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May 31, 2010 10:34 AM   Subscribe

Sprocket Rocket is a physics game whose goal is to collect sprockets to unlock argumentations to your egg shaped rocket ship (and school you about IP law but you can ignore that part).

Via Neatorama.
posted by Mitheral (41 comments total) 9 users marked this as a favorite

 
Cute idea, but the constant political proselytizing is really annoying.

However, I do enjoy the hosting website. Thanks for making me aware of that.
posted by endotoxin at 10:50 AM on May 31, 2010 [1 favorite]


This is surprisingly fun.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 10:51 AM on May 31, 2010


This game really makes you think. It teaches cleverness and innovation, and gives you a good basic grasp of how stuff like levers and torque works (even if the tool I used most was a triangle-toothed lock pick with a spear on the other side).

It is fun, inventive game. Using Wallace and Gromit is a great touch too, both since Wallace is know for his wacky inventions, and the characters themselves tickle my nostalgia funny bone. The in-game music was harmlessly forgettable for the most part. Using a little pod to fly around in was a cute sci-fi touch. The ship editing part could've used some more complexity, though. I really would have like able to attach additional hinges to the mechanism, but that's a minor quibble.

What was a more major quibble for me where the blue signs, usually set up so that you couldn't avoid them. Each one of them bonking you over the head with IP status quo propaganda. Every one of those blue signs made me roll my eyes, but most especially the one where it said that property should be respected, because it was delivered in such a ham-fisted way. It reminded me of those cheesy "Don't copy that floppy" PSAs or those "would you steal a car? Then don't download this movie" commercials that are unskippable on DVDs.

Eduatianment games should be about FUN and LEARNING, not about being preached to-- especially make-you-think physics-based puzzlers. I don't want to take time out from my thinking, planning, and plotting, from wondering how am I gonna get my ship over to that cog, to have to stop and read copy that comes across like a patronizing biddy standing over me, wagging a finger, clucking a tongue and preaching about IP and copyright and patents and trademarks.
posted by ShawnStruck at 10:53 AM on May 31, 2010 [5 favorites]


If you ever need an object designed to do a task that is absolutely necessary, for God's sake don't ask me.

I am absolutely pants at this game.
posted by djgh at 10:53 AM on May 31, 2010


You are aware, are you not, that I have work to do? This is going seriously interfere with that whole "getting things done today" strategy.

Cute idea, but the constant political proselytizing is really annoying.

<cheek><tongue>(So it's the perfect game for MetaFilter, then?)</tongue></cheek>
posted by FishBike at 11:01 AM on May 31, 2010


The one where you have to knock the cog down the ramp and race to get it before it scrolls off screen crossed my Control-W threshold.
posted by fleacircus at 11:33 AM on May 31, 2010


GRRAARRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR E9 is getting on my tits
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 11:33 AM on May 31, 2010


Are you talking about F5 fleacircus? I think the idea is to redirect the cog with the long thin purple piece.
posted by Mitheral at 11:38 AM on May 31, 2010


scratch that, E7 is more annoying.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 11:48 AM on May 31, 2010


Fun stuff. Don't have time to plow through the whole thing right now, but the general concept plays well.

Politically, it seems a bit off target to give you a "PATENT PENDING" stamp for fairly basic designs when it should instead be e.g. charging you a licensing fee or serving you up with some sort of patent-portfolio injunction on behalf of whoever played before you. But I quibble.

What was a more major quibble for me where the blue signs, usually set up so that you couldn't avoid them.

I enjoyed pretending that I was some sort of Cog Pirate with the subgoal of finding a way not to collide with the blue signs wherever possible.
posted by cortex at 11:53 AM on May 31, 2010 [6 favorites]


I think you mean "augmentations".
posted by w0mbat at 11:56 AM on May 31, 2010


This game is awesome. I have an 11 year old son playing on another computer and a 4 year old one hanging onto every move I make on this one.
posted by DU at 11:56 AM on May 31, 2010


I figured it was probably a mistake that you unlocked argumentations but I am disappointed that it is so. I like the idea of a game that teaches you about logic and rhetoric by unlocking logical proofs and rhetorical flourishes. You just unlocked A=A! *Sad Trombone* Wah wah wah... you fell into the no true Scotsman pit.
posted by Babblesort at 12:11 PM on May 31, 2010 [6 favorites]


That was great. It seemed kind of buggy though with regard to your ship parts staying around after you go get more. Several times it worked, but then on the one where it's supposed to (the 'prop up' one), it didn't. Or maybe I wasn't doing it right. I finally got it without using 2 pieces but it was hard.

Mixed feelings about all the clues. Probably made it more fun, but less challenging.
posted by ropeladder at 12:16 PM on May 31, 2010


I couldn't get through the second puzzle. The first one clearly showed that my design was patented, and therefore an IP infringement. So my second design would be as well. So I couldn't progress.

I think it's an excellent educational tool.
posted by alasdair at 12:51 PM on May 31, 2010 [1 favorite]


w0mbat: "I think you mean "augmentations"."

Ugh, Yes! Though Babblesort's interpretation would have been fun too.
posted by Mitheral at 12:54 PM on May 31, 2010


You owe me an hour of my life.

That said, fun. Good find.

And really? Proselytizing? Is it that hard to hover over something and hit "enter" right away?
posted by Lizsterr at 1:35 PM on May 31, 2010


Finished and I was there were more.
posted by DU at 1:44 PM on May 31, 2010


And once again we learn that most of life's problems can be solved with a lockpick and / or a bulldozer.
posted by PontifexPrimus at 1:48 PM on May 31, 2010 [1 favorite]


I would love to redesign this with fun little messages in the edit bay.

"Oops! It looks like the simple wedge you have designed is already patented. Would you like to pay user27334 two cogs for the privilege of using this design to finish the game?"
posted by Avelwood at 2:11 PM on May 31, 2010 [9 favorites]


Hmmm... Am I missing something obvious with the trapped cog in the central hub?

Also, all of life's problems can be solved with a wedge and a torque engine. Just shove the wedge in and jiggle it until something comes loose.
posted by kaibutsu at 2:13 PM on May 31, 2010


ok, got it!
posted by kaibutsu at 2:30 PM on May 31, 2010


So great that a game built to teach me about IP is a mirror image of another game!
posted by wrok at 2:47 PM on May 31, 2010 [6 favorites]


It's amazing how useful a long, skinny (built diagonally) stick can be.
posted by Malor at 2:57 PM on May 31, 2010


any tips on C2?
posted by .kobayashi. at 3:11 PM on May 31, 2010


On C2? Outright spoiler: (sorry I can't spoiler-tag on MeFi)






It's easiest with either the spin or the torque tool. Make a long diagonal stick with a pointy end that slopes to the right, spin it up vertical, and then just barely poke the cog. The instant it starts moving, drop the stick and run along the blue line, meeting it when it drops. If you push it too hard, you won't make it in time.

You can do it without spin or torque, but the slope will be too steep if you build a vertical stick with a 45-degree slope on the end. If you make a straight stick instead, you can kind of bounce/nudge it until it start to move to the right, and then you drop your tool and run for it.
posted by Malor at 3:29 PM on May 31, 2010 [1 favorite]


That was very excellent. A few of the rooms are much much easier if you ignore the hint, though. "Tweezers." Hmph.

I was also hoping for a Wallace and Gromit short as a reward for beating it, but alas, just a little "good job" banner.
posted by Sibrax at 3:49 PM on May 31, 2010


In the room with the big block and the nonsense clues about a hammer (dude, you need a wedge... a long thin torqued wedge, just like everywhere else...) I managed to push the block over, then get under the block to get the cog, and then push the block back through the opening to the other side, all without leaving the room (as the hint suggests you do).
posted by kaibutsu at 3:52 PM on May 31, 2010


Went back and finished it. Yeah, it's all about that long thin torqued wedge, isn't it? I don't think I ever used anything but torque after getting it.

I thought the use of "leave the room and come back" to solve a couple of the puzzles was a bit more weak than clever.

The funnest puzzle was where the cogs were buried at the bottom of the little bouncy ball pit (like wot kids romp in) where you didn't even need a tool and could just smash the drone into them over and over. Loading the crates into the rocket was also fun.
posted by fleacircus at 4:09 PM on May 31, 2010


Thanks, Malor -- I was afraid that was the case. It turns out I'm much better at designing thingamabobs than I am steering the ship.
posted by .kobayashi. at 5:06 PM on May 31, 2010


The funnest puzzle was where the cogs were buried at the bottom of the little bouncy ball pit (like wot kids romp in) where you didn't even need a tool and could just smash the drone into them over and over.

Yes, this one was definitely a good demonstration of that well-known principle of physics: if brute force doesn't work, you're not using enough.

This is fun. It might actually replace my Hex Empire addiction for a while.
posted by FishBike at 6:15 PM on May 31, 2010


(and school you about IP law but you can ignore that part)

Y'know what, I really can't.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 7:34 PM on May 31, 2010


That was fun. That middle cog in the Hub stymied me for quite a while, it was kind of cheap.

But yeah. Definitely all about the thin wedge, and the double-wedged boomarang for carrying things.
posted by Lemurrhea at 7:49 PM on May 31, 2010


Now is the time on Sprockets when we dance.
posted by neuron at 8:58 PM on May 31, 2010 [1 favorite]


Hmmm... Am I missing something obvious with the trapped cog in the central hub?

Yes. Consult the map.
posted by The Esteemed Doctor Bunsen Honeydew at 9:31 PM on May 31, 2010


I keep waiting for someone to post a link to a hacked version with the IP references stripped out.
posted by Menthol at 10:36 PM on May 31, 2010


Thanks! That was fun.
posted by severiina at 8:02 AM on June 1, 2010


So great that a game built to teach me about IP is a mirror image of another game!

Bob Comes In Pieces looks really fun....if you happen to own a copy of Windows. I can't even figure out if it runs under wine. I don't understand how, in the age of scripting languages and portable libraries, this continues to be a problem.
posted by DU at 9:16 AM on June 1, 2010


if brute force doesn't work, you're not using enough.

Ha. I enjoyed trying to solve some of the puzzles without using any tool at all, just whacking things with the ship and relying on force or friction. It surprised me how many could be solved that way.

Good post. Thanks.
posted by cribcage at 9:58 AM on June 1, 2010


Bob Comes In Pieces looks really fun....if you happen to own a copy of Windows. I can't even figure out if it runs under wine. I don't understand how, in the age of scripting languages and portable libraries, this continues to be a problem.

Bob Comes In Pieces is hella fun. Steam (as is, ignoring the soon-to-be-Steam-on-Linux-for-real) sort of runs fine under Wine -- I don't know if that specific game works, but I've had generally good luck running most Steam games under Wine.
posted by wrok at 1:53 PM on June 1, 2010


Bob Comes in Pieces ran fine under WINE for me (albeit with no sound). However, it is GODDAMNED ANNOYING. Not the good kind of "wow, these are challenging" annoying but the bad kind of "these puzzles are stupid simple BUT FUCK YOU CONTROLS".

Not recommended.
posted by DU at 5:48 PM on June 5, 2010


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