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100 thoughts on “The Incredible Machine: Pure Puzzles | 10 Days of Favorite Games | Game/Show | PBS Digital Studios

  1. There is a spiritual successor to this game called Contraption Maker. It's on Steam and it's a great redux of this game with a few minor changes. If you love Incredible Machine, check out Contraption Maker.

  2. My favorite puzzle game? Columns. CLOSELY CLOSELY followed by Tetris. It was the only puzzle game to even compare to Tetris for me and I FUCKING LOVE IT! I once played it for like 10 hours… XD

  3. Have you played the game fantastic contraption? It's a free web game, and it sounds similar to this. You have wheels that turn clockwise, counterclockwise, and not at all; ans water rods that clip through things and wood ones that don't. That all. Despite that, this is one of the most complex, creative games I've ever played. The incredible machines that you can make in it remind me of the crazy contraptions people build in minecraft

  4. This was great, but what was even greater was The Incredible Toon Machine. Exact same premise, goofy animations. I loved that game.

  5. A few others have said it, but Portal is my favorite. I guess its not only for the puzzles, but the mystery and atmosphere, the humor, and of course the slow build of mechanics. I remember first playing and being really overwhelmed and sort of scared. These large puzzle rooms that I thought were impossible to complete added to the overly sterile environment and suspicious A.I. talking to me made for such an interesting experience. Plus, playing around with portals was pretty novel at the time.

  6. For those interested or just feeling nostalgia, I'm pretty sure most incarnations of The Incredible Machine can be found on Good Old Games, refurbished to work on current hardware.

  7. Mine personally was probably Tetris Attack. Half for the main game of just sliding blocks around and quickly deciphering the best way to clear rows, but the other half was it's actual Puzzle mode. You'd have a fixed number of moves, and progressively bigger and weirder stacks of predetermined blocks. Find the right moves to make the whole stack go bye-bye and you proceed. It was pretty damn fun when I was 13.

  8. I just got introduced to the Professor Layton series.  That's got a very good shot at becoming my favorite, but I can't say until I've finished at least 1 game (JUST got into it).  The Ace Attorney series did very well for me, but its appeal was just as much for its story as for its puzzle elements.  The previously mentioned Portal series was definitely very strong, too. 
    It's hard for me to pin down a favorite puzzle game, because the puzzles lose a lot of their edge once you beat them.  Ultimately, I'd say it would go to the Dr. Brain series, specifically the Lost Mind of Dr. Brain.  It has so many different kinds of puzzles for many different kinds of thought.  I didn't like all of their puzzle types, but I could appreciate that other people would.  There's no replacing the classics, though.  The Time Warp of Dr. Brain had standard logic puzzles, where you fill in a grid for the proper information.  I've always loved those.

  9. I had a game that looked just like that but it was most certainly a more recent version than the one you were showing, maybe I am thinking of a sequel or a similar game but when I googled "The Incredible Machine 2" or "The Incredible Machine 3" it still did not look like what I remembered, That might just be nostalgia kicking in but I don't think so I must of just played a different but similar game. Please tell me if you have any idea what I might be thinking of. It looked a lot more 3dish although still from a 2D perspective and I remember there was a gravity effect which I played around with a lot while "creating" levels of my own.

  10. Ooh, Incredible Machine is a very good choice. I'd also put The Lost Mind of Dr. Brain up there. Logical Journey of the Zoombinis, too, though I think I've outgrown that one.

    And Braid! I love Braid. It uses such unusual mechanics for a puzzle game.

    If I had to choose just one, though, I'd go with "Lost Mind" – I sunk sooo many hours into that game.

  11. This brings a few games to mind, generally from the same era:
    Atomix – A Sokoban-like game where you need to create a certain molecule each levels using the atoms on screen (Each atom is one square), yet the atoms don't stop till they hit a wall. The special thing about this game for me was that the molecule created, a certain arrangement of the blocks on scree, was not to be created in a predetermined place, yet anywhere on the level, and you had to find out where it's possible to create the pattern needed.
    Lemmings – I believe it requires no introduction, the goal of the games was to pass a certain amount of the lemmings for the beginning of the level to it's end (set differently every level), avoiding the obstacles on the way through assigning certain abilities to each lemming the allows it to pass those obstacles.
    Supaplex – It's kind of a clone of Boulder Dash, I liked it better because of the looks, a better color scheme, and more fluid animations.
    All three games were released originally, I believe, for the Commodore Amiga.

  12. Tetris Attack: Unlike current color-matching games, by letting you move blocks that don't immediately make a match, you can set up chain reactions for max pointage/ block droppage.

  13. A friend of mine had the game installed in his computer and we spend hours and hours resolving the puzzles. One of my most cherished games of my childhood

  14. Wild Arms 3…
    It's an RPG actually… But there are lot's of puzzles in it, and they're great!!
    And, in my personal opinion, Wild Arms 3 is also the best one of the series.

  15. Puzzle adventure games. Bombastic, Portal, Qoosh and many more I haven't played yet. They're similar in the way that there's an actual sense of progression along with the increasing difficulty.

    Static puzzle games are the same, and the only real change is the difficulty. Any change in skin is purely cosmetic.

  16. Antichamber, I love optical illusions and the amount of mind-f*ckery in that game is ridiculous, I still don't know how he even coded half of it…

  17. I LOVED T.I.M SO much as a kid. The sound effects like the cat or the "phew" when you win still give me joy at 30+ years old.

  18. I have to agree its a great game… I sadly never owned it… but my friends had a demo and I think my school or some school I went to had it on their computers.

  19. I loved playing the Incredible Machine back when i was a kid. i loved to see how fast i could bounce the cat around the screen.

  20. Portal, obviously, but let's take a brief second to rage over Catherine.  Great story, seriously aggravating puzzles.  I ended up unlocking Super Easy mode so I could get through the damned puzzles faster.

  21. Easy answer: Antichamber.  This was the first game I played that challenged my basic understanding of logic, and while not necessarily aesthetically pleasing, the art style took away every distraction, leaving only pure puzzling.

  22. If you guys don't know, the creators of this game recently made a spiritual successor called Contraption Maker. Its basically the same game but greatly enhanced with more parts you can use and you can play it at much higher resolution. You can get it on

  23. Awesome, sounds like this inspired amazing Alex which even lets you make your own levels for people to solve. I love how games are modified by engines these days

  24. Favorite puzzle game has to be Pokemon Puzzle League. I spent too many hours on that game as a child and now it is the only N64 game I own even though I don't have a N64.

  25. My favorite puzzle game is Pushmo for the 3DS eShop. I love the mix between a push-and-pull block element and variety of puzzles based on most popular Nintendo characters. Plus, the gameplay and solving puzzles are fantastic, and the replay value is excellent, thanks to the inclusion of Pushmo Studio.

  26. It think in overall presentation Portal is easily my favorite puzzle game, but if we're talking about purely the puzzles themselves, I'd probably go with Spacechem. It gets ridiculously hard as the game goes longer, so I haven't beat it yet. The puzzles has the same elements as Jamin mentioned for Incredible Machine, there are countless ways to solve these problems, but it still manages to be one of the hardest puzzle games I've played.

  27. I play a lot of puzzle games, but right now my favorite is Lyne. The idea is simple: connect all the triangles, all the circles, and all the squares without crossing over another line. It's deceptively simple premise masks just how complex this game gets. It's ingesting to me because of the different approaches i take to the puzzles. For sind i blindly connect things until it dorks, others i stare at i and somehow it just clicks, others are really intuitive and immediately solved. It's truly brilliant, please check it out on steam.

  28. i know it's cliche but Portal. Portal 2 i guess. not only because the stock game is so fun and challenging but there is basically endless levels thanks to people smarter than i creating custom levels. many of those are much more challenging than the stock game.

  29. I loved TIM when I was a kid, and I still value it as one of the best puzzle games out there, so on this we can agree! Though I've got to say that the first Portal is definitely a contender!

  30. I actually agree with you. TIM is one of my favorite puzzle games of all time. Maybe Lemmings beats it out, if that can be counted as a puzzle game?

  31. Holy shit! I had a game called "The Incredible Toon Machine" that was the same thing but with a cat and a mouse that hated each other. I spent so many hours just making my own puzzles and stuff. Forgot about it until now.

  32. Once again Portal 2 is on the highest tier (those cake puns man). I love me some physics puzzles, but the satisfying AHA moment when you finish a level makes all other puzzle games look quite crumby (cake puns for the win).

  33. Oh my gosh! I loved this game so much! My brother and I spent hours and hours playing this game. I think the best part about it was that you could design your own levels. Most of the time we spent playing was not actually solving puzzles, but making them, and we also created all kinds of other things like obstacle courses, explosion timers, and bouncing ball simulators.

  34. favourite puzzle game? i'd have to go with World of Goo. it's physics based puzzles were really fun, and got pretty difficult, but the story and art style and music were all huge plusses for this great game. Kyle Gabler is my hero.

  35. I remember this game!  Loved it!  I always created a ball that followed custom physics.  A frictionless, antigravity, heavy bowling ball was way to weird to not be useful.

  36. What's my favorite puzzle game? There''s something about the Myst series which really grabs me… Oh, right, it's the atmosphere!

    But, I haven't played Portal and everyone is really enamoured with it.

  37. I loved that game! the sequels that introduced two tom and jerry style characters to the game didn't have the original's charm 

  38. Wow this is awesome to see! We are actually working on a spiritual successor to The Incredible Machine called Contraption Maker (same guys that made the original). It feels really good to be exposing the game to a new generation of players. The game is currently available on Steam

  39. for Puzzle games people will obviously bring up Portal / Portal 2 because they are the most recent amazing Puzzle games to come out on console.  Everytime I think about great puzzle games there are two that come to mind.  One would be The Adventures of Lolo series and the second would be Cut The Rope.

  40. It's so weird to see that game again. I can barely remember it, but I think I played it quite a lot. I had totally forgotten about it to be honest, so thanks for the flashback.

  41. PROTIP: If you like The Incredible Machine, buy Contraption Maker on Steam. It's from very same people who made TIM and it's super fun!

  42. Myst, Riven and Exile. These games were games I played as a kid whenever I went to my grandparents to visit. The puzzles were always fun, but the game never held your hand. It was an experience more than anything else.

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