pieces through an Internet website.



Inventors:
Fredrickson, Scott (New Orleans, LA, US)
Application Number:
11/032585
Publication Date:
07/13/2006
Filing Date:
01/10/2005
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A63F9/10
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
WONG, STEVEN B
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Juan, Lizarraga J. (SUITE 2300, 909 POYDRAS STREET, NEW ORLEANS, LA, 70112-1010, US)
Claims:
1. A jigsaw puzzle game system comprising a plurality of puzzle pieces, each having an upper surface and a lower surface, configured to inter-fit with adjacent puzzle pieces, to together form an assembled puzzle structure having an assembled visual scheme being a coherent combination of the configurations of the puzzle pieces.

2. A jigsaw puzzle game system as described in claim 1 where the upper surface of each puzzle piece is finished identically to the lower surface of that same puzzle piece.

3. A jigsaw puzzle game system as described in claim 1 in which none of the puzzle pieces are identical in configuration to any of the other puzzle pieces and neither the upper surface nor the lower surface of any puzzle piece carries any visual marker which would assist a puzzle user in completing the assemble puzzle structure.

4. A jigsaw puzzle game system as described in claim 2 in which none of the puzzle pieces are identical in configuration to any of the other puzzle pieces and neither the upper surface nor the lower surface of any puzzle piece carries any visual marker which would assist a puzzle user in completing the assemble puzzle structure.

5. A jigsaw puzzle game system as described in claim 1 wherein the assembled puzzle structure having an assembled visual scheme is unique and said jigsaw puzzle game system is assigned a unique serial number and each puzzle piece is assigned a discrete part number.

6. A jigsaw puzzle game system as described in claim 2 wherein the assembled puzzle structure having an assembled visual scheme is unique and said jigsaw puzzle game system is assigned a unique serial number and each puzzle piece is assigned a discrete part number.

7. A jigsaw puzzle game system as described in claim 3 wherein the assembled puzzle structure having an assembled visual scheme is unique and said jigsaw puzzle game system is assigned a unique serial number and each puzzle piece is assigned a discrete part number.

8. A jigsaw puzzle game system as described in claim 4 wherein the assembled puzzle structure having an assembled visual scheme is unique and said jigsaw puzzle game system is assigned a unique serial number and each puzzle piece is assigned a discrete part number.

9. A jigsaw puzzle game system as described in claim 5 further comprising a puzzle solution map identified by the unique serial number and illustrative of the assembled visual scheme for the jigsaw puzzle game system with a part number and location for each puzzle piece within the assembled puzzle structure.

10. A jigsaw puzzle game system as described in claim 9 wherein the puzzle solution map further comprises an internet website with a computer-implemented graphic user interface screen display of a puzzle solution map with puzzle piece part numbers.

11. A jigsaw puzzle game system comprising a plurality of puzzle pieces, a frame tray, said puzzle pieces each having an upper surface and a lower surface, configured to inter-fit with adjacent puzzle pieces and to inter-fit with said frame tray, to together form an assembled puzzle structure having an assembled visual scheme being a coherent combination of the configurations of the puzzle pieces and the frame tray.

12. A jigsaw puzzle game system as described in claim 11 where the upper surface of each puzzle piece is finished identically to the lower surface of that same puzzle piece.

13. A jigsaw puzzle game system as described in claim 11 in which none of the puzzle pieces are identical in configuration to any of the other puzzle pieces and neither the upper surface nor the lower surface of any puzzle piece carries any visual marker which would assist a puzzle user in completing the assemble puzzle structure.

14. A jigsaw puzzle game system as described in claim 12 in which none of the puzzle pieces are identical in configuration to any of the other puzzle pieces and neither the upper surface nor the lower surface of any puzzle piece carries any visual marker which would assist a puzzle user in completing the assemble puzzle structure.

15. A jigsaw puzzle game system as described in claim 11 wherein the assembled puzzle structure having an assembled visual scheme is unique and said jigsaw puzzle game system is assigned a unique serial number and each puzzle piece is assigned a discrete part number.

16. A jigsaw puzzle game system as described in claim 12 wherein the assembled puzzle structure having an assembled visual scheme is unique and said jigsaw puzzle game system is assigned a unique serial number and each puzzle piece is assigned a discrete part number.

17. A jigsaw puzzle game system as described in claim 13 wherein the assembled puzzle structure having an assembled visual scheme is unique and said jigsaw puzzle game system is assigned a unique serial number and each puzzle piece is assigned a discrete part number.

18. A jigsaw puzzle game system as described in claim 14 wherein the assembled puzzle structure having an assembled visual scheme is unique and said jigsaw puzzle game system is assigned a unique serial number and each puzzle piece is assigned a discrete part number.

19. A jigsaw puzzle game system as described in claim 15 further comprising a puzzle solution map identified by the unique serial number and illustrative of the assembled visual scheme for the jigsaw puzzle game system with a part number and location for each puzzle piece within the assembled puzzle structure.

20. A jigsaw puzzle game system as described in claim 19 wherein the puzzle solution map further comprises an internet website with a computer-implemented graphic user interface screen display of a puzzle solution map with puzzle piece part numbers.

21. A computer-implemented method for providing a puzzle solution map and replacement pieces for a jigsaw puzzle game system comprising a plurality of puzzle pieces, each having an upper surface and a lower surface, configured to inter-fit with adjacent puzzle pieces, to together form an assembled puzzle structure having an assembled visual scheme being a coherent combination of the configurations of the puzzle pieces, where the upper surface of each puzzle piece is finished identically to the lower surface of that same puzzle piece, in which none of the puzzle pieces are identical in configuration to any of the other puzzle pieces and neither the upper surface nor the lower surface of any puzzle piece carries any visual marker which would assist a puzzle user in completing the assemble puzzle structure and wherein the assembled puzzle structure having an assembled visual scheme is unique and said jigsaw puzzle game system is assigned a unique serial number and each puzzle piece is assigned a discrete part number; comprising the steps of: providing to a user access to an Internet website; providing to the user a computer generated graphic user interface screen display on said website of a puzzle solution map identified by the unique serial number and illustrative of the assembled visual scheme for the jigsaw puzzle game system with a part number and location for each puzzle piece within the assembled puzzle structure providing replacement puzzle piece computer-implemented ordering instructions to the user for ordering replacement puzzle pieces once identified on the screen display.

22. A computer-implemented method as described in claim 21 for providing a puzzle solution map and replacement pieces for a jigsaw puzzle game system as described in claim 21 wherein said described jigsaw puzzle game system further comprises a frame tray, and the puzzle pieces are configured to inter-fit with adjacent puzzle pieces and to inter-fit with said frame tray, to together form an assembled puzzle structure having an assembled visual scheme being a coherent combination of the configurations of the puzzle pieces and the frame tray.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

This invention relates to jigsaw puzzle games which involve arranging multiple puzzle pieces to reach a solution and a system and method to provide a solution map and replacements pieces to the user.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Puzzles or games of various shapes and sizes that involve a user arranging and rearranging puzzle pieces to achieve a specified solution are well known in the art. In particular most people are familiar with “jigsaw” puzzles, in which a large number of interlocking pieces can be fitted together to make a recognizable two-dimensional picture or pattern. Such puzzles include, for example, the widely recognized Chinese puzzle known as the tangram that involves combining interlocking and non-interlocking geometric puzzle pieces into a larger shaped puzzle solution either contained within an external frame or tray, or within an edge formation that is composed of individual puzzle pieces commonly called border or edge pieces.

Examples of puzzles with an external frame or tray are shown in U.S. Pat. Nos. 3,433,485 and 4,053,159. Examples of puzzles with an edge formation composed of individual border or edge pieces are shown in U.S. Pat. Nos. 5,067,714 and 6,550,769.

These puzzles are usually played by a user as a source of an enjoyable challenge or entertainment. These puzzles also serve to improve the cognitive abilities of many users, especially children, and can therefore be a valuable educational aid or learning tool.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

One advantage of the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system is that none of the puzzle pieces are interchangeable. The upper and lower surfaces of all puzzle pieces are finished identically in all respects, including but not limited to smoothness and color, and thus could be used on either side. In addition, the upper and lower surfaces of the pieces carry no visual marker or design to assist in determining where the individual pieces fit in the overall puzzle scheme—all to increase the level of difficulty.

Another advantage of the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system is that the user is afforded access to a graphic user interface screen display of a puzzle solution map through a computer-generated medium via an Internet web site.

Another advantage of the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system is that each jigsaw puzzle game system may be unique. Each jigsaw puzzle game system is individually designed, manufactured, and signed by an artist. Each jigsaw puzzle game system has a serial number and part numbers assigned to each puzzle piece. The user can reproduce the puzzle solution map by graphic user interface screen display at the Internet web site and obtain replacement puzzle pieces, border pieces or frame tray identified on the screen display by following computer-implemented ordering instructions.

It is an object of this invention to provide a new type of puzzle game system of inter-fitting puzzle pieces, preferably of the nature of a jigsaw puzzle that may be unique in design and visual appearance.

It is a further object of this invention to provide a jigsaw puzzle game system comprising a plurality of puzzle pieces, said pieces being shaped to inter-fit with adjacent puzzle pieces to form an assembled puzzle structure, either within an external frame or bordering on an internal frame or having no frame, said assembled puzzle structure having a finished visual scheme being the outline of the pieces in coherent combination and where the combination of puzzle pieces will fit no other puzzle of similar visual appearance.

It is a further object of this invention to provide a jigsaw puzzle game system comprising a plurality of puzzle pieces and a frame tray, said pieces being shaped to inter-fit with adjacent pieces and inter-fit with said frame tray to form an assembled puzzle structure, said assembled puzzle structure having a finished visual scheme being the outline of the pieces and frame tray in coherent combination and where the combination of puzzle pieces and frame tray will fit no other puzzle of similar visual appearance.

It is a further object of this invention to provide a jigsaw puzzle game system comprising a plurality of puzzle pieces wherein each puzzle piece has identical upper and lower surfaces allowing the puzzle piece to be used on either side and where none of the puzzle pieces are interchangeable nor carry any visual marker, all to enhance the difficulty of the puzzle game.

It is a further object of this invention to provide a jigsaw puzzle game system comprising a plurality of puzzle pieces wherein each puzzle game system is assigned and etched with an identifying serial number and each puzzle piece is assigned part numbers corresponding to the puzzle game system identified by serial number and where each puzzle piece may be etched with its corresponding part number.

It is a further object of this invention to provide a jigsaw puzzle game system comprising a plurality of puzzle pieces wherein each puzzle game system further comprises a puzzle solution map designated for the puzzle game system and identified by the puzzle game system serial number and a completed visual scheme indicating each puzzle piece by part number.

It is a further object of this invention to provide a jigsaw puzzle game system comprising a plurality of puzzle pieces wherein each puzzle game system further comprises a method for computer-implemented user access to a graphic user interface screen display of a puzzle solution map with access to replacement puzzle pieces through an Internet web site.

It is a further object of this invention to provide an Internet web site with a graphics user interface screen display for each puzzle solution map for each puzzle game system.

It is a further object of this invention that any embodiment of the inventive puzzle game system may be produced and offered to users as one-of-a-kind without duplication.

It is a further object of this invention that the plurality of puzzle pieces and frame tray for any embodiment of the inventive puzzle game system may be fabricated from a variety of materials including but not limited to stainless steel, aluminum, titanium or any metal, metal alloy or non-metallic material and that said pieces and frame tray may be fabricated by a variety of precision cutting and machining techniques including but not limited to lasers with cutting tolerances within one 10,000th of an inch to enhance difficulty of assembly.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a partial plan view of a non-interlocking puzzle game system bordered with an external frame tray.

FIG. 2 is a cross-section of the non-interlocking puzzle game system depicted in FIG. 1.

FIG. 3 is a partial plan view of an interlocking puzzle game system bordered with an external frame tray.

FIG. 4 is a cross-section of the interlocking puzzle game system depicted in FIG. 3.

FIG. 5 is a plan view of a non-interlocking puzzle game system bordered with an internal arrangement of puzzle pieces.

FIG. 6 is a plan view of an interlocking puzzle game system bordered with an internal arrangement of puzzle pieces.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

FIG. 1 shows a partial plan view of an example of the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1 with a plurality of non-interlocking puzzle pieces 2 bordered by an external frame tray 3. The non-interlocking puzzle pieces 2 are configured to inter-fit with adjacent puzzle pieces 2 and to inter-fit with the frame tray 3, to together form an assembled puzzle structure having an assembled visual scheme being a coherent combination of the configurations of the puzzle pieces 2 within the frame tray 3. The puzzle pieces 2 are placed within the external frame 3 to achieve an assembled visual effect unique to this combination of puzzle pieces 2 and frame tray 3. This example of the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1 is given a serial number 5, shown in FIG. 1 on frame tray 3, and each puzzle piece 2 and frame tray 3 is given a part number 4.

FIG. 2 is a cross section of the non-interlocking jigsaw puzzle game system 1 depicted in FIG. 1 showing the external frame tray 3 and the non-interlocking puzzle pieces 2 in place within the external frame tray 3. Also indicated in FIG. 2 is an upper surface 6, a lower surface 7, and a side surface 9 for the non-interlocking puzzle pieces 2, as well as an exterior side surface 8, an interior surface 10, an upper surface 11, a bottom surface 12 and an inner bottom surface 12a for the external frame tray 3. As can be seen, the lower surfaces 7 of the non-interlocking puzzle pieces 2 are in contact with the inner bottom surface 12a of the external frame tray 3. The interior surface 10 of the external frame tray 3 is configured to inter-fit with adjacent non-interlocking puzzle pieces 2 so that the frame tray 3 contributes to the level of difficulty of the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1. The side surfaces 9 of the non-interlocking puzzle pieces 2 adjacent to the frame tray 3 are in contact with the interior surface 10 of the external frame tray 3.

While FIG. 1 depicts the serial number 5 on the upper surface 11 of the external frame tray 3, and the part numbers 4 on the upper surface 6 of the non-interlocking puzzle pieces 2, the serial number 5 can be placed on any of the other surfaces 8, 10, 11, 12 and 12a of the external frame tray 3, and the part numbers 4 can be placed on the lower surface 7 or side surface 9 of the non-interlocking puzzle pieces 2.

FIG. 1, if presented as a complete plan view of this example of the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1, would serve as a puzzle solution map which would be provided as part of the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1, either in hard document form or by computer-assisted user access to an Internet web site or in both ways. While serial number 5 and part numbers 4 would be shown on the puzzle solution map for identification, either or both of these numbers need not be physically placed on either the external frame tray 3 or the puzzle pieces 2, since the tray 3 and pieces 2 can be identified by the unique visual effect of this particular inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1. If either or both of numbers 5 and 4 are physically placed on the external frame tray 3 or the pieces 2, then they may be placed on a side surface 8 or 10 or a bottom surface 12 or an inner bottom surface 12a of the external frame tray 3, or on a side surface 9 of the non-interlocking puzzle pieces 2. In this way, the numbers 5 and 4 would not detract from the unique visual effect nor detract from the difficulty of the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1. It is also intended that the upper and lower surfaces 6 and 7 of the non-interlocking puzzle pieces 2 carry no visual marker or design to assist in determining where the individual puzzle pieces 2 fit in the overall puzzle scheme. Likewise it is intended that the upper and lower surfaces 6 and 7 be identical in finish. It is intended for purposes of this invention and all embodiments that finish as defined herein shall comprise surface smoothness, color, and all aspects of visual appearance.

If numbers are physically placed on the external frame tray 3 or the non-interlocking puzzle pieces 2, or both, then the corresponding numbers would be permanently affixed to the desired surface by a method appropriate to the material upon which the number is being affixed. For example, etching or engraving by machine or laser technique could be used on a metallic material.

FIG. 3 shows a partial plan view of another example of the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1 with a plurality of interlocking puzzle pieces 13 bordered by an external frame tray 3. The interlocking puzzle pieces 13 are configured to inter-fit with adjacent puzzle pieces 13 and to inter-fit with the frame tray 3, to together form an assembled puzzle structure having an assembled visual scheme being a coherent combination of the configurations of the puzzle pieces 13 within the frame tray 3. The puzzle pieces 13 are placed within the external frame tray 3 to achieve an assembled visual effect unique to this combination of puzzle pieces 13 and frame tray 3. As in FIG. 1, this example of the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1 is given a serial number 5, not shown in FIG. 3, and each puzzle piece 13 is given a part number 4. The frame tray 3 may also be given a part number 4.

FIG. 4 is a cross section of the interlocking jigsaw puzzle game system 1 depicted in FIG. 3 showing the external frame tray 3 and the interlocking puzzle pieces 13 in place within the external frame tray 3. Also indicated in FIG. 4 is an upper surface 14, a lower surface 15, and a side surface 16 for the interlocking puzzle pieces 13, as well as an exterior side surface 8, an interior surface 10, an upper surface 11, a bottom surface 12, and an inner bottom surface 12a for the external frame tray 3. As can be seen, the lower surfaces 15 of the interlocking puzzle pieces 13 are in contact with the inner bottom surface 12a of the external frame tray 3. The interior surface 10 of the external frame tray 3 is configured to inter-fit with adjacent interlocking puzzle pieces 13 so that the frame tray 3 contributes to the level of difficulty of the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1. The side surfaces 16 of the interlocking puzzle pieces 13 adjacent to the frame tray 3 are in contact with the interior surface 10 of the external frame tray 3.

While FIG. 3 depicts the part numbers 4 on the upper surface 14 of the interlocking puzzle pieces 13, the part numbers 4 can be placed on the lower surface 15 or side surface 16 of the interlocking puzzle pieces 13. Likewise, the serial number 5 can be placed on any of the surfaces 8, 10, 11, 12 and 12a of the external frame tray 3.

FIG. 3, if presented as a complete plan view of this example of the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1, would serve as a puzzle solution map which would be provided as part of the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1, either in hard document form or by computer-assisted user access to an Internet web site or in both ways. While serial number 5 and part numbers 4 would be shown on the puzzle solution map for identification, either or both of these numbers need not be physically placed on either the external frame tray 3 or the puzzle pieces 13, since the frame tray 3 and puzzle pieces 13 can be identified by the unique visual effect of this particular inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1. If either or both of numbers 5 and 4 are physically placed on the external frame tray 3 or the puzzle pieces 13, then they may be placed on a side surface 8 or 10 or a bottom surface 12 or an inner bottom surface 12a of the external frame tray 3, or on a side surface 16 of the interlocking puzzle pieces 13. In this way, the numbers 5 and 4 would not detract from the unique visual effect nor detract from the difficulty of the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1. It is also intended that the upper and lower surfaces 14 and 15 of the puzzle pieces 13 carry no visual marker or design to assist in determining where the individual puzzle pieces 13 fit in the overall puzzle scheme. Likewise it is intended that the upper and lower surfaces 14 and 15 be identical in finish.

Just as described above for the example inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1 depicted in FIG. 1, if numbers are physically placed on the external frame tray 3 or the interlocking puzzle pieces 13, then the corresponding numbers would be permanently affixed to the desired surface by a method appropriate to the material upon which the number is being affixed. For example, etching or engraving by machine or laser technique could be used on a metallic material.

FIG. 5 is a plan view of another example of the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1 with a plurality of non-interlocking puzzle pieces 2 bordered by an internal arrangement of border pieces 17. The non-interlocking puzzle pieces 2 are configured to inter-fit with adjacent puzzle pieces 2 and to inter-fit with the border pieces 17, to together form an assembled puzzle structure having an assembled visual scheme being a coherent combination of the configurations of the puzzle pieces 2 and the border pieces 17. The puzzle pieces 2 are placed within and around the border pieces 17 to achieve an assembled visual effect unique to this combination of puzzle pieces 2 and border pieces 17. This example of the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1 is likewise given a serial number 5, not shown in FIG. 5, and each puzzle piece 2 and border piece 17 is given a part number 4.

As similarly indicated in FIG. 2, the non-interlocking puzzle pieces 2 and the border pieces 17 shown in FIG. 5 have an upper surface 6, a lower surface 7, and a side surface 9. While FIG. 5 depicts the part numbers 4 on the upper surface 6 of the non-interlocking puzzle pieces 2, the part numbers 4 can be placed on the lower surface 7 or side surface 9 of the non-interlocking puzzle pieces 2 and the border pieces 17.

FIG. 5 would serve as a puzzle solution map which would be provided as part of the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1 depicted in FIG. 5, either in hard document form or by computer-assisted user access to an Internet web site or in both ways. While serial number 5 and part numbers 4 would be shown on the puzzle solution map for identification, either or both of these numbers need not be physically placed on the puzzle pieces 2 or the border pieces 17, since the pieces 2 and 17 can be identified by the unique visual effect of this particular inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1. If either or both of numbers 5 and 4 are physically placed on the puzzle pieces 2 or the border pieces 17, then they may be placed on a side surface 9 of the non-interlocking puzzle pieces 2 or the border pieces 17. In this way, the numbers 5 and 4 would not detract from the unique visual effect nor detract from the difficulty of the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1. It is also intended that the upper and lower surfaces 6 and 7 of the pieces 2 and the border pieces 17 carry no visual marker or design to assist in determining where the individual pieces fit in the overall puzzle scheme. Likewise it is intended that the upper and lower surfaces 6 and 7 be identical in finish.

Just as described above for the example inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1 depicted in FIGS. 1 and 3, if numbers are physically placed on the non-interlocking puzzle pieces 2 and the border pieces 17, then the corresponding numbers would be permanently affixed to the desired surface by a method appropriate to the material upon which the number is being affixed. For example, etching or engraving could be used on a metallic material.

FIG. 6 is a plan view of another example of the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1 with a plurality of interlocking puzzle pieces 13 bordered by an internal arrangement of border pieces 18 around a space 19. The interlocking puzzle pieces 13 are configured to inter-fit with adjacent puzzle pieces 13 and inter-fit with border pieces 18, to together form an assembled puzzle structure having an assembled visual scheme being a coherent combination of the configurations of the puzzle pieces 13 and border pieces 18. The interlocking puzzle pieces 13 are placed around the border pieces 18 to achieve an assembled visual effect unique to this combination of puzzle pieces 13 and border pieces 18. This example of the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1 is likewise given a serial number 5, not shown in FIG. 6, and each puzzle piece 13 and border piece 18 is given a part number 4.

As similarly indicated in FIG. 4, the interlocking puzzle pieces 13 and the border pieces 18 shown in FIG. 6 have an upper surface 14, a lower surface 15, and a side surface 16. While FIG. 6 depicts the part numbers 4 on the upper surface 14 of the interlocking puzzle pieces 13 and the border pieces 18, the part numbers 4 can be placed on the lower surface 15 or side surface 16 of the interlocking puzzle pieces 13 and the border pieces 18.

FIG. 6 would serve as a puzzle solution map which would be provided as part of the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1 depicted in FIG. 6, either in hard document form or by computer-assisted user access to an Internet web site or in both ways. While serial number 5 and part numbers 4 would be shown on the puzzle solution map for identification, either or both of these numbers need not be physically placed on the puzzle pieces 13 or the border pieces 18, since the pieces 13 and 18 can be identified by the unique visual effect of this particular inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1. If either or both of numbers 5 and 4 are physically placed on the puzzle pieces 13 or the border pieces 18, then they may be placed on a side surface 16 of the interlocking puzzle pieces 13 and the border pieces 18. In this way, the numbers 5 and 4 would not detract from the unique visual effect nor detract from the difficulty of the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1. It is also intended that the upper and lower surfaces 14 and 15 of the puzzle pieces 13 and the border pieces 18 carry no visual marker or design to assist in determining where the individual puzzle pieces fit in the overall puzzle scheme. Likewise it is intended that the upper and lower surfaces 14 and 15 be identical in finish.

Just as described above for the example inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1 depicted in FIGS. 1, 3 and 5, if numbers are physically placed on the interlocking puzzle pieces 13 and the border pieces 18, then the corresponding numbers would be permanently affixed to the desired surface by a method appropriate to the material upon which the number is being affixed. For example, etching or engraving by machine or laser technique could be used on a metallic material.

To enhance the value and collectability of the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system, any embodiment with a unique assembled effect may be manufactured as one-of-a-kind without duplication. Likewise, the puzzle pieces, border pieces or frame tray for any embodiment may be manufactured from a durable, non-oxidizing metal or metal alloy such as stainless steel, titanium, or aluminum using cutting techniques such as a laser to achieve precision inter-fit between adjacent puzzle pieces, border pieces and frame trays.

In any embodiment of the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system, the user would be provided with a puzzle solution map identified by the unique serial number and illustrative of the assembled visual scheme for the jigsaw puzzle game system with a part number and location for each puzzle piece within the assembled puzzle structure. The puzzle solution map could be provided as a hard document on a material such as paper or cardboard and also as a computer generated graphic user interface screen display of a puzzle solution map on an internet website available to the user as part of the inventive puzzle game system. The inventive puzzle game system website would also include ordering instructions for replacement of puzzle pieces, border pieces and frame trays.

The examples of the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1 depicted in FIGS. 1 through 6 are illustrative only and it is not intended that the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1 be limited to any of those depictions nor that the inventive jigsaw puzzle game system 1 be limited to non-interlocking or interlocking puzzle pieces or to any border arrangement or frame tray. Likewise, it is not intended that puzzle pieces, border pieces or frame trays be limited to any specific material, or that said puzzle pieces, border pieces or frame trays all be of the same material.

The present invention also provides a method which allows the user to replace the puzzle solution map to the jigsaw puzzle game system and replace puzzle pieces. According to this method, the user is provided access to an Internet website. At the website, the user can access a computer generated graphic user interface screen display of a puzzle solution map identified by the unique serial number and illustrative of the assembled visual scheme for the jigsaw puzzle game system with a part number and location for each puzzle piece within the assembled puzzle structure which may further comprise a frame tray, border pieces or both. The user can then reproduce the puzzle solution map and obtain replacement puzzle pieces, border pieces or frame tray identified on the screen display by following computer-implemented ordering instructions.

While this invention has been described as having multiple designs, the present invention may be further modified within the spirit and scope of this disclosure. This application is therefore intended to cover any variations, uses, or adaptations of the invention using its general principles. Further, this application is intended to cover such departures from the present disclosure as come within known or customary practice in the art to which this invention pertains.