Dale Yu: Review of Puzzle Rap Star

Puzzle Rap Star (Book)

puzzle rap star

Puzzle Rap Star is the newest book from the inventive people at Crux Club.   We have played though one of their earlier books, Mob Treasure, and had a pretty good time with that one.  The Crux Club is based in New York City, and it appears that they do outdoor escape room activities (as well as an upcoming one that uses Augmented reality!) and puzzle books.

From their description: ” Crank that beat up, grab the mic and show em’ whatcha got! Puzzle Rap Star is a new puzzle book that will challenge you to prove you got what it takes to level up in the rap game. To play, examine the images and text on each page then bend your mind to crack the codes. You’ll use what you learned to crush your competition in complex meta puzzle rap battles. As you sharpen your skills, you’ll level up from underground battles to getting a record deal and worldwide fame. Tackle 6 levels containing over 60 puzzles!”


As the story goes, one of your pals, Craz, has disappeared, and you start looking for him. You find a suspect in Shotz Doc Menace, and you chase after him.  The rest of the story is outlined as you progress through the book and get glimpses of the story in between the levels.  The theme is kept up through the whole book.  

The copyright notice is even written in “verse”


And some of the puzzle instructions rhyme like rap lyrics as well….


Like their previous book, this is a medium sized paperback book, with 60 numbered puzzles, split up into six levels – essentially nine smaller puzzles and then one meta puzzle at the end of each.  If you’re unfamiliar with puzzle hunts, a meta-puzzle generally is one which uses the answers of previously solved puzzles in a final puzzle that ties everything together.


Overall, the puzzles are of varying difficulty.  Some were fairly simple for me, requiring only a minimal glance at the page (10-15 seconds) and a quick solution.  Other puzzles took a bit of time – sometimes meaning I had to put the book down, go do something else, and then come back with a fresh view of things later.  There is no timeframe on the book, and there is really nothing stopping you from skipping around from puzzle to puzzle.  You’ll likely need to complete all 9 puzzles prior to solving each of the meta-puzzles though (the meta puzzles are each multiple of 10).



The puzzles come in all types, and there is a nice variety of styles to tackle here.  And, if you get stuck, no worries.  The back pages in the book are filled with hints and even the answers to the puzzle.  However, those pages can be a bit spoilery, so I might recommend using your phone to access their hint webpage instead.  When you use this site, you can check your answers as well as get hints without accidentally seeing any other puzzle material!



So, while I’d prefer using the website, it’s not necessary – so if you wanted to take this book with you on a trip, you can still fully enjoy it offline!

This is the second Crux Club puzzle book that I’ve had the chance to try, and both have been enjoyable times.  The overall difficulty would be medium, but that’s just the sort of thing that I am looking for sometimes. I’d recommend this to anyone looking for a chance to test their brain out against the puzzle masters at Crux Club.


Until your next appointment,

The Gaming Doctor



About Dale Yu

Dale Yu is the Editor of the Opinionated Gamers. He can occasionally be found working as a volunteer administrator for BoardGameGeek, and he previously wrote for BoardGame News.
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