Mazes vs. Labyrinths. What’s the Difference? | Intrism

Mazes vs. Labyrinths. What’s the Difference?

How are mazes and labyrinths different?

Remember those mirror houses from your childhood you anxiously walked into one step at a time with no idea if you would walk straight into a mirror or be one step closer to the exit? Or those corn paths at the local farm during Halloween that had seemingly no end in sight. And we can’t forget the classic 2D marble games with two knobs used to maneuver a marble carefully along a path. So what are these called? Mazes or labyrinths?

What's a maze?

Mazes and labyrinths are both puzzles but with different characteristics. In a maze, the goal is to find your way through an intricate branching pathway that may have multiple entries and exit points. The branching pathways add a high degree of difficulty to navigate with countless dead-ends along the way. Corn mazes would fall into this category.

What's a labyrinth?

On the other hand, labyrinths generally offer one path, making it simpler to complete. Though there may be bends and turns, the path does not branch off into dead ends. Our 2D marble game example would fall into this category, where the real challenge is crossing the obstacles in the way rather than identifying the correct path.

Both mazes and labyrinths have been celebrated for hundreds of years, from commissioned landscaping such as the Hampton Court Palace in England to the main plots in celebrated Hollywood films like Steven Speilberg’s The Maze Runner and Harry Potter’s third task in the Triwizard tournament in the goblet of fire. 

The ultimate showdown. We love a good debate.

Within our team, we’ve been going back and forth on whether Intrism puzzles are labyrinths or mazes. The complex 3D structure of Intrism Pro and Mini create a real challenge to identify and navigate the correct pathway, which puts them in maze territory. However, since they both do just have one correct pathway with many obstacles along the way, they could be considered labyrinths. What do you think? Can a puzzle be both a labyrinth and a maze? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

Check out our selection of 3D wooden puzzles.


I don’t care if the Intrism Pro is a maze or a labyrinths! I just know it was a challenge that I accepted. I do take exception to the “since they both do just have one correct pathway”. I solved the Intrism Pro two different times and used a “short cut” on one of the solutions that was different than the first solution.

Alan Bornmueller

I have both the regular 3D puzzle and the Mini 3D puzzle. I think they are labyrinths. If there is only one correct path, I haven’t found it in either. I have gotten to stage 2 with the mini and not as far in the regular puzzle. They were both fun to make. They sit by my chair to work on as I watch TV. Thanks for great products and excellent customer service.

John Peter Meyers

Leave a comment

More from The Intrism Blog

5 of the Best Puzzle Brands That Will Keep You Entertained for Hours
  • Apr 28, 2023
5 of the Best Puzzle Brands That Will Keep You Entertained for Hours
marble mazes
  • Mar 2, 2023
Enhance Your Child’s Growth With Fantastic Marble Mazes
hobbies for men and women
  • Feb 16, 2023
5 Unique Hobbies For Men & Women