Tuesday, 2005-08-23; 14:42:00

Oh. My. God. Free Oxyd clone for Mac OS X! (Here's a direct download link for version 0.92.) This is threatening to make my already rather un-productive summer even more unproductive. (It's not on MacUpdate, or I would've linked there. Also, don't confuse it with this Enigma, which is made by Freeverse and is a Mastermind clone.)

Don't bother with the tutorial levels if you've already played Oxyd and know how to control the ball and what does what -- they basically show one item per level and get really annoying after a while. (There are some new things, like a spoon, which seems to just kill you when you're in a position that is undesirable but you don't want to totally restart the level.) Enigma is pretty faithful to the original Oxyd, except for the sounds -- the description says it's been "inspired by Oxyd on the Atari ST," so perhaps the sounds on the Atari are the same in Enigma? I'm still partial to the sounds in the Mac OS 9 version. I suppose, though, since Enigma is just an application package, and the sounds seem to be wav files, I can just get the sounds from the Mac OS 9 version myself and drop them in.

Enigma also seems to replicate some levels from the other Oxyd variants I've played, like per.Oxyd, Oxyd, Oxyd Extra, and Oxyd Magnum, which is cool, and Enigma also has some good levels of its own. It doesn't replicate ALL the levels, though, and that's a shame, because some of the other Oxyd levels were quite good. (Again, though, looking inside the application package, it looks like they want to replicate the other levels too, since they have an index of all the Oxyd levels of all the variants, and the vast majority of them simply say "todo". I wonder if an automated level updater could be made.)

Anyway, if you've never played Oxyd, you should definitely check out Enigma. (You basically move around a black marble and try to match up the colors of the various Oxyd-blocks by running into two with the same color in succession. There are many other blocks and obstacles that impede your way, though, like water, and you need to figure out how to get around these. It's not entirely a puzzle game, though, because there are a few enemies, so it's more like a "puzzle-action" game. I think those are the best kinds of games.)

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