Alien Tiles Official Web Page
"The Universe's Most Challenging and Fun Puzzle Game"
(Scroll down for directions.)

with seed

 Moves so far.

Make all the tiles blue! Alien Tiles is a vivid and fiendishly difficult puzzle recently developed by Dr. Cliff Pickover and programmed by Cam Mckechnie. Some have called it "Rubik's cube for the new millennium."   The rules are simple, but the patterns soon become very complex. We look forward to hearing from artists, puzzle fans, and mathematicians regarding any interesting solutions, observations, and patterns.

How the Puzzle Works

Click on any tile in the array and all tiles in the same row and column advance by one color in a cycle from red to green to blue to purple and finally back to red. Try it. You can always start over again by selecting the "Start" button.


First Goal: Starting from all red, your goal is to make every cell in the puzzle turn all green, blue, or purple in as few moves as possible. Are you certain your solution requires the least number of moves?

Second Goal: Starting from all red, create a board that is all purple except for a single, central red tile.

Third Goal: Inside the 7x7 array, create a Xenoplastic Diamond -- a rotated 4x4 square of one color inlaid within tiles all of another color. Click here for an example. If you can ever create this magnificent specimen, you will have a long life filled with joy.

Fourth Goal: To achieve ultimate peace and transcendence, create the following Alien Tile "Sivaraman" patterns: Bazuluk Shenkursk Vologda Novomoskovsk Orel Shar'ya Vyshniy Charon

Playback Demo and Game Saving

You can use a mouse to copy all your moves. As an example, you can try playing back a sequence of 587 moves for the 7x7 board. You can try this by using a mouse to copy this odd solution into the "Replay" field.

Click here for the Classic 4x4 board. (In some situations, this is actually more difficult than the 7x7 board.)

Click here for an amazing 14x14 board.

Contest and Reader Comments

Click here for a grand Internet contest with valuable prizes as a reward.

Click here for other challenges, unanswered questions, and challenges from vistors to

Click here for a technical math paper on Alien Tiles (PDF file).

Click here for another technical math paper on Alien Tiles (PDF file).

Click here for some program code to solve the puzzle.

Click here for a book chapter on the game.

Click here for a technical math paper on Alien Tiles.

Click here for a technical math paper on Alien Tiles.
If Alien Tiles intrigues you, check out these new books.
Shiver at the sexy minds who have laid naked the mathematical machinery whirring just beneath the skin of reality.

Please e-mail me if you get these books, as I would like to know what you think of it.


Send feedback, questions, and discoveries.

Who are We?

There are still many mysteries and questions surrounding the Alien Tiles. Visit our web sites for puzzles, artwork, books, mind expanders, and more information about us:

-- Dr. Cliff Pickover, contact information
-- Visit Cliff Pickover's web site (
-- Discussion Group (

-- Cam Mckechnie,
-- Visit Cam Mckechnie's web site

Tell five friends about this web site. After you do, you have permission to click here for a different, wonderful alien image every hour. Thanks.

© 2002-2009, Cliff Pickover and Cam Mckechnie, All rights reserved. No copying of the Alien Tiles game is permitted. "Alien Tiles" is a trademarked term. Alien cartoon by Brian Mansfield.

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