interface design
selene tan

Tag: interface design

Simple Sudoku and Modes of Thinking

by on Feb.17, 2010, under Blog

A while back, I found Simple Sudoku, a freeware Sudoku puzzle maker/solver. It generates puzzles for you to solve, and also has a lot of features to make it easier to solve them. After playing way too much Sudoku in it, I realized why it makes things so much easier. On the surface, Sudoku is all about logical deduction–the 9 in this square means you can eliminate 9’s elsewhere in the row and column, and so on. However, at higher levels, Sudoku is actually about pattern recognition, and that is what Simple Sudoku reveals.

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Information Access in Avalon Code

by on May.27, 2009, under Blog

Recently I’ve been playing a DS RPG called Avalon Code. It’s an action RPG where the world is about to end, and you’re the Chosen One who’s been granted the Book of Prophecy to populate the new world. It’s your duty to use the Book to gather information about all the things that will be in the new world by “code scanning” them, which you do by hitting them with the Book of Prophecy. (Apparently the new world is going to have a lot of monsters.)

When you code scan something, it adds a page to the book that describes the object and shows its “codes”. Codes are blocks of different shapes and sizes that represent various qualities, such as Fire, Snake, or Justice. The codes are arranged on a grid (the “mental map”), and you can “rewrite” the codes by swapping them around.

The Sword page and the 4 hot-swap code slotsThe Sword page and the 4 hot-swap code slots.

You’ll find item bases scattered through the game, and you modify them by swapping codes. The above picture shows the Sword base with one Fire code, making it a “Fire Sword”. There are also recipes for specific items, e.g. the set of codes you’ll need to make the Sword into a “Champion Gladius”.

Making the recipes is a painstaking process. You have 4 slots of “holding” space to transfer codes between pages — all other codes have to be on a page. So if you decide you want that Champion Gladius, you have to: (more…)

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