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  Hint Button for Puzzle Game  (Read 1743 times)
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Offline fletchergames

Senior Duke





« 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 http://www.orbitalcows.com/lpc/lpctest.php 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 Duke





« 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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