Lloyd King's Lateral Thinking Puzzles

Review, some alterations, and hints by William F. Bultas
NOTE: These puzzles are also available as the Lateral Thinking Puzzle IQ Test.

Below are 10 lateral thinking IQ puzzles by Lloyd King. Lloyd is the author and/or co-author of the books Amazing "Aha!" Puzzles, Test Your Creative Thinking, Puzzles for the High IQ and Pocket Puzzlers II: IQ Teasers. These 10 puzzles are from Test Your Creative Thinking.

The puzzles are in general very difficult. Test Your Creative Thinking is split into 2 primary sections: "EASY" and "HARD", and all but one of these are in the "HARD" section (even the "EASY" problems will give most people a significant challenge!). I encourage you to use any reference materials you think might help. To assist you a little, I have provided a hint or hints for each problem. If you are truly stumped, try the hints. If that STILL doesn't help, then you can throw in the towel and look at the answer. Keep in mind that it can take several minutes or hours to solve a problem, so looking at the answer prior to that is essentially cheating yourself.

I have individually linked the answer for each problem, so that you won't accidentally see the answer to the wrong puzzle. These 10 puzzles were used by us as Puzzle Contests, so you will note that each problem had a winner, and in some cases some statistics are provided.

So, sharpen your pencils and your mind, give each problem a little time before using the hints and checking the answers, be sure to have fun, and don't forget: THINK LATERALLY!!

ALPHABET TICKLE

Take away one of the letters in this grid and yet still leave all 26 letters of the alphabet. Which letter can be taken away?

TRENDSETTER

What six-letter word is missing from this sequence?

DIRECT
ROLE
OCCIDENTAL
DARE
??????
AMUSED

LETTER SEQUENCE

Which other circle should be black to complete the sequence below?

Choose from the following:

A. Top circle on the first figure
B. Top right circle on the third figure
C. Top circle on the last figure
D. Bottom left circle on the fourth figure
E. Bottom right cicle on the second figure
F. None of these

THE SAUCY SORCERER

One day a saucy sorcerer winks at a witch. She immediately pays him back by turning him into a toad. Can you take away six of the seven shapes below to leave a sort of toad?

Choose from the following to leave:

A. His hat
B. His brow
C. His right eye (his perspective)
D. His left eye (his perspective)
E. His nose
F. His moustache
G. His mouth

A DIFFERENT SLANT

A, B, C and D are four sleeping ladybugs on a perfectly flat tabletop. What is the direct distance between ladybugs A and C?

HOME ALONE

Which home below is incomplete?

THE MAGIC WORD

After hours of searching the castle you eventually find the mysterious Room 88 at the end of a long gloomy corridor. Appropriately enough, it has "R88" on it. You try to open the door, but it is locked. Suddenly a ghostly voice from inside murmurs: "Say the magic word and the door will open." What word should you say?

GIVE ME FIVE!

5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35, ?

Can you find the number below, which comes next in the above series?

6, 15, 18, 20, 25.

DOWN PAYMENT

A wizard pops into his local magic store to buy a new pet toad. Unfortunately, he only has £2 on him and the toad costs quite a bit more than this. He therefore asks the shopkeeper if he can pay £1 now and the rest the following week. The kind shopkeeper agrees to this and the wizard leaves the store happy with £1 in his pocket and a toad. How much does the toad cost?