This is the fourteenth installment of the Monthly Topic Challenges with topics suggested and voted on here. This month's topic is "Think inside the (very small) box!" (suggested by Stiv) and will span from the 1st of September to the 30th of September 2023. During this period, we will compile the list of relevant questions and post it as an answer to this question.

In the meantime, please go and propose and vote on future challenges!

Everyone have fun, and happy puzzling!

Link to other Monthly Topic Challenges.

The suggestion is copied to this post for posterity.

Think inside the (very small) box!

This challenge is a simple one - create a puzzle based on a small square grid. Grids must be 2x2, 3x3, 4x4, or 5x5 in size - no bigger!

The grid itself does not have to be small in physical size - for example, you may wish to fill each square with an image or a sentence; this is fine. The challenge is to restrict yourself to a small number of cells.

Small pen-and-paper puzzles, crosswords, wordsearches, Boggle grids, and grid-deduction puzzles are (of course) welcome, as are connecting walls - but by no means are these the only ways to use small grids and make an interesting puzzle... You may need to think outside (or is that inside?!) the box!

  • $\begingroup$ @Stiv How strict is the "square" grid constraint? If the intended restriction is "a small number of cells", how kosher would having multiple small grids be? I have an idea for a puzzle (that I'll likely post regardless) but am wondering how well it fits in this MTC 😅 $\endgroup$
    – samm82
    Sep 6, 2023 at 17:51
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @samm82 I think with this one I was really going for a single grid, to play on the famous phrase involving a single box... But I guess the cells don't have to be exactly square - but they ought to be pretty close to it... $\endgroup$
    – Stiv
    Sep 8, 2023 at 20:33

1 Answer 1


List of all questions published as part of the Monthly Topic Challenge #14:

The highest-voted three of these are:

The most viewed three of these are:


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