Wednesday, May 31, 2006
Posted by Jon Westfall in "SOFTWARE" @ 08:00 AM
Masterful Mastersoft Additions
Mastersoft has been a pioneer bringing SuDoku and Kakuro to the Pocket PC world, and they have built in a number of great features into their clients that allow new players as well as veterans the chance to improve their game and tailor it to their current skills. Both offer many levels of difficulty, and because their engine solves puzzles as a human would, their difficulty ratings are pretty accurate. Rarely will I come across a mis-labeled difficulty (more often a hard puzzle that is actually pretty easy), and this happens so rarely it could just be my momentary glimpses of insight that are the cause, not their solver!
Two features that I particularly like in SuDoku are the extensive customization features and the flip feature. The customizations let you use any sort of set you'd like instead of just boring old numbers in your SuDoku. In the screen shot below, I chose People, don't they look happy to be in my puzzle?
Figure 10: With the skinning feature, I suppose I could use little pictures of my friends... wouldn't they be delighted!
The flip feature is also interesting and useful. If you hadn't thought of it already, here is a thought: SuDokus retain the same solution regardless of how they're oriented, as long as the relative positions of each number remains the same. Mastersoft has built in a neat ability to send your numbers flying around the board either directly flipping or rotating around to give you a new perspective on a puzzle you may be stuck on. Behold the before and after shots below!
Figure 11: Stuck In The Rut.
Figure 12: Rotated!