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  Hint Button for Puzzle Game  (Read 2678 times)
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Offline fletchergames

Senior Devvie

« Posted 2008-09-24 18:16:50 »

I'm working on a game that contains 3 puzzles.  Do I need to add a hint button to the game?

Color Mix (a puzzle where you mix paint colors to get 3 balls in a row) is easy enough that it doesn't need one.

Memory Search (a card matching game where you uncover hidden post cards) is a bit harder, but there's really no point at which you get stuck.  If people can just hit the hint button to match cards, what's the point.

Unmix (a row/column swapping game) is the only game where a hint button would make sense.  Even so, I don't think it's necessary.  And I think the hint button for Unmix would be slow.  It would involve a breadth first search of a reasonably large problem space.

On the one hand, I would think a hint button would be a standard feature.  On the other, it would only be useful for Unmix, and it would be slow.

What I think would be better is if I could come up with some of kind of new special card for Memory Search or a new special color for Color Mix.  I don't want to add to the artist's burden though.  The game's way behind already, and I recently threw a bunch of work the artist's way.

Lucky's Puzzle Carnival is currently in alpha testing.  Visit to download the alpha version either for Windows or for Mac OS X.  There will also be a Linux release.
Offline Eli Delventhal

JGO Kernel

Medals: 42
Projects: 11
Exp: 10 years

Game Engineer

« Reply #1 - Posted 2008-09-25 01:48:22 »

This is sort of a difficult question to answer with such a small amount of information. However, I've tried your alpha out, and I actually thought that the color match thing was by far the most confusing game. The others were sort of common game types.

See my work:
OTC Software
Offline fletchergames

Senior Devvie

« Reply #2 - Posted 2008-09-25 16:44:24 »

I'm going to ask a few more people and see if I find someone who wants a hint button.

I can see how a hint button would be nice in a few situations, but it would be like playing a game with a walkthrough in front of you.  It seems like a standard feature, but it's not like there's any hidden secret moves that you need the computer to show you.

Color Mix is a little unusual, but it seemed really easy to me.  It might have a steeper learning curve just because of its oddness though.
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