Jorinapeka


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Rating: 4.7/5 (557 votes)
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JorinapekaGrinnypYou know what an arrow maze is, don't you? It's one of those funky games with a grid and arrows, and you need to follow the direction of the arrows to accomplish...well, whatever the game wants you to accomplish. We've seen them in hidden-object/adventure hybrids, in room escape games, heck, there's even one in ClickPLAY 3. Tonypa, that fiendish deviser of deceptively simple games has built an entire puzzle game around this basic concept. Check out Jorinapeka and brace yourself for some serious time suckage. Office managers around the country are already crying into their half-caf mocha lattes.

There's a 7 x 7 grid, and in this grid are 49 balls, each with a semi-circle indicating which direction it will go. All you have to do is pick a ball, click on it, and watch it move. As it hits other balls it will eat them like a demented pac-man, changing direction according to their semi-circle indicators. The objective? Well, there are colored balls in the grid, and the object is to remove all of the colored balls. Sounds easy? Did I mention that you only have five turns per level? Or that although you start out with three colored balls, more gets added each level? Ever try to remove a dozen or more colored balls from a maze like this in only five moves? Give it a try, I dare you. And oh, yeah, you can't click on the colored balls. Well, you can, but nothing will happen because they don't move.

Points are racked up as a ball is consumed. The more balls you take out in one hit, the more points you can rack up. But, seriously, concentrate on getting those colored balls out first. It's terrible to set up a fantastic long chain and realize that no colored balls vanished, and you're left with one or two turns left and many more colored balls to remove. If that happens you may soon be experiencing the agony of defeat. An added challenge in the later levels is that some balls will drop into the grid with no directional arrows at all. These balls are "inert". They can be taken out by a moving ball, but you can't make them move with a click. Once the balls have vanished more drop in, increasing the possibility of setting up a better move for the next turn. Or not. Fortunately for the gamers' sanity there are a few bonuses available, such as gaining an extra turn if you destroy ten or more balls in a single shot. There are also four "hidden" bonuses which you may or may not discover as you play Jorinapeka. I'd tell you about them, but then Tonypa would have to kill me, and I want to get back to trying to get past level 10...

Analysis: As with all Tonypa games, the simple Jorinapeka concept conceals some devilishly deep gameplay. You will find yourself sitting there mapping out massive multiple moves, trying to determine which way the ball will go, trying to maximize the damage it does on the way, spending many minutes setting up a move that will only take seconds to execute. As you would expect with anything by Tonypa the design and setup is simple and elegant with clean, spare graphics. Adding to the addictive gameplay is the jaunty, bouncing clip by Kevin MacLeod which will burn itself indelibly into your neurons and will EAT YOUR BRAIN! I'll never get that tune out of my head...

Are there downsides aside from the fact that you are about to lose many hours off of your life? Well the difficulty curve in Jorinapeka is pretty steep. It might have been better to only add an extra ball every three or five levels. As it is, many players may have trouble getting past, say, level 5 on their first try. Or was that just me?

Despite the difficulty Jorinapeka is a game that just begs you to play it over and over, striving to reach that ever elusive "end". Although technically the game doesn't have one, it being open-ended and all. So the player still wants to keep trying to get a better score. Or trying to get the highest score. Or trying to find those four "hidden" bonuses. Or just trying to get past a certain level. Tonypa has once again given us cunningly executed casual gameplay exquisite in concept, design, and execution. And another national nightmare as productivity is swallowed whole by the need to play just one more time!

Play Jorinapeka

52 Comments

Ah, tonypa, bane of my existence. I love and hate you. Thank you for screwing with my brain this lovely afternoon.

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Fun game but the part where it boots to the advertising splash screen after every round is horrendous and makes me not want to play.

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See, this is what I hate about Tonypa games: it's almost always obvious right from the start that you can't ever possibly win.

For example: take notice how virtually every single "random" sampling of colored balls is individually surrounded by 9 balls whose directions all point away from the goal. There's no path to hit any goal balls without "prepping" one by wasting a click.

This means that you WILL have to waste at least one turn on every single colored goal ball... there's very often no way to get any (much less more than one) on your first click... or to get any without 2 clicks per ball.

It LOOKS random and fair, but it's far, far from it. Once there are more than 3 balls, I see no way to even play. Fail.

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I have to agree. Being forced to endure one of those insipid ads every time I run out of moves is a very strong motivator toward finding something else to do.

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Tonypa you're the best.
the ads are annoying, but i get around them by loading the game then playing offline

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Woah! What's with the over-the-top advertising bombardment? Good game, too bad it's totally hobbled by the ads.

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actually, that just inspired me to work on getting better at the game.

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Repeating ads = no more playing that game ever.

Sorry Tonypa. Even your genius is not worth that crap.

There isn't even a mute on the ad. It's as if they don't know I have volume control.

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GeezLouise February 10, 2011 8:12 PM

I've been playing this game for a week, I love it. I was wondering when it would show up here.

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The ads are annoying.

I like this game, but after playing it for a while it feels pretty hollow and repetitive.

The logic is pretty simple, almost too simple. It's time consuming but effortless to go bubble by bubble and calculate each move until you find the one you want. The small number of moves for each stage means you don't have time to set up complex chains, because if it requires planning more than one move ahead you're going to run out of moves.

Too often, you feel like you lost because the game dealt you a bad hand, not because you made an error. This is exacerbated by the early rounds where you are just as likely to get a bubble pointing right next to your target as to get no bubbles pointing at it.

I think this concept would have been better suited to a straight puzzler (nonrandom levels that require precise choices to clear) or as a Minesweeper/solitaire style game where the player gets to punch in some options for size and difficulty and play a single round. The high-score game relies much too heavily on luck, and becomes repetitious when you lose and have to start from the beginning.

The aesthetics are simple and attractive, though, and I enjoy the music. A few more sound effects and a slightly more transparent system for gaining extra moves (Show the player how many bubbles away they are from an extra move each time the bubble moves) would be simple improvements.

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This concept doesn't really work. It's a good start to a good puzzler, but at this state it's more random than thoughtful...or compelling.

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Since arrows disappear after being used once, it is possible to hit targets even when nothing is initially pointing at them.

For example, you can hit the O here by hitting the middle square: >

I found it was a good idea to look along the full row and column that a target is in, rather than just its four adjacent squares.

And as the review says, getting a long enough chain will result in that turn being "free", which helps a lot if you can do it multiple times.

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sandylouise Author Profile Page February 10, 2011 11:13 PM

I have to agree with previous complaints with the addition of my ultimate pet peeve: You can't turn off the BGM and keep the sound effects. Drives me nuts.

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There are ways to block the ads. But about the game itself, just like most of tonypa's offerings, I feel it is too dependent on luck to make it a satisfying experience. Yes, skill will help, but a game that you can still lose even if you play perfectly is frustrating and unworthy of replay. For example, this game might be better if it rewarded the player for not using all five moves on a level by rolling over any leftover moves to the next level.

I played it several times, and got to level 10, but at that point I was pretty tired of staring at the screen until I concluded there was no way to win given the configuration.

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Let's be honest. It's a simple idea made appealing with nice clean graphics, marred by the heavy reliance on random luck in level generation that too often produces something entirely unplayable.

I fail to see anything in the way of "devilishly deep". I feel the classic effect of the name Tonypa on a JIG review; were the exact same game mechanics implemented by anyone else, I highly doubt that we'd see words like "cunning" or "exquisite", or hype about productivity loss on a national scale.

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That's pretty harsh.

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I like it! It's simple and weird at the same time. Makes a change from all those match-3 games out there.

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Thanks for nice review :)

I have updated the game a bit by now, it uses 7x7 board now, not 8x8 as mentioned in the review.

It really is random and there is no special logic in the game to make it extra hard by picking worse possible pieces around colored pieces.

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I just honestly can't see any strategy in it. You just scan around, find the best move (usually not good enough). Then the whole board shifts as the pieces fall, so you have to start the whole thought process again. It's impossible to plan ahead because each different first move that you make would result in a completely different set of second moves. (it's barely possible to even imagine what the board will look like after 1 move).

However I do appreciate the effort that Tonypa puts in to making different games.

I actually think this game might have worked better as an action game against the clock, rather than number of moves.

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By reducing the size of the play field to 7x7, you've made the game MORE difficult and MORE dependent on luck, because now it is much harder to find a path of more than 10 circles in length. Did you not realize this when you made this change?

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Hmmm... Might be the first ever Tonypa game I do not especially like. Not as if it was the game's fault - it's just as good one as the others, I just don't like it too much, that's all :(

bio

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hughperman Author Profile Page February 11, 2011 9:12 AM

Most fun game :) I found the way to get going with it was to go for long chains which give you an extra move.

What is the track in the background?? I've flicked through Kevin MacLeod's site but there is a ton of MP3s on it!

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Pretty fun, actually, unless you take it too seriously.

I've gotten two of the four bonuses, what are the other two?

FURO = Empty a full row
FUCO = Empty a full column

Also, it's totally possible to keep the game going until you get a really bad board (it is random, after all) All you need to do is:

Look for moves that will get you another free move by clearing 10 or more balls at once.

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I really enjoy this game. Satisfyingly challenging, and the music is fun. Contrary to what others have said, I found that luck has little to do with it--if the arrows point badly, then you can usually find a nice long chain to reshuffle the board while also earning an extra move.

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Ooh, found one more bonus:

HAPI = Clear half the pieces with one move

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Found two hidden secrets:

Furo: Clear an entire row in one click

Cofu: Clear an entire column in one click

Anyone find any others?

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@kevinb1229

The third bonus is for clearing half the board in one move

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Found another secret:

HAPI, for clearing half the pieces with 1 move.

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hughperman, the track is called "Thatched Villagers". You should be able to find full version from Kevin site by searching for those words.

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The last bonus is for

clearing an entire level with one click. Generally only possible on an early level.

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Lemo = Finish the level with 1 move

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I quite enjoyed this game. It's NOT impossible and I suspect that it is not actually random at all. The difference between this and most stacking games like it: there is no time limit and no time bonus. The only way to get through the higher levels is to use chess-like backward calculations. Once I realized how to play, I have gotten to level 10 nearly every time, and my maximum is level 17. I got about 5000 points the best game, and it wasn't by accident. It's a little bit frustrating but it's a well-made game and a good way to tire out your brain. Just remember the moves to actually win can be really long chains which might take a while to figure out. NO hurry.

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People suggesting that it's impossible don't understand the game. You can get screwed by luck, but if you understand the mechanics, it's vanishingly rare.

One of the more important things to understand is that if you clear 10 different circles in a single move, you get an extra move. If you don't have a path to your remaining colored circles, the appropriate move is to find a 10-long chain, clear it, and see what new arrows appear, while remaining move-neutral.

It's occasionally the case that there is literally not one 10-move chain on the entire board, but it's pretty unlikely -- and you do have a buffer of five moves to work with. So if there's no 10-move chain, go with the longest chain you do have, and then hopefully the new board after your move will again have a 10-move chain.

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Fun game. I wouldn't change anything. Not that I'm very good at it.

As Epoch says, it's usually possible to get an extra move by getting a long chain.

Probably much more often than I actually managed it ... my problem is remembering which squares are going to get blanked out during the long run. But that's where the fun comes in, for me.

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Bingo, JIGuest, Epoch. I had the same reservations as many posters initially -- too much luck involved -- but it really isn't true once you get the hang of it. I'm getting better at seeing those long, extra-move-earning/multiple-colored-circle-clearing chains, and finding it fairly rewarding when they suddenly jump out at me. This is one of my favorite Tonypa games to date.

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I reached level 24 and then I finished all the colored ones but it didn't let me get to level 25. I had one step left and there was no way to get any more bonus steps so I just clicked somewhere and then it was over.
Maybe it's a bug because on level 23 the entire 5x5 inner grid was colored, and on level 24 it was the same, it didn't have any place to add another colored square.

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The ads have been turned way down from the initial posters; so thank you very kindly. I agree that there is an element of luck to the game, much like card games or board games. The difficulty for the game is also very high, and you're not meant to go on forever. There is a strategy to finding the longest chain that take out the most colored pieces, and it is very satisfying when you do get a great chain. I like this game a lot, actually.

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My complaint about this is my complaint with most tonypa games, and many Flash games in particular.

There's nothing wrong with having a game that depends so heavily on randomized elements that you can be dealt a literally unwinnable hand by the system. It's the principle on which Minesweeper and Klondike Solitaire were founded, after all, and it's part of what makes them so addictive.

However, pay attention, game developers. You can either have a randomized win-enabling element, OR you can have a scoreboard. You CAN'T. HAVE. BOTH.

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I'm insanely addicted to this little game - even did a little happy dance when I scored 3rd today with over 10k points.

As a casual game, the concept is just right on the mark. There is a fair amount of strategy involved. There is a progressing level of difficulty. No timed element lets me leave it up for hours as I try to get actual work done. All important items in my book.

That being said, I do think the game lacks a little "something." We can complain about the "random" factor, which I see a lot of people already have. But my basic dissatisfaction stems from not being able to counteract that random possibility - that a board could actually be unsolvable. If there were bonus pieces on the board or unused moves carried over, I believe it would lead to a more satisfying experience.

Personally, I would love to see if I could beat a fully-colored board. But I don't see that happening with the way the game is currently setup. I'm not even sure if the game truly ends when a full-colored board is defeated.

Even with what may be seen as faults...it's sooooo darn amusing.

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EranG, I will try to add some nicer way to end the game for people who can finish so many levels. As you already noticed, at some point there just isn't any space left to add more difficulty.

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Bryce Herdt February 15, 2011 5:11 AM

I'm curious, what's the fourth bonus? I've gotten COFU (eliminate a full column at once), FURO (a full row at once), and HAPI (half the pieces at once).

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The last one is LEMO, for clearing a level with one move. It's easiest to do it early on.

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love it.
any one figure out the scoring?

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Must follow up that the ad issue is completely resolved. I gave the game another chance and it does have some depth.

I would love to see a hint (maybe it costs a move) showing the next longest run available.

Or, a one time shuffle - or a turn a piece clockwise or counter-clockwise 90 degrees - akin to power-ups that you could earn along the way

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The scoring I can't suss out. Colored pieces are 5, sometimes points move exponentially, other times by 1.... There's a pattern, I just can't seem to figure it. Of course, I haven't paid much attention because I'm too addicted to the moving parts.

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deedeeiam: I believe it works like this per chain:
1st color: +5
2nd color:+10
3rd color:+15 (etc)
white:+1
white after 1st color:+2
White after 3rd color:+3 (etc)

example (w)1+(w)2+(c)7+(w)9+(w)11+(c)21+(w)24

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Tonypa, PLEASE move back to the 8x8 gird.

Ten instead of eleven for a new life does not level the different versions, it just does not scale that way.

It's also grossly unfair: beating the higher scores achieved on the bigger grid is practically impossible.

The most frustrating of all is that I see no reason at all for the smaller grid. Why oh why???

Please...

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I like this game. I think it has a decent combination of strategy and randomness. I'm sure many people like tonypa's games, but this is the first one I've returned to.

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Oi Ocha April 5, 2011 1:41 AM

I don't normally comment often, but I just had to say that this is my favorite tonypa game. I've liked a few of them, but there's something so soothing about this one. I play it so often that it even got its own bookmark.

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This game is in my "Favorites" so I play it pretty frequently. There seems to be a bug this evening--the 10-ball combo isn't adding an extra turn. In fact, no matter how many I clear, I'm not getting extra turns. I play on this computer (MacBook Pro) with this browser (Chrome) at least 3 times a week, so it can't be the computer or browser. Just wanted to report this!! Hope someone can pass it on!

[The game file hasn't changed recently, so it is very odd that you're seeing different behavior from the game today. Try emptying your browser cache and reload the game page. Perhaps the file in your browser cache got corrupted somehow. -Jay]

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I saw a similar issue to the above poster. Instead of a bonus on ten balls, it took eleven to get an extra move. ( I know not to count the first ball) I cleared my browser cache and that did correct the problem.

On another note, I would definitely pay up to $5 for an iPhone version, if that is not heresy around here...;-)

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This is probably my favorite Tonypa game. It's not random nor impossible, but it is satisfyingly difficult.

Hint: at higher levels, the "clear 10 balls and get an extra move" mechanic becomes essential.

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