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Snood, the Simple Game

jamie posted more than 11 years ago | from the three-of-these-a-decade dept.

Games 369

Greg Costikyan has penned a Snood screed that bears reading for anyone into game design. I gave Snood a try a couple of years ago when I read that Woz was hooked on it. Fun. I've played it on and off since then. But the ninth most popular game in 2001? That's nuts. Is Snood part of a series of tiny puzzley games, like Tetris and Bejeweled, that can still do well in a world of Counterstrikes and Unreal Tournaments? Is there still the chance for an individual or small team to strike it rich writing a game like this (maybe for cell phones)? Or is the engagingly simple game doomed to extinction? M : The Snood-equivalent for Linux is Frozen Bubble.

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369 comments

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fIRST POST FUVCKING EH!!! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5082954)

GO CANADA!!!!! oh yeah baby score one for the good guys!!

My thanks to CmdrTaco and the Slashdot team (-1, Troll)

PedoPeteTownshend (641098) | more than 11 years ago | (#5082997)

I'd like to thank everyone at Slashdot for the kind articles [slashdot.org] posted about me in the past.

It's nice to know that even though I am sexually aroused by contributing to the abuse of children worldwide, I can still get some good press on an Open Source and Linux oriented website.

And thank you especially, CmdrTaco. Without your purchase of "50 CDs of my material", I might not have been able to afford that computer I used to begin my paedophilic quest.

P.S. Lighthouse 2 a.k.a. "Kiss my flashing beacon, little boy." shall be out soon on EMI!

Frozen bubble (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5082960)

A RIP OFF of the Bust a move game.

Snoodling? Isn't that a gaysexual thing? (-1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5083015)

Snoodling: When an uncircumcised homo pulls his extra foreskin over the cock of another homo and proceeds to jerk him off. Those gays have way too much free time. Can be used at as a great derogatory term as in, "You Snoodler!"

http://www.number-one-adult-sexual-health-terms- ad visor.com/obsecure.htm

Re:Frozen bubble (1)

Semi-Psychic Nathan (563684) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083062)

Yeah, just like Tetris is a rip-off of Tetris is a rip-off of Tetris is a rip-off of Tetris...

Bust-a-move (4, Interesting)

SonicBurst (546373) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083073)

otherwise known as puzzle bobble to the rest of the world. Both mame and NeoRageX play it very well, btw. :)

Re:Frozen bubble (3, Funny)

los furtive (232491) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083106)

And just like Bust a Move is a rip off of Puzzle Bobble. Anybody try Puzzle Bobble 4 on MAME? It's like smoking crack and watching saturday morning cartoons!

Actually (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5083205)

It is a variation of Asteroids, As are ALL drop from the sky games, Tetris et al. You youngsters are probably amazed by Pong!

whatever (3, Funny)

tps12 (105590) | more than 11 years ago | (#5082971)

Say what you will about Quake 3 and its tendency to provoke violence in children, but at least people who obsess over it are communicating with other people, albeit over the Internet.

Games like this (and Tetris, and Solitaire, and so many others) are simply antisocial and psychologically crippling. You play for hours, not because you're "enjoying" it, but because your brain is too numbed to stop.

If our legislators had seen these in action, they'd be banning them before they worry about the comparitively healthy first person shooters.

Re:whatever (2)

flippet (582344) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083059)

You play for hours, not because you're "enjoying" it, but because your brain is too numbed to stop.

While saying "Just one more game, then I'll stop, honest!" throughout...

Good insight (0, Interesting)

Raul654 (453029) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083072)

Let me preface this by saying whoever modded that as funny should be taken into some dimly lit parking lot and raped

With that said, you have some good insights there, but I disagree on one issue. I would argue that such single-player games as you name fall into two catagories. You have games (1) that require a lot of thinking to progress -- tetris, Freecell, etc; and (2) those games such as Snood, Tron, etc that do not. Games in catagory #2 cause people to faze out, and (IMHO) are the ones that are the most socially destructive.

Re:Good insight (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5083170)

Let me guess - your sense of humor was sexually abused as a child, right?

Re:Good insight (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5083267)

Let me put it this way -- "No, Uncle ernie, no!"

Re:whatever (5, Interesting)

Jason1729 (561790) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083186)

I used to play multiplayer tetris on the LAN at work. There were bonus pieces that let you do good things like eliminate rows from the bottom of the screen or bad things like drop random blocks on someone's screen

It was team based and you generally had to use your good blocks on an ally who's in trouble. We'd play it for hours at a time, and we were enjoying it and socializing, not too numbed to stop. Since we were all in the same room, it was like a LAN party. Occasionally, even the managers would play.

Games like quake3 where all you do is go around shooting things are boring. That's what's mind-numbing and crippling. Tetris makes you concentrate and think.

The best games are the simple ones with high playability, so to answer the question in the summary, there will always be a demand for this.

Jason
ProfQuotes [profquotes.com]

just one more game (4, Funny)

kennon42 (147921) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083190)

although, realizing this effect, the creator of snood helpfully provided a "Just One More Game" function, and even gave it its own hotkey :)

Re:whatever (5, Insightful)

Blkdeath (530393) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083215)

I'm not sure if this was intended to be funny, or if it was misconstrued by the mods (wow, that'd be a first!), but I'll respond as if it were in a serious tone.

Say what you will about Quake 3 and its tendency to provoke violence in children, but at least people who obsess over it are communicating with other people, albeit over the Internet.

Most people I see playing online shoot-em-ups are too busy fragging their opponents to bother taking their hands from the cursor keys (or whatever they use for direction and fire) to use the keyboard; that would reduce their kill rate.

Games like this (and Tetris, and Solitaire, and so many others) are simply antisocial and psychologically crippling. You play for hours, not because you're "enjoying" it, but because your brain is too numbed to stop.

Are the games at fault, or the people? My grandmother used to (and probably still does) play Solitaire. Alone. She had a board she'd put on her lap and a deck of cards that's probably been dealt more times than I've worn socks. She'd play until she was bored, then quit.

I used to read quite seriously, and would often plow through 200-300 pages in a single night. (I read the American BiCentennial Series in a single school year = 10 months; grade 6). Would that be considered 'obsessive' behaviour, or is that healthy? I couldn't do it now, because performing in public school is much less demanding than performing at work (and heaven knows what would've happened if I pulled a few all-nighters like that and tried to drive before the sun came up!).

Anything to excess is a bad thing. Be it Quake, Snood, Solitaire, reading, chocolate, sex, anything. Rather than regulating everything that COULD cause us harm - why don't we teach our children and students moderation and self discipline?

Sad news -- Don Knuth dead at 65 (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5082972)

I just heard some sad news on talk radio - Computer Science pioneer Donald Knuth was found dead in his California home this morning. There weren't any more details. I'm sure everyone in the Slashdot community will miss him - even if you didn't enjoy his work, there's no denying his contributions to computer science. Truly an American icon.

Re:Sad news -- Don Knuth dead at 65 (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5083035)

Off topic AND false, AFAICT. Searched google news and found nothing.

Snoodling? Isn't that a gaysexual thing? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5082975)

Snoodling: When an uncircumcised homo pulls his extra foreskin over the cock of another homo and proceeds to jerk him off. Those gays have way too much free time. Can be used at as a great derogatory term as in, "You Snoodler!"

http://www.number-one-adult-sexual-health-terms- ad visor.com/obsecure.htm

the truth is... (1)

korea (615587) | more than 11 years ago | (#5082976)

This thing may be able to put in the same category as snood.. however... is, it, as, good? only time (mostly free) will tell.

Snood is a definite classic. (5, Interesting)

AugstWest (79042) | more than 11 years ago | (#5082977)

Gamers tend to think that games will only be classics if they're adopted by gamers. That's why they're so surprised when deer hunting games outsell Quake.

My 64 year-old mother got hooked on Snood, and got a copy for everyone she knew. She doesn't know what kind of video card she has, she doesn't know the bus speed of her RAM, but she'd be up until 3 in the morning trying to beat her high scores.

Oh, it is already available on cell phones and PDAs [snood.com] .

Re:Snood is a definite classic. (5, Funny)

BethLogic (561055) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083128)

I was introduced to Snood a couple summers ago while living with a non-geek friend and got very addicted. Many unemployed hours were spent watching the pretty colors gather and then fall. When I was over at my boyfriend's apt I would take every chance I got to try to beat his high score. If he walked out of the room and was gone for a minute I'd start playing. The competition aspect made it much more gripping.

Luckily I found a job and have been able to turn those wasted hours into time spent on /.

Although a little Snood wouldn't be a bad way to kill time as I wait for code to build....

Re:Snood is a definite classic. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5083192)

I was definitely hooked on Snood in college. Got 15 minutes before class? Snood! I'd sometimes fall asleep with snoods dancing before my eyes...

Then I got my dad hooked on it. He's not especially computer literate (he doesn't experiment, really. My mom does that), and every few minutes a snood would land where he didn't want it, and he'd start swearing at the computer. Expletives emanating from the computer room were a dead giveaway that he was playing Snood!

Re:Snood is a definite classic. (1)

john_is_war (310751) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083236)

It is VERY MUCH a classic. I can remember I spent many many hours in algebra 3/trig playing... or sleeping. But that game is still one of the games I play the most, along with a good portion of the population at my school.

As for your mother, but mine once stayed up until 6 AM so she could beat Bug's Bunnies Crazy Castle :P

just a bust-a-move clone (0, Redundant)

honold (152273) | more than 11 years ago | (#5082984)

there is nothing unique about snood. all of the gameplay elements are a direct rip-off of bust-a-move.

see this review [ign.com] for a little more on the subject, and give your money to the people who not only invented the game but implement it better than their 'successor' clone!

Re:NOT just a bust-a-move clone (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5083181)

IGN is dead wrong about Snood, as is whomever thought that Frozen Bubble is equivalent. There are two seemingly small differences between Snood and the Puzzle Bobble series, but they make all the difference in the world.

The first difference is the lack of any timing element. This gives Snood a meditative quality unlike Bust-a-Move, which uses power bubbles and other flashy gimmicks as a crutch to make up for dull game fundamentals.

More importantly, Snood's danger bar can be ROLLED BACK. This makes Snood an infinitely more complex and strategic game than Bust-a-Move; you don't need perfect aim or lucky pieces to win, just great thinking. To use another video game analogy: it's the difference between someone who uses ticks and cheap combos to play Street Fighter II, and someone who can win without throwing a single hadouken.

There are just enough really subtle touches in Snood that I think Dave Dobson really understands game design. His earlier (Mac-only) game, Centaurian, is an outstanding tribute to Bosconian as well as every classic video game of the 80's.

I do pity the poor Windows users who have to put up with crapware like Gator to install Snood, though. The original Mac version never had any spyware, and I don't expect the Mac OS X version to, either.

Good Design, Annoying Installation (5, Insightful)

weeeee (196575) | more than 11 years ago | (#5082987)

If only this game doesn't come with every spyware software in existance! All my friends have this game, and they wonder why their computer runs like crap after installation. Thank you Ad-Aware.

Spyware (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5083188)

Yes, the author appears to need extra revenue sources. Spyware is a suckshit thing to package with any program. I say flood Dobson until he removes Bonzai Buddy et al!

It's not always about graphics and violence (5, Insightful)

stevenbdjr (539653) | more than 11 years ago | (#5082989)

Games are at heart a form a recreation and enjoyment. Some people find games like Counter Strike and UT2003 disturbing, and with good reason. Games like Tetris, Solitaire, and Snood, are simply fun, without the violence. These are the types of games that parents, grandparents, and wifes play. That's a big market.

Heck, I'm a huge RTCW player, but one of my favorite games is still Columns on Sega Genesis.

Puzzle Bobble (2, Informative)

Snover (469130) | more than 11 years ago | (#5082991)

Snood is primarily a cheap rip-off of the arcade game Puzzle Bobble (aka Bust-a-Move in the USA). Mame [mame.dk] does an excellent job of playing the ORIGINAL versions, and there are also plenty of less "hacked" alternative (by hacked, I mean that Snood has removed a lot of the original features of the game that made it really fun).

I hope these games get popular... (3, Funny)

GoofyBoy (44399) | more than 11 years ago | (#5082992)

.. cause in my old age I can't play twitch games like I used to.

In a child-like echoy voice;
"Ready ... GO!"

Hm (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5082998)

The Snood-equivalent for Linux is Frozen Bubble.

This may be the killer app that gets the world's desktop running Linux and KDE!!!

Re:Hm (1)

LiftOp (637065) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083160)

...which can only mean that the killer app to get the world running VIC 20's again can't be far behind...

...at least I hope so, I've got a Commodore tape drive I'm a-itchin' to put on eBay.

Uh, isn't this bust-a-move? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5082999)

From the PS and PS2?

If it is, the one thing I noticed about it is that it's one game that girls of all kinds seem to like playing...

What's so great about Snood? (2)

Junior J. Junior III (192702) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083000)

I got bored with it after about five minutes.

Bust a Move Rip Off? (4, Informative)

Flamesplash (469287) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083007)

Isn't Snood just a rip off of Bust a Move [ign.com] ? I heard of Bust a Move long before Snood. Or is this one of those occassions where Bust a Move is the rip off and happens to be more well known.

Re:Bust a Move Rip Off? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5083103)

That's exactly what I was going to say.

I love Bust-a-Move. I play bust-a-move-3 on my GBC when I travel. They messed up version 4 and you just can't tell two of the colors apart. Very sad.

Funny, the slashdotted Snood website points to download.com, so I did a search there [com.com] and the second result is a "Bust a Move Clone".

Re:Bust a Move Rip Off? (1)

devnull17 (592326) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083107)

Nope. Bust-a-Move is the original, although that's not the original name. The series was released in Japan (and Europe, I believe) as "Puzzle Bobble." "Bust-a-Move" in Japan, where the game in all its incarnations are developed, refers to the Bemani-like series that Americans know as "Bust-a-Groove." Confused yet?

Re:Bust a Move Rip Off? (1)

Ark42 (522144) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083112)

I agree - I was like "wtf is snood??" until I clicked on the frozen-bubble link and saw the screenshots. Immediately, I thought "OHhhh! they mean 'Bust a Move'!"

Re:Bust a Move Rip Off? (1)

SonicBurst (546373) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083144)

Bust-a-move is at least circa '91 or '92, and that was for the US NeoGeo version of it. I'm sure the Japanese version was around much earlier, and even then it may have been ported to the NG from something else, as it really isn't too hardware intensive.

Re:Bust a Move Rip Off? (5, Informative)

boinger (4618) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083147)

That was my immediate thought, too - some quick Googling shows that the original Bust A Move was an English conversion of a Japanese game "Puzzle Bobble" - the copyrights for Bust A Move go back to 1994.

So, the question is, when is Snood from?

Re:Bust a Move Rip Off? (1, Redundant)

Raster Burn (213891) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083162)

Yeah, I remember Snood... back when it was called BUST A MOVE

Re:Bust a Move Rip Off? (2)

boinger (4618) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083196)

Most game reviewers of Snood say that it's "a ripoff of Bust-A-Move", notably. And they generally say something like "Snood is a PC rehash of Bust-A-Move, complete with worse graphics than the original". I've never played Snood, but judging by screenshots [geocities.com] , I think they're right.

Some additional Googling turned up the Puzzle Bobble/Bust-A-Move FAQ [neogeoforlife.com] .

Re:Bust a Move Rip Off? (2)

oGMo (379) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083214)

They all look like Puzzle Bobble [overclocked.org] to me, and that was for the SNES, which is even older than the platforms listed for Bust a Move. I can't find any source for a NES version having existed, though the arcade and GameGear versions listed on that page may have been of that era.

Re:Bust a Move Rip Off? (2, Informative)

Lazlo Nibble (32560) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083225)

Snood is the rip-off of Bust-A-Move (a/k/a Puzzle Bobble [klov.com] , et al.). The fact that so few people seem to recognize this kind of reinforces the original author's point about the recent obscurity of the puzzle-game genre.

Re:Bust a Move Rip Off? (0, Redundant)

Lux_Nova (626166) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083255)

Exactly. It's a fun game, but IMHO the author has a lot of nerve to ask for money for this game, let alone receive recognition for a great game. C'mon, it's a total rip-off..

No Need To Worry (1)

aerojad (594561) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083008)

There will always be a need for a simple game (board game, tetris game, etc.) that doesn't greet the user with 200fps and take 5 gigs to install needing 1.5 gigs of ram to run smoothly on the newest mind-bending video card. There will always be a market for that, but there is just a level of satisfaction of beating a computer at chess that shooting someone on a Counter-Strike map can never duplicate.

Web Games (1)

Arc04 (601196) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083016)

I think there is a big market for compilations of classic games on portable consoles like the Gameboy SP.

And people on ancient PCs can play these games without having to have $300 video cards - good for poor people who still like addictive gameplay.

snood is fun but... (2)

Stanley Feinbaum (622232) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083021)

The windows version really blows. It's slow and thegraphics are chunky. Like most programs originally coded for Mac, it was NOT ported to windows properly.

I enjoy playing snood on my g4 when I am not working on journalism but I have tried it on PCs a few times and it is a terrible mess. How snood became popular outside the Mac platform I will not know...

strike it rich (2, Insightful)

mesach (191869) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083022)

I think that was the problem with the .bombs

Everyone wanted to "Strike it rich" and didn't care if what they were striking it rich on was really worthwile. I mean come on dog food delivery?!

While I think that snood would probably be cool to play on a cell phone. Don't do it because you wanna get rich doing it, just do it cause its a thing that you think we need,

I think the quote is
do what you love the money will come.

snood = bust a move (1)

Ferro_Man (252684) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083028)

a lot of people here on campus play snood and are also addicted to it. It is almost identical to the bust-a-move games. My mom playes bust a move for the n64 [nintendo.com] all the time, and she would challenge me to play against her (i would win eventhough the only time i play the game is when she challenges me)...and now she has my 10 year old cousin hooked on the gamel, because my mom actually bought her a copy of bust a move for the computer! I have not played snood, but it looks identical to bust a move.

i don't really know anything about where one would download or purchase snood, but it seems to me that the programmers for bust a move should be able to get money for copywrite infringement

Zen and Snood (3, Interesting)

_Sambo (153114) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083029)

The logic of solving small puzzles quickly and in sequence is the best training i can think of for the world's future coders.

Snood, like tetris, is a puzzle that is impossible (or at least improbable) to beat. But trying to do the improbable is one of the most endearing traits of the human species. (Think flying, scuba diving, landing on the moon, ending the cold war, etc.)

This speed induced logic could help to sharpen the minds of young scientists, and keep the minds of bored scientists busily doing nothing for the duration of their addiction. Crap. It's a double-edged sword.

God bless Snood.

Re:Zen and Snood (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5083098)

An appeal of Snood is it's lack of a countdown clock. Take an afternoon to line up a shot if you want. Snood can wait. :)

Most popular Rip-Off (3, Insightful)

brandorf (586083) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083043)

Snood is fun, but it's hardly original, Taito's Bust-a-Move has been around for years prior to the emergence of snood, and has seveal arcade games, and ports on the PSX, PS2, GBC, GBA, PC and probbably others as well. It's interesting that almost enveryone in college has played snood, but most have never heard of the original. I don't really think there's any sort of analogy for it.

Re:Most popular Rip-Off (1)

stratjakt (596332) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083167)

I'd never heard of Snood in my life until today, but I've been a fan of Bust-a-move/Puzzle Bobble forever.

There are tons of clones of it about, maybe I did play Snood and then immediately forgot about it as soon as I saw another Bust-A-Move clone.

I always liked (3, Insightful)

big_groo (237634) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083044)

Blockout [blockout.de] .

A 3D Tetris-a-like. Loads of fun.

.

Re:I always liked (2)

Deagol (323173) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083145)

I'd forgotten about this awesome game (a download into my VMWare session is going as I type this). Far more enjoyable than Tetris. And far better than Welltris. Anyone remember that piece of shit, Welltris? Man, did it suck ass. I can't belive I spent real money on that game.

a rip off and... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5083058)

it's a game that will entertain mentally challenged 5 year olds. What a waste of time.

Yes, theres a demand (1)

supergwiz (641155) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083060)

Is Snood part of a series of tiny puzzley games, like Tetris and Bejeweled, that can still do well in a world of Counterstrikes and Unreal Tournaments?

Of course theres still a demand for simply, small games. Just look at Nintendo GameBoys sales numbers.

Dont forget bubble bobble (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5083061)

The ORIGINAL game where the green monster from bust a move came from. I owned the commodore 64 version, and it was a VERY addictive platformer, which imho pushed a lot onto a small cassete.

I never completed all 100 levels, But its still a legendary game that deserves a mention.

Re:Dont forget bubble bobble (1)

stratjakt (596332) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083202)

The 'monsters' are named Bub and Bob, and are actually princes who've been transformed into the little bubble-blowing dragons, and are on an adventure to be returned to their original states.

It was followed with an incredibly poor sequel: Rainbow Islands, which as legend has it, was rushed to production in 2 weeks after the developers sat around doing nothing while they were being paid to do a Bubble Bobble sequel.

Then came Puzzle Bobble/Bust-A-Move, and later came Snow Bros - which is pretty much an update of Bubble Bobble with shinier graphics, boss battles, more powerups, and this time featuring princes who've been converted to snowmen who ensnare their enemies in big snowballs instead of bubbles.

And thats the story of Bubble Bobble.

Oh yeah, every game in the series, save Rainbow Islands has been cloned to death by unoriginal game developers. Snood among them.

Important Concept Missing from Frozen Bubble (2)

Lord Bitman (95493) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083063)

Okay, played this thing for 3 seconds, it looks well executed [especially for an Open Source game, how the hell many GOOD games do we have? zero? yep!]
But it launches colors which arent already on the screen, adding needless clutter and taking away from the fast-paced nature of Bust-A-Move. Booo! Hissss!
Yeah, I formed that opinion in 3 seconds.

"blogchive"?? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5083067)

Excuse me while I puke. You stupid fucks need to quit with the bloody idiotic 'blog' crap.

Blogchive. Geez.

Snood (0, Interesting)

wdr1 (31310) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083081)

Since, Jamie, in his glorious wisdom, saw fit not to give a link to the actual thing he was talking about, here it is:

http://www.snood.com/index.html [snood.com]

Which leaves one to wonder, if this were submited by a regular reader, would this have made it the front page? Especially as poorly constructed this rambling piece is?

Perhaps in the future, Jamie could submit [slashdot.org] his items for the front page and see if another Editor approves it? (Just like in grocery store doesn't allow a clerk to check out their own purchases, but has the clerk go through someone else, as a simple honesty check.)

Full marks if they submit anonymously to eliminate any bias due to an existing working/friendship relationship with the other editors.

-Bill

Re:Snood (-1, Offtopic)

wdr1 (31310) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083247)

Thanks for mod'ing this down Jamie. Nice use of 'Overrated' too, to avoid meta-moderation.

You want addictive and simple? (1)

ansomatica (180031) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083085)

My circle of friends are somewhat addictive to this great little helicopter game [seethru.co.uk] .

blatant plug (3, Informative)

kisrael (134664) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083091)

My contribution to the 'amazingly simple game' genre are game buttons [kisrael.com] , reasonably rich games each played entirely within a single CGI form grey pushbutton, as both controller and display. I still come back to these every once in a while, especially Dashteroids and Happy Eater.

Re:blatant plug (3, Interesting)

LucVdB (64664) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083250)

Hey, those are pretty cool. Well done.

I also like Tiny Windows Games [tinywindowsgames.com] .

This makes me think that given half a chance humans will find a game in even the simplest activity.

already been ported to cell phones (2, Insightful)

ketamine (88165) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083096)

I've had snood on my samsung java-enabled phone for a few months...

Always room for these games (4, Insightful)

core plexus (599119) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083100)

"Is Snood part of a series of tiny puzzley games, like Tetris and Bejeweled, that can still do well in a world of Counterstrikes and Unreal Tournaments?"

Short answer: Most Definately

I've found older people and kids, especially, love Frozen Bubble (in Linux), as well as Tetris, Minesweeper, Tux Racer, etc. There will always be a place for these games. And don't just do it on the hope of making a mint: do it for the challenge, the thrill, the exposure, or even the vanity.

Fight with computer brings SWAT team [xnewswire.com]

For crying out loud. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5083105)

News? Stuff that matters? Pfft, at least Chips & Dips wasn't this lame. What the hell happened to it, anyway?!

It's not just computer games. (2, Insightful)

Tofino (628530) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083123)

Little, simple card, board, and RPG games also get little respect from card, board, and RPG game developers or "hardcore" gamers. Magic: The Gathering (the card game) and Mage Knight (the miniatures game) are both available for purchase in every game store in existence, you can learn to play either in about 20 minutes, and they are fun and addictive. The rules, while not particularly rich or complicated, are elegant, and strong enough to keep people playing. But both of these games are looked down upon by "traditional" gamers.

The Year of the Snood (5, Funny)

sandbenders (301132) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083126)

I remember it like it was yesterday- rank upon rank of students sitting behind Macs in the computer labs, forcing helpless drama students to go to the engineering labs and use windows machines to get their homework done. Countless hours lost, students failing left and right, the university computer store replacinging record numbers of worn-out Mac mice and keyboards.... The cause: Snood. The year: 1998.

Good thing Slashdot stays on top of the latest trends in the Mac world.

Among my friends, Snood has come and gone, enjoyed a brief renaissance, and finally slipped into obscurity. In fact, the year I graduated, in 1998, the term 'Bad Snood'- for a stupid move, or a stroke of bad luck- was in common usage on campus.

Puzzle bobble ripoff (1, Funny)

YAN3D (552691) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083133)

1. Take puzzle bobble (bust a move in the U.S)
2. Add shitty graphics
3. Add spyware
4. ?
5. Profit!

Re:Puzzle bobble ripoff (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5083175)

Cookie for the South Park reference. If I had mod points, you'd be gettin' one. (:

Re:Puzzle bobble ripoff (1)

Cuthalion (65550) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083246)

Step 3 = step 5.

The way this works is Gator Inc, or whoever, will pay you per copy of their software you trick your users into installing. I doubt it's still this high, but when I was working for Sonique (the mp3 player) in early 2001 Gator offered $1 (!) per install (we turned them down).

best game in the genre... (4, Insightful)

kisrael (134664) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083140)

*THE* best game in the genre, at least for two players, is "Panel de Pon" aka "Tetris Attack" aka "Pokemon Puzzle League". This game has an amazing seesaw action two player, since the garbage blocks you send to your opponent can end up being used against you, allowing combos that will bring garbage blocks raining down on your own head.

EGM mentioned some upcoming mega-puzzle-compilation for GameCube, with 4 player versions of Tetris, Tetris Attack, Dr. Mario, etc...man, I am *so* there.

Re:best game in the genre... (1)

Cuthalion (65550) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083218)

Panel de Pon is the first game to introduce the notion of attack blocks from chains, and is a fine game, but the Best 2p puzzle game is Money Puzzle Exchanger, for the Neo Geo. The PSX version is okay, if you have a region 2 (or modded) PSX, but the neo geo one is the one to play. I guess if you don't have a Neo Geo you can just use MAME. :/

You should also check out Starsweep, if you can find it. It's for the PSX and was made by the same guy who wrote Panel de Pon.

Btw: I've recently (a few weeks ago) to start building a definitive collection of puzzle games (with the appropriate hardware. Fuck emulators!). Any suggestions?

snood (1)

Zen (8377) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083161)

Yes, Snood is definitely one of the most popular games out there. Every once in a while it comes up in a conversation, and people always recognize it. My wife plays it on the pc for hours, and I play on my palm pilot whenever I'm stuck somewhere and have nothing better to do.

You mean... (1)

vasqzr (619165) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083163)


A game doesn't have to be an overhyped, over-produced, $2 million budget, 3D rendered, hunk of shit to be 'good'?

You're kidding me.

What I loved about the older video games, up until about the SNES era, was that game programmers could be innovative instead of concentrating on packing CD's full of graphics and 3D effects.

Possible reason why (1)

saitoh (589746) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083169)

Well, I can speak for those at my school (UMPI) who live in the dorms. The games are widly held as being king over Halo or UT style games.

Now why this happens can possibly be attributed to the same reasons why Nintendo wont grow up (see previous slashdot story for more info); people seem to want simple games that are just fun. Nothing complex, nothing where many days/weeks are required to learn the game or even become proficient at it. People (atleast those that I have contact with) appear to fit into this reasoning.

3 cents (was 2, but inflation is a w3nch)

Page

Re:Possible reason why (1)

devnull17 (592326) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083206)

I think there's a simpler explanation. Of all of the people I know in my building at UMass Amherst, I think maybe three of them have decent graphics accelerators. PC games, when present at all, are very simplistic.

Non-computer games (1)

Continental Drift (262986) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083171)

I'm a programmer, and I enjoy many computer games, but over the past few years I have been doing much more non-computer game design. The best of those that I had the privilege to work on is Zendo [wunderland.com] , best described as an inductive puzzle game where the first player to figure out the puzzle wins. But there are hundreds of other great games [looneylabs.com] out there that don't require electricity.

Here [wunderland.com] are several essays on game design, many focusing on simplifying a game to focus on the interesting mechanics and decisions. Clearly this applies to computer games as well, but non-computer games are also more accessible to non-programmers.

Confessions of a Snood addict (2)

seldolivaw (179178) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083174)

I habitually browse the web in one window while playing snood in the other. I was playing Snood when I saw this article. I play Snood while watching TV, and when I'm chatting, and whenever I should be working. I play Snood a *LOT*.

Further confession: I use the aimer, 'cause I prefer the puzzles to the actual dexterity skills. Or so I rationalize it to myself, anyway.

Play Snood responsibly (3, Funny)

Mr. Sketch (111112) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083182)

I had a friend in college that played Snood for a very long time and her leg fell asleep so when she got out of her chair she fell on her leg just right and broke it.

Yep, Snood is responsible for at least one broken leg so, please play responsibly.

Always room for these types of games (2)

Masem (1171) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083183)

Tetris, Snood, Bejeweled will always fill a niche in the gaming market that you'll rarely find filled by major developers, in that these are the types of games people play when they want a quick diversion, or don't want to upgrade to the latest & greatest hardware, or just to have something more intellicully stimulating than most FPSs without the time commitment of RPGs and RTS games. They load fast, are easy to learn, require few resources, and yet can be addictive and fun to play. There's more of them being made all the time by the same type of people that specialize in shareware, PopCap being a prime example of a group working off their success. And with the easy of programming these things thanks to the simplicity of Flash and/or Java, there's a lot more people getting involved with these as well.

Sure, not all the games are equally challenging, and not every game will be met with the same appriciation as others, but it's definite a niche that needs to be filled and it's being filled quite well.

Re:Always room for these types of games (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5083226)

Quick diversion?? I started playing a game on journey difficulty, and six hours later I was still on round 50!! What I wouldn't give for a save feature...

Sooo.... (2)

sharkey (16670) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083184)

Woz likes Snoodling, huh?

Not an indie design success story (5, Insightful)

Junks Jerzey (54586) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083187)

I've played it on and off since then. But the ninth most popular game in 2001? That's nuts. Is Snood part of a series of tiny puzzley games, like Tetris and Bejeweled, that can still do well in a world of Counterstrikes and Unreal Tournaments?

I like the sentiment, wanting the little indie game designer to succeed. That's great!

But at the same time, is it really a success for all these so called inde developers to keep endlessly, endlessly, cloning the same handful of Tetris variants? Even ten years ago these things were stale, and now, in 2003, we have people hailing a design 100% borrowed from the Bust-A-Move arcade game from the mid 1990s as a "success" for the little developer? Surely there is a way to stay outside the "world of Counterstrikes and Unreal Tournaments" without resorting to writing rehashes of the same diddly batch of puzzle games.

Bust A Move (1, Redundant)

vitaflo (20507) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083191)

Perhaps it's worth noting that Snood (and all games like it) are based off of the addicting game Bust A Move [gamespot.com] , originally released on the Neo Geo in arcades in 1994.

This type of game is definitely not new. Just had to give credit where it was due. ;)

Addicted (1)

VariableSanity (578725) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083197)

This game is evil. I go to college, and snood has become the game to play in the dorms. They are all addicted to snood!! And I am not joking, the amount of games played is a few hundred in the first month. WHY??? SNOOD IS THE DEVIL!!! (Shannon: Lay off the snood)

Frozen Bubbles LAN Fun (2)

long_john_stewart_mi (549153) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083203)

I went to a LAN party in the summer, and the most popular tournament was Frozen Bubbles (I *think*... CS may have barely beaten it). The great thing about the game is that the learning curve isn't very steep. If everybody has little experience at it (like most people at the LAN), that's when you have a blast. You can just hop in, learn the 3 buttons necessary, and have fun. =)

bust a move (2)

Suppafly (179830) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083209)

How can you give props to snood for being inovative when its a blatant ripoff of bust a move which came out several years before snood was even conceived.

plug for a simple game (1)

Gallo Nero (466182) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083210)

I used to like squigs which was similar(ish) and came on a coverdisk of an amiga mag ... er, this was some years ago.

anyway if you think thats simple try this ...

(flash game) [happyworm.com]

I really like it, but then I'm biased. Yes this is a shameless plug.

Bust-A-Move (3, Informative)

matticus (93537) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083212)

I remember throwing quarters into Bust-a-move like 8 years ago. Then last year, someone asked me if i had heard of "Snood," supposedly the "most addictive game ever". Surprisingly enough, it's not near as good as Bust-A-Move even though it's a DIRECT RIPOFF and as far as I can tell, the little Bubble Bobble dinosaurs don't get any money from the probably $12 the Snood creators made from including spyware in the game. It's disgusting. Which would you rather play, a game with the bubbly goodness of the dinosaurs, or a crappy ripoff that pops up ads? Give me a break. Frozen Bubble stays relatively true to the original Bust-A-Move, and it's Free, so check that out, but please, for the love of everything that is good, inform EVERYONE you know who has ever heard of Snood that it is a crappy ripoff of Bust-A-Move and it should be called Bust-A-Move, if only to make people aware that Bust-A-Move exists. Please.

Re:Bust-A-Move (3, Informative)

matticus (93537) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083238)

oh, and I'm aware that puzzle bobble came before bust-a-move, but they're the same game. Bust-a-move is just the american name for it.

Atomica, Snood et al (1)

Mephie (582671) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083221)

I was hyper hooked on Atomica for a long time (found on *gasp* MSN). After a while it sorta wore off, but I keep going back to it and other games like it. The main appeal to me is the fact that it's quick and simple, close to mindless, and you don't have to completely close out everything else you're doing and invest all of your attention on this one thing. It's a great background game which makes it perfect for a relaxer while working.

Or maybe it's an attention span thing...

Simple games rule... (1)

TwoEdge77 (92704) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083227)

More likely Unreal and Counterstrike doomed to extinction. The simple games will always be with us. Anyone for checkers?

Other puzzle games (2)

Old Wolf (56093) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083241)

The article says, "Tetris was the game that originally sold GameBoy, the single hit game that convinced people to buy the device."

I beg to differ - I had a GameBoy but was annoyed that it only came with stupid Tetris. I think GameBoy sold well because of the idea of being able to walk around playing games that were a bit more involving than existing handheld games (eg. those crappy flat display ones).

Back to my main point.... two other puzzle games I loved were Sokoban [sourcecode.se] (although the version I have has 100 maps and is free) and Blots, a game that was remarkable because you controlled one guy with the left hand and another with the right hand. Unfortunately, I cannot find Blots anywhere now. It was a shareware game in pre-web days but the author seems to have slipped out of existence after posting only five free levels. Any one got info?

Finally, I don't think it matters what the game is called... I've played this game but have never heard the names 'Snood' or 'Bust A Move', I'm sure when the survey called it the 9th most played game, they were referring to all games with this same theme.

For Zaurus users... (3, Informative)

dr_dank (472072) | more than 11 years ago | (#5083251)

there is Froot [unc.edu] . Definitely a must for Zaurus gamers who like Snood.
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