The Most Popular Puzzle: A Ranking of Favorites

Choose the puzzle you think is the most popular!

Author: Gregor Krambs
Updated on Sep 21, 2023 10:25
Are you a puzzle enthusiast eager to know which brainteaser reigns supreme? You've come to the right place! Here at StrawPoll, we're putting together a captivating ranking to settle the debate once and for all: "What is the most popular puzzle?" Thousands of fellow puzzle lovers are already casting their votes and sharing their opinions on a wide array of mind-boggling challenges. Be it the classic Rubik's Cube, the enigmatic Sudoku, or the intricate jigsaw puzzles, we've got it all covered. Don't see your favorite on the list? Worry not! You can suggest any missing option and rally support for your preferred brain-teaser. Don't miss out on this exciting opportunity to help crown the ultimate puzzle champion! Join us now, cast your vote, and let your voice be heard!

What Is the Most Popular Puzzle? (September 2023)

  1. 1
    Rubik's Cube
    RTCNCA · CC BY-SA 3.0

    Rubik's Cube

    Ernő Rubik
    Rubik's Cube is a 3D combination puzzle that has sold over 350 million copies worldwide since its invention in 1974. It continues to be a favorite among puzzle enthusiasts and competitive speedcubers.
    The Rubik's Cube is a three-dimensional puzzle toy that has captivated people's attention since its creation. It consists of a 3x3x3 cube with six different colored faces which can be rotated independently. The goal is to scramble the colors and then try to solve the puzzle by arranging each face to have a single color.
    • Size: 3x3x3 cube
    • Colors: 6 different colors
    • Difficulty: Challenging
    • Number of possible combinations: 43,252,003,274,489,856,000
    • Number of moves to solve: Optimal solution in 20 moves
    Rubik's Cube in other rankings
  2. 2


    Howard Garns
    Sudoku is a logic-based number placement puzzle that originated in Japan in the late 20th century. It has become a popular newspaper and online puzzle game.
    Sudoku is a popular free offline game that originated in Japan. It is a logic-based number placement puzzle that requires players to fill a 9x9 grid with numbers from 1 to 9. The grid is divided into nine 3x3 subgrids, and each row, column, and subgrid must contain all numbers from 1 to 9 without duplication.
    • Difficulty Levels: Varied - Easy, Medium, Hard
    • Grid Size: 9x9
    • Subgrid Size: 3x3
    • Number Range: 1 to 9
    • Logic-based Puzzle: Yes
    Sudoku in other rankings
  3. 3
    MeekMark · Public domain


    Arthur Wynne
    Crossword is a word puzzle that is typically found in newspapers and magazines. It involves filling in a grid of blank squares with words or phrases that intersect at shared letters.
    Crossword is a popular word puzzle that consists of a square or rectangular grid of white and shaded squares. The goal is to fill in the white squares with letters to form words, based on given clues. The words intersect both horizontally and vertically. Crossword puzzles test vocabulary, general knowledge, and problem-solving skills, providing an engaging and challenging experience for the solver.
    • Grid: Square or rectangular
    • Solver: Human
    • Clues: Given for each word
    • Intersecting: Words intersect both horizontally and vertically
    • Difficulty Levels: Varies from easy to hard
  4. 4

    Jigsaw puzzle

    John Spilsbury
    Jigsaw puzzle is a puzzle consisting of numerous small interlocking pieces that are assembled to form a larger picture. It has been a popular pastime for generations and is often used for relaxation and stress relief.
    A jigsaw puzzle is a popular puzzle that consists of various interlocking pieces that when correctly assembled, form a complete picture or scene. The objective of the puzzle is to arrange the pieces in the correct positions to recreate the desired image. Jigsaw puzzles come in different levels of difficulty and usually have a wide variety of image options, ranging from landscapes to famous artworks or cartoon characters.
    • Number of Pieces: Varies, typically ranging from 500 to several thousand pieces
    • Material: Cardboard, wood, or plastic
    • Piece Shape: Irregular, interlocking shapes
    • Image Variety: Wide range of subjects and themes
    • Difficulty: Varies from easy to highly challenging
  5. 5
    Word search
    Tempus · Public domain
    Norman E. Gibat
    Word search is a puzzle game that involves finding a list of words hidden in a grid of letters. It is often used in classrooms and as a way to improve vocabulary and spelling skills.
    Word search is a popular puzzle game that involves finding hidden words in a grid of letters. The objective is to locate and circle or highlight the words within the grid, which may be placed horizontally, vertically, diagonally, or even backwards. Once all the words have been found, the puzzle is considered complete.
    • Difficulty Level: Ranges from easy to difficult
    • Grid Size: Typically 10x10 to 20x20
    • Word Length: Varies from short words to long phrases
    • Word Variation: May contain words with different orientations
    • Theme: Can be themed around various topics (e.g., animals, food, sports)
  6. 6
    Collective · Public domain
    Maze is a puzzle consisting of a complex network of paths or passages that must be navigated to reach a goal or exit. Mazes have been used for entertainment and as a means of testing cognitive abilities.
    A maze is a puzzle that consists of a complex network of paths, typically represented as a series of interconnected corridors or passages. The objective of a maze is to find a way from the entrance to the exit, navigating through the convoluted paths and dead ends. Mazes can vary in complexity, size, and design, offering different levels of challenge to the solver.
    • Types: There are various types of mazes including hedge mazes, corn mazes, and grid mazes.
    • Difficulty Levels: Mazes can have different difficulty levels ranging from simple for beginners to intricate and challenging for experts.
    • Size: Mazes can range in size from small handheld puzzles to massive outdoor or digital mazes.
    • Solving Methods: There are multiple solving methods for mazes, including trial and error, solving algorithms, and using memory techniques.
    • Artistic Design: Many mazes are designed with artistic elements, creating visually appealing patterns and shapes when viewed from above.
    Maze in other rankings
  7. 7
    Cryptogram is a puzzle that involves decoding a message by substituting letters or symbols for each other. It is often used as a form of cryptography and has been used by governments and military organizations to send secret messages.
    Cryptogram is a popular puzzle that involves the use of codes and ciphers to encrypt and decrypt messages. The goal of the puzzle is to decipher a secret message, which is usually a famous quote or saying, by substituting one letter for another.
    • Difficulty Level: Cryptograms can be found in varying difficulty levels, ranging from easy to challenging.
    • Encryption Techniques: Various encryption techniques are used in cryptograms, such as simple substitution ciphers, Caesar ciphers, and symbol substitution.
    • Letter Frequency Analysis: The frequencies of letters in the English language are important for solving cryptograms, as certain letters appear more frequently in words and can be used as hints.
    • Word Patterns: The patterns of words, such as their lengths and repetition, can provide clues in solving cryptograms.
    • Clue Formats: Cryptograms may include clues in the form of letter hints or partial words to assist solvers in cracking the code.
  8. 8
    Octahedron80 · CC BY-SA 3.0


    Jacques Sagy
    Kakuro is a math puzzle that involves filling in a grid of blank squares with numbers that add up to a given sum. It is similar to Sudoku but involves addition instead of just placement.
    Kakuro is a popular numeric puzzle that involves filling a grid with digits using the clues given. It combines elements of crossword puzzles and Sudoku, requiring logical deduction and mathematical calculations.
    • Difficulty Levels: Puzzles can be varied in difficulty ranging from easy to challenging.
    • Interactive Play: Can be played online or using printed puzzle books.
    • Grid: Consists of white and black cells, with numbered clues at the start of each row and column.
    • Clues: Clues represent the sum of the digits in a valid solution for that row or column.
    • Digits: Each white cell can be filled with a single digit from 1 to 9.
  9. 9
    Kazi S. M. Faysal(Naogaon) · CC BY-SA 3.0
    Tangram is a puzzle consisting of seven geometric shapes that can be arranged to form various shapes and figures. It has been used for centuries as a form of entertainment and as a means of developing problem-solving skills.
    The Tangram is a centuries-old traditional puzzle that originated in China. It consists of seven polygonal shapes, known as tans, which are used to create various geometric patterns and figures. The seven tans are a square, a parallelogram, and five different sized triangles.
    • Number of Pieces: 7
    • Shapes: Square, Parallelogram, 5 Triangles
    • Materials: Wood, Cardboard, Plastic, etc.
    • Difficulty Level: Varies (from easy to challenging)
    • Objective: To arrange the tans to form specific shapes or figures
  10. 10
    Sliding puzzle
    Micha L. Rieser · Public domain

    Sliding puzzle

    Noyes Palmer Chapman
    Sliding puzzle is a puzzle game that involves moving a set of tiles or pieces around a board to form a specific pattern or image. It has been popularized by games like 15 Puzzle and has been used in educational settings to teach spatial reasoning and problem-solving.
    The Sliding puzzle is a popular mechanical puzzle consisting of a square or rectangular grid divided into smaller congruent tiles. The objective of the puzzle is to rearrange the tiles by sliding them horizontally or vertically into a desired final configuration, typically by moving one tile at a time into an empty space until the desired pattern is achieved.
    • Grid Size: Varies based on the puzzle design, commonly 3x3, 4x4, or 5x5
    • Number of Tiles: One less than the total number of grid cells
    • Tile Shape: Typically square or rectangular
    • Tile Material: Various materials like plastic, wood, or cardboard
    • Movement: Sliding horizontally or vertically into an empty space

Missing your favorite puzzle?


Ranking factors for popular puzzle

  1. Number of players
    The number of people engaged in playing or solving the puzzle can be an indicator of its popularity. A puzzle with more players is likely to be more popular than one with fewer players.
  2. Difficulty level
    The level of difficulty of a puzzle can also determine its popularity. A good balance between being too easy and too hard is important, as it should be challenging enough to maintain player interest while not being too difficult to discourage them.
  3. Accessibility
    A popular puzzle should be easily accessible, with minimal barriers to entry. This includes factors such as cost, availability of materials needed, and the ease with which players can learn the rules or strategies required to solve the puzzle.
  4. Enjoyment and satisfaction
    How much enjoyment and satisfaction players derive from the process of solving the puzzle is another important factor. A popular puzzle should provide an engaging experience that keeps players entertained and invested in reaching a solution.
  5. Timelessness
    A puzzle that maintains its appeal over time is likely to be more popular. Some puzzles may be based on fads or short-lived trends, while others have a more enduring appeal and can continue to be enjoyed by new generations of players.
  6. Cultural significance
    A puzzle that has become ingrained or iconic within a particular culture or society may be more popular than one that has not. This can be due to the puzzle's history, its representation in popular media, or its association with certain events or figures.
  7. Versatility and replayability
    A popular puzzle should allow for a variety of solutions or strategies and have the potential for players to discover new aspects or challenges each time they engage with it.
  8. Solvability
    A puzzle that is impossible or nearly impossible to solve might attract some niche attention, but is unlikely to become widely popular. Players should be able to solve the puzzle with persistence and creativity, leaving them with a sense of achievement.
  9. Aesthetics and presentation
    The visual appeal and design of a puzzle can also contribute to its popularity. Attractive artwork, interesting themes, or a unique presentation can make a puzzle more appealing to potential players.
  10. Recognition and awards
    If a puzzle has won awards or received significant recognition from critics or experts in the field, this can be a sign that it is well-regarded and may be more popular among players. Similarly, puzzles with strong word-of-mouth or online community support can also gain popularity.

About this ranking

This is a community-based ranking of the most popular puzzle. We do our best to provide fair voting, but it is not intended to be exhaustive. So if you notice something or your favorite puzzle is missing from the list, feel free to help us improve the ranking.


  • 206 votes
  • 10 ranked items

Voting Rules

A participant may cast an up or down vote for each puzzle once every 24 hours. The rank of each puzzle is then calculated from the weighted sum of all up and down votes.

More information on most popular puzzle

Puzzles have been enjoyed by people of all ages for centuries. These fun and challenging games require a combination of logic, creativity, and problem-solving skills to complete. From jigsaw puzzles to brain teasers, there are countless types of puzzles to choose from. But which one is the most popular? At StrawPoll, we conducted a survey to find out what puzzle enthusiasts consider to be the top puzzle. Join us as we explore the results and discover the most beloved puzzle of all time.