The first (and only) time I got one of Braid's incredibly well-hidden stars, its rare collectibles, I felt like an utter genius. My impossible solution of luring an enemy across the map, up an elevator, across a gap, and manipulating time to pounce on its head at the arc of its jump seemed preposterous. I felt like I'd surely concocted a solution the game hadn't intended, but it worked. I'd outsmarted Braid, and I'm sure my achievement was directly responsible for Jonathan Blow spending the next seven years coming up with even harder puzzles in The Witness. But I'll never forget that eureka! moment, or ones like it. Puzzle and adventure games are designed to give you those moments. They put up walls, and the longer you're stuck, the more satisfying it is when you break them down.
Other games set you loose in a sandbox with the tools to build a genius moment for yourself. Headshots in shooters are satisfying, sure, but nowhere near as satisfying as outwitting your opponent to get the drop on them or sneak off with their flag. That's skill and brains.
We want to hear your stories about the smartest you've ever felt while playing a game—your most brilliant, holy-shit-that-actually-worked memories. Share your stories of extraordinary genius in the comments below. We'll put together our favorites and recognize the geniuses among you for your greatest achievements.