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Player Thoughts - Homepath
  5th October, 2019
Each week, oodles of feedback floods my inbox. Thank you to everyone who sends their thoughts/comments on all the wonderful games I've been making so far, this year.

This week, RSKGames has thoughts on the latest Shoebox game, Homepath.

You can Play Homepath in the Shoebox on Desktop, Mobile or Tablet.


Started playing Homepath 20/750 done. Brilliant puzzle game.


I felt it is the result of your accumulated puzzle and game design knowledge from the following games.
Shelley the Frog : Paint all the tiles before the time runs out and avoid enemy gems.
Blockman Gets Retro: Collect the required amount of yellow dots in the maze.
The Link Janitor Game: Connect like colored starts and ends with each other without crossing each other. (Similar to Dual and Triple of Homepath)
Some concepts from the above games and adding lock and key tiles to the mix gives Homepath.

(I'll assume there was further love at the end of that last sentence )

Much more than all of the above is Kee, Bo, Ard, a game in which you navigate three characters around a maze.
That's pretty much this game, in a nutshell.

My overall improvement in maze generation, since August 2010, is the biggest change between the original game and this.
IIRC, the original was handmade levels. They never really tasked the player in any real way, and .. although I enjoyed the concept, I definitely didn't enjoy designing levels!

The sequel switched to a slightly different maze style, which is a little interesting, but wouldn't work with the touch-based interface.
Also, again, the levels had to be hand-made.

By the time the third game came around, I was working with a level generator, but .. It wasn't very neat at making them, and the results weren't particularly thrilling.

It's been almost 8 years since the third release, and this week (after the horrible horrible Disk O' Green) I knew I had to make a better maze game.

A much better level generator, and a simpler control scheme, and everything came together nicely.

Really need a puzzle number in the game screen as I really liked puzzle 17 in mono and wanted it in the screenshot. Initially I thought puzzle 17 is not possible but then the tiles that need to go through 2 times adds magic to the puzzle.

I'll look into a way to organise them.. They're currently numbered based on how the generator made them, and you can see the "real" level number in the bottom right of the screen during play.
But, yeah, I should probably add level names or something, to the select screen.

The control scheme of Homepath is very slick and simple. Simply click on the piece and start dragging over the tiles.

This is all down to Shoebox's lovely Board Game engine, and that's certainly been reused plenty of times during the creation of the collection. I'm glad that it could cope with this sort of thing, and it'll no doubt be useful in other games, too.
Incidentally, the (Still unfinished) Pool game also uses the board game engine, as does the Minigolf.
Really has been a great amount of reuse, there!

Having retry option and not allowing undo makes the player plan all the way through by playing, failing and finding the correct path eventually.

I was a little unsure as to whether I should add a "normal" per-tile Undo function into the game.
It can be a little frustrating at times, when you slip slightly with the mouse, and the counter goes off in a random direction!!
But those instances are few and far between, and having to Redo From Start is a great punishment for failure!

Overall a great addition to the long list of excellent AGAW puzzle games.

Glad you enjoyed it

What was your thought process when designing this game?

"I really have to make a better maze game than Disk O' Green, 'cos that wasn't very good at all!" was the thought nagging away at me, all week.

Tuesday's Poetry Corner

That's roughly 24 hours before I went "Right, I'm making that, then!!"

Views 19, Upvotes 1
Player Thoughts , Homepath
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