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TIGSource ForumsDeveloperDesignLevel Design Workshop - #3 Structural Atmosphere
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NiallM
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« Reply #60 on: July 10, 2010, 01:33:05 AM »

Nitro Crate's new puzzles:
I really like the last two; 5 being deceptively simple and 6 having me stumped for a good while until I figured out how to get above the last two blocks.

baconman:
You really like making the player work! Wink  6 was my favourite as it required a bit of thought.  10 was pretty neat, but there was too much space, making it easier than it could have been.

Almost:
Really clever.  8 really threw me by having more holes than boulders, 9 stumped me entirely.

Captain_404:
I like how 4 made me think I was blocking off escape routes by putting the blocks in the corners.  I spent some time working out how to avoid placing them there till the last minute, before realising there was enough space that I didn't need to keep the corners free.

TheDustin:
A lot of these felt like variations on a theme (move one block aside so another can be slotted into place).  6 and 9 were the ones that gave me pause.


Sorry, I meant to comment on everyone's levels, but I'm all sokoban'ed out.  I might try and come back later.
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Draknek
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« Reply #61 on: July 10, 2010, 02:50:58 AM »

I like Rubble and Combination lock here.

Interesting stuff! Not sure how you would apply this kind of thing in an actual game though.

Level 1: very nice, you got me.
Level 2-4: possibly 3 levels is a bit too much for the same trick, although they all spin it differently.
Level 6: pretty good, needed to think more than I expected.
Level 7: disappointingly easy, was expecting a trick or something.
Level 8: the solution is to go into the editor and change it?
Level 9: I don't like how this one forces you to go offscreen (unless I've missed something).
Level 10: pretty good.

Draknek, I feel that your levels are not very well ordered. Some early ones offer interesting challenges, while some later ones seem fairly trivial. The last one's really smart!
Yeah, I didn't spend any time rearranging them after I'd made them. Couldn't really get a grasp on their relative difficulty levels so soon after having created them.
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Eraser
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« Reply #62 on: July 10, 2010, 03:14:29 AM »

1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10

I haven't really tried to arrange this in any particular order of difficulty (except for level 10), nor did I try to make a difficulty ramp. I mostly made these to seem like they were generated randomly, but with eluding solutions, and to provide mild amusement.

All of these are beatable, and I daresay that I didn't put enough brain stumping in these as I could have.
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Dacke
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« Reply #63 on: July 10, 2010, 03:21:47 AM »

This isn't really relevant, but I took a course where we wrote Sokoban AIs last year. I had pen help me design a tile-set, for the official demonstration.

This is what the final product looked like, but it was animated when in action:



(level not designed by me)
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agj
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« Reply #64 on: July 10, 2010, 04:57:12 AM »

Yeah, Dacke, I remember you mentioning that elsewhere. It must have been a nice challenge. The tileset is really cute, by the way.

Interesting stuff! Not sure how you would apply this kind of thing in an actual game though.

That only depends on the kind of game you want to make.
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agj
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« Reply #65 on: July 10, 2010, 10:28:28 AM »

MindEraser, you screwed up your links!
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Draknek
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« Reply #66 on: July 10, 2010, 04:19:46 PM »

1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10
Fixed links for you.

These don't really fit the original exercise of being simplified to the core puzzle. Many of them could be simplified quite a bit without really changing anything. Some of them don't feel like they were designed to be challenging.

Level 9 having fewer blocks than targets is a bit weird.
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Noel Berry
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« Reply #67 on: July 10, 2010, 09:42:04 PM »

I've got 5 done so far. It's pretty late now though, so I'm heading to bed.

[Level 1] [Level 2] [Level 3] [Level 4] [Level 5]
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Nitro Crate
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« Reply #68 on: July 11, 2010, 08:53:34 AM »

I've got 5 done so far. It's pretty late now though, so I'm heading to bed.

[Level 1] [Level 2] [Level 3] [Level 4] [Level 5]

I have to say, the difficulty curve on these are spot on!
I envy your abilities.  Coffee
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Supermini_man
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« Reply #69 on: July 11, 2010, 12:27:48 PM »

With the criticism that I received in mind I made my last six levels, enjoy! Smiley
Level 5-http://jonathanwhiting.com/coding/ldw/sokoban.swf?level=AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAABBBBBBAAAABCAAEBAAAABADDABAAAABAEDEBAAAABBBBBBAAAAAAAAAAAAAA
Level 6-http://jonathanwhiting.com/coding/ldw/sokoban.swf?level=AABCAABAAAAABFAABAAAAABAFAABAAAABFAFABAAAABADAABAAAABAADBAAAAAABEEBAAAAAABBBBAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA
Level 7 (Is a slight variation of Level 6 btw)- http://jonathanwhiting.com/coding/ldw/sokoban.swf?level=AABCAABAAAAABDAABAAAAABEDAABAAAABDEDABAAAABEDEABAAAABAEDBAAAAAABAEBAAAAAABBBBAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA
Level 8-http://jonathanwhiting.com/coding/ldw/sokoban.swf?level=AAAAAAAAAAAABBBBBBAAABEAADABAAAABEDDCBAAAAABEDABAAAAAABEBAAAAAAAABAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA
Level 9-http://jonathanwhiting.com/coding/ldw/sokoban.swf?level=AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAABBBBBBBAAABACDEEBAAABADBDABAAABAADEEBAAABBBBBBBAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA
Level 10-http://jonathanwhiting.com/coding/ldw/sokoban.swf?level=AAAAAAAAAAAABBBBAAAAABBAEABBAAABADADABAAABEACAEBAAABADADABAAABBAEABBAAAABBBBBAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA

Edit: And here's my first four levels http://forums.tigsource.com/index.php?topic=13717.msg405176#msg405176
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Tuba
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« Reply #70 on: July 12, 2010, 07:34:14 AM »

1 - http://jonathanwhiting.com/coding/ldw/sokoban.swf?level=AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAABBBBBAAAAABACABAAAAABAAABAAAAABBDBBAAAAAABABAAAAAAABEBAAAAAAABBBAAA

2 - http://jonathanwhiting.com/coding/ldw/sokoban.swf?level=AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAABBBBAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAABBABAAAAACEBDBAAAAAABBABAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAABBBBAAAAAAAAAAAA

3. http://jonathanwhiting.com/coding/ldw/sokoban.swf?level=AAAAAAAAAAABBBBBBBAAABACAAABAAABABBBABAAABADAAABAAABBBBAABBAAAAABADABAAAAABAEABAAAAABEABAAAAAAABBBAA

4 - http://jonathanwhiting.com/coding/ldw/sokoban.swf?level=AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAABBBBBBAAAABAAAEBAAAABAADABAAAABECDABAAAABAADABAAAABAAAEBAAAABBBBBBAAAAAAAAAAAA

5 - http://jonathanwhiting.com/coding/ldw/sokoban.swf?level=AAAAAAAAAAAABBBBBBAAAABAAAABAAAABAABEBAAAABADDCBAAAABAAEABAAAABBBBBBAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA

6 - http://jonathanwhiting.com/coding/ldw/sokoban.swf?level=AAAAAAAAAAABBBBBBAAAABEAAABAAAABBABABBAAAABACDABAAAABADDABAAABBBAAEBAAABEAAABBAAABBBBBBAAAAAAAAAAAAA

Tried to make them with a difficulty curve.. but they became all too easy  Sad
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Noel Berry
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« Reply #71 on: July 12, 2010, 01:27:58 PM »

I've got 5 done so far. It's pretty late now though, so I'm heading to bed.

[Level 1] [Level 2] [Level 3] [Level 4] [Level 5]

I have to say, the difficulty curve on these are spot on!
I envy your abilities.  Coffee

Thanks!  I actually wasn't really sure if they were too hard or too easy, glad you liked them Smiley



Generally, I agree, they ended up being a bit too easy. If you make the last 4, I would suggest trying to make some really tough levels.

Level 1: Fine start. Easy, and clear what you have to do.
Level 2: Not too bad. However, I noticed that it's basically impossible to push the block in the wrong direction - there is literally no way you can mess it up and have to restart (unless you push it off the screen). I would say that if there is no way to lose in a level (unless it's level one) then it's definitely too easy and should be worked on further.
Level 3: This level was fine. It required some thought as to what you have to do.
Level 4: It's not too bad, but I actually found this easier than level 3.
Level 5: About the same difficulty as level 4, and it didn't really add anything new. I felt that at this point, you should try maybe working with a few more rocks and making the levels a bit bigger.
level 6: A lot better, I think it's heading in the right direction. Still pretty easy, but I had to think for a few moments and figure out which block had to go where before I started.

Don't know if my feedback helps very much, but hopefully it does Smiley
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Captain_404
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« Reply #72 on: July 12, 2010, 05:51:15 PM »

Feedback Round 2 ...fight!


NiallM:
-For a second level, I think your second level s a bit confusing. Both blocks are being pushed around really tight spaces, which led me to initially believe the blocks belonged in the opposite holes that they actually did.
-There are a few spaces which could be eliminated in level 3, and I don't think it's necessary to start with the player and the first blocked moved over to the right like you have them, it forces the player into only one option for a first move.
-Level 6 feels a little weaker to me than the ones before it.
-Level 8 doesn't really stand well as a puzzle for where it's placed in your progression. If you take away its symmetry, it shows more immediately how simple it is. This is one case where visual complexity != gameplay complexity. Furthermore, I'm not sure the symmetry is necessary to the puzzle itself.
-There are a lot of spaces which are never used in level 10, and honestly, I don't know why they're there.
-Overall, it sort of feel like you came up with one idea in your early levels (which involved a certain rearrangement of three blocks) and kept mutating that for your later puzzles. I'd encourage you to come back to this after playing other peoples levels and see if you can't come up with some more interesting levels.

HybridMind:
Agreed. It also drove me nuts that the board was 10x10.
-Level one, ah yes, the press-a-button-to-win level. The player may win this level simply by mashing random buttons on their keyboard, and so it teaches them nothing about the game. Since the player and the block do not move independently from each other, it is never even clear to the player what exactly pressing this button does. Normally, first levels teach the player two basic things: 1. how to move, and 2. how to win. Because the player's area of movement is so strictly limited and the win condition is so ambiguously defined, this level does neither of these.
-I feel the puzzle in level 4 could be achieved through much simpler design than the one you provide.
-I'm not sure what the purpose of the block to the far right in level 5 serves. It seems an unnecessary distraction.
-Level 6 could be whittled down a bit.
-Level 8 could be achieved with much fewer blocks. Yes, I get it, eight on level eight, but you could achieved the exact same puzzle with only two moving blocks.
-Level 9 has a lot of unused space. The entire bottom row is never walked on apart form the player starting in it.
-I think level 10 is more interested from a scoring perspective, ie: do it in under [X] to win, but from a boolean win standpoint it is not very engaging. More specifically, it really only requires the player to deal with one block at a time (a theme in your levels) despite having so many blocks on the playing field at once.

Zaratustra:
-You can fit the basic puzzle of level 1 into a much much tighter space.
-Level 2 is an interesting approach, but you might want to keep in mind that when faced with a left/right decision, most people choose right. This level could also be trimmed up a bit.
-Is there a way to make level 3 turn green? I can't tell. (though it does illicit funkiness in the top right corner...)
-Level 4 is level 1.

Draknek:
-I thought level 1 was a really great introduction of the mechanics, however dizzying and phallic it may be. For that matter, the left side could have been made a bit shorter.
-I love how smoothly the puzzles evolve from level 2 to 4.
-8, 9, and 10 were a tiny bit weaker than the rest, but the whole set is pretty solid.

agj:
-Tutorial, Roundabout, and Ping Pong are more or less the same level and thus redundant. Though I did enjoy how the flow of Ping Pong related to its title.
-You have no idea how much I love your impossible levels. I wish I had thought of it, and I may have to try making a few impossibles myself!

Lord Tim:
-Level 1 made me laugh. For a second, I actually thought the game had glitched up on me.
-I don't think I can justify the presence of level 5 in this set. It too much space for too simple a puzzle and the visual gimmick is, to be honest, not interesting enough to warrant this sort of level.
-In level 6 there is a lot of useless block pushing before getting to the actual puzzle of it. If these useless bits were cut out of the level it could be more engaging.
-Level 7. Too much useless space.
-LOVE LOVE LOVE level 9, and I think there's more room to explore with this mechanic. Despite its originality, it does use too much space for too little a puzzle.
-I was expecting something a little more wacky from level 10, but it was a good puzzle anyway. The point is that the order of levels is important. Even if you don't arrange your levels by difficulty, at least take the time to arrange them.

MindEraser:
-distance != difficulty. A lot of your levels are needlessly complex. Just because the player is moving around a lot of blocks, or moving around one block a lot doesn't mean the level is actually difficult. I really suggest you go back through all these levels and remove anything that doesn't need to be there. A lot of them feel pretty randomly designed.

Noel:
-I don't personally like levels like level 1. They feel like a lot of moving around for very little payoff. Maybe that's just me though.
-There's a little extra space at the outside corners of level 2, but I don't think it's really a big deal in this case.
-4/5 are really excellent uses of space.

Supermini_man:
-I'm assuming 7 and 6 are to be beat by moving outside the level? The way the levels are set up makes it look a bit accidental, as though you there is a real solution and you didn't anticipate the ability to move beyond the level boundaries. I think if you are to make a level that exploits the outside for a solution, there must be a reason the outside is used. This level could easily slide over a few squares to the right and remain unaffected.
-I think 9 is your best level. 8 felt a bit flat to me, though I don't know why exactly. Interesting 10's similarity to agj's combination lock!

Tuba:
-Why is that extra space in level 1 there? Is it to show that the player can move on two axis? I feel to demonstrate this it would be better if the level required the player to move in two axis. This level doesn't.
-Level 2 interests me in the way you don't really need walls to make the player stay in the box.
-You should give a bit more thought as to what the puzzle of level 4 is for you, as there are multiple ways to solve it.
-More often than not in your later levels, there are multiple blocks, but their paths do not intersect each other at all. It's as if you had three individual levels lumped into one. For your last levels, try focusing on how the blocks move, and how in moving one toward a solution it might obscure the solution of another. As your levels are now, the blocks don't really interact with each other. Why do you really need more than one block in a level if the blocks aren't going to get in each other's way? You don't. Make some levels where the blocks bump into each other and get all annoyed at the other block's clumsiness.
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Captain_404
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« Reply #73 on: July 12, 2010, 07:19:56 PM »

A few levels inspired by agj's set.

Hiding
The Chosen One
The Place Where Time Yawned, Stretching its Arms into the Infinite Horizon Until the Man From Another Dimension Clicked a Tiny Red X
The Miser and the Miserable
Awry
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Jonathan Whiting
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« Reply #74 on: July 13, 2010, 07:38:38 AM »

Wow, whilst I was swanning about and sunning myself on cliffs and ledges this has really blossomed.  Excellent work everyone, this is shaping up to be everything I'd hoped it would be.

I've got loads of stuff to respond to, and a bunch of other things to get done, so I might have to batch my feedback a little.  I promise I will catch up before toooo long.  I also might end up repeating some things that other people have already said, for that I can only apologise.

So, launching into it:

Ahh. I guess I ignored the focus on minimalism; my bad. What I was trying to do with my levels was provide a variety of experiences and goals, rather than just one.

... and that's great when trying to create 'real' levels, but it doesn't do much to illuminate or break down the building blocks of the game.

I also designed my levels with unobvious ways for people to screw themselves up, and wrong choices that they were totally free to make/attempt.

Whilst I don't really wish to aim this comment at anyone, since you inadvertently brought it up.  As a general rule of thumb don't try and screw around with the player, you'll only put them off.  There are of course many exceptions to this, but the rule of thumb remains important.  If in any doubt, play fair!

Here's my ten:

Level 1
Level 2
Level 3
Level 4
Level 5
Level 6
Level 7
Level 8
Level 9
Level 10

I suspect they may be a bit too simple, but I've never been particularly good at sokoban.  I'm not sure my brain is very good at this kind of logical thinking.

Simple is fine, simple is the idea.  Quite a few of the levels could have been reduced some without losing anything significant. In particular I noticed recurring use of symmetry.  Symmetry can be great, but when it just makes a player do the same thing twice it's kinda dull.  I find symmetry works best when you subvert it in some way (through player placement, or subtle differences), so that whilst both halves/quarters/whatever *look* the same, they play in a substantially different way.

Otherwise a pretty solid set, the ideas are good if perhaps unspectacular, and the layouts largely clear and concise.  Good work!

I
II
III
IV
V
VI
VII
VIII
IX
X

Please rip them to shreds!

Grudge match! (though thanks for your crits, they're spot on)

I is boring. Nobody wants to press a button to win. Because the player starts right next to the block and has nowhere to move but towards the block, it makes it appear as though pressing the right arrow causes the person and block to move in tandem with each other, as though they were a single entity. (a lesson which is reinforced over the first move of your second level). I actually think your second level is a better first level, as it teaches the player all the directions they can move, it establishes the block, player, and goal as separate entities, and it is much harder to win by randomly mashing buttons.

I was all riled up and ready to say it's *meant* to be trivial, it's the simplist possible level, but you make a very good point.  It should have at least taught the player something about movement.  It should have been this puzzle

You had me convinced that VIII was impossible, so I skipped it. Then I openly wept.

I convinced myself it was impossible twice, once when I made it, and again when I played through them quickly before I put them up.  I took this to mean it was a good puzzle.

...I might argue that IX is the exact same as VIII, but lengthier...

You're right, I umm'd and ahh'd about including them both, and somehow convinced myself that the 3 boulder one added something different.  It didn't, and I shouldn't have included it.

but the earlier levels didn't engage me as much. I, II, and III could all be condensed into a single level with no ill effect, and level IV-VII all revolve around the same basic principle (the order in which you do things). Individually, the levels are well made, I don't think I found anything that needs to be removed. As a whole, however, your ten levels present about four ideas.

They certainly aren't a great set of levels as far as playability is concerned, and I wouldn't ever release a game with a level set that tedious.  The intention was to try and explore the most minimal space as completely as possible.  This does mean the set is low on ideas, but it did help me gain a more fundamental understanding on the interaction of the mechanics at the base level, which is the real focus of the exercise.


That is one thing that really stood out to me about this process is that the more one is familiar with the mechanics and possibilities of the game the better chance you'll have on crafting a level intelligently.

This, 1000x over.  It is really important to note that whilst it's very possible to come in with familiarity to a game like sokoban, or a conventional platformer etc. there will probably be times we'll have to design levels for games we don't yet fully understand the mechanics of, and aren't even sure they'll be compelling.  That is the time to reach for this excercise, to find the smallest chunks of 'playability', and gain an appreciation of what can be done with them.  Leap blindly into trying to make big and final levels and one is likely to make much less interesting levels than they're capable of.

Oh yeah.. DAMN I WISH THE GRID WAS 11x11 not 10x10... Shocked drove my OCD mad not being able to center anything. Hehe.

Haha, sorry.  I didn't realise this would be a problem.. Surely though centering say, 6x6 in an 11x11 grid is just as hard though?


The first 3 are exellent examples of exactly the sort of deconstruction I was after.  Four felt weak, there are far too many possible solutions, and it would be improved greatly by preventing many of them in some way (perhaps fill in some of the gaps in the grid?), it would lead to a much more complicated level though.

In fact, the same weakness is repeated through much of the rest of the set.  It's a shame, as there are also some really nice ideas hidden in there too, it's just a struggle to see them.  The set would really benefit from some time spent identifying the underlying ideas, and replacing the puzzles with versions that just contain the core idea and eschew the aesthetic concerns.

...

As mentioned before I'll be batching my responses a bit, more will follow later...
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Supermini_man
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« Reply #75 on: July 13, 2010, 08:29:52 AM »

Supermini_man:
-I'm assuming 7 and 6 are to be beat by moving outside the level? The way the levels are set up makes it look a bit accidental, as though you there is a real solution and you didn't anticipate the ability to move beyond the level boundaries. I think if you are to make a level that exploits the outside for a solution, there must be a reason the outside is used. This level could easily slide over a few squares to the right and remain unaffected.
-I think 9 is your best level. 8 felt a bit flat to me, though I don't know why exactly. Interesting 10's similarity to agj's combination lock!


Thanks for the criticism. 7 and 6 are both beatable without moving outside the level, but to be fair to solve them there is way much moving and they also look too intimidating.
« Last Edit: July 13, 2010, 08:35:00 AM by Supermini_man » Logged
PsySal
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« Reply #76 on: July 13, 2010, 08:44:11 AM »

http://jonathanwhiting.com/coding/ldw/sokoban.swf?level=AAAAAAAAAABBBBBBBBBABAAAAEACBABABDBDBDBABAAEAEAEBABABDBDBDBABAAAEAAEBABBBBBBBBBAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA
http://jonathanwhiting.com/coding/ldw/sokoban.swf?level=AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAABBBAAAAAAABCBAAAAAAABDBAAAAAAABEBAAAAAAABBBAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA
http://jonathanwhiting.com/coding/ldw/sokoban.swf?level=AAAAAAAAAAABBBBBBBBBABEDEAAACBBBAABBBEBBBAAAADADABBAABEBBAABBAAADDAEBBBAABABABEBBAAAAAAAABBBBBBBBBBB

Quick three...
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PsySal
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« Reply #77 on: July 13, 2010, 11:41:09 AM »


I really liked this one!
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PsySal
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« Reply #78 on: July 13, 2010, 12:16:34 PM »

Feeling frisky (?) so I decided to go through a stage-creation process. Maybe this will interest somebody, here is the final level first to play:

Intelligent Design vs. Creationism

EDIT: not totally satisfied with this, even after a few tries reworking I can't make it quite as tight as I would like to. Moving on to other things!
---

Here we go!

http://jonathanwhiting.com/coding/ldw/sokoban.swf?level=AAAAAAAAAAAABAAAAAAAAAEAAAAAAAAAADAAAAAAAAABEAAAAAAAADAAAAAAAAAAAAEDAAAAAAADBAEBAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA

First laid out the holes, and the rocks. In starting the level this way, I'm creating a puzzle for myself.

What we want to do next is decide if the blocks should be pushed into the logical hole or not. Let's start with the lowermost. We want to make it so that it won't be pushed directly "up".

http://jonathanwhiting.com/coding/ldw/sokoban.swf?level=AAAAAAAAAAAABAAAAAAAAAEAAAAAAAAAADAAAAAAAAABEBBAAAAAADAABAAAAAAAAAEDAAAAAAADBAEBAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA

This helps, because the nearest rock is going to have a harder time making it into the second from the top hole.

http://jonathanwhiting.com/coding/ldw/sokoban.swf?level=AAAAAAAAAAAABAAAAAAAAAEAAAAAAAAAADAAAAAAAAABEBBAAAAAADAABAAAAAAAAAEDAAAAAAADBAEBAAAABAAAAAAAAABBBAAA

More limiting on the second from the bottom rock. We'll have space to move around, but first we need to push it to the left. This rock is now almost definitely going to go in the second from bottom or second from top hole.

http://jonathanwhiting.com/coding/ldw/sokoban.swf?level=AAAAAAAAAAAABAAAAAAAAAEAAAAAAAAAADAAAAAAAAABEBBAAAAAADAABAAAAAAAAAEDAAAACAADBAEBAAAABAAAAAAAAABBBAAA

We'll put the player up here; we're imagining her first task will be that second from the bottom rock, somehow, so we put her far away from it.

http://jonathanwhiting.com/coding/ldw/sokoban.swf?level=AAAAAAAAAAABBBBBBAAAABEAAAAAAAABADAAAAAAABABEBBABBABADAABAABABAAAAEDABABCAADBAEBAAAABAAAAAAAAABBBAAA

These walls seem an obvious thing, given our imagined path for the player.

http://jonathanwhiting.com/coding/ldw/sokoban.swf?level=AAAAAAAAAAABBBBBBAAAABEAAAAAAAABADABAAAAABABEBBABBABADAABAABABABAAEDABABCAADBAEBAAAABAAAAAAAAABBBAAA

We're trying to railroad the player into dealing with the second from the bottom rock early on, by making her block herself in if she doesn't.

http://jonathanwhiting.com/coding/ldw/sokoban.swf?level=AAAAAAAAAAABBBBBBAAAABEAAAAAAAABDDABAAAAABABEBBABBABADAABAABABABAAEDABABCAADBAEBABEFBAAAAAABBBBBBAAA

Now we're getting somewhere. We added an extra block with a hole as a distraction (attraction for the first move?) and made it so the player will have to walk around and push the top block to the upper right. Well, that's not really required YET...

http://jonathanwhiting.com/coding/ldw/sokoban.swf?level=AAAAAAAAAAABBBBBBBAAABEAAAABAAABDDABAAAAABABEBBABBABADAABAABABABAAEDABABCAADBAEBABEFBAAAABABBBBBBBBB

... but it (probably) is now, because otherwise she is going to jam herself in if she tries to move the top rock "left".

So our sequence now is to walk around and push the top rock to the right.

Now I'll take a break and play this a bit, see what it looks like...

I like it so far. One thing that is sort of nice is that if I make a mistake and don't do the intended rock first, but do the second from the top, I can undo my mistake (just barely).

http://jonathanwhiting.com/coding/ldw/sokoban.swf?level=AAAAAAAAAAABBBBBBBAAABEAAAABBAABDDABAABAABABEBBABBABADAABAABABABAAEDABABCAADBAEBABEFBAAAABABBBBBBBBB

And actually, that's good! I'll call it done. However I wonder something, what if I put an extra block..

http://jonathanwhiting.com/coding/ldw/sokoban.swf?level=AAAAAAAAAAABBBBBBBAAABEAAAABBAABDDABAABAABABEBBABBABADAABAABABABAAEDABABCABDBAEBABEFBAAAABABBBBBBBBB

... Here? Well, it becomes unbeatable. Let's call it a day!

One last thought: this way of building a level works pretty well, but what about levels with more than one (interesting) solution? Would they need to be at the same complexity to be satisfying? What about red herrings?
« Last Edit: July 13, 2010, 12:38:28 PM by PsySal » Logged
Draknek
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"Alan Hazelden" for short


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« Reply #79 on: July 13, 2010, 01:22:48 PM »

I've got 5 done so far. It's pretty late now though, so I'm heading to bed.

[Level 1] [Level 2] [Level 3] [Level 4] [Level 5]
These are good, especially level 5.

Level 6&7 would be better with a wall on the left-hand side, but otherwise are good. I think those are the strongest from this set.

I agree that these are quite easy, although for this exercise difficulty isn't strictly required.

Level 6 is heading towards interesting puzzles, try doing more of whatever process you used there.

Level 1 is solid.
Level 2 should either be the very first level in a set (although see discussion earlier in thread about why "push button to immediately win" is bad) or non-existent; level 2 is not where it belongs.
The extra target in level 3 should be removed in my opinion, other than that it's a decent level though.

This level is quite boring: you can basically solve all the blocks separately one after another.

Your "unbeatable" level, on the other hand, is a lot better (and is beatable).
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