…and just like that, I got it. Power of the post I guess
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AMAZING! The last two major puzzles (the 2x2 "raft" puzzle, and the two pink blocks) had just the right amount of difficulty, and were really satisfying to get after slowly understanding their logic. Really nice execution of a single stage broken up into multiple puzzles, with a tiny bit of backtracking to make it feel connected but not so much as to add another layer of difficulty. In general, really great design, great balance, a good playthrough time, and nice extra mechanic at the end! This was a delight to play. Thank you!!
9: you are handicapped the whole level because you need to get back to that 1x1 in the upper left, and so you need to leave your initial portal open the whole time. You can only push the white blocks and not use portals. You need to get two white blocks into a configuration:
(or maybe it's flipped) by only pushing them. Use the yellow Ls to help push around the white blocks.
10: This is actually far simpler than it seems. It seems like there are a whole bunch of things you need to do, but if you just get to reconfiguring the long yellow blocks to be horizontal, then push them into the water, you can get around the map pretty easily to solve it. You don't need to be too conservative with the white 1x1s, but where you push them ends up being straightforward and pretty simple (there's a bit of portaling but it's not too complex). I think in the end I might not have even used one of them.
11: It's been a while and I'll need to reconstruct what I did :). I think you need to use the white block and the long L to push around the short L to get it into place, and as you may have guessed the white block needs to have a portal through which the long L block will protrude upwards into the 2x1 slot but that is the really tricky bit. I remember I spent a long time playing around with portaling at the two white slots at the top, as well as trying to get the player character above the midway river to manipulate things directly; I think that the solution ended up involving neither, but I don't remember for sure.
Such a lovely concept, and really well executed! This was a pleasure to play, thank you!
Two suggestions for balancing:
First, death is a bit too unforgiving given the length of the game. How about savepoints, or "undo" move (maybe available only for moves that kill you, so if you back yourself into an un-winnable situation you'll still lose, but don't have to lose from blunders alone?). I also frequently died from a key repeat in some direction, and didn't see some piece in time, so maybe a "check!" that interrupts key repeats? Or, like other roguelikes, interrupt key repeats when an enemy is spotted?
Second, the final room was super exciting and appropriate when I first saw it, but then it was anticlimactically over in two moves (although the ending screen was great, and taught me two new words)… I would suggest it more challenging by putting the pieces out of range of a single rook power move. (Or maybe you tried that, and then the room proved too hard?) An undo or a savepoint would have also been fun at the end; I also didn't realize the game would end as soon as the final queen was taken, I kind of wanted to also try first annihilating all the other pieces in the final room, which might be more challenging strategically.
But, having two moves between when a piece spots you and when it moves is, I think, an appropriate mechanism.
And, it's lovely the way it is with, I assume, randomly generated maps. But I can also imagine lots of possibilities for really devious room/level designs, effectively chess puzzles for this new variant of power moves+pawn summons, that could make this have DROD-level depth and complexity.
I got stuck in the same place and, while messing around with the keypad code entry and seeing what pictures I could make with the shapes, figured out the next step by accident. So my hint is: play around with that keypad, see what shapes you can make, and if there's anything in the room that looks like those shapes.
AHA the problem was that I didn't see the levers. The coloration did look a bit odd to me, and I was pressing E all along that wall, but I didn't see any change or realize they were levers to push/pull in a pattern. It would be much better if, e.g. there was red at the tips of the handles. But thank you, that worked!
I'm on the level with the equation hint. I found the wood, and found how to reach the forge with the wood, but I can't find any ore to make a pickaxe. I've tried everything and looked everywhere. I assume the big room is a trap, since none of the holes there work. Any hints, please?