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Pipsqueak: Dice puzzle idea with digital option

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Chad Russell
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Pipsqueak Puzzles
updated tile and playtest low ink sample

After designing and playtesting two exhausting games this year I decided to go a different route and work on a puzzle idea I had for quite some time. I hesitated to start because I felt it must have been done before.

I decided to give it a go anyway and ask fellow designers if it is already out there. One thing about the idea that may make it a bit different is the use of a foam die so it can be used on a tablet and it does not interfere with a touch screen.

So far I have created 12 double sided tiles, many which can link together to form a larger puzzle as shown in the photo. The theme involves a mouse getting cheese cube,(die) to its hole in the wall. The rules I have at the moment are pretty simple:

1) Choose a tile.
2) Place the die on a pip square. A pip square has an upper and lower pip value. The upper value is the pip on the die that is to be facing up, the lower value is the pip that is to be facing the player.
3) The goal is to reach the door of the mouse hole in the amount of moves indicated in the upper left of a door square, (2-4). No more, no less.
4) A move consists of "rolling" the die the as many times as the pip value shown at the top of the die. Must use the total pip amount each move. By "Rolling", it means flipping the die in an orthogonal direction. Moving the die the entire number of "rolls" allotted is considered a move.
5) The die cannot be moved diagonally.
6) The die cannot be moved through a wall.
7) The die cannot move immediately to a space just moved from. It may return to that space during a move after visiting other spaces.
8) Later puzzles have a pip value in the upper right of a door square. This means the die must be solved with the indicated pip value face up on the die when complete.

Have created quite a few puzzle and answer keys for player reference, hoping to get about 50 to start.
Also working on a second player with a second die. Players must take turns solve set puzzles without blocking each other from reaching the goal.
I hope some of this makes sense and am grateful for any feedback for this idea.

JohnBrieger
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This is pretty minor, but I

This is pretty minor, but I was a little confused at first when you made a distinction between “facing up” and “facing the player”, though I now understand after a closer reading. Maybe make those initial placement squares more diagrammatic instead - showing a small die as it should be placed in a slightly isometric view?

Overall I’m intrigued by the concept!

Chad Russell
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initial placement die

The isometric view of the initial placement of the die would likely be easier to understand. I will create a sample tile with this idea and try to share a photo soon. Thank you for the insight!
*edit*
I have placed a quick dry erase sample in the original post. Not sure how to put photos in following replies. It represents two set up positions for the sample tile.

let-off studios
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Sliding Puzzles

I like this idea a lot. It brings to mind the solo puzzle games Rush Hour and even Treasure Quest, which is itself a variation on to classic computer game Sokoban.

If you find yourself in a bind trying to come up with new stages to attempt, I suggest the classic method of "working backwards from the finishing point" to determine your new stage.

Chad Russell
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Think fun type game

let-off studios wrote:
I like this idea a lot. It brings to mind the solo puzzle games Rush Hour and even Treasure Quest, which is itself a variation on to classic computer game Sokoban.

If you find yourself in a bind trying to come up with new stages to attempt, I suggest the classic method of "working backwards from the finishing point" to determine your new stage.

Thank you for the insight! I actually had bought a used copy of treasure quest but it was missing components. This idea is definitely in the vein of the games you mentioned.
I will keep the classic method in mind. So far finding many stages is not too difficult, creating the puzzle reference and answer key for each is the time consuming task. As in any design, I will keep at it in hopes to get a large selection. For the moment, the single player is the focus.

let-off studios
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Sokoban Inspiration

Not too long ago I was developing my own Sokoban clone, and found this level-generating resource, which I would now consider indispensable. It's called Yet Another Sokoban Clone. If you have a PC, download this post-haste.

https://sourceforge.net/projects/sokobanyasc/

Chad Russell
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JohnBrieger wrote:This is

JohnBrieger wrote:
This is pretty minor, but I was a little confused at first when you made a distinction between “facing up” and “facing the player”, though I now understand after a closer reading. Maybe make those initial placement squares more diagrammatic instead - showing a small die as it should be placed in a slightly isometric view?

Overall I’m intrigued by the concept!

This is very helpful! I have posted a new photo at top of post for this idea for starting positions as well as the same tile in a print and play type sample for tests.

Chad Russell
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let-off studios wrote:Not too

let-off studios wrote:
Not too long ago I was developing my own Sokoban clone, and found this level-generating resource, which I would now consider indispensable. It's called Yet Another Sokoban Clone. If you have a PC, download this post-haste.

https://sourceforge.net/projects/sokobanyasc/

That can be helpful, I have downloaded it. I am not familiar with Sokoban but I hope this idea is at least worth doing even as a clone.

wob
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there is a similar type of

there is a similar type of puzzle called a dice maze. basically its a grid of dice faces. you start on dice a and must get to dice b. the puzzle being that if you are on say a 3 you have to move 3 spaces orthogonally.

some other ideas for you to try maybe; squares where you must show x on the dice, squares where you must not show x, way points that must be hit in order (either mandatory or for bonus points), squares that flip/rotate your die, teleporting squares, one way walls and squares.

finally, if you are going digital i would ditch the real die. mainly because it limits your customers to a certain size screen. i would either go with a digital die or a book/sheet and real die.

Chad Russell
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dice maze

wob wrote:
there is a similar type of puzzle called a dice maze. basically its a grid of dice faces. you start on dice a and must get to dice b. the puzzle being that if you are on say a 3 you have to move 3 spaces orthogonally.

some other ideas for you to try maybe; squares where you must show x on the dice, squares where you must not show x, way points that must be hit in order (either mandatory or for bonus points), squares that flip/rotate your die, teleporting squares, one way walls and squares.

finally, if you are going digital i would ditch the real die. mainly because it limits your customers to a certain size screen. i would either go with a digital die or a book/sheet and real die.

The dice maze sounds more like the idea I was going for, I will look into that. When checking the Sokoban creator app, I found the way it plays to far from my idea, mainly because it does not involve the die. In the dice maze, does the player slide the die along the grid?

For the idea I have, each time the die is moved to an adjacent square it must be rotated in that direction. This means it will have a new value each square. Also while moving the allotted squares, the direction of movement can be changed. Maybe this is different than the dice maze?

The various square abilities and conditions sounds like an excellent addition to some of the puzzles. I started early puzzles with just a door to reach, then later reaching the door with a specific value face up. The ideas mention would follow these well.

As far as the digital idea, it was just a test I did with photos of the puzzles on a tablet. Since most tablets have a zoom in/out function for photos I felt they could adjust the picture to fit the size of the die. Maybe include both 1" and a 1/2" in foam die. I see your point though, and with focus on the printed version for the time being.

This is great insight of the idea, thank you for that. I hope it is worth creating and not too much of the dice maze mentioned.

wob
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hi. the dice maze i saw was

hi. the dice maze i saw was printed in a newspaper a while ago (no idea which one) so it just had the printed dice faces and i'm not sure the numbers were realistically plotted ( they could have just been arabic numbers not pips and it would have worked the same). you also couldn't change direction as far as i recall.
as your version uses the real life properties of dice (opposite sides adding to 7etc) it should, in theroy, be doable as a purely mental thing (ie you should be able to plan the root in your head before touching the die). i like this in a puzzle, its like completing a sudoku without having to use a pen. but unlike a sudoku style puzzle it uses the spacial awareness part of the brain (it is surprisingly hard to picture a die turning and keeping the pips correct). for those that find this difficult ( mostly younger players) you might suggest having a spare die to turn so they dont get confused.

Chad Russell
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Spare die

Thank you for the information on the dice maze. I agree, there should be multiple die in the game. I had planned to gear the idea to younger players for testing and add more elements and difficulty as it progresses. Thank you again for the input!

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