Lateral thinking puzzles and mind teasers

Can you attack problems from other angles and solve these


Evil warlock doesn't like dwarfs so he chooses four of them and buries them into the ground so that only their heads are above surface. Dwarfs can't move at all and they can look only forward.

They're buried in a line and one of them is separated by a wall. They are all facing the same direction: last dwarf sees two heads of his friends and a wall. Second last sees only one had and a wall. Second dwarf sees only the wall and first is looking to the distance where he can see nothing interesting though.

Warlock explains the situation to dwarfs and tells them that he has placed hats on their heads - two blue hats and two red ones. One of the dwarfs is supposed to say what color is the hat he is wearing. If he says the right color warlock will dig them out immediately. If he says something else all of them will stay there till the end...

How will dwarfs solve this problem?

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There is father and son in a car. As it happens on the roads from time to time the have a terrible accident. They are both seriously injured and ambulances carry them to two different hospitals.

The son is on a surgery table while the surgeon walks in and says: „I can't do the surgery on him he is my son!"

How is it possible?

(assume relations are blood - no stepfather involved)

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You are standing next to three switches. You know these switches belong to three bulbs in a room behind a closed door – the door is tight closed, and heavy which means that it’s absolutely impossible to see if any bulb is on or not. All three switches are now in position off.

You can do whatever you want with the switches and when you are finished you open the door and go into the room. While in there you have to tell which switch belongs to which bulb.

How will you do that?

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Can you divide a cake in 8 pieces with three cuts?

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Clown and the King

Once upon a time there was a kingdom. A king and a clown lived in this kingdom. Unfortunately they hated each other so they agreed that they will poison each other one day.

There are only twelve vials of poison in whole kingdom and they are locked in one chamber in the castle.

The poisons have numbers from 1 to 12. The higher the number the stronger the poison. Effect on human body is simple – you drink the poison, you die. Each stronger poison neutralizes all weaker poisons which means that poison 12 neutralizes all poisons, number 11 all poisons but 12 etc. (If you drink 11 and than 12 nothing happens. If you drink 12 and than 11 you die.)

The king enters the chamber with poisons first and takes all the even poisons (2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12). Than the clown enters and takes the rest. They meet in the throne hall where each fills one cup and hands it over to the other who immediately drinks it. Now each fills the cup once again, now for himself, and drinks it (hoping to save his own life).

What did the clown do that he woke up the second morning and the king was dead?

Premises: Each of them (the king and the clown) PRIMARILY wants to survive. If he survives he wants to poison the other as surely as possible. There is one dose of each poison – it’s not possible to divide it. The poisons are fluids without color or smell and they have the same consistency as water.

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Death match

You have just arrived to Wild West and you have already got in trouble. Buffalo Bill and Killer Kid are aiming at each other with colts. They accept you to death match with pleasure. They don’t want to waste bullets so they agree on following rules:

  1. Participants shoot in given order until only one survives.
  2. Everyone shoots only once when it’s his turn.
  3. If someone is injured the others finish him off with iron rod.
  4. The worst shooter (you) shoots first the best shoots last.

What tactics will you choose if you know that you hit about every third shot, Bill has around 50% chance and Immortal Kid never miss? (Please don’t shoot yourself)

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Poor farmer went to the farmers market to sell his corn. He had only one sack so he put barley into one half of the sack tied it in the middle and filled the other half with wheat.

He found a buyer at the market who unfortunately wanted only barley which was at the bottom. The buyer had also only one sack and he didn’t want to switch sacks as his one was bigger.

How did they get the barley from one sack to the other without pouring the grain somewhere else?

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Both triangles are made of identical parts. In the bottom one is one empty square though. How is that possible?

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If we tie a sheep to one peg it eats out a circle in grass. If we put a rope through a ring on its neck and tie both ends of the rope to two pegs it eats out an ellipse. If we want an oval we tighten one rope between two pegs put a ring with a rope on it and tie the sheep to its other end.

How to tie a sheep so that it eats out a square in grass? We have one sheep ropes pegs and rings.

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Can you divide a square in 13 completely same parts?

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Three Chinamen

There are three Chinese guys sleeping in a hotel room. Someone paints their faces with black color during the night. When they wake up in the morning they look at each other and all start laughing.

If one of them realizes he is black too he stops laughing. Because they are all smart and they know it about each other one of them will realize it soon. How did he find out?

Just realize that if two friends are dirty it means that I am too. If I see two laughing dirty guys it doesn’t mean that I’m dirty too they might be laughing at each other and I might be clean. Chinese didn’t point or say anything.

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You are sentenced at court.

Judge is a fair guy so he offers you following:

“You can say one sentence to defend yourself. If you lie we will hang you. If you tell us the truth we will shoot you.”

What will you say?

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