Sokoban

a game by Atelier Double
Genre: Puzzles & Words
Platforms: PC, Sega GenesisGenesis
Editor Rating: 8/10, based on 1 review
User Rating: 8.0/10 - 3 votes
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See also: Puzzle Games
Sokoban
Sokoban
Sokoban
Sokoban

To say that the games that were around back in the early eighties were simplistic would be an understatement. However, this is not to say that the concept behind these minimalist games was not solid when put under 2020’s microscope. Take Space Invaders, Pacman or Asteroids for example. All games that still have a massive following to this day, not just for nostalgic purposes but also within the new gaming generations. This holds true for a lot of retro games and to an extent, this is true for Sokoban.

This 1981 Japanese classic puzzle game will be familiar to a lot of mobile gaming aficionados through its general mechanics. It asks players to move boxes around a screen and into certain tiles to complete a stage. The game has similarities to mobile titles such as Unblock me or Roll the Ball but also takes aspects from classic block clearing titles such as Tetris or Lumines.

Manual Labour For Brainiacs

This game can’t compete with the glitz and glamour of the modern-day releases but for the time, this game looked pretty good. It uses the classic Bomberman style birds-eye view, giving you control of a warehouse worker and your goal is to get all the boxes to a marked tile to complete the level. It sounds simple but as you work through the stages, you’ll begin to see just how tricky this concept can get.

The art style of the original game was very simple, to say the least with the only things of note on the screen being the boxes, the marked tiles, a brick wall perimeter to mark out the warehouse and your worker dressed in a white shirt and blue jeans. Yet despite this appearance, the game remains very playable. It’s one that doesn’t rely on any bells and whistles to get its point across and this is no doubt why it has been remade countless times and inspired so many titles.

Plenty of Work to be done

Within the most senior version of this widely popular title, there were a grand total of 50 levels to get stuck into, each with a progressing level of difficulty. The title would start off easy to let you get your bearings but by the end, the game would really test your resolve with puzzles that will have you scratching your head for hours in an attempt to come up with the solution.

An Inspirational Game

When we say inspirational, we don’t mean emotional or uplifting. I mean all you’ll be doing is moving boxes from place to place. What we mean is that this game has inspired a lot of bigger, better and more awe-inspiring titles than this one. It has served as a building block to success within the genre and its concept is still being used for mobile titles to this day.

8

So next time you are playing a puzzle game akin to this on your commute, remember where it came from. It came from Sokoban.

Pros

  • Mechanics that would inspire many future titles
  • Decent art style for the time period
  • A decent amount of content to work through

Cons

  • Gameplay is very one note, can become stale
  • Difficulty can stop players enjoying all the content on offer

Download Sokoban

PC

System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP

Genesis

System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP
  • Game modes: Single game mode

Player controls:

  • Up, Down, Left, Right - Arrow keys
  • Start - Enter (Pause, Menu select, Skip intro, Inventory)
  • "A" Gamepad button - Ctrl (usually Jump or Change weapon)
  • "B" button - Space (Jump, Fire, Menu select)
  • "C" button - Left Shift (Item select)

Use the F12 key to toggle mouse capture / release when using the mouse as a controller.

Snapshots and Media

PC Screenshots

Sega Genesis/Mega Drive Screenshots