Puzzle video game

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Minesweeper (1990) is a popular puzzle video game.

A puzzle video game is a genre of video game that includes traditional puzzles played as a video game, and also new puzzle games which can only be played because of video game hardware and software. I define a puzzle game as one which requires applying logical thinking and memory to develop a plan which will achieve a goal. There typically isn't much difference between a "puzzle" game and a "strategy" game in terms of the underlying mechanics, so I generally differentiate a strategy game if the players are competing. For example, solitaire is a puzzle game, while poker is a strategy game, and Sokobon is a puzzle game, while a multiplayer Bomberman is a strategy game.

Some of the very first video games ever made, even as far back as the 1960s were computer versions of traditional puzzle games like trivia questions, peg solitaire, and brain teasers. However, as computers became more powerful, the puzzle games made for them began to use more multimedia beyond that which was possible with traditional means and puzzle video games became more elaborate. As video games began to come into their own, and different genres of video games took shape, puzzle games were incorporated into them. Today, although pure puzzle games are still being published, most are given additional mechanics like a story line, fast moving graphics, and sound effects and music.


Although I always enjoyed picking up traditional puzzle games, I rarely work hard enough to become really good at solving them. Pure puzzle games are usually about discovering a trick and then exploiting it to solve the puzzle, and I don't get much satisfaction in such a pursuit. I find video games to be much more accessible medium for puzzle games because they can add material to make the game more interesting like attractive graphic art, music, and good writing. Most of the puzzle games I like aren't too hard, and can be solved with only a fair amount of intelligence and perseverance. I generally dislike puzzle games that require esoteric knowledge or ones that keep getting harder to the point of frustration.


This is a list of puzzle video games that are important to me. For all games in this genre, see the puzzle category.

Title Released Developer
The 7th Guest 1993-04-01 Trilobyte
Anika's Odyssey 2007-??-?? Tricky Sheep
A Boy and His Blob: Trouble on Blobolonia 1990-01-?? Imagineering
Castle Adventure 1984-??-?? Kevin Bales
The Frostrune 2017-02-01 Grimnir
Glittermitten Grove 2016-12-26 Twinbeard
Her Story 2015-06-23 Sam Barlow
Hugo series 1990-01-01 David Gray
Ittle Dew 2013-07-05 Ludosity AB
Katamari Damacy 2004-03-18 Namco
Kickle Cubicle 1988-06-?? Irem
King's Quest series 1984-05-10 Sierra On-Line
Limbo 2010-07-21 Playdead
Little Inferno 2012-11-18 Tomorrow Corporation
Loom 1990-01-?? Lucasfilm Games
Pony Island 2016-01-04 Daniel Mullins Games
Portal series 2007-10-10 Valve
Shadowgate 1987-07-30 ICOM Simulations
Space Quest series 1986-10-?? Sierra On-Line
Tetris 1984-06-06 Alexey Pajitnov
ZZT 1991-10-?? Tim Sweeney


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