Zen Puzzle Garden


  • Currently 4.3/5
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Rating: 4.3/5 (26 votes)
| Comments (8) | Views (144)

Zen Puzzle Garden

KarmenThe Zen garden: a carefully arranged collection of rocks and sand. Does it remind us of islands in the ocean? Dogs in the water? Does it teach patience and wisdom? Is it meant to bring enlightenment—or enigmatic madness? If you are in the Zen Puzzle Garden, chances are, it is all about the latter.

Zen Puzzle GardenIn this simple, yet challenging puzzler from Lexaloffle Games, your goal is to help a happy little monk rake all of the sand in his Zen garden. Using the arrow keys or by clicking hovering arrows, you direct the monk onto the sand where he promptly begins to rake. With the gentle scenery and calming music, you might be lulled into thinking this will be easy. But then the monk keeps raking. He won't stop until he reaches the edge of the sand, or an obstacle, such as a rock or a stone lantern.

Step carefully! If he reaches the edge of the sand, you will be rewarded with the pleasing strum from the shamisen. If he rakes himself into a corner, he will turn to dust and be blown away on the wind. It may take some careful maneuvering in order to rake around each edge of every rock and fill in the gaps without getting stuck. As some Zen master somewhere may have once said, without the struggle of the mind, one cannot gain enlightenment... or the cheery fireworks that celebrate the completion of each garden.

Zen Puzzle GardenYou'll begin in the spring, practicing your raking skills around basic rocks as cherry blossoms fall in the background. As the seasons progress, the puzzles become more challenging. The gardens begin to include different elements, lanterns and fallen leaves, which must be approached in a different manner than the rocks. Lanterns may be gently nudged across the sand into the ideal position, while the leaves can be raked up—but only in order, yellow first, then orange, and finally red.

Analysis: Zen Puzzle Garden includes 64 puzzles (16 per season) which may be played in any order. This is a useful feature, as the early levels grow a little dull. It is simple to jump ahead into autumn and start raking leaves. Then, when you start getting stuck, you can return to the spring for practice. The game also includes a level editor, which allows you to create your own gardens. Newly created gardens can be saved and swapped using a tool which converts the layout to ASCII. These features, added together, provide many hours of casual gaming pleasure.

The game was created in 2003, so the graphics and sounds might seem a bit simple by today's standards. However, the beauty of this game lies not in graphics, but the sheer simplicity of the setting. This minimalist approach is counterbalanced by the difficulty and variety of puzzles. Altogether, it is an endearing game. Also, the Zen Puzzle Garden is perfect for those of us who always wanted a desktop Zen garden, but couldn't deal with sand in the keyboard or the cat suspiciously eyeing the sand.

WindowsWindows:
Download the demo
Get the full version

Mac OS XMac OS X:
Download the demo
Get the full version

8 Comments

lol, it looks cute, except until i scrolled down to that closeup, it looked like the monk was waste-deep in sand.

Score: 0 (0 votes) Vote up Vote down Report this comment Reply

That monk is adorable

Score: 0 (0 votes) Vote up Vote down Report this comment Reply

oh my, it's Zen Garden. I remember this when it first came out, I even created some puzzles for this which should be on the Lexaloffle forum, or maybe not, as it was around two years ago I think. Such a cute game and my daughter has been playing it on and off since she was five, so, yeah, it was two years ago. Nice to see it here.

Score: 0 (0 votes) Vote up Vote down Report this comment Reply
Haywire May 25, 2008 1:17 AM

Oh god. It's a recreation of the dreaded walk-in-a-line-that-hits-all-points puzzles from the old Zelda games. Apparently some people actually liked those...

Score: 0 (0 votes) Vote up Vote down Report this comment Reply

I would almost swear that the first place I saw this game was on this site a long time ago. ?
*shrug*
Anything Lexaloffle is good.

Score: 0 (0 votes) Vote up Vote down Report this comment Reply

You can also try an online demo at a couple of sites. Miniclip (http://www.miniclip.com/games/zen-puzzle-garden/en/ ) is the one I know offhand, but I've seen it elsewhere.

Score: 0 (0 votes) Vote up Vote down Report this comment Reply

I remember playing the demo of this back when the game was "new". Good times, man, good times!

Score: 0 (0 votes) Vote up Vote down Report this comment Reply
Kevin Bacon April 19, 2009 5:45 PM

I find it amazing that some people didn't like the old Zelda games. I was completely addicted to them and I think if people didn't like them, then they weren't very good at them. This game, Zen Puzzle Garden is great. The minimalist approach is very zen.

Score: 0 (0 votes) Vote up Vote down Report this comment Reply

^ Scroll Up | Homepage >

Leave a comment [top of page]

    Please consider creating a Casual Gameplay account if you're a regular visitor here, as it will allow us to create an even better experience for you. Sign-up here!
  • PLEASE UNDERSTAND SITE POLICIES BEFORE POSTING COMMENTS
  • You may use limited HTML tags for style:
    (a href, b, br/, strong, em, ul, ol, li, code, spoiler)
    HTML tags begin with a less-than sign: < and end with a greater-than sign: >. Always. No exceptions.
  • To post spoilers, please use spoiler tags: <spoiler> example </spoiler>
    If you need help understanding spoiler tags, read the spoiler help.
  • Please Preview your comment before posting, especially when using spoilers!
  • No link dropping, no domains as names; do not spam, and do not advertise! (rel="nofollow" in use)
149 Views
0 Comments
Helix> Dora Need a challenging but clever arcade game? Fire up Michael Brough's iOS gem, where you need to move fast to encircle enemies to destroy them on a playing field that's full of constantly evolving foes. Getting a high score here is a definite accomplishment in a world of one-hit KOs.  ...
Find the Escape-Men Part 121: Appetite for Fall Food> Dora You and your friend were enjoying a day at the fall festival when they vanished, and after finding them you discover they've gotten themselves trapped in the bathroom, thus providing you ample teasing opportunity for years to come. Hunt around for items and solve puzzles, and of course find the ten little green men to escape!  ...
Faraway Kingdom - Dragon Raiders> Dora When your kingdom is destroyed by a dragon, it's up to you to rebuild it and train an army in this gorgeous free-to-play iOS fantasy RPG/simulation that calls Tiny Tower to mind. With a light, unobtrusive in-app purchase system and a generous amount of in-game rewards, it keeps players coming back for its simple, fun gameplay without ever putting the squeeze on their wallet.  ...
1,086 Views
8 Comments
Assembots> Dora You've been put in charge of a factory that makes little robots, and it's your job to program each one to help the rest get to the exit safely in this charming logic puzzle game!  ...

Recent Comments

 

Display 5 more comments
Limit to the last 5 comments

Casual game of the week

Riddles of Fate: Memento Mori

Your Favorite Games edit

add
Save links to your favorite games here. Use the Favorites editor.

Monthly Archives

Legal notice

All games mentioned or hosted and images appearing on JayIsGames are Copyright their respective owner(s).

All other content is Copyright ©2003-2014 JayIsGames.com. All Rights Reserved.


Visit our great partner: maxcdn!