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How to Solve Picross Puzzles in a Few Simple Steps

Picross was created by bringing the principles of Sudoku and Minesweeper. A picross puzzle aims to darken squares in a board to show a hidden image. The numbers on the sides of the columns and rows represent continuous blocks of darkened cells. With different levels of difficulty and time limits, playing this game can be enjoyable.

If you’re a starter who hasn’t played this game before, you can follow some simple steps to learn how to play it.

This article takes you through the steps of solving a picross puzzle.

1. Read the Tutorial

Most picross puzzles on the internet have tutorials that can guide beginners on how to play. The tutorial will tell you how to start the puzzle, explain how the hints and icons work, and give you a practice puzzle. Some novice players ignore reading the tutorial because they think it’s tedious. However, it’s best to go through the tutorial because it will save you time and stress when you start to play.

2. Learn how to Complete the Puzzle

Find a 5 x 5 board, and look at the numbers on the side and top. Those numbers represent the number of squares to be filled in. Single numbers stand for the number of consecutive blocks to be filled in. The easiest rows and columns to finish are those with zeros. Columns and rows with zeros represent blocks that don’t need to be filled. If you’re using a 5 x 5 board, it would be best to fill all the five squares in the corresponding direction.

Double numbers represent the number of blocks to be filled in. Filling in the block starts from the first number before going to the consecutive squares. On a 7×7 board, you can fill three consecutive squares in one blank space.

3. Mark the Board

Additional marks can help you to know where a number is supposed to be placed aboard. If you’re using an app to play, you can tap on the ‘x’ icon and place it in a box where you think you need to fill a number. Using this method is effective when zeros are in play because it helps to eliminate squares easily.

After placing the ‘x’s on the board, ensure you tap on the ‘pen’ icon.

4. Start With the Large Numbers

You need to search the board to determine if there are any high single number rows or columns. If there are, complete them.

5. Fill the Lower Numbers

Let the image provided guide you to fill the rows or columns of the lower numbers appropriately.

6. Finish the Puzzle Using Completed Rows and Columns

You can do this by using the right image, which requires you to fill four consecutive squares. It’s appropriate to fill the squares from the 3rd box to the column’s end to complete the puzzle. The 3rd column requires at least one blank space, one filled square, and two consecutive filled-in squares. When you fill the three rows, the rest will be accomplished.


Picross puzzles can be a good and challenging game for you. If you follow these simple steps of playing it, you’ll find solving the puzzle easy.