Game Manual - Karsten Vermeulen

Codecracker
Game Manual
Contents
System Requirements..........................................................................................3
Introduction.........................................................................................................4
The Main Menu....................................................................................................5
How to play..........................................................................................................8
Understanding the interface..............................................................................10
In-game messages..............................................................................................12
Troubleshooting.................................................................................................13
Thank You..........................................................................................................14
Contact...............................................................................................................15
2
System Requirements
- 1GHz Processor
- Windows XP/Vista/7 with Microsoft Visual C++ 2010 x86 Redistributable
- 500Mb RAM
- 50Mb Hard drive space
- Video card, Sound card, mouse
Please Note : The Microsoft Visual C++ 2010 x86 Redistributable comes
packaged with the game.
3
Introduction
Codecracker is a code-breaking game that requires the player to use their grey
cells and logic to decipher a secret code. The computer randomly thinks of a
color combination and hides it from view in its own row. The player is then
required to figure out what colors were chosen, and in what exact position in
the row those colors are situated. Having only ten rows available, and using
feedback provided by the computer in each row, the player is put to the
mental test to see if they have what it takes to be a true code cracker!
This particular computerized version is based on the popular board game
“Mastermind”, which was invented by Mordecai Meirowitz in 1970. Prior to
that, the game dates back to a much earlier pencil and paper version called
“Bulls and cows”.
While many versions of a Mastermind based game are available in different
forms, Codecracker comes packed with extra features. Three different themes
are available, giving the player more variety in terms of individual game boards
and user-interface panels. For each theme, the background images, music,
sound effects, in-game messages and help screens have been designed to
adapt accordingly. The colorful objects used to break the code are also
different, creating a unique experience for the player based on which theme
they choose.
In addition, Codecracker also has three difficulty levels, which allows the player
to use six, eight or ten colorful balls (or bricks). This in turn also permits the
computer to create more (or less) complex codes.
As more themes become available, they will be easy to download and plug
straight into the game, guaranteeing unlimited hours of addictive gameplay!
Keep checking the Lazy Dog Games website for future patches and updates.
4
The Main Menu
Once you start up the game, you will be presented with two title splash
screens, which you can skip through by hitting the ESC key on your keyboard. A
main menu will follow, which allows you to do different things, such as select
different settings for the game, or even get a glimpse of who was involved in
making the game. Below are full explanations of how the main menu works.
PLAY
Click on this button to begin playing the game. If you do not change any game
settings beforehand, then the default theme (Classic), and the default difficulty
level (8-Ball) will be set for your game. Clicking this button will always start the
game with the current settings, unless you change them.
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OPTIONS
If you would like to change the game settings, then click on this button to do
so. Another screen full of options will display and enable you to setup the
game just the way that suits you best.
The Settings options are for toggling the music, sound effects and game view
mode (either WINDOWED or FULLSCREEN).
The Theme options allow you to choose your desired theme for gameplay.
Currently three themes are available, and more will be downloadable in the
future. Keep checking the Lazy Dog Games website for updates and patches.
Difficulty allows for three modes of gameplay, depending on how experienced
you are. The more balls you have, the tougher it gets to crack the code. (No
pun intended!)
Click on any of the options to adjust the game the way you want, and once you
are satisfied, click the OKAY button to return to the main menu.
6
HELP
If you click on this button, you will be presented with another sub-menu with a
further four options. About will open up a screen detailing what Codecracker is
all about, Gameplay will help you with managing how to play the game
correctly, and Credits will show you who was involved in making the game a
reality. Each individual screen has useful information for you, and if you wish
to return to the main menu, click the OKAY button located in the bottom right
corner of the screen. If you click on HELP and wish to return to the main menu
without opening up any of the help screens, click on Back to head back to the
main menu.
QUIT
Finally the option that exits the game back to Windows is this one. It has the
same effect as clicking the X in the top right corner of the game window
(WINDOWED mode only).
7
How to play
Codecracker is real easy to play, however it may take some practise before
getting it right. Below is a full explanation of how to master the arts of code
breaking, and since each theme is unique and makes use of different objects,
the instructions below are meant in a generic sense. Because two of the three
game themes use colorful balls, the term “ball” will be used throughout.
The game screen consists of a game board, on which you will find the
computer's hidden row on the left, 40 empty slots for you to make your
guesses in, 40 row markers below these slots that will reveal each row result to
you, a ball selection slot on the bottom left, and a colored rectangle marking
the current active row.
At the bottom of the game screen is a UI (User Interface) panel, from which
you can make your game choices.
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You start the game by selecting a ball from the UI panel using your mouse. The
ball will appear in the ball selection slot on the bottom left of the game board.
This will be your desired ball of choice. Now, using your mouse again, you may
click on an empty slot in the active row on the game board to place your ball in
the row at that position. You will only be allowed to fill up one row at a time.
After your current row is complete with four balls, a green arrow will appear
on the UI panel. If you are happy with your choice, click the green arrow to
progress to the next row. Otherwise, click on the newly displayed red cross
icon to clear your row and try again. If you wish to replace a particular ball in
the row, simply click on a new ball in your UI panel and click on the existing ball
that you wish to replace.
Once you click the green arrow, the computer will compare your guess to its
own code, and the four row markers below the active row will show you how
good (or bad) your guess was. A green marker means there is a ball in the row
that is the correct color, and it’s placed in the right position in the row. A
yellow marker means there is a ball in the row that is the correct color, but
unfortunately it’s incorrectly placed in the row. A red marker means there is a
ball in the row that is completely incorrect.
The goal is to get 4 green markers. That means all your balls are the right color,
and are positioned correctly in the row. It also means that you have cracked
the code and the current game session is done. Once this happens, you will be
scored and prompted to play again. If unsuccessful, you will keep moving one
row to the left until either you solve the code or all your slots are used up. If
you fail to crack the code within the given ten rows, the computer will reveal
its code regardless and you will be prompted to try it all again.
Your score is displayed on the bottom right of the UI panel. You will only earn
points if you crack the code. For each row you haven't used, including the row
you were in when you cracked the code, you will receive 1 point. Otherwise, if
you used up all rows without solving the code, you will score nothing.
9
Understanding the interface
Now the previous section may all sound like a mouthful, so let’s break
everything down into smaller pieces.
The Game Board
This is the main board on which you place your ball choices into the slots.
The User Interface Panel
This is the panel from which you make all your game choices from.
10
The Help Screen
This screen will appear when you click on the HELP button on the UI panel.
Everything is explained clearly here, so if you find yourself needing a little bit of
assistance, this screen will certainly be beneficial to you. Once you are done
reading and would like to return to the game, simply click the OKAY button
located at the bottom right of the screen.
11
In-game messages
Depending on whether you win or lose a round, the UI panel on the bottom of
the screen will turn into a message box and display either a winning or losing
message. It will also ask you if you would like to play again. Simply click on YES
to play again or NO to return to the main menu.
If you happen to score 100 000 000 points or more, another message box will
appear asking you if you would like to reset your score back to 0 or not. YES
will reset the score and NO will keep your score on the maximum value of 100
000 000. This is the highest score you can achieve on Codecracker.
12
Troubleshooting
At times, the game might not run exactly the way you want it to, and so we
have dedicated a section for any issues that you might encounter along the
way. These are only the common issues, but if you happen to come across an
error we haven’t documented, please feel free to contact the Lazy Dog Team
via their website and report it.
Error : “This application failed to start because MSVCP100.dll was not found.
Re-installing the application may fix the problem.”
Meaning : If you see an error like this or similar, it means that the Microsoft
Visual C++ 2010 x86 Redistributable package is missing. This software is
needed in order for the game to run.
Solution : Re-install the game. The Redistributable comes equipped with the
game, so it will install all neccessary files needed. Alternatively, you can also
download the software package from Microsoft’s website.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Error : “This application failed to start because <....dll> was not found. Reinstalling the application may fix the problem.”
Meaning : This indicates that one of the required DLL files is missing from your
game folder. Codecracker is built around the SDL API and therefore needs
certain files to run properly.
Solution : Re-install the game.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Error : “Error opening resource file <...>. File not found.”
Meaning : Either a particular resource file or folder that Codecracker is trying
to load is missing. These files should all be inside the game folder, and not be
tampered with.
Solution : Re-install the game.
13
Thank You
First of all, thank YOU for taking an interest in Codecracker and purchasing this
game. We really appreciate that and are extremely pleased to see that you are
enjoying something we enjoyed creating!
Beyond that, we would like to thank the following people for all their help.
Without them, this game would not be possible at all.
Programming
Karsten Vermeulen
Game art & textures
Julian Vermeulen
Paul Iuzzolino
Background music
Ilana Lakofski
Tim Tom
Josh Trotter
Sound effects
Ilana Lakofski
Game testing
Karsten Vermeulen
Julian Vermeulen
Chrissie Vermeulen
Paul Iuzzolino
Dave Calabrese
Celestino Gianotti
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Contact
www.lazydog-games.co.uk
www.facebook.com/LazyDogGames
www.twitter.com/LazyDogGames
www.youtube.com/LazyDogGames
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