wow! This is brilliant. I especially like the level (7, I think?) with the giant staircase of hats and a single unproblematic-looking hatstand with conveniently proximate hat, which does that perfect thing of being a very good joke as well as a puzzle. The tribulations I went through to get that hat on to its stand!
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This is gorgeous! Predictably, Le Slo's level still seems to have defeated me with its extreme simplicity concealing something that large amount of brain-churning cannot unlock. (edit: finally figured it out! It's wild to me that it can avoid so many unintended solutions while looking so uncomplicated)
Please send the unbutterer to restore friction to those floors.. The decorative knife walls may no longer be hot, but they're still very sharp, and we don't want any more workplace accidents!
Loved it <3
The puzzles are great, especially the bread-tree-pushing machines. And it's always cool when there's a whole bunch of mechanics that are there the whole time, with the levels carefully built not to reveal them too early :)
Finally got to the end -- I have to hand it to level 10, which is deceptively good at becoming unsolvable, and level 30, the platonic ideal of a hard puzzle in the minimum viable space required. But my bête noire was level 27, which I'm not entirely convinced I could solve again but was relieved when I eventually stumbled across whatever insight it was supposed to generate after bashing my head against it for 2 days!
This is a thing of deep delight :)
I'm now contemplating whether I should put my real-life TV console on wheels, so that I can sokoban my way to toy tidying success. Peppa Pig certainly has that sort of child magnetism!
Having a lot of fun with this! I just love the purity of the Skinner-type levels. It always amazes me how responsive they are to entirely new mechanics. I'd assume such tightly constructed levels would just break when the rules are changed, but instead they often end up amplifying the new mechanic, as if they tapped into some low level universal framework for all Sokoban.
What a lovely game!
With all due respect to the gorgons, they're facing a real scalability problem with their dungeon. The more adventurers they petrify, the more hiding places they create for other adventurers, who will be able to progress deeper. Any chartered dungeon surveyor would likely advise them to scope out larger premises or to abandon their current grid-based 2d set-up for something involving ray-tracing.
I'm normally asleep at night, so had missed some of the practical differences with daytime. Am I right in thinking that locked doors are totally useless at night, but so long as I'm lifting weights and/or repairing impossibly damaged floors, I can keep an eye on them to make sure no thieves are just pushing them out the way? ;-P
Great game -- can't remember the last scrolling puzzlescript game I played, but it seems cool! Is x-scrolling some ingenious kludge or could you make a game that scrolls in the x and y axes? If so, 2d Witness demake when? :)
The real chef's kiss moment is that you removed undo and made the movement ever-so-slightly janky. Can't describe the despair and rage of realizing one's Z-lessness after making a tiny mistake.
Handful of feedback points:
- The forge should be a regular, predictable event that occurs every x floors. It radically effects the viability of a run and making it non-random would also help with scaling.
- The presence of the healer and shop should be non-random. It's annoying to go several floors without encountering healing or shops and that some floors have multiple healers/shops.
- The 25 heal for 5 gold doesn't scale; it should be a full heal. It's enough for the trade off just to be between increasing your health cap vs healing.
- I would consider making the shop and healer remain on map even after a player visits. It's annoying to discover you don't yet have enough gold to up your HP or buy the item you want when you could potentially go back after a few more fights.
- Let me click while the mouse is in motion on the map to redirect it. At the moment, once you click on a fight, etc there's no way to cancel out of that action.
- The Matthew options could use a re-think. Is the archer option even viable given that you don't have the inventory space for a backup weapon and can run out of arrows in a few fights? Should the rare/uncommon items pull from a limited set of options? The current mega-roulette just encourages restarting until you get a viable item(s).
It was very tricky and required no small amount of luck, but I finally attained the loneliest island: a land of grass and stone and lakes, under the shadow of once-mighty wind turbines, whose blades now shift lazily in the gentle breeze.
PS Fire Geckos are still a huge pain.
- I'm getting 1-2 curses a turn, which in turn make me weaker or less armored. And the fire geckos are strong enough that they hardly need +10 rage or regen from me getting rid of the curses, but if I don't..
- By the third area, my inventory is pretty stacked, so there's not a lot of room for 2-block curses, and taking damage when I can't place them is essentially game over because..
- Burn is a cool idea, but I'm carrying 20-30 burn by the time I've got rid of a single gecko and that's barely survivable because..
- The Geckos' or Gecko plus Olm's health pool is so big that I need multiple turns to get rid of even one of them.
I traded a life ring in the event with the rat, and though it has been removed from my inventory and its effect removed from my character, the ring image is now permanently in that square of my backpack and can have other stuff put on top of it (see the bottom left ring + key scenario)
I love the addition of relics and the possibilities they open up, but I wonder if balancing for them has ended up making run-of-the-mill builds totally non-viable in the final three floors (looking at you three fire geckos). I remember Terry Cavanagh saying something he discovered when balancing Dicey Dungeons was that it can just be fun for players to get OP builds on rare occasions and fixing those or balancing for them wasn't always the best approach.
The only viable build I've had on that floor is the shield-spirit + soldier shield + bag of knives whirling dervish of destruction, which absolutely melted enemies and only met its match with a spiky Axman circa floor 16. But none of my aggressive normal builds have made it through the gauntlet of fire geckos. I'm fine with failure in games, but it's best when it's because of a decision I made or a miscalculation that I can correct as I get better at the game. The present version of the game has shifted the balance to a place where I need to get lucky with equipment drops in the hope of entering the final three floors with an OP build.
The shifting states make for a nice complication in the puzzles when you're trying to figure out the end-state. It's also really pleasingly physical, especially some of the interactions with steam (poor redperson, burned through my mistakes!).
I managed to solve this level without engaging with one of the temperature plates and think I might have found an unintended solution?
Oof — the magma core floor health bumps in the latest build are tough. The three fire gecko fight is a brutal roadblock.
edit: This was a decent build and it got completely destroyed by everyone's favorite gank squad. The stacking poison, the curses and the insane health pool mean that unless you have crazy damage output you're doomed.. Could poison stack but also decrease by one at the end of each turn? Could this be a fight against two geckos instead of three? Why is the final boss three geckos in the middle of the magma core level?
This is terrific :)
I really hope you keep developing it after the jam — it seems like there's huge potential for inventive puzzles. The penultimate level was particularly good!
FWIW The pathing puzzle at the end is a bit disappointing, but only because it's in tension with puzzlescript's undo function and fingertip solving. The second of the unused puzzles in the source seemed like a more elegant and expansive way to test understanding; it's like you've built a lock with the downward fans and the positioning of the ice blocks sets the pins that will unlock it.
This is so impressive!
I'm currently stuck with room G1 — I've managed to liberate both the boxes but I can't seem to figure out a way to melt the topmost blue thing.. Any tips?
edit: ahhhh, I needed to reset the level to spot the critical error I had made!
The screenshotted early encounter below is not fun — on most turns the enemy heals faster than I can damage it and its health pool is so large that I have to get lucky with my damage output multiple turns in a row to beat it. Perhaps you could introduce some additional health scaling on enemies or a lower tier of this enemy so that early fights against it aren't quite so tedious.
The same dynamic is also true of multi-enemy fights on later floors where shielding/healing can turn them into huge grinds or just make them feel unfair — two heavy hitting shield enemies and a move-copier for instance, if you aren't able to take the move-copier out on your first turn.
If you put a dice in the marked squares, you can use the honey dice the queen adds to your hand to multiply its value, which can let you do 20-30 damage in a turn if you plan it properly — and I assume understanding this mechanic is required to beat the boss. It's only for those two squares though, in other squares honey will cause the value to halve.
The jester's randomize event turned all of my dice to blocks except one attack die, which let me tank the wasp queen (yay!) only for the next battle to be against two shield-bearers and a move copier.. turns out that fight is impossible to win or lose when you can do max 6 damage per turn and shield indefinitely, while they constantly shield each other more than you can deplete them :(
Yeah, I feel like the health/damage/heal dynamics are poorly balanced in general. It's particularly evident in the boss fights, where their huge health pool and damage output often makes them impossible to counter for an average build. Or, more precisely, my hunch is that the game doesn't allow enough room for player skill to counter bad luck.
And the same issue is spread across sequences of fights as well: the loss of health becomes a compounding problem that travels with you from fight to fight and results in bad gameplay experiences like keeping an enemy alive in order to get the best boosted heal roll possible.
I like the idea of a game that's going wrong and where the mechanics are correspondingly counter-intuitive but fair (Jack Lance's Easy Enigma is a great puzzlescript example)
The problem here is that it's very hard to know what you're supposed to be doing. The opening run of levels is a little confusing, but I muddled through them until I made it to the level that introduces the black and green blocks. I might be missing something obvious, but I have no idea what solution the level is expecting, nor how I'm supposed to interact with the two new colors. Wrong-feeling mechanics are great when they're discoverable, but sometimes you need to design the level to either nudge or force the player to discover them.
This might be single most impressive frankenpuzzlescript game I've ever seen — it's so cool to see something made by so many wonderful puzzlemakers that also manages to have a whole, joined-up meta puzzle element. Hats off to everyone involved and to whomever wrangled this collab into something so cohesive.
I could probably poke around in the source-code more diligently, but is AB5 a Dom Camus level? I got some very strong Golem vibes from that one :-)
There are some great puzzles here! One thing to bear in mind is that sokoban is way more fun when there's an undo move button that lets you go back as far as you need to.
As the levels become more complicated, the lack of undo becomes a real friction point, partly because it's easy to produce a fail-state accidentally, but more because starting a level over can feel very punishing when you're close to a solution but have made a small mistake.
The level select thing was much less of a problem this time — I think it only became an issue because I kept trying to go back to the bad goto level to see if I could progress.
Usually, I think post-death messages end up producing quite a lot of friction in puzzlescript, as I mostly just want to press Z or R and keep working at the puzzle. However, in your game, those messages are part of the fabric of the experience, and the puzzles aren't so fiendish that the interruption becomes frustrating.
Enjoying this! Unfortunately there's a couple of weird bugs:
- If I fail a level, I get a bunch of text screens and then get taken all the way back to the start. At that point, the level select will only take me to the last level I completed, rather than the level I just reached.
- Also, when I beat the blood level, I get taken to the level that introduces soap again and can't progress any further.
Some of these levels are really interesting (I recognised at least one from good ol' David Skinner, doyen of conceptually hard sokoban levels!). The one that required you to seal yourself in — but in which room! — was particularly fiendish.
I do think the deliberately tedious levels could all do with being about 30% less tedious. And I thought it was strange that the 'terrible mistake' level, or rather the level before that dialogue screen, let you complete the level by pushing the green box alone. I'm not sure to what extent puzzlescript allows branching paths, but that would have been a neat device, where accomplishing the difficult solution vs the easy one could lead to a different ending.
This is a lot of fun — really clever interpretation of the rando-theme!
The last level feels like it demonstrates the ability to make sophisticated puzzles, but it's hard to parse the precise rules of bunny carrot-lust when there are multiple bunnies in play. The specific problem, which is probably hard to solve, is that it feels more efficient to half-guess a solution and then tweak it based on the bunnies' response than to deduce it.
Love it :)
A couple of things that feel unfair when they happen:
- A succession of jumps between small platforms, where misjudging the departure point of the first jump means you can never recover and will always overshoot the final platform in the sequence (which is often obscured anyway). It feels like more complex control over jumping would spoil the game, but maybe you can do some game-feel-magicTM on the platform sizes or spawning in that scenario to make it recoverable.
- A horizontally moving platform after a giant cylinder path bifurcation. The cylinder blocks your view so you don't know there's a moving platform to consider, and so what happens is that you go right, for instance, and discover the platform you need to land on is too far in the opposite direction to reach. It's possible this falls into the git gud school of Triangle Running, but it always feels like an impossible jump.