Sunday Lawn


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Rating: 4.3/5 (36 votes)
| Comments (38) | Views (1,763)

sundaylawn.jpgJohnBFiring up the lawnmower and cutting the grass isn't everyone's favorite activity. Why go out under the burning sun when you can sit in the air conditioning and surf JIG Casual Gameplay? Fortunately for us, Donut Games, the creator of Spikey's Bounce Around, Chicken & Egg, and Castle Smasher, has taken the chore out of grass cutting and made it fun. Sunday Lawn puts you in control of Charlie whose job is to cut the grass around his house. Unfortunately there are dogs, hedgehogs, and various other obstacles standing in his way of monocotyledonous perfection.

Use the arrow keys to move Charlie around the screen, being careful to avoid enemies that dart around the lawn. Much like Pac-Man, tapping a key makes Charlie move in that direction until he comes in contact with an obstacle. Try to cut as much grass as you can in one long path to get more points. You won't be penalized for cutting a patch here and there, so don't hesitate to sacrifice your record if a dog comes bounding your way.

Analysis: Donut Games always has wonderfully simple games that are perfect for killing time when you're supposed to be working/studying. Sunday Lawn is more bare-bones than other releases, but it's still packed with strategy and charm. I enjoyed the retro Pac-Man feel the game exudes with its control style and layout. And I admit, it's satisfying to leave a trail of perfectly manicured grass behind as I slide around the screen.

When a game is as simple as Sunday Lawn, it can be easy to add too much and ruin the fun. Donut Games manages to balance everything remarkably well to make the game challenging without causing frustration.

Play Sunday Lawn

38 Comments

Karin M Designs Author Profile Page April 30, 2007 9:22 PM

Cute - like all Donut Games - my only complaint would be that you only get one life and then it's Game Over already.

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This game is prettty awesome...
But teh hedgehogs are awfully mean
This is one of those games where you certainly won't waste time by playing

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Indeed, a fun game- heck, it's the first one I ever got a high score on on a global board. I doubt it will last long, but hey, I'm still basking in the glory.

The real key is keeping up a combo. The score bonus just goes crazy with the more yards you add.

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Cute game. Two gripes though, one was that you only have one life. If you bump into the dog you die. :(

The other is that sometimes I pressed the key for a direction and it didn't turn, as if the response was delayed a little or something. I'm pretty sure it's not my keyboard as it works fine in other games...

But still, it was a cute little game with some great graphics.

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My one qualm about Donut Games is their fondness for games where once you die, you have to start over. Granted that's the only real challenge in this particular game, but I don't want to play the first few levels of Spikey every time I die in order to finish the game.

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There was something I forgot to mention before for some reason when I was playing I thought I smelt freshly mowed grass... Am I the only one that this had happened to?

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I like this game well enough, but I'd have to agree that having to start all over again so quickly is pretty irritating. Having only three chances to make a mistake in Spikey's Bounce Around was bothersome, and with this game it's only once and the game is over.

What's it hurt to have a few extra chances to complete the game without having to pop back to the beginning?

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Interesting game. Slightly repetitive after a while, but fun.

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Samster May 1, 2007 6:26 AM

This is a blatant copy of an old Jeff Minter game for the Commodore 64 called "Hovver Bovver"......and it's a poor copy - Hovver Bovver was loads better despite being released back in 1984.

Hovver Bovver had much better features: The neighbour who chased you, flowers that if you mowed them caused the gardener to appear and of course the dog. As the level progressed the Dog's loyalty to you would decrease - you could hit the joystick button in order to set your dog on the neighbour or gardener.

Poor show Donut Games - they've nicked a 23 year old idea for a game and have missed out on the best bits of the gameplay!

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Hey everyone, this is Daniel - one of the programmers over at Donut Games.

First off, wow - I love your feedback. Thanks for all kind, as well as constructive, comments!

Just wanted to give you guys a quick reply on some of your questions.

The amount of lives, energy, etc, is really one of the key questions when it comes to developing a game, and has to be adapted to the target audience (in our case, a site with free content, thus visitors from all over the world with VERY varying experiences in gaming).

Make a game too easy and there's no challenge at all or glory in mastering all levels. Make it too hard and you'll be having ppl cursing, leaving your site and not telling anyone about the game.

When developing a Donut game we are trying to find a decent balance. I'm pretty sure most of you guys would manage to complete all levels in most of our games. Maybe not on your first try, but it's doable. A reachable goal motivates the player to try again and again, and when you do succeed there's so much more glory to it.

I'd also like to point out that in many of our games there are easy tasks you MUST complete, and hard tasks you may complete only if you want a greater score. Sunday Lawn is a great example of this type of dynamic scoring and difficulty system.

Come on, you can easily turn around as soon as a dog or hedgehog is about to approach you, but it's the greed "One more yard... ok, just one more... oh I think I can get one more, BANG!" that eventually will make you lose.

Personally, I (and the rest of the staff at Donut Games) love this kind of scoring system. YOU have the power to decide the difficulty to reasonable degree! It's all about what risks you're willing to take to get a high score.

Hope this helps answer some of your questions.

Happy gaming everyone! And watch out for more games soon... That's a promise :)

Best,
Daniel

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Eytan Zweig Author Profile Page May 1, 2007 8:35 AM

Daniel - thanks for sharing with us the thinking behind the design. But while I agree that it makes sense, I can also tell you that I certainly am not particularly interested in playing this game again, after having played it a mere twice. The reason is simple - my main motivation in playing any sort of arcade-style game is not scoring, but rather progress. I like to see new levels. And Sunday Lawn keeps forcing me to replay the same levels, or play really boringly and conservatively to progress. And after playing levels 1-3 for the third time, I'm a lot less motivated to do so again.

I see why you would want to not include mutliple lives, but it would have been better (for me) if you would have paired the single-life mechanism with unlockable levels, allowing me to start my next game from where I left off, even if my score resets. I'm pretty sure that if that was the case, I would be replaying, at least until I saw all the levels.

Still, thank you for making this game - it failed to engage my prolonged interest, but I do appreciate how charming and well-polished it feels.

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an ok game, not a lot of replay value though. and who uses the word "monocotyledonous"? are you a botanist or something JohnB? definitely sent me looking to figure out what that meant.

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Escapee Author Profile Page May 1, 2007 10:31 AM

I've actually enjoyed this game, even though I was initially annoyed when I died and had to start over, I'm trying to get the longest possible chain on each level and get a higher overall score.

Is it possible to complete each level in one run?

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I was irritated at dying and needing to restart, a good addition for this game would be a level select. As with all donut games it seems to have a unique quality.

Good Job

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Honestly, I pay very little attention to my score in any game that I play. That's not what interests me. Like someone mentioned, I also like to progress through new levels, and I don't enjoy seeing the same levels over and over.

Still, it's more fun than I've had actually cutting grass.

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Jack Ohzis Author Profile Page May 2, 2007 4:04 AM

Heeheehee. I get a leg up on the competition in this one... _MANAX?

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I have the same complaints as others...but I keep coming back to play this and spikey's bounce around.

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Let's list longest mows :D

lv 1 i got 80 yards

will add more soon :p

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lv 2: 108 yards

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Escapee Author Profile Page May 3, 2007 1:39 PM

Level 1: 84 yards
Level 2: 86 Yards - I can't get anywhere near as high
Level 3: 127 Yards
Level 4: 248 Yards
Level 5: Died :(

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The challenge with getting yardage is that the mower won't turn when I want it to sometimes. This game reminds me of Pac-Man.

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thefeifei Author Profile Page May 5, 2007 1:30 AM

Longest chains:
Level 1: 84
Level 2: 57
Level 3: 95
Level 4: 180
Level 5: 63
Level 6: 69
Level 7: 82
Level 8: 77

Not very high. :/

And to answer Escapee's question: no, it is not possible to solve the levels in one run. Any time the grass forms a figure 8 or similar around obstacles, it's impossible to get all the grass unless you start just inside of one of the corners, and the starting places are pre-set.

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Very fun game. I keep getting sucked back into it. I like a lot of Donut Games' stuff (I especially like their bejeweled clone "Legend of Aladdin"), but I have one major grip about most of them: the one strike and your out thing gets really frustrating.

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Anonymous March 4, 2010 6:44 PM

I actually really enjoy this game and like it's challenges!! Question: Has anyone figured out how to get a score of 110 on Mr Spike set me free... it's driving me crazy!! Thanks!

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Help me I'm stuck on level 28 I can't get through it :(

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Anonymous March 8, 2010 4:45 PM

How do I do challenge 7?

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Anonymous March 8, 2010 6:57 PM

PLEASE I can only get 109 on Spike Set Me Free. I feel I've tried all the combos. Help.

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How do i get past level 27?
Where is the brown button

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I can't get past level 27, whats up with the gold button?

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lvl 1 90 is max my high score is 68000 im addicted

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Anonymous January 29, 2011 1:58 PM

I have been playing this but I'm stuck already at only level 7!! Advice anyone?

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owned peeps i'm on level 36 confusing labyrinth. i cant beat it! help. haha i cant believe you guys cant get past level 27!!! that's sad.

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anyone know how to do level 36??
ladybrinth
please!!

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Need help March 29, 2011 9:02 PM

I cannot get Mr. Spike to set me free! It's driving me nuts. I keep getting 109 and I feel like I have tried absolutely everything! I really need help. Anyone? Please?

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Weird, but quite addictive. I'm really stuck on Level 33, I can't get past it

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Martyjessy October 12, 2011 12:31 PM

I have just finished this game... All levels with 3 stars

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Sorry everyone but I disagree with most of you. I don't mind having to start again when I die - it makes it more challenging and strives me to archive better the next time around.
Keep up the good work Donut games you have got me slightly addicted to this game :)

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How do you get three stars on level 28?

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