David W. Skinner
What is Sokoban?
Sokoban is a logic game consisting of sets of puzzles or "levels" similar to the example shown above. It is not a video game and does not require quick reflexes nor does it involve blasting aliens to bits.
Sokoban means warehouse keeper in Japanese. The player pushes objects (balls, crates or money bags depending on the version) to their correct destinations in a crowded "warehouse". The puzzles range from very simple to extremely difficult ones requiring many hours of brain work.
The game was invented in Japan and won a computer game contest there. The original program was written by Hiroyuki Imabayashi and is Copyright (c) 1982 by THINKING RABBIT Inc. JAPAN. Since then, many other versions of the program have been written and additional sets of puzzles have been created. Many of these may be found by searching the internet. A more complete explanation of Sokoban may be found at Scott Lindhurst's Sokoban web site listed below.
My Sokoban sets:
I have created several original sets of Sokoban puzzles. To use them, you must first obtain one of the many Sokoban programs available. Links to several of them are listed later on this page.
My sets are available here in text format. Click on a set, then save it as a text file for use in your Sokoban program. These sets may be freely distributed provided they remain properly credited.
Occasionally I get email from someone who is convinced that a particular puzzle is impossible. Be assured that ALL are solvable.Sasquatch (50 puzzles, released January, 1999)
This is my first set. Scott Lindhurst describes them as generally of just the right difficulty to be fun: not too easy, but (usually) not so hard that you get frustrated.
Mas Sasquatch (50 puzzles, released August, 1999)
Microban (155 puzzles, released April, 2000)
This is a good set for beginners and children. Most of the puzzles are small and illustrate a particular concept. More experienced players should also find them interesting, since they are as different from each other as I could make them given their size. Sokoholics could perhaps time themselves on completing the whole set. This set also contains puzzles which I thought were interesting but too easy to include in my regular sets.
Sasquatch III (50 puzzles, released June, 2000)
This set ranges in difficulty from medium to very hard. Thirty one of these levels explore some form of design symmetry. It is interesting (to me at least) to solve levels in which sections are reversed or rotated. Each transformation often suggests different approaches to the solution. However, sometimes the confusion created requires that each section be solved from scratch.
Sometimes, I find levels in my earlier sets which I would do differently today. Included here are improved versions of two previous levels.
Sasquatch III #41 = Mas Sasquatch #46
Sasquatch III #48 = Sasquatch #49
Sasquatch IV (50 puzzles, released March, 2001)
These range in difficulty about like Sasquatch III. As always, I've tried to explore a wide variety of puzzle types.
Sasquatch V (50 puzzles, released December, 2001)
Again, a wide variety. This set contains several puzzles which exceed the 31x18 size limit of my previous sets.
Mas Microban (135 puzzles, released April, 2002)
Like Microban, this set is good for beginners and children. Most of the puzzles are small and illustrate a particular concept. At the end of the set are four "mega" puzzles which are fun to watch on programs which can handle oversize levels and allow "automated extended pushes".
Sasquatch VI (50 puzzles, released October, 2002)
This set is a symmetrical feast. Forty of these levels involve some form of symmetry. There is also a sequence of levels where I explore the possibilities of working within squares of various sizes. This set contains several puzzles which exceed the 31x18 size limit of my earlier sets.
Sasquatch VII (50 puzzles, released June 2004)
This set has a lot of symmetry but not as much as Sasquatch VI. I tried to do more "normal" puzzles this time. It also contains more expreiments with squares plus other shapes such as diamonds and a circle. As usual several oversize puzzles are at the end of the set.
Sasquatch VIII (50 puzzles, released March 2008)
This set contains improved versions of two previous levels.
Sasquatch VIII #37 = Sasquatch #31
Sasquatch VIII #38 = Mas Sasquatch #9
Microban III (64 puzzles, last updated Novenber 2008)
This set is not finished. The puzzles are subject to change. In addition to new Microban puzzles, this set now incorporates those which I had created for Aymeric Du Peloux's LOMA project. For more info see Aymeric's LOMA page.
Sasquatch IX (50 puzzles, released April 2009)
About one third of these are "normal" puzzles while the others are "symetricals" with lots of squares, diamonds and other shapes. Sasquatch IX #16 is an improved version of Sasquatch #15.
A new type of Sokoban developed during the first week of January 2002. It all started when I created the first "hexoban" puzzle and challenged programmers to create a program on which to play it. Check it out at my Hexoban page.
David W. Skinner
Grandview, Washington, USA
Email me if you desire to correspond about Sokoban, comment on my puzzles, or just declare your existence.
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