Puzzle & Dragons (パズル&ドラゴンズ Pazuru Ando Doragonzu) is a puzzle video game with role-playing and strategy elements, developed by GungHo Online Entertainment for the iOS, Android, and Kindle Fire platforms.
Puzzle & Dragons is a match-three puzzle game, requiring players to move and match colored orbs arranged in a grid. The amount and type of matches determine which of the six monsters on the player's team attack the waves of enemy monsters and how much damage they do. An additional layer of challenge is the acquisition, selection, and improvement of a team of monsters from among thousands ranging from standard fantasy fare, to deities from several religions and mythologies and characters from popular entertainment franchises.
The game is free-to-play and financed by the sale of in-game currency. It is a commercial success in Japan, where it was downloaded 32 million times by November 2014, and was released in other Asian countries as well as in North America and many European countries. Total worldwide downloads surpassed 50 million by September 2015, and 62 million by October 2017. Puzzle & Dragons is the first mobile game in history to gross $1 billion in revenue, eventually grossing $6 billion by the end of 2017. It was the highest-grossing mobile app of all time up until it was surpassed by Monster Strike in October 2018. Puzzle & Dragons has grossed $7 billion, and is the second highest-grossing mobile app of all time, as of October 2018. The game has spawned a franchise consisting of several video games as well as an anime series Puzzle & Dragons X.
|Puzzle & Dragons|
|Developer(s)||GungHo Online Entertainment|
|Platform(s)||iOS, Android, Kindle Fire|
Puzzle & Dragons is a combination of two types of gameplay: tile matching and a monster collecting RPG. Players create teams by picking from the over 4000 different monsters they can acquire within the game and then play dungeons where they solve a tile-matching puzzle that determines how powerful their monsters' attacks are on waves of enemy monsters.
The monsters in PAD are drawn from many origins. Their designs range from fantasy creatures such as dragons, demons, ogres, and goblins, to monsters based on deities and other figures of various mythologies around the world; also included are third party fictional characters available for limited periods of time. Players collect these monsters as rewards for completing the game's dungeons or spending in-game currency (either won through gameplay or purchased) at the "Egg Machines".
The various statistics different monsters possess add to the strategic nature of the game. One monster on the team is designated as the "Leader", and will have a passive leader skill that affects either the offensive or defensive abilities of the player's team throughout play in a dungeon. In addition, nearly all monsters also possess active skills that the player can use to their advantage in play, but these possess a cooldown timer, which requires the player to take several turns before being able to use the skill. During play, the player also picks a monster from other players to add to their party. Prior to version 7.4.1, only the player's friends would have their leader skill activated and "adventurers" could only be chosen to possibly become friends after; version 7.4.1 makes the "adventurer" players' monsters have leader skills active as well. Players are limited to what monsters they can use on their teams based on their rank and the monster's associated team cost which is based on the monster's rarity and strength. When the player increases his or her player rank through completing dungeons and earning experience points, the total team cost is increased, as well. Players can save multiple teams to use in the game, starting out at six possible combinations to set up. Teams can be tailored to defeat a particular dungeon, or be set up to best utilize the team's leader skill.
Monsters are made more powerful through fusing them with others, which increases the selected monster's experience. If the two monsters possess the same skill, there is a chance that the base monster's skill level will be increased, which will lower the skill's cooldown counter permanently. Certain monsters won in the game also are marked with a plus (+) sign and a number, which indicates that they have a statistic that is increased in comparison to identical monsters; using these monsters in fusion passes on the increased statistic to the base monster. Once a monster reaches a set maximum level, the monster can be evolved, so long as the player possesses other monsters required for that particular monster's evolution. Evolution resets the monster's level back to 1, but it also allows for the monster's statistics to be increased through leveling once more. An "Ultimate Evolution" mechanic was added to the game in its update to version 4.0, which can change a monster's various statistics around, changing how that monster can be used strategically in dungeons. The update to version 6.0 added the Awoken Skill system, adding additional passive skills that all monsters on a team have active in dungeon play.
The puzzle system in Puzzle & Dragons is found within the game's dungeons, where the play of a tile-matching puzzle determines the strength of the player's monsters' attacks. Dungeons consist of certain numbers of waves of enemy monsters, each with their own offensive and defensive statistics. The player must clear all of the dungeon's floors without having their team's collective HP drop to zero. The game screen is split, with the enemy monsters appearing on the top half of the screen, and a 6-by-5 tile grid appearing on the bottom, divided by the player's own team of monsters.
Dungeon encounters are played out in a turn-based style. The player's turn consists of activating any skills from the monsters on their team if they are available, and then attempting to make a match (or "combo") of three or more tiles (or "orbs") on the board. The orbs are of the five colors representing the elemental attributes of the monsters (Fire, Wood, Water, Light, and Dark) as well as hearts that represent life recovery (certain enemy monster skills may introduce two other types of orbs to the board). The player drags an orb to adjacent positions, swapping with the orb already there. So long as the player does not let go of the orb, the player can move the orb as much as necessary within 4 seconds (unless changed by a player or enemy monsters' skills) once they start moving it, allowing them to arrange for several combos in a single turn. After completing this, all matched orbs are removed from the board and accounted for as damage. The board then cascades all orbs down and fills the board up once more; this may result in more combos, known as "skyfall combos" (落ちコン ochikon).
Damage is based on what colors were matched in the combos: for example, a basic combo of 3 red (Fire) orbs will have any player monster that is Fire attribute deal its damage equal to its base attack stat (ATK) to one creature. When heart orbs are matched in a combo, this restores health to the team based on the team's total health recovery stat (RCV). Combos of more than 3 orbs of the same color will increase the damage dealt for each additional orb. Making multiple combos in the same turn will boost all damage or healing for all monsters regardless of colors matched, while separate combos of the same color further multiply the damage dealt. Single combos of five or more orbs will activate an attack that hits all enemy monsters on the field. Certain Leader or Awoken Skills may also change damage dealt, so long as the particular parameters are met. Damage is dealt to a single monster, generally determined by the game as the best attack. Damage will be affected by both the opposing monsters' defense statistic and its elemental attribute, so fire damage against an opposing fire monster will work, but will be boosted against a wood monster and decreased against a water monster, and so forth in a rock-paper-scissors relationship; light and dark monsters are solely weak to the other type. The player can force damage to go against a specific monster by tapping it on the screen. After the player finishes their turn, a counter on each of the enemy monsters drops by one. If one of these counters gets to zero, that monster is given a turn to attack, and the counter resets to a predefined value. If a player does not end a turn on a successful match, the enemy monsters' attack counter advances once while any cool down timers for the player do not change (statuses imposed by enemy monsters are affected, though).
When an enemy monster's HP drops to zero, the monster drops out from battle, and there is a chance that it will leave a monster egg or treasure chest behind that will be part of the dungeon's reward. Once all monsters in an encounter are defeated, the player moves to the next encounter until reaching the boss encounter for that floor. Once the boss is defeated, the player earns the various rewards earned throughout the dungeon. If the player's team's HP drops to zero, they have the option to use in-game currency to continue from where they just lost, refilling their HP and resetting the entire board, or to abandon the dungeon and forego any gains from it. Completing a dungeon earns the player experience, as well as in-game currency and any monster eggs that were obtained through the encounters. Once all of the floors in a dungeon are completed, the next dungeon is unlocked.
The game features several types of dungeons that the player chooses to participate in. All dungeons have an associated Stamina cost, which is based on the player's rank in the game; this cost is scaled to the dungeon's difficulty, and if the player does not have enough stamina, they must wait until it is restored in real time or use an in-game currency to restore it. At the start, only the Normal Dungeons are available to the player. Enemy monsters in these dungeons will only ever cause standard damage during gameplay. After successful completion of a series of the Normal Dungeons, the Technical Dungeons (added in version 3.0) are unlocked. Technical Dungeons are more difficult, as enemy monsters now possess their own skills to increase their damage output or change the player's board by changing colors, obscuring the view, or adding the block and poison orbs that are unique to enemy monster skills. Some Technical Dungeons also impose restrictions on the player, such as restricting what monsters the player can use or deactivating all monsters' passive skills. After successfully clearing a series of the Technical Dungeons, a new "Challenge Mode" is unlocked, where the player creates a team from friends' monsters, relying on only their own monster's leader skill.
Also in play are Special Dungeons, which have limited periods of availability and often feature the strongest and rarest monsters in the game. Special Dungeons have their own separate difficulty scaling; the rarer monsters are less likely to be won from the easier difficulty dungeons, whereas completion of the highest difficulty ranking almost ensures winning the dungeon's boss. A recent addition to the Special Dungeons is a system that scores the player based on their dungeon performance and team make up and awards the player an additional rare monster for achieving a high score. Added to the version 7.2 update are "Coin Dungeons", Special Dungeons that the player can purchase with the in-game coin currency for one hour at a time, including several new Dungeons and new monsters only accessible in revamped dungeons. The Challenge Dungeon was also added to the game, appearing for limited times and offering prizes for successfully clearing increasingly difficult floors of the dungeon. A recent update added new Dungeons with roguelike gameplay, allowing players to challenge series of monsters, their own team levelling up along the way, to win monsters and in-game currency.
There are also ranking Dungeons, it appears as a special event and lasts for one week. Sometimes you will be given a team or you have to make a team for yourself. Finish the Ranking Dungeons with the time limit 300 seconds and get scores according to the performance you did in the dungeons. All players will compete for higher score. Certain rank will be given certain prices. Players that reach top 3% of the rank will be given a crown that can be placed next to your character name.
Puzzle & Dragons features multiple types of in-game currencies that the player uses for various purposes. The most versatile are the Magic Stones. Players are awarded Magic Stones for completing dungeons for the first time (or for the first time through Challenge Mode), or they can be purchased through the in-game store. Magic Stones are used to increase the capacity of the player's monster inventory, restore stamina to full capacity, increase the capacity of the player's friend list (after a certain level), and continue play in a dungeon if the player lost all HP. However, they are also used as payment for the Egg Machines, where the player can win rarer monsters. Players often save up Magic Stones for special server events where the rarer monsters have an increased payout at the Rare Egg Machine. These are split between Galas for single elemental types, Carnivals for themed sets of monsters, or the Godfests where the game's rarest God type monsters have increased payout. While these rare monsters can be obtained at any time from the Rare Egg Machine, there are monsters that can only be obtained during the Godfests.
Pal Points are an additional form of currency found in the game, which is awarded for participating in dungeons with other players. These are spent at the Pal Egg Machine, which usually does not award the player rare monsters, unless there is an event to make some rarer monsters more readily available from the Pal Egg Machine. Coins, along with experience points and monster eggs, are awarded to the player for completing dungeons. Coins are required for fusing monsters together, either for experience or evolution. They are also used to purchase access to the Coin Dungeons, which gives the player a chance to play certain time limited Special Dungeons or play new versions of dungeons with higher difficulties to attempt to win new rare monsters exclusive to the Coin Dungeons.
Most recently a new type of currency, Monster Points (MP), have been added to the game. These points can be obtained by selling monsters, where higher rarity monsters sell for more Monster Points. These points can be spent at the special Monster Point Shop to buy Evolution Materials, Tamadras, Latent Tamadras, and other rare monsters unobtainable from the Rare Egg Machine.
Puzzle & Dragons is also known for its collaboration events with several other video games and anime properties. During collaborations, Special Dungeons and special Collaboration Egg Machines are added to the game which contain monsters that can otherwise never be obtained again. The more common monsters won through the collaboration dungeons will possess the same skills as standard monsters, making them sought after for increasing monster skill levels. Most of the collaborations are exclusive to the Japanese edition of the game, but many have been released to the international editions. The collaborations are as follows (in chronological order as they were added to the Japanese edition of the game):
Puzzle & Dragons Challenge (パズドラチャレンジ Pazudora Charenji) is a spin-off application made available for a few times between 2013 and 2014. Players of PAD Challenge must use a set team of supplied monsters to defeat a series of powerful monsters within a 5-minute time limit.
In a future update to the standard Puzzle & Dragons app, Puzzle & Dragons Challenge will be further integrated, with players able to use their own designed teams to play against other players' teams for Pal Points, effectively creating customized dungeons.
On July 29, 2014, the Japanese edition of PAD updated to version 7.0.0 and with the update came Puzzle & Dragons W (パズドラＷ Pazudora Daburyū), a second game packaged with the normal PAD. It primarily features the TAMADRA monster from Puzzle & Dragons, and tells the story of how their AvaTAMA (アバたま Abatama) eggs, eggs containing clothing bestowed upon them by the other monsters, were stolen by the evil King DeviTAMA for his own use. The AvaTAMA pieces are the primary collectibles in PADW, instead of monsters.
Gameplay in PADW is similar to that in the standard game. Players spend stamina points to begin levels where they are given a certain amount of time to move a single orb around the puzzle board to make combos in order to perform damage on the enemy. However, the game is geared more towards the puzzle aspect than the RPG elements of PAD. The board in PADW is a 6-by-6 grid, and instead of monsters the player has a TAMADRA avatar that he or she customizes with the collected AvaTAMA hats, handheld items, and shell decorations. Each AvaTAMA activates different skills that the player can use on a puzzle, which is activated when the player touches a special skill star orb that appears on the board. Skills usually either change the color of orbs on the board or clears orbs such as in a line across the board, but there are skills that deal damage or give the player free movement for a period of time. Like in the regular game, players also pick a friend or explorer and their TAMADRA avatar and AvaTAMA pieces assist the player in completing the puzzles. New types of orbs have been added: rainbow-colored W orbs that act as wild cards for any three matches made with it, the white Angel orbs (included at launch), and the black Devil orbs (added in a later update). Jammer orbs have been changed to fill up the board where they cannot be matched, but can be removed if another nearby line is cleared; purple Jammer orbs multiply on the board if not cleared.
In order to perform damage to the enemy DeviTAMAs, the player must meet a certain goal for that level's puzzles. These take the form of requiring a particular color or set of colors be matched in a single turn, that a certain number of combos be made in a single turn, that a particular number of orbs be matched in a single combo, or any combination of the three. Players are given a limited number of turns per area (instead of dungeons) to reach these goals, but turns can be restored by matching heart orbs. Once all of the DeviTAMA enemies have been defeated, the player wins the level, and is then shown their score based on the number of turns left and their average number of combos. This score is then graded from one to three stars, and then awarded the contents of any AvaTAMA eggs and treasure chests that the enemies dropped. If the AvaTAMA are duplicates of what the player already owns, the item is leveled up instead of taking up inventory space. Treasure chests award the player medals, a new form of in-game currency. The next stage is unlocked once the player has a minimum of 4 stars for a single stage's three areas, but this doesn't require that all three areas be cleared. Clearing the third area is usually more difficult and requires more stamina, but finishing it for the first time restores the player's stamina and either awards a greater quantity of medals or a Magic Stone, which is carried over to the standard Puzzle & Dragons account.
As in the regular game, players can use Magic Stones to restore stamina, continue dungeons where the turns ran out, and increase the friend list capacity. The medals earned in the game go towards the Puzzle & Dragons W version of the Egg Machine. While single common items can be won with a fairly low number of medals spent, rarer items cost more medals and the rarest items can only be won if playing a multiple item spin.
Puzzle and Dragons Radar is an accessory app for Puzzle and Dragons meant to add augmented reality functionality with GPS support to the main game. It is available only in Japan. The app can be linked to the player's Puzzle and Dragons account. By playing through the Radar game, the player can collect orbs by walking around and exploring. The orbs can be redeemed for items and monsters in Puzzle and Dragons, including Tamadras, Piis, 1 hour dungeons, and many other prizes.
The Puzzle & Dragons Battle Tournament (パズドラ バトルトーナメント Pazudora Batoru Tōnamento, shortened to Pazubato (パズバト)) arcade game was released in collaboration with Square Enix on April 24, 2014. Gameplay in Battle Tournament is similar to the mobile game. The player uses a team of monsters and solves a tile-matching puzzle to determine how powerful their monsters' attacks are, and can activate their monsters' active skills during play for various effects and choose one monster to serve as team leader to use the passive leader skill. However, several changes were made to suit the arcade version, which uses the NESiCA smart card to save playing data for individual players. The puzzle is now on an 8-by-5 grid, allowing for greater movement and combos. The player's team of monsters consists only of their leader monster, three sub members, and a friend monster, however the player can also choose three reserve monsters that they can switch into play. Players choose avatars to play through the game's story mode as well as its online mode to play against other players in real time, and these avatars have their own active skills that can be used during play. Monsters' HP is not pooled, and individual monsters can be temporarily knocked out of play if they lose all HP. If more damage is dealt by the player's monsters when any have run out of HP, then the opponent receives direct damage. When either player's HP runs out, they lose the match. Throughout play, players can obtain special items used to either evolve their collected monsters or to use the game's Rare Egg Machine to obtain new monsters.
The first version of the game was subtitled Lazul Kingdom and Madoromi Dragon (ラズール王国とマドロミドラゴン Razūru Ōkoku to Madoromi Doragon). An update subtitled Champions of Lazul (チャンピオンズ オブ ラズール Chanpionzu Obu Razūru) was released nationwide on November 26, 2014.
The Puzzle & Dragons Trading Card Game was released in Japan on January 15, 2015. Gameplay involves matching up orbs on different cards to perform attacks or combos. To commemorate the release, a new limited time dungeon was added to the video game featuring a monster created for the trading card game.
On May 3, 2013, GungHo revealed a spin-off for the Nintendo 3DS named Puzzle & Dragons Z (パズドラZ Pazudora Zetto) during the Puzzle & Dragons Fan Appreciation Festival 2013. The game was released in Japan on December 12, 2013. Game play is in general identical to the mobile game, but it adds RPG elements such as towns and NPCs. As of February 24, 2014 the game has sold 1,374,333 copies. As of July 30, 2014, the game has shipped over 1.5 million copies. A manga about PADZ has been serialized in CoroCoro Comic since September 29, 2013, and the first tankōbon volume was released on April 28, 2014.
Puzzle & Dragons Z was released in North America and Europe in May 2015, packaged alongside the Super Mario Bros. Edition.
An arcade game edition titled Puzzle & Dragons Z: Tamer Battle (パズドラZ テイマーバトル Pazudora Zetto Teimā Batoru) was released on June 26, 2014. Players scan collectible trading cards into the arcade machine which they use to battle another player elsewhere in Japan in a similar system to the handheld game. There is additionally an incentive to use a "Z Bonus" indicated by a part of the card that will be cut off by the machine if chosen.
Puzzle & Dragons: Super Mario Bros. Edition for the Nintendo 3DS features characters from the Super Mario series in gameplay similar to that from Puzzle & Dragons Z, including an overworld and story. It was released on April 29, 2015, in Japan as a standalone title and later in South Korea on May 1, 2015. For the North American and European release, it was packaged with Puzzle & Dragons Z.
Prior to Puzzle & Dragons' release, GungHo had primarily been involved in assisting in computer and console games from its formation in 2002, including Ragnarok Online. The company's founder and CEO, Kazuki Morishita, found that the quality of their games had started to diminish, and moved more of his time over into the creative development department, and guided the company towards mobile gaming around 2010. Prior to Puzzle & Dragons' release, they had already published about ten games.
The idea for Puzzle & Dragons came about around August 2011, according to Morishita. They observed that at that time, card battle games were popular mobile applications in Japan, though Morishita felt most of the titles were not great. They worked to craft a new type of card battle game, combining gameplay genres such as the tile-matching puzzle aspects and role-playing game exploration. After about a month, they recognized they had the core of the game down, and subsequently a team of six developers completed work on the title over the next six months.
Though they desired to release the game simultaneously for both iOS and Android, their small team size required them to stagger the releases. Using the Unity game engine, they developed natively on the iOS and then added more developers comfortable with the Unity engine to help port the Android version. The game was first released on iOS platform in Japanese markets on February 20, 2012 without any advertising, and had topped the app charts within a few days. When they released the Android version on September 18, 2012, GungHo opted to employ television spots to promote the title since it was now available on both platforms. The Android version tops its charts within a week and a half of going live. English and Korean versions of the game were released about half a year after the success in Japan.
GungHo released the title as a free-to-play app, with players able to spend money to continue to explore dungeons after depleting their stamina or being defeated in a dungeon, to collect more monsters, or to attempt to get rare monsters from a random draw. Morishita said they found that as players became accustomed to the gain, their spending habits switched from getting continued dungeon exploration toward obtaining more and rarer monsters.
According to Morishita, in 2014 about forty developers and artists are working on the title, with nearly half of those focused on continuing updates and art assets. The game has developed some new modes such as challenge mode, technical dungeons, and a new ranking system in certain dungeons where the player is awarded points based on overall combo number, rarity, cost, and more.
GungHo has announced that Puzzle & Dragons will cease support for devices with operating systems lower than iOS 6 and Android Ice Cream Sandwich (4.0) in December 2014 in Japan and in spring 2015 for North America and Europe. Puzzle & Dragons W is already not supported on the iPhone 3GS and third generation iPod Touch as well as versions of Android lower than Android Honeycomb (3.0).
Puzzle & Dragons's soundtrack is composed by Kenji Ito and Yukio Nakajima. A soundtrack containing Ito's contributions was released on April 3, 2013, via the iTunes Store. Ito was also the composer for Puzzle & Dragons Z and Puzzle & Dragons: Battle Tournament; Kohei Tanaka also participated in the composition of the Battle Tournament soundtrack.
The game also has a series of official merchandise in Japan, sold at AppBank Store locations as well as through an official Puzzle & Dragons online store. Items sold include phone cases, phone straps, books, plush toys, figurines, and even snack foods also sold at Japanese grocery stores. Other video games for handheld consoles and video arcades have also been released in Japan, as well as merchandise only available from claw cranes.
As of April 2013, it is the #1 grossing app in the world on iOS and Android. In mid-2013, the Japanese version of the game had been downloaded more than 18 million times, which represents nearly 10 percent of the country's population. As of October 2013 the game has been downloaded 20 million times in Japan and over a million times in North America. It has an estimated daily revenue of $4.5 million. In May 2014, GungHo announced that Puzzle & Dragons surpassed 28 million downloads in Japan, and the North American version surpassed 4 million downloads. In October 2015, GungHo announced that Puzzle & Dragons surpassed 50 million downloads worldwide, with 38 million downloads in Japan, 8 million in North America, 2 million in South Korea, and 2 million in Taiwan and Hong Kong. By October 2017, the game exceeded 62 million downloads, including 46 million in Japan and 12 million in North America.
In 2012, the game earned a revenue of ¥14.599 billion (equivalent to $183 million). In 2013 and 2014, it had an annual revenue of $1.5 billion. Puzzle & Dragons thus became the first mobile game in history to gross $1 billion in revenue. By the end of 2017, the game grossed $6 billion in revenue. It was the highest-grossing mobile app of all time up until it was surpassed by Monster Strike in October 2018. Puzzle & Dragons has grossed $7 billion, and is the second highest-grossing mobile app of all time, as of October 2018.
A Gamasutra blog discussing "coercive monetization" tactics in video games mentioned Puzzle & Dragons as one of the most skillful examples of making players believe they are playing a skill game, while in fact being a money game (i.e. enticing players to spend more and more money).
An adventure game is a video game in which the player assumes the role of a protagonist in an interactive story driven by exploration and puzzle-solving. The genre's focus on story allows it to draw heavily from other narrative-based media, literature and film, encompassing a wide variety of literary genres. Many adventure games (text and graphic) are designed for a single player, since this emphasis on story and character makes multi-player design difficult. Colossal Cave Adventure is identified as the first such adventure game, first released in 1976, while other notable adventure game series include Zork, King's Quest, The Secret of Monkey Island, and Myst.
Initial adventure games developed in the 1970s and early 1980s were text-based, using text parsers to translate the player's input into commands. As personal computers became more powerful with the ability to show graphics, the graphic adventure game format became popular, initially by augmenting player's text commands with graphics, but soon moving towards point and click interfaces. Further computer advancements led to adventure games with more immersive graphics using real-time or pre-rendered three-dimensional scenes or full-motion video taken from the first- or third-person perspective.
For markets in the Western hemisphere, the genre's popularity peaked during the late 1980s to mid-1990s when many considered it to be among the most technically advanced genres, but had become a niche genre in the early 2000s due to the popularity of first-person shooters and became difficult to find publishers to support such ventures. Since then, a resurgence in the genre has occurred spurred on by success of independent video game development, particularly from crowdfunding efforts, the wide availability of digital distribution enabling episodic approaches, and the proliferation of new gaming platforms including portable consoles and mobile devices; The Walking Dead is considered to be a key title that rejuvenated the genre.
Within the Asian markets, adventure games continue to be popular in the form of visual novels, which make up nearly 70% of PC games released in Japan. The Asian markets have also found markets for adventure games for portable and mobile gaming devices. Japanese adventure games tend to be distinct from Western adventure games and have their own separate development history.Araucaria araucana
Araucaria araucana (commonly called the monkey puzzle tree, monkey tail tree, piñonero, or Chilean pine) is an evergreen tree growing to 1–1.5 m (3–5 ft) in diameter and 30–40 m (100–130 ft) in height. It is native to central and southern Chile, western Argentina. Araucaria araucana is the hardiest species in the conifer genus Araucaria. Because of the longevity of this species, it is described as a living fossil. It is also the national tree of Chile. Its conservation status was changed to Endangered by the IUCN in 2013 due to the dwindling population caused by logging, forest fires, and grazing.Crossword
A crossword is a word puzzle that usually takes the form of a square or a rectangular grid of white-and black-shaded squares. The game's goal is to fill the white squares with letters, forming words or phrases, by solving clues, which lead to the answers. In languages that are written left-to-right, the answer words and phrases are placed in the grid from left to right and from top to bottom. The shaded squares are used to separate the words or phrases.Dr. Mario
Dr. Mario (stylized as D℞. Mario) is a 1990 action puzzle video game produced by Gunpei Yokoi and designed by Takahiro Harada. Nintendo developed and published the game for the Nintendo Entertainment System and Game Boy consoles. The game's soundtrack was composed by Hirokazu Tanaka.
In this falling block puzzle game, the player's objective is to destroy the viruses populating the on-screen playing field by using colored capsules that are tossed into the field by Mario, who assumes the role of a doctor. The player manipulates each capsule as it falls, with the goal being to align similar colors which removes the viruses. The player progresses through the game by eliminating all the viruses on the screen in each level.
Dr. Mario received positive reception, appearing on several "Best Nintendo Games of All Time" lists. The game has been ported, remade, or has had a sequel on every Nintendo home console since the NES as well as most portable consoles, including a re-release in 2004 on the Game Boy Advance as part of the Classic NES Series. Modified versions of Dr. Mario exist as minigames in WarioWare, Inc.: Mega Microgames!, Brain Age 2: More Training in Minutes a Day!, and Brain Age: Concentration Training.Eight queens puzzle
The eight queens puzzle is the problem of placing eight chess queens on an 8×8 chessboard so that no two queens threaten each other; thus, a solution requires that no two queens share the same row, column, or diagonal. The eight queens puzzle is an example of the more general n queens problem of placing n non-attacking queens on an n×n chessboard, for which solutions exist for all natural numbers n with the exception of n=2 and n=3.Jigsaw puzzle
A jigsaw puzzle is a tiling puzzle that requires the assembly of often oddly shaped interlocking and tessellating pieces.
Each piece usually has a small part of a picture on it; when complete, a jigsaw puzzle produces a complete picture. In some cases, more advanced types have appeared on the market, such as spherical jigsaws and puzzles showing optical illusions.
Jigsaw puzzles were originally created by painting a picture on a flat, rectangular piece of wood, and then cutting that picture into small pieces with a jigsaw, hence the name. John Spilsbury, a London cartographer and engraver, is credited with commercializing jigsaw puzzles around 1760. Jigsaw puzzles have since come to be made primarily of cardboard.
Typical images found on jigsaw puzzles include scenes from nature, buildings, and repetitive designs. Castles and mountains are two traditional subjects. However, any kind of picture can be used to make a jigsaw puzzle; some companies offer to turn personal photographs into puzzles. Completed puzzles can also be attached to a backing with adhesive to be used as artwork.
During recent years, a range of jigsaw puzzle accessories including boards, cases, frames, and roll-up mats has become available that are designed to assist jigsaw puzzle enthusiasts.Kaon
In particle physics, a kaon , also called a K meson and denoted K, is any of a group of four mesons distinguished by a quantum number called strangeness. In the quark model they are understood to be bound states of a strange quark (or antiquark) and an up or down antiquark (or quark).
Kaons have proved to be a copious source of information on the nature of fundamental interactions since their discovery in cosmic rays in 1947. They were essential in establishing the foundations of the Standard Model of particle physics, such as the quark model of hadrons and the theory of quark mixing (the latter was acknowledged by a Nobel Prize in Physics in 2008). Kaons have played a distinguished role in our understanding of fundamental conservation laws: CP violation, a phenomenon generating the observed matter–antimatter asymmetry of the universe, was discovered in the kaon system in 1964 (which was acknowledged by a Nobel Prize in 1980). Moreover, direct CP violation was discovered in the kaon decays in the early 2000s by the NA48 experiment at CERN and the KTeV experiment at Fermilab.Level (video gaming)
A level, map, area, stage, world, track, board, floor, zone, phase, mission, episode, or course in a video game is the total space available to the player during the course of completing a discrete objective. Video game levels generally have progressively increasing difficulty to appeal to players with different skill levels. Each level presents new content and challenges to keep player's interest high. The use of levels in video games dates back to Namco's shoot 'em up Galaxian, released in 1979 during the golden age of video arcade games.In games with linear progression, levels are areas of a larger world. Games may also feature interconnected levels, representing locations.List of PlayStation Now games
This is a list of PlayStation Now games. The service allows members to stream PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4 games on PlayStation 4 and PC via a dedicated application. As of October 2018, there are over 650 games available for streaming and over 200 available for download on PlayStation 4, with new games being added every month.Minesweeper (video game)
Minesweeper is a single-player puzzle video game. The objective of the game is to clear a rectangular board containing hidden "mines" or bombs without detonating any of them, with help from clues about the number of neighboring mines in each field. The game originates from the 1960s, and has been written for many computing platforms in use today. It has many variations and offshoots.Platform game
Platform games, or platformers, are a video game genre and subgenre of action game. In a platformer the player controlled character must jump and climb between suspended platforms while avoiding obstacles. Environments often feature uneven terrain of varying height that must be traversed. The player often has some control over the height and distance of jumps to avoid letting their character fall to their death or miss necessary jumps. The most common unifying element of games of this genre is the jump button, but now there are other alternatives like swiping a touchscreen. Other acrobatic maneuvers may factor into the gameplay as well, such as swinging from objects such as vines or grappling hooks, as in Ristar or Bionic Commando, or bouncing from springboards or trampolines, as in Alpha Waves. These mechanics, even in the context of other genres, are commonly called platforming, a verbification of platform. Games where jumping is automated completely, such as 3D games in The Legend of Zelda series, fall outside of the genre.
Platform games originated in the early 1980s, which were often about climbing ladders as much as jumping, with 3D successors popularized in the mid-1990s. The term describes games where jumping on platforms is an integral part of the gameplay and came into use after the genre had been established, no later than 1983. The genre is frequently combined with elements of other genres, such as the shooter elements in Contra, Beat 'em up elements of Viewtiful Joe, adventure elements of Flashback, or role-playing game elements of Castlevania: Symphony of the Night.
While commonly associated with console gaming, there have been many important platform games released to video arcades, as well as for handheld game consoles and home computers. North America, Europe and Japan have played major parts in the genre's evolution. Platform themes range from cartoon-like games to science fiction and fantasy epics.
At one point, platform games were the most popular genre of video game. At the peak of their popularity, it is estimated that between one-quarter and one-third of console games were platformers. No genre either before or since has been able to achieve a similar market share. As of 2006, the genre had become far less dominant, representing a two percentage market share as compared to fifteen percent in 1998, but is still commercially viable, with a number of games selling in the millions of units. Since 2010, a variety of endless running platformers for mobile devices have brought renewed popularity to the genre.Puzzle
A puzzle is a game, problem, or toy that tests a person's ingenuity or knowledge. In a puzzle, the solver is expected to put pieces together in a logical way, in order to arrive at the correct or fun solution of the puzzle. There are different genres of puzzles, such as crossword puzzles, word-search puzzles, number puzzles, relational puzzles, or logic puzzles.
Puzzles are often created to be a form of entertainment but they can also arise from serious mathematical or logistical problems. In such cases, their solution may be a significant contribution to mathematical research.Puzzle video game
Puzzle video games make up a unique genre of video games that emphasize puzzle solving. The types of puzzles can test many problem-solving skills including logic, pattern recognition, sequence solving, and word completion. The player may have unlimited time or infinite attempts to solve a puzzle, or there may be a time limit, or simpler puzzles may be made difficult by having to complete them in real time, as in Tetris.
The genre is very broad, but it generally involves some level of abstraction and may make use of colors, shapes, numbers, physics, or complex rules. Unlike many video games, puzzle video games often do make use of "lives" that challenge a player by limiting the number of tries. In puzzle video games, players often try for a high score or to progress to the next level by getting to a certain place or achieving some criteria.Rubik's Cube
Rubik's Cube is a 3-D combination puzzle invented in 1974 by Hungarian sculptor and professor of architecture Ernő Rubik. Originally called the Magic Cube, the puzzle was licensed by Rubik to be sold by Ideal Toy Corp. in 1980 via businessman Tibor Laczi and Seven Towns founder Tom Kremer, and won the German Game of the Year special award for Best Puzzle that year. As of January 2009, 350 million cubes had been sold worldwide making it the world's top-selling puzzle game. It is widely considered to be the world's best-selling toy.On the original classic Rubik's Cube, each of the six faces was covered by nine stickers, each of one of six solid colours: white, red, blue, orange, green, and yellow. The current version of the cube has been updated to coloured plastic panels instead, which prevents peeling and fading. In currently sold models, white is opposite yellow, blue is opposite green, and orange is opposite red, and the red, white and blue are arranged in that order in a clockwise arrangement. On early cubes, the position of the colours varied from cube to cube. An internal pivot mechanism enables each face to turn independently, thus mixing up the colours. For the puzzle to be solved, each face must be returned to have only one colour. Similar puzzles have now been produced with various numbers of sides, dimensions, and stickers, not all of them by Rubik.
Although the Rubik's Cube reached its height of mainstream popularity in the 1980s, it is still widely known and used. Many speedcubers continue to practice it and similar puzzles; they also compete for the fastest times in various categories. Since 2003, the World Cube Association, the Rubik's Cube's international governing body, has organised competitions worldwide and recognise world records.Sudoku
Sudoku (数独, sūdoku, digit-single) (, , , originally called Number Place) is a logic-based, combinatorial number-placement puzzle. The objective is to fill a 9×9 grid with digits so that each column, each row, and each of the nine 3×3 subgrids that compose the grid (also called "boxes", "blocks", or "regions") contain all of the digits from 1 to 9. The puzzle setter provides a partially completed grid, which for a well-posed puzzle has a single solution.
Completed games are always a type of Latin square with an additional constraint on the contents of individual regions. For example, the same single integer may not appear twice in the same row, column, or any of the nine 3×3 subregions of the 9x9 playing board.
French newspapers featured variations of the puzzles in the 19th century, and the puzzle has appeared since 1979 in puzzle books under the name Number Place. However, the modern Sudoku only started to become mainstream in 1986 by the Japanese puzzle company Nikoli, under the name Sudoku, meaning "single number". It first appeared in a US newspaper and then The Times (London) in 2004, from the efforts of Wayne Gould, who devised a computer program to rapidly produce distinct puzzles.Tower of Hanoi
The Tower of Hanoi (also called the Tower of Brahma or Lucas' Tower and sometimes pluralized) is a mathematical game or puzzle. It consists of three rods and a number of disks of different sizes, which can slide onto any rod. The puzzle starts with the disks in a neat stack in ascending order of size on one rod, the smallest at the top, thus making a conical shape.
The objective of the puzzle is to move the entire stack to another rod, obeying the following simple rules:
Only one disk can be moved at a time.
Each move consists of taking the upper disk from one of the stacks and placing it on top of another stack or on an empty rod.
No larger disk may be placed on top of a smaller disk.With 3 disks, the puzzle can be solved in 7 moves. The minimal number of moves required to solve a Tower of Hanoi puzzle is 2n − 1, where n is the number of disks.Wheel of Fortune (U.S. game show)
Wheel of Fortune (often known simply as Wheel) is an American television game show created by Merv Griffin that debuted in 1975. The show features a competition in which contestants solve word puzzles, similar to those used in Hangman, to win cash and prizes determined by spinning a giant carnival wheel.
Wheel originally aired as a daytime series on NBC from January 6, 1975, to June 30, 1989. After some changes were made to its format, the daytime series moved to CBS from July 17, 1989, to January 11, 1991. It then returned to NBC from January 14, 1991, until it was cancelled on September 20, 1991. The popularity of the daytime series led to a nightly syndicated edition being developed, which premiered on September 19, 1983, and has aired continuously since.
The network version was originally hosted by Chuck Woolery and Susan Stafford, with Charlie O'Donnell as its announcer. O'Donnell left in 1980 and was replaced by Jack Clark. After Clark's death in 1988, M. G. Kelly took over briefly as announcer until O'Donnell returned in 1989. O'Donnell remained on the network version until its cancellation, and continued to announce on the syndicated show until his death in 2010, when Jim Thornton succeeded him. Woolery left in 1981, and was replaced by Pat Sajak. Sajak left the network version in January 1989 to host his own late-night talk show, and was replaced on that version by Rolf Benirschke. Bob Goen replaced Benirschke when the network show moved to CBS, then remained as host until the network show was canceled altogether. Stafford left in 1982, and was replaced by Vanna White, who remained on the network show for the rest of its run. The syndicated version has been hosted continuously by Sajak and White since its inception.
Wheel of Fortune ranks as the longest-running syndicated game show in the United States, with over 6,000 episodes aired. TV Guide named it the "top-rated syndicated series" in a 2008 article, and in 2013, the magazine ranked it at No. 2 in its list of the 60 greatest game shows ever. The program has also come to gain a worldwide following with sixty international adaptations. The syndicated series' 36th season premiered on September 10, 2018, and Sajak became the longest-running host of any game show, surpassing Bob Barker, who did Price Is Right from 1972 to 2007.Wikipedia logo
The logo of Wikipedia, an Internet-based free multilingual encyclopedia, is an unfinished globe constructed from jigsaw pieces—some pieces are missing at the top—inscribed with glyphs from many different writing systems. As displayed on the web pages of the English-language version of Wikipedia, there is a wordmark "Wikipedia" under the globe, and below that the text "The Free Encyclopedia" in the free open-source Linux Libertine font.World Puzzle Championship
The World Puzzle Championship (commonly abbreviated as WPC) is an annual international puzzle competition run by the World Puzzle Federation. All the puzzles in the competition are pure-logic problems based on simple principles, designed to be playable regardless of language or culture.National teams are determined by local affiliates of the World Puzzle Federation. Of the 26 championships (team category) held thus far, 14 have been won by the United States, 7 by Germany, 3 by the Czech Republic, and 2 by Japan. The most successful individual contestant is Ulrich Voigt (Germany) with 11 titles since 2000.
The latest WPC was held in October 2017 in Bangalore.Yu-Gi-Oh!
Yu-Gi-Oh! (遊☆戯☆王, Yū-Gi-Ō!, lit. "King of Games") is a Japanese manga series about gaming written and illustrated by Kazuki Takahashi. It was serialized in Shueisha's Weekly Shōnen Jump magazine between September 30, 1996 and March 8, 2004. The plot follows the story of a boy named Yugi Mutou, who solves the ancient Millennium Puzzle. Yugi awakens a gambling alter-ego within his body that solves his conflicts using various games.
Two anime adaptations were produced; one by Toei Animation, which aired from April 4, 1998 to October 10, 1998, and another produced by NAS and animated by Studio Gallop titled Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters, which aired between April 2000 and September 2004. The manga series has spawned a franchise that includes multiple spin-off manga and anime series, a trading card game, and numerous video games. Most of the incarnations of the franchise involve the fictional trading card game known as Duel Monsters, where each player uses cards to "duel" each other in a mock battle of fantasy "monsters". This forms the basis for the real life Yu-Gi-Oh! Trading Card Game. As of 2018, Yu-Gi-Oh is one of the highest-grossing media franchises of all time.