How cute can you take it? If your answer is merely "pretty darn cute", that won't be enough, because the latest game from Picaso Games is adorable enough to make Scottish-Fold kittens on the other side of the world jealous. Even your cursor becomes pudgy and extra cuddly as you set out to help the little Euwins return home. It seems a massive tidal wave has scattered them across the land, but fortunately for them, they have a steady supply of building materials, even if they don't quite know how to use them. That's where you and one very clever physics engine come in with Bridgecraft.
The gameplay feels similar to Armadillo Run or Pontifex. You start each level with a budget that you can use to purchase building materials, like the standard deck, and add either steel or the weaker rope for support.
Start by clicking on the anchor points, denoted by little green circles, and draw a line to direct where your bridge will go. Clicking on a green circle again will delete anything attached to it, returning the cost to your budget. You'll need to work in segments, and since some obstacles are bigger than others, you're going to have to strengthen your bridge with the appropriate material. Rope may be cheaper, but it's more than a little unforgiving when it comes to bearing weight. For the most part, each material behaves like it should, so you should feel more comfortable with a reinforced steel bridge than, oh, a swaying bridge made of water-logged macrame.
When you're ready, you can click the green Start button to send your little critter tottering trustingly out onto your bridge. If the bridge snaps, you'll have to try again. You can choose to Undo a single move, Reset the whole level, or add more support to the existing design, if you have any funds left. There's no real penalty for failing, so you can try over and over again as often as you like. In fact, you'll probably want to make use of the "Show Stress" button at the top of the screen, which will highlight areas that are under particular strain when the Euwin tries to cross and help you figure out where the problem lies. That the levels take place on a grid makes it that much easier to really fine-tune your measurements.
For those of us with less than a passing interest in architecture, Bridgecraft can prove frustratingly challenging at times, as you watch construct after construct surrender to the elements and send your unhappy looking Euwins tumbling into the watery depths. You may not need a degree in engineering for this one, but it helps to have a basic understanding of structure and support. 70 levels is plenty of time to become a building master, but I'm still not sure whether the physics engine is unforgiving, or I'm just inept at engineering. I'm sorry, little Euwins. Your trusting eyes will haunt me in my dreams!
Analysis: Don't be fooled by that happy smiling sun. It's a good thing this game is so unrelentingly cheerful, since the soothing colours and shapes can help when you'd rather throw your keyboard out the window, after yet another bridge falls apart like a soggy pretzel. That's what I get for passing notes during science class. It takes a lot of experimentation and patience to figure out exactly what each level requires, since working within a budget means there is rarely more than one solution for any given puzzle. Adding to your stress, the Undo button only lets you undo a single move, which forces you to reset the entire structure if your mistake happened early on in the building process.
If any game could be described as appealing to a niche group, then this is probably it. The challenge of building a sturdy bridge under monetary constraints isn't going to be everyone's cuppa, and with nary a bloodthirsty alien or magical sword to be found, those craving fast-paced action had better look elsewhere. What's surprising, however, is how this one grew on me. The satisfaction in completing a level and seeing your design stand tall is pretty addictive, to say nothing of the increasing challenge as the levels go on.
Bridgecraft is an exercise in patience, common-sense, and ingenuity. If the trial-and-error doesn't discourage you, and I encourage you not to let it for this one, the experience can be rewarding. For me it also serves as a reminder of why I got that F in shop class.
Thanks for the suggestion, Scott, Mat, and David!
(Please allow page to fully load for spoiler tags to be functional.)
This list is not by any means the "right" way to do any of these. I wasn't striving for a high score, but rather simply to muddle through to the end. I accomplished the muddling at least.
Before the levels, I'll cover a few gameplay basics you are probably already familiar with. I'll hide these just in case someone wants a completely virginal playing experience.
Sometimes you need to start building far away from an anchor point. That's easily accommodated by simply running a length of rope from the anchor to wherever you'd like to begin. Once you have a bridge span or steel beam in place you can delete the rope. I've mentioned this on the first (I think) level I used the technique.
You can reinforce sections either with another material or just more of the same. Some sections need two steel beams or two lengths of rope to handle the stress. Some will need one of each. I've tried to mention the places I've done this but I'm sure I've missed a few. If the solution isn't working have a look at how much of your budget is left. If you have more than my picture shows I had left odds are some reinforcement is needed.
The physics of the game are kind of sketchy sometimes, so even though I tested all these solutions a couple of times, there's no guarantee they'll work for you. Look at the weirdness of level 34 for evidence.
Levels 1 through 70:
Just two deck pieces straight across
Again just two deck pieces straight across
The middle rope might need to be doubled here https://jayisgames.com/images/bridgecraft/level12.jpg
The beam the arrow is on is doubled steel https://jayisgames.com/images/bridgecraft/level16.jpg
Straight off to the shore anchors on both sides https://jayisgames.com/images/bridgecraft/level21.jpg
https://jayisgames.com/images/bridgecraft/level23.jpg Wait a minute... how can anything that floats down like that be afraid of the water? They couldn't possibly drown!
There are other solutions already posted here much more graceful than mine but this works... https://jayisgames.com/images/bridgecraft/level25.jpg
The ropes are reinforcing steel beams https://jayisgames.com/images/bridgecraft/level26.jpg
Start with a rope from the anchor point and drag it out to any starting point on the bridge then once the bridge is started the rope can be deleted https://jayisgames.com/images/bridgecraft/level27.jpg
Single-use bridges. Are you sure we're not working for the government??
Posted by Philip098123 in here earlier - with a very handy cheat explained
or you can do it this way without the cheater effect
Steel and rope where the white arrow is pointing
Where the red line is you put in a rope piece then take the rope back out
NOW it will work
No, I don't know why
The whole thing collapses but hey, it works. Notice the rope and steel mix on the left 2 pieces angling up
Most of these little critters have antennae. Should they really be playing on scaffolding in lightning storms?
All rope sections have steel behind them except where the arrow is, that one is just rope.
One of the angle braces at the beginning of the bridge is a rope/steel combo https://jayisgames.com/images/bridgecraft/level44.jpg
The rope section has steel behind it https://jayisgames.com/images/bridgecraft/level45.jpg
Thanks to fuzzyface for the solution on this one - it's the flipper! https://jayisgames.com/images/bridgecraft/level48.jpg
This one is in two parts
The top part:
Then the lower section:
I call this "The Dumper" https://jayisgames.com/images/bridgecraft/level55.jpg
I used the cheat to lift the critter as you can see. I have NO idea how else to finish this level. https://jayisgames.com/images/bridgecraft/level65.jpg
Again without using the lifting cheat at the beginning I have no way of finishing this level https://jayisgames.com/images/bridgecraft/level68.jpg
And again with the cheating thing... https://jayisgames.com/images/bridgecraft/level69.jpg
I didn't even bother to try without cheating. What's the point? https://jayisgames.com/images/bridgecraft/level70.jpg
Posted by: AaronzDad | April 19, 2009 3:24 PM
BRIDGECRAFT WALKTHROUGH FOR POINTS
Want to increase your score? Then this is the walkthrough for you. It scores over 50K points more than the original walkthrough and may help your score.
This is NOT intended to "show up" the author of the original because he wasn't playing for points in the first place and
clearly states so in his introduction. Also, I didn't view his solutions then look for ways to improve upon them afterward. I played the game on my own from start to finish. But I began under the erroneous impression that saved points accumulated for later use. I realized my mistake later but continued maximizing points wherever possible. I use his scores and solutions for comparison because they are the only complete reference I have. Lastly, I tip my hat to him for composing the walkthrough, and for completing the game (I almost gave up myself at level 26).
I don't have any advantage of special schooling; I'm just a regular guy. I tend to favor symmetrical solutions and it pained me to sacrifice a nice-looking structure for points. Also, like the wooden block tower game Jenga, there's probably a beam here and there that can be omitted without any effect. But I didn't tinker endlessly trying to squeeze out every last point. However, in some cases where the bridge works but collapses afterward, I didn't spend the 100-150 extra points to keep it standing.
I don't know how many people will see this as I discovered this game late after the buzz died off. If anyone does, I hope it helps. My score got me into the monthly Top 10 so it's a good score. But there were higher scores, so that means still better solutions to many levels. If this inspires you to discover any, please feel free to post your solution. Have fun!
Level 1 Through Level 11 - 1000 Points
Replacing just one section of deck with rope saves 33 pts (1233 vs 1200). They add up, believe me.
Same rope trick saves another 33 pts here (2433 vs 2400).
Rope trick doesn't work here, but using a lower profile saves 234 pts (1525 vs 1291).
Bracing from the bottom and using shorter beams saves 225 pts (1668 vs 1443).
Different length deck (and thus beams too) saves 61 pts (1534 vs 1473).
Same solution. Double the highlighted beam.
Using steel at the very bottom saves 80 pts (2790 vs 2710).
Using shorter deck and only rope saves 177 pts (1689 vs 1512). Due to elasticity of rope, be sure to start below ground level as shown.
Level 12 Through Level 17 - 2000 Points
My first inclination here was to use rope. Using only rope saves 252 pts (2367 vs 2115).
My original solution looked nice until I realized the first deck section needs no bracing. Ugly but functional saves 369 pts (2470 vs 2101).
The highlighted beam is rope-reinforced steel. Top bracing saves 328 pts (3207 vs 2879).
Highlighted part is just rope. This clean solution saves 683 pts (3094 vs 2411).
Another clean solution saves a respectable 1031 pts (3161 vs 2130). Now we're getting to some decent points.
Yet another respectable savings of 1121 pts (3935 vs 2814).
Level 18 Through Level 27 - 3000 Points
Completely different approach saves a considerable 1400 pts (5244 vs 3844).
This solution saves 179 pts (3202 vs 3023).
Alas, as much as I wanted to keep this symmetrical, it wasn't worth the lost points. Respectable savings of 1035 (5307 vs 4272). That's single rope in the middle.
Easy as pie. That's single rope in the middle. Yet still more respectable savings of 1061 (4083 vs 3022).
Again, my instinct was to use rope instead of steel. Saves a considerable 1433 pts (4567 vs 3134). The rope is supposed to snap. If you re-play this level, you need to replace the ropes. Don't know why, but it won't work unless you do.
Even though it doesn't save as many points, I've got to hand it to Diego for a design that saves 1256 pts. I first saw it as I was writing this walkthrough & laughed out loud when I tried it. When the small steel beam breaks, the "cage" swings carrying our friend Crabbyface. Lovely indeed!
This solution saves 318 pts (3385 vs 3067).
This simpler design provides a whopping savings of 2426 pts (6159 vs 3733).
Not very sleek, but saves 519 pts (3904 vs 3385). The highlighted beam is rope-reinforced steel. It collapses afterward but will stay intact if the diagonal steel beam at the farthest left is doubled. That uses another 120 pts, so I didn't do it because disposable bridges seem to be fair game.
It was happenstance that my shorter version saves 71 pts (4827 vs 4756).
Level 28 Through Level 33 - 4000 Points
The highlighted beams are doubled. No top bracing saves 360 pts (4866 vs 4506). If the middle deck snaps, Flowergirl still makes it.
An even more minimalist approach saves 104 pts (4590 vs 4486).
Hey, if we're going to make single-use disposable bridges, we may as well make them REALLY disposable. This saves 540 pts (4763 vs 4223). It can be tweaked to keep the trapeze hanging without snapping the rope, but it costs a tad more and I didn't see any point in doing so.
The left highlighted beam is doubled. Right is rope-reinforced steel. Saves 734 pts (4789 vs 4055).
I took a completely different approach here and saved a considerable 1291 pts (5350 vs 4059). The highlighted diagonal beam is double steel plus single rope.
By now, everyone has seen Philip's "walking mat" which is brilliant (and his justification hilarious). If you haven't, here it is.
Is it a cheat? Perhaps no more so than letting the critters fall or collapsing bridges are. Still, I didn't feel right using it. Besides, my solution saves more points anyway and I'm proud of it. LOL.
Level 34 Through Level 43 - 5000 Points
This slightly simpler solution saves 144 pts (5249 vs 5105).
Instead of trying to support a static structure, let it fall on a hinge. It will still remain intact and deliver Pizzaface to the island. This saves a considerable 1455 pts (6531 vs 5076).
On the left side, deck placement is crucial. Considerable savings of 1302 pts (6334 vs 5032).
Not quite perfectly symmetrical, but it saves 900 pts (6280 vs 5380).
It's more economical to use the upper anchor in the path instead of as a rope anchor, since bracing is unnecessary for anything to the right of it. Respectable savings of 1132 pts (6224 vs 5092).
You don't need that much rope (or deck). Save 783 pts (5792 vs 5009).
It's easy to miss the underwater anchor. Saves 272 pts (5382 vs 5110).
One highlighted beam is double steel. The other is rope-reinforced steel. Choice of reinforcement can make a big difference. Saves 570 points (5674 vs 5104).
A horizontal ground-level path anchored at both ends. Now it's only a matter of support. Using only what is necessary saves a whopping 2776 pts (8645 vs 5869). The highlighted beam is double steel. The two upper rope sections are just rope.
The left structure looks like overkill. However, its sturdiness stabilizes the right structure. Saves a considerable 1313 pts (6759 vs 5446). Note the rope-reinforced deck section. I'll bet there's a better solution here.
Level 44 Through Level 49 - 6000 Points
None other than Crabbyface himself suggests using deck as support here. Another considerable 1357 pts savings (7659 vs 6302).
Hail, hail, the gang's all crossing together! Kinda cool. This un-reinforced solution saves 782 pts (8274 vs 7492).
Funny how the rope goes limp when you want it to be elastic. Bottom bracing saves a respectable 1074 pts (7847 vs 6773). Probably a better solution here too.
It was tougher than it looks to save 967 pts on this one (7695 vs 6728). The two highlighted beams are doubled. Greenie has a little trouble here but he makes it.
Same solution. Not sure why this is in the 6000-point category since it was duplicated twenty levels ago.
Wish this was more symmetrical, but it saves a substantial 1724 pts (8426 vs 6702). The highlighted beam is tripled.
Level 50 Through Level 57 - 7000 Points
Yet once again, simply using rope does the job and saves an impressive 1554 pts (8642 vs 7088).
Different deck length allows using only one rope. Middle deck snaps, but it works. Save 236 pts (7552 vs 7316).
It's kinda neat how the deck section at lower right works. Saves 802 pts (9438 vs 8636).
Simplicity saves 399 pts (8343 vs 7944).
Spare design saves a whopping 2100 pts (9630 vs 7530).
Minimalism saves a considerable 1362 pts (8456 vs7094). As a goof, Crabbyface and Mr. Sun both closed their eyes for the shot. Weenies.
The highlighted beam is rope-reinforced steel. Saves 430 pts (7489 vs 7059).
Sacrificed aesthetics for points. Left highlighted beam is rope-reinforced steel. Right is double steel. Saves 347 pts (8227 vs 7880).
Level 58 Through Level 63 - 8000 Points
Nothing reinforced here. Not pretty, and it collapses. But it saves a considerable 1446 pts (10,065 vs 8619).
The highlighted beam is rope-reinforced steel. A slightly lower profile saves 371 pts (9487 vs 9116).
I arrived at the same solution. Although my mini-version snaps, it saves 184 pts (8743 vs 8559).
Yes, I too spent a lot of time on this level. Here is just one elaborate, expensive (and failed) attempt.
I disagree with the comment about "what the authors wanted" (especially since it uses a "cheat," LOL). My reasoning is that the designers could easily prevent unwanted shortcuts if they wanted to. Having falls kill the Euwins, for example. In the end, I arrived at a very simple solution that saves a substantial 1807 pts (14,300 vs 12,493).
Similar solution that saves 132 pts (9843 vs 9711).
The highlighted beam is rope-reinforced steel. Saves 379 pts (8391 vs 8012).
Level 64 Through Level 66 - 9000 Points
The two highlighted diagonal beams are doubled. The highlighted horizontal beam is rope-reinforced steel. Since the bridge is supported from below, it made sense to use bottom bracing. This saves an impressive 1657 pts (10,801 vs 9144).
Okay, back to Philip's "physics engine exploit." I guess it comes down to whether one thinks it's cheating, an individual decision. If I had thought of it on my own (and I wish I had), then I probably wouldn't think so. But I didn't. So to me, relying on it repeatedly when there are alternative viable solutions is cheating. So I'll offer two separate point-saving options depending upon your view.
This was done after the fact to improve upon AaronzDad's design. Saves 564 pts (14,072 vs 13,508).
This is my original design. The only other solution I see that didn't use Philip's device was Peter's. In comparison to his, this saves 1540 pts (12,136 vs 10,596). Highlighted beams are double steel.
Ugly, but it does the job and saves a substantial 1815 pts (13,596 vs 11,781). If you want, spend another 134 pts to keep it intact.
Level 67 Through Level 70 - 10,000 Points
Nothing reinforced because this took virtually the entire budget. Saves 96 pts (10,120 vs 10,024).
Highlighted beams are doubled. I was shocked that this late in the game, my solution saved a whopping 2803 pts (12,854 vs 10,051). The biggest savings of all.
Didn't need a device to save 690 pts (10,997 vs 10,307). Black sections are just rope. I later saw Peter also had a similar approach.
Again, I didn't need the device to save 275 pts (16,317 vs 16,042). Nothing is reinforced.
But the most elegant and cost-effective solution came from an unidentified JIGuest. Saves a substantial 1755 (17,797 vs 16,042). Well done!
My review if anyone is interested. Contains gameplay tip spoiler.
Like others, I too grumbled about a list of complaints; two-ton shuffling Euwins who refuse to pick up their feet when they walk, elastic rope (except when you want it to be), inconsistencies like when a critter smashes deck by falling just two grid lengths, yet other times fall long distances with no damage, and beams that won't get any stronger no matter how many times you reinforce them. But after awhile, I accepted these limitations and enjoyed the challenge of working through them.
If you really want to maximize your score, always use the "Show Stress" button. As noted, blue is tension and red is compression. Strengthening a blue steel beam with more steel often causes a different beam to snap, which in turn prompts you to double that one and so on. Using rope instead as reinforcement (or even replacement) often solves the problem with no further modification necessary. I didn't really utilize this feature until later in my game; so many designs can probably be improved. The key to high scores: use more rope - the cheapest material.
Since it took several days for me to finish, I really started noticing the attention the designers paid to the background with its clouds, lightning and surreal and whimsical structures. The sounds of frogs, birds and thunder contributed to the atmosphere. The between-level music was another story.
As I mentioned earlier, I was ready to give up about a third of the way in. But like Dora, the game really grew on me. Unlike other bridge construction games, this one lent itself to creative solutions which added to the fun. In the end, I thoroughly enjoyed it and urge those who feel like quitting to hang in there because completing it can be very rewarding.
Posted by: Bad Dog | May 15, 2009 4:10 PM