Super Soukoban is one fascinating video game. Heck, if the cover isn’t enough to catch your eye (it immediately captures my fancy and makes me wonder what the hell kind of game this is), then surely the intro will…
Obviously, the driver is clearly asking her to make him some coffee [NO! He’s asking her to join him for coffee ya git -Ed.]. Oh. Well, either way she’s visibly hesitant. No sooner then does a ride that’s more fly, as they say, pull up.
The new guy also requests her company. Stuck in the middle, with offers from both gentlemen, oh what’s a modern lady to do?! I can’t take this drama…
The rejected guy, cursing his lot in life, contemplates how a better set of wheels would right all wrongs…
What do you expect this sad bloke to do now? Will he
- A. Take out his anger by vanquishing bad guys in a beat ‘em up?
- B. Jump on cutesy animal baddies in a platformer?
- C. Work his way up the financial ladder in a sim?
- D. Push boxes around in an empty warehouse?
- E. Learn the art of ass kicking and throw fireballs in a 2D fighter?
If you picked “D”… Bob, tell him what he’s won!
GameBoy players might be familiar with Boxxle, which came out back in 1989.
Super Soukoban is a mind-taxing logic game; the goal is to push boxes to cover the purple dots. You can’t pull, you can only push and you can only move one box at a time. You can imagine the mess you’d create if you push a box in an ill-advised position. Thankfully, besides the option to restart a level at any point, pressing “L” rewinds the action and allows the player to go back as far as he wishes. Likewise, “R” is fast forward, in case you went too far back. This can prove to be a God-send and was very wise on the programmers’ part. It’s great because rather than completely restarting a level, it encourages experimentation and creativity at each step (literally) of the way. Kudos!
There’s no time limit however there is a step limit. Nothing beats solving a puzzle with exactly 0 steps remaining! That is the ultimate rush.
Let’s take a look at some of the stages now.
Ah, the classic simple first stage to acclimate players to the world of Soukoban.
Get each box in that position there, where the guy is in front of. Surely you can take it from here.
This stage introduces the darkened box. This indicates the box is already resting on a purple dot. Later stages may have multiple. They can be tricky so watch it…
OH PLEASE, EVEN A FOUR-YEAR-OLD CAN SOLVE THESE…
OK wiseguy. There are a total of 300 (!) warehouses to tackle, with the option of jumping to any one at any time. A password is given each time you clear a level. Of course, the first handful eases you in, before becoming gradually harder until DAMN! Notice as the puzzles get more complex, everything is properly reduced in size. Nothing intimidates than seeing a small screen littered with dozens and dozens of boxes…
A look at some of the later stages then.
See! They quickly become absolute conundrums in no time flat.
In fact, rumor has it that launch day buyers TO THIS DAY are still stuck on level 289!!
[Oh? Source? -Ed.]
Er, moving on…
To cap it off, there’s also a Level Edit option and a radical 2-player mode to see who can finish first. There’s even a choice of 10 characters to select from. It’s the perfect way to top off what is already a well-baked cake.
Sokoban (note the missing “u“) loosely translates to “warehouse keeper,” and has been around since the early ’80s, pioneered by one, Hiroyuki Imabayashi. Its easy-to-play-but-difficult-to-solve gameplay is as pure as it gets. It’s a brilliant game that anyone, even non-gamers, can really enjoy. The 2 player mode is a nice bonus, but it’s really the 300 puzzles that will last players a lifetime. Or at least, a good chunk of time, anyhow.
Super Soukoban is really a can’t-miss for those who enjoy staring contemplatively at the screen until inspiration breaks through with a resolute A-HA!
This is, sadly, an underrated Super Famicom gem. Don’t overlook it just because it lacks explosions or “thrills.” It’s amazing how satisfying it is to solve these levels. Sometimes just taking 20-30 minutes to figure out ONE level is good enough to call it a night. Who knew moving boxes around in a cluttered abandoned warehouse could be so damn awesome?