Futoshiki

Futoshiki sets the example of what every Kindle game and application should strive for.  It is fun, challenging, and includes great graphics and has intuitive navigation.

It is Sudoku with an added twist.  For those of you who are familiar with the basics of Sudoku, it is a set of 3×3 grids within a larger 9×9 one.  The goal is to insert numbers from 1-9 in all of the squares with a different number for each cell.  Both Sudoku and Futoshiki start out with a few numbers already filled in.

As one who is definitely not a math person, I was a little intimidated by the < and > signs that are added into the 5×5 and 7×7 grids at first, but they’re actually there to help you.

Ratqueen

“I’m not a huge fan of standard Sudoku — I like it, but find it somewhat difficult, repetitive, and kind of boring. Futoshiki is a whole lot better and I absolutely love it. While the < > signs on the board may appear as additional requirements/restrictions at first, they in fact act as clues and make the game a bit easier (less trials and errors) and more interesting than Sudoku, at least to me. That opens a whole new way of thinking that I find most satisfying.”

After I got going, with Futoshiki, I actually got to like it a lot, and do intend to play more often when I get spare time.  I think it is fun to play around with the numbers until you can get them situated right.

I took advantage of the instruction manual, and got the basics of the game.  But, I really got the gist of it when I dove in and tried a few puzzles on my own.  Use the manual to learn how to access hints and keyboard shortcuts.  While you are in the game, be careful with how many hints you use.  If you have some left over, you can get bonus points.

Bluewave

“This game is similar to Sudoku, but quicker. It’s fun & easy to pick up while traveling. I highly recommend it if you want something fun to do while waiting or in between reading. Worth the price! ”

One quick note about the navigation.  Be sure you make the distinctions between the annotation button and the actual number.  You can annotate each square to help figure out what number would be the best fit, but the process is somewhat difficult if you aren’t careful.

Braintonik has done a great job with Futoshiki.  Great graphics and high marks by reviewers.  You can’t get much better than that!  Good for players of all skill levels.

 

Sudoku for Kindle

Sudoku is a natural addition to the Kindle word game list.  You have a large variety of puzzles to choose from, and you can choose to play Sudoku puzzles that come from newspapers and magazines.  So, no need to give up your favorite New York Times puzzles.

If you aren’t familiar with the game, you are provided with a 9 by 9 grid that is partially filled with numbers.  There are thousands of number combinations to choose from.  The grid is broken down to smaller 3 by 3 regions.  You must fill each region with the numbers 1-9 in order to finish the game.  The Kindle version comes with levels ranging from easy to insane.  So there is something for everyone.  A reviewer who considers himself a Sudoku expert even feels challenged by the difficult levels.

EA did a great job making the Kindle version of Sudoku resemble its pen and paper counterparts.  There is a legend included to show what letters on the Kindle keyboard represent the numbers in the game.  EA makes is easy to remember what letters go with the numbers.  The letters that correspond to the numbers are the ones at the top of the keyboard starting with “w” and ending with “o”.  The 5-way toggle button makes it easy to move the letters around.

Sudoku on the Kindle has a few advantages over the paper version.  You can make notes in the squares and click “autofill” if the game gets too hard.  You also have a “hints” option that is included in all of the Kindle games.  If you mess up, click “undo” or use the error checking option.

For more information on Sudoku for Kindle, check out the Sudoku Kindle review on the Kindle Review Blog.

Kindle Sudoku


Kindle Sudoku
Kindle Sudoku

Update: As of November 19, 2010 Electronic Arts has released a Kindle version of Sudoku on Amazon marketplace. You can download it here an start playing right away.

Since little is known right now about KDK and the way it will integrate with Kindle software I can only speculate about which Kindle apps will be available. And this is precisely what I’m going to do.

Kindle Sudoku is likely to the among the first application to appear in fact I believe that there will be multiple versions of it by several companies. Sudoku is a very popular game, it doesn’t require fast screen refresh, colors and any computing power or memory. On top of that it’s not encumbered by trademarks or copyrights so everyone is free to implement it in any way they like. Kindle keyboard and 5-way controller are good enough for playing Sudoku (I have to admit that touchscreen with a stylus would have been the most perfect).

In fact if you look at Amazon’s official KDK page, one sample app that is displayed on Kindle there is Sudoku.