There are lots of types of puzzles you can use in your D&D games but logic puzzles are by far the easiest to integrate. This is because logic puzzles are either based on statements or numbers. And what is D&D really other than a bunch of statements and numbers?
In this article we’ll show you a lot of logic puzzle examples, how to use them, and we’ll look at some of the best illustrated logic puzzles for your D&D game. So let’s dive right in.
D&D Logical Statement Puzzles
The first type of logic D&D puzzles is really easy to incorporate in your game and a lot of fun. But they should be used very sparingly or your players will get bored eventually. For example:
I have a pot of potato soup. The following statements are true:
- All potatoes in the soup are mine.
- No potatoes of mine, that are new, have been boiled.
- All my potatoes in this pot are fit to eat.
- No unboiled potatoes of mine are fit to eat.
Are there any new potatoes in this pot?
Answer: ‘No, there are no new potatoes in the soup’. The players can reason this out by following the logical statements. If they can’t figure it out, have them roll intelligence checks and give them hints. You can give hints by connecting two logical statements such as:
All the potatoes in the soup are mine + No potatoes of mine, that are new, have been boiled = All the potatoes in the soup that are new, have not been boiled.
The problem with these puzzles is that the DM must be skilled at propositional and predicate logic. If you’re not, these puzzles will confound you as much as they do the players. So they are tricky in that respect.
On the other hand, if you are comfortable with these types of puzzles, you can weave them into your story very easily. Those new potatoes might be cursed and the players need to find out if there are any in the soup they just ate. It takes virtually no effort integrating these types of logic puzzles into your D&D game.
D&D Logical Number Puzzles
The next category are number puzzles for D&D. Numbers represent a type of logic. The main reason for using them in D&D is because numbers are so very clear. To math problems there is only one correct answer, so there can be no discussion about whether players have figured out the puzzle. And players already know the rules to math so the DM will have a lot less explaining to do which speeds up the game. For instance:
In the sum above, P and Q each represent a digit. What is the value of P + Q?
Answer: 5. (P = 3 and Q = 2)
While this is an easy puzzle you can quickly throw at your players the problem with logical math puzzles in D&D is that it is very obvious to players they are solving a math problem. It’s harder to integrate these types of puzzles into your game. And as a result, your players will feel this puzzle breaks immersion. If you want to know how to do these logical math puzzles the right way, read our article on D&D math puzzles.
Illustrated D&D Logic Puzzles
Logic puzzles are a dime a dozen. The real challenge is integrating logic puzzles into your D&D game so players feel the puzzle has a natural place in your setting. Having beautiful illustrations of fantasy themed puzzle pieces players can manipulate helps a lot. But you also need to have a story that places the puzzle solidly in your world and gives players a reason for solving it.
Here’s an example of a logic puzzle by Paul Camp that does a beautiful job at immersion.
With Dungeon Puzzles your players wish to explore a monster-infested dungeon from which only one person has ever escaped alive. This person was driven insane by one of the monsters but with the help of a detect thoughts spell the players were able to gather clues to its layout. Through the detect thoughts spell you learn the piece of the dungeon map, you were able to draw, are in the correct place but they are facing the wrong direction.
The players must lay out the entire dungeon using puzzle piece which come in 4 by 4-inch printable tiles or digital images for virtual tabletop use. By rotating the images in their place, they are able to discover the dungeon layout. This gives them both a map of the dungeon but once they finish this puzzle it immediately serves as the in-game map they can place their tokens on.
Scrambled D&D Logic Dungeon Puzzle:
Solved D&D Logic Dungeon Puzzle:
So your players finish the puzzle and can start exploring right away. That’s brilliant! We’ve never seen any other puzzle designer do this and, in our opinion, it puts Paul’s puzzle designs in a league of their own.
And this isn’t the only immersive and innovative logic puzzle design Paul’s created. There’s something new to everything he creates. If you wish to see all of his work, check out our page that holds all of his puzzles for D&D, many of them logic puzzles.
Dark Ulf is the founder and editor of DNDpuzzles.com. When not writing for DNDpuzzles he travels the multiverse and destroys demons with a crossbow in one hand and a crossword in the other.
We hope this site inspires you to put more puzzles into your D&D games.