Forgotten Puzzle Games

A list of games we’d like to see make a return in some form, at the very least in the form of downloadable content.

By fishdalf, Posted 06 Sep 2012

I’ve always been a fan of the puzzle genre from right back when I was a feisty five-year-old maniacally bashing my Commadore 64 keyboard, as rogue insects chased me around the screen in Red Ant. I believe a lot of it had to do with my step father’s puzzle-heavy gaming collection, which I would always dip into and play when I was growing up, especially through the Amiga age. Now I like to have a bash at any that get released and centre on a unique concept, such as defending my house from hoards of the undead with some shrubbery in Plants vs. Zombies, or guiding a giant hexahedron through a series of well-thought-out floor layouts in Cuboid. Here is a list of games I’d like to see make a return in some form, at the very least in the form of downloadable content on Xbox Live and the PlayStation Network.

Wetrix

Wetrix

The game was released back on the Nintendo 64 and has since been ported to various other platforms; it also spawned a sequel on the PlayStation 2 called Aqua Aqua in 2002. Since then there has been no indication that it is set to make a return in any form. It’s a shame because for such a simple idea it could hold your interest for hours on end. You started out with a piece of land and shapes would fall upon it, similar to Tetris, and these shapes would morph your land higher or lower and with it make lakes, valleys and dams, etc. After a while water would start to drop from the sky and fill these crevices, until eventually it would leak through one of the edges, your score would be registered based on how long you survived and it would be game over. It’s one of those titles that has to be played to be fully understood and that’s exactly why I’d love it to make a return in some capacity. I’ve actually contacted the developers several times over the years but to no avail.

Timekeepers

Timekeepers

A forgotten classic from Vulcan Software, who had some fantastic adventure and puzzle games on the Amiga – this being one of them. They’ve never really done much with them though, other than porting them to the PC and making them available from their website, but that’s not exactly putting them out there for the a new generation of gamers to experience. Timekeepers was a complex and thought-provoking puzzler that drew strong influences from Lemmings - only from an over-head perspective - where you were tasked with getting a platoon of 14 men across different time zones by strategically placing them on switches and such so that you could navigate obstacles and traps that were strewn across each level. As with any game of this ilk it started off pretty simple and by the end you swore to yourself that the end goal was nay impossible. ‘They don’t make them like they used to’ might be an overused phrase, but in this case it rings true.

Kirby: Canvas Curse

Kirby: Canvas Curse


I’ve spoken about this title several times as an enigma in that we haven’t had a sequel in seven years, even though it achieved that rare feat of doing well in both sales and reviews when the Nintendo DS first came on the scene. Some even dubbed it as the greatest Kirby game of all time, and I’d have to agree that it’s close to the best - certainly the best of this generation. Canvas Curse was predominantly a Platformer, but with strong puzzle influences throughout where your movement was restricted exclusively to forward motion via your stylus. Drawing lines across the screen would act as a conveyor belt that Kirby would begin moving across and with this you were able to traverse perilous landscapes, with the catch being these lines would begin to fade after a short period and new lines would need to be drawn before you fell to your death. It really was an innovative experience and I’m sure if it was released on the Nintendo 3DS or even as a motion-controlled console game it would be a hit.

pushover puzzle game

Pushover

Lastly we have Pushover, which is a pretty ironic title in that completing it was anything but a walk in the park. The game centered on dominoes that were scattered around various platforms and the aim was to knock every single last one down in one consecutive motion by placing them in a set order. It might sound simple in premise but completing each level took a fair amount of brain power. You weren’t allowed to break a single domino and there were plenty of edges for them to fall off of, not to mention if one fell and didn’t make contact with another in the correct way the chain reaction would come to an end. There were also special dominoes that came into play that changed the direction of the falling pattern, some that bridged gaps for you and even ones that vanished to leave you banging the desk in frustration. For me this would make a great piece of downloadable content that would soon become a firm favourite amongst the online gaming community. Let’s hope one day that becomes a reality.


So what forgotten puzzle games would make your list? Do any from your list match my own? Let me know, I’d love to hear from you.


Craig Bryan, NoobFeed

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Themes: Feature, Editorial, Interviews, Opinion Pieces
Release Date: 2009-02-14

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