Thank you for your interest in the the Numbskull puzzle playset from Nitrome toys, the makers of the Twang construction set, Final Ninja combat gear, and In the Dog House sliding puzzle game. This manual will teach you how to use this playset, unleashed just in time for the Halloween season. Included in this release are the following:
- 1 toy skeleton with detached head
- 1 block grid with "spooky stormy graveyard" backdrop
- 1 grid stand
- 500 assorted blocks of various shapes and sizes
- 1 expandable square grid-rotation clamp (integrated into the mouse)
To play, use the cursor to draw boxes around chunks of the grid. When you release the button the selected squares rotate one quarter turn clockwise. The goal is to deposit the skull on the skeleton's body without any hazards (electricity, pumpkins) getting in the way. Pipe blocks will instantly suck the skull from one end to the other if the path is clear, and the conveyor blocks will carry it from one location to another. Certain other blocks, like chained blocks and large blocks, will inhibit your ability to rotate parts of the grid, and some blocks will require you to rotate the entire thing or make different rotations. If you get stuck, dump out the grid and start over (you know, by clicking the swirly arrow "reset" icon).
Analysis: Is it possible to be entertained and frustrated by the same thing at the same time? It must be, because that's exactly how I feel with Numbskull. It always drives me nuts trying to figure out how to rotate this to get that from here to there. But I love it. And I'm one of those freaks who actually likes slide puzzles.
This is a 100% puzzle game, no fast-paced action involved. There's not even a timer; all the game keeps track of is how many rotations you make. The fact that you can only make clockwise quarter-turns (unless you include a special block in your box) can be frustrating at times, however, and sometimes it can screw up your plans (Aaack! I didn't mean for the skull to go THERE!). As usual, Nitrome delivers in the visual department with great-looking pixel art, so no quibbles there. All in all, it's an enjoyable and challenging game!