From the early morning Crossword Puzzle, to the Rubik's Cube on your desk, to the Match-3 games that keep us up way past our bed times, the challenge of a good puzzle can make everything else seem a bit less, well, challenging. This week in The Vault we have a nice selection of puzzle games from our archives, sure to provide variety, quality, and just plain fun.
- LightForce Games - It may seem like a minor thing compared to to preservationists and conservationists in the physical realm, but, darn it, it feels good when JiG is able to host games that would otherwise be lost to the the swirling mists of the internet. Case in point: Helen and Nick Kouvaris' LightForce Games website disappeared years ago, almost taking with it their collection of arcade-puzzle works. Certainly, many of them are clones of similarly-abandoned DOS games, but they're high quality clones, with solid programming and presentation that might never have made it online in any other form. From the collapsing cheer of Poux, to the stacking shifts of Blix, to the rolling recreation of Q, LightForce Games brought us some classics, and I'm glad we can keep them around to share.
- Legend of the Golden Mask - For a genre so prolific in downloadable titles, it's surprising we don't get more hidden object-minigame combos developed for in-browser play. Legend of the Golden Mask, a 2009 work by Candystand, though is a glorious exception. The production values are high, the story is intriguing, and its decidedly South American visuals and music make it a stand-out. We may never know for certain why all those amateur-adventurers about to head to the jungles of the Amazon always seem to start by scouring their messy rooms for a bicycle pump, Magic 8-Ball, violin case and a pickle, but hey, I guess that's what you sign up for when you come along for the ride.
- Goldburger to Go - Oh ZOOM! You were great! I mean, stories, games, science experiments, and finally being able to decrypt the Ubbi-Dubbi language used by the female contingent of the playground? Very choice. Plus, PBS has seen fit to keep the program's tie-in games available on its website, including this choice chain-reaction puzzler from 2005. Sussing out the correct settings on the overly-complicated Rube Goldburger device probably won't prove too much of a challenge for those above the 7-12 year old target demographic, but it's an engaging, creative work that, after all, was created thanks to the support of Viewers Like You!
While we welcome any comments about this weekly feature here, we do ask that if you need any help with the individual games, please post your questions on that game's review page. Well, what are you waiting for? Get out there and rediscover some awesome!