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Welcome to MazezaM SOS for the Intellivision!
MazezaM is a puzzle game originally created by Malcolm Tyrrell (see the Credits section). This version of the game takes the player through all 30 Classic Levels and adds a new twist: In SOS levels the player must rescue another character before completing the level.
Warning: MazezaM puzzles are extremely challenging! How hard is the game? It is PSPACE-hard (see the Computational Complexity section)!
Five children went exploring in MazezaM and have become trapped! You play as the fearless explorer Hannah and it is your mission to travel through the 30 levels and to bring the five children back to safety.
The goal of each level is guide the main character Hannah to the exit. In SOS levels the player must also guide a second child character to the exit.
MazezaM has many similarities to the famous block pushing game Sokoban. In both of these games grid-based puzzles the player can push, but not pull, boxes. The main differences between MazezaM and Sokoban are the following:
Use an Intellivision controller connected to either controller port to play MazezaM SOS.
When navigating the menus use the Enter key or the bottom-right action button to make selections and advance. Use the Clear key or the bottom-left action button to move backwards.
During a level Hannah is controlled using the Intellivision disc. In SOS levels the children are controlled with the number pad. The numbers 2, 4, 6, and 8 will move the child up, left, right, and down.
To reset your progress on a level press the Clear key or the bottom-left action button. This will cause the rows and the characters to move back to their initial positions. Pressing the Clear key or the bottom-left action button again will exit the level back to the Level Select screen.
During a level you may also press the top-left or top-right action button to pause the level. The pause screen will also display the level name and number as well as the number of moves required to earn 1, 2, or 3 Stars (see the Achievements section) and the current number of Stars earned on the level. The pause screen also shows the current password (See the Password section). SOS levels cannot be paused.
--------- | | 2: move child up | 1 2 3 | 4: move child left | | 6: move child right [| 4 5 6 |] 8: move child down | | [,]: pause <| 7 8 9 |> password toggle 0-9 and A-J | | <,C: reset / abort | C 0 E | navigate backwards | | >,E: select --------- navigate forwards ( ) ( ): move Hannah navigate menu options
Pro-Tip: On SOS levels a friend can control the trapped child by using the number pad on the opposite controller.
When completing each levels 1-30 you will be rewarded with 1, 2, or 3 Stars.
The number of stars earned on each level 1-30 can be viewed from the Level Select menu. Stars are not earned during SOS levels.
When working on a level the top row of the screen will display two counters. The counter on the right is the total number of moves made so far and counts up. The counter on the left counts down based on the number of moves remaining to earn 3 Stars or 2 Stars. Once you have used more moves than the 2 Star accomplishment, this counter begins counting up to show how many extra moves that you have made.
The move counter (and your progress in the level) is reset by using the Clear key or the bottom-left action button. Immediately pressing these again will you to exit the level.
There are two types of level locking in MazezaM SOS.
You can attempt to rescue each of the children after earning the following number of stars.
However, you must rescue the children in sequence. For example, you cannot attempt to rescue Habibah unless Aja has been rescued, even if you have already earned 30 or more stars.
The levels 1 - 6 are initially unlocked. After rescuing each of the children the following levels are unlocked.
The game is completed once Nitin is rescued. This will require rescuing Eve and earning 50 stars.
Completing MazezaM SOS will take most players dozens of hours of solid concentration, so you will want to save your progress!
In MazezaM SOS you can save your progress using a password system. Each password saves the following information.
You can view your current password in two ways.
Each password is 20 characters long, and each character is a digit 0-9 or a letter A-J. For example, the following password gives you a total of 11 Stars and access to the first SOS level.
C168 05AD 4933 8B27
Note: Be mindful of the distinction between the digit 8 and the letter B. These two characters are distinct, but can look similar in the standard Intellivision font. The digit 1 and I are also similar.
You can enter a password from the Password screen which is available from the Main Menu.
To enter a password you can use the Intellivision disc, where left and right are used to select the position, and up and down are used to change the character.
You can also use the Intellivision keypad to enter your password more quickly. By default the keys 0-9 are used to enter that character. By pressing the top-left or top-right action button, these keys are toggled to letters A-J. Pressing the action button again will toggle the keys back to 0-9.
To enter a password press the Enter key or the bottom-right action button. To exit the Password Screen press the Clear key or the bottom-left action button.
Pro-Tip: When entering passwords it is faster to enter all of the digits 0-9 then toggle to the letters A-J and enter all of them.
MazezaM was invented by Malcolm Tyrrell in 2000. He first released the game on the ZX Spectrum in 2002. In 2010 he won a video game contest by reimplemented the game to have 30 levels and take only 1kb in space.
The levels 1-30 in this port are identical to those in Malcolm’s 1kb version of the game in 2010 (except that the title of «A Mismatch Made in Heaven» was renamed «A Mismatch in Heaven» to fit on one line of Intellivision text).
This version of the game was created by Aaron Williams for entry in the IntyBASIC Programming Contest 2018. More specifically, Version 0.9 was submitted by email before the deadline, with minor optimizations and bug fixes having been made since then. The Atari Age subforum about the contest and the specific thread about this game are below.
The idea for the SOS mode was invented by Aaron Williams. This is the first version of MazezaM to include the SOS concept. The SOS levels were created in an academic paper discussed below.
MazezaM has been ported to nearly 40 different platforms and has been released as a commercial product on the Super Nintendo and the ColecoVision. For a complete list of available MazezaM games refer to Malcolm Tyrrell’s website.
Ben North proved that MazezaM is NP-hard in an unpublished manuscript from 2008.
The manuscript assumed that MazezaM would also belong in the class NP, and so the term NP-complete was used in the manuscript instead of NP-hard.
A sequence of MazezaM levels requiring an exponential number of moves to solve was published at the JCDCGGG 2017 conference by Greenblatt, Kopinsky, North, Tyrrell, and Williams.
Ben North created a visualization showing how to solve these levels.
These exponentially-long levels effectively force the player to count in binary using an alternate ordering called the binary reflected Gray code. They also formed the basis for the SOS levels in this port of the game, with the second character being trapped late in each level.
The authors of the JCDCGGG paper are currently working on an article that proves that MazezaM is PSPACE-complete, meaning that it is harder than NP-complete (unless NP = PSPACE).
MazezaM was released by Malcolm Tyrell under the GNU Public License and this has contributed to the large number of ports that have been written for it.
This version of MazezaM is also released under the GNU Public License, more specifically, GPL Version 3.0.