Junket: puzzle game idea

I’m already set on not doing this, but here’s a game idea I was turning over in my mind as our ragtag band of misfits introduced one another.

I recently bought this fun, simple puzzle with a nice, tactile feel. Being shaped like a set of keys, it seems only natural to carry it in my pocket. I can toy with it when I’m thinking hard about a problem at work, or if I’m waiting to get on a train. It’s like a lightning rod, dispelling a cognitive charge that would otherwise distract me.

The puzzle can be in one of many states, one of which is the solution. Finding that solution isn’t the only joy in keeping the puzzle, however– pushing it from state to state is its own reward.

It would be neat to present a mobile phone user with an unexplained object- a new one each day- whose design allowed it to change state similarly. The lowest energy state would be called the “solution”, and the player would have to figure out how to flip, turn, or slide its components around to match the solution state.

And then the solution would disappear, and they’d be left with the object, still inexplicable but now explorable, mapped, familiar.

Project code name: Junket

Pros:

  • Leverages 3D scene graph, which I need to learn
  • Relies on interactive gestures and mouse picking, which I need to learn
  • Relies minimally on UI, which I need to learn
  • Requires few assets

Cons:

  • Requires procedural generation of puzzles at its core
  • How does this idea become concrete?
  • Conceptually a hard sell
  • There’s already a lot of games like this for sale
    • And they’ve received more than six weeks of effort

So, no. Sorry Junket.

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