Originally released in 1982 for the PC-8801, Sokoban is an ingenious overhead puzzle game about a guy pushing boxes around a warehouse.
That might sound as dull as dishwater to some people, but the fact is: Sokoban is extremely clever and very challenging, and is one of those games that really gets the brain muscles flexing in order to beat it.
The idea is to push the boxes (you cannot pull, unfortunately) into their required positions (marked by circles on the floor) in the fastest possible time, with the least possible moves. Pressing P will pause the game, giving you time to breathe (but unfortunately not time to study the floor – the game cuts to a score screen), and there is also a very handy ‘save position’ feature, which is enabled by pressing F7.
One wrong move in Sokoban, though, and a level becomes un-finishable. Thankfully, a press of F3 will start the level again from scratch, plus: pressing F1 will return you to an intro screen that allows you to choose which level to attempt next. Which is great because some levels are so difficult that they would block progress otherwise. You can take on any of the 99 levels in any order you like. Levels 01 to 50 are playable, and levels 51-99 are blank for editing, using the game’s built-in editor.
Sokoban isn’t for everybody. If you’re wanting for braincells, or patience, it’s unlikely to float your boat. That said, if you love a tough puzzle game, and prefer a decent challenge, you will probably love it. I think it’s an amazing puzzle game, but does require a lot of forward thinking. Advanced chess players will definitely see the appeal.
This Commodore 64 conversion was published by Spectrum Holobyte in 1988.