Critical Play: Puzzles (Wilmer Zuna)

The game that I chose to do my critical play on for this week is titled Factory Balls Forever. This game was developed and published by Bart Bonte.

Overall, the experience of the game was very fun. I initially played the game on my own but ended up debating with friends on how to best approach solving a particular puzzle.

Formal Elements of Game:

  • Objectives: The game is a mixture between solution- and construction-oriented approach. The puzzle revolves around the player looking at a box on the screen, which contains the shape and style of a ball that the player is expected to recreate with the given set of tools with them.


  • Outcomes:  The game is very forgiving towards not winning. There is only one outcome in the game: the player completes the puzzle. If the player cannot complete the puzzle, then the game continues. From this, we can say that the game is a non-zero sum outcome game.
  • Rules: In this game, the rules here are structured such that the player can only use the tools given to them during a specific level.
  • Procedures: For the duration of the game, the player has the options to make varying combinations with the tools given to them to create the end product to complete the package.

  • Resources: The player has access to a variety of tools in their given level. Parts of these tools include paint of the colors needed in the level, along with layering tools – e.g. hats, sunglasses, belts, etc. – for the player to use to complete their level challenge.

  • Players: This puzzle is player vs. game, since the player completes challenges to advance through the levels in their puzzle.

The game’s intended type of fun is analytical thinking and collaboration with others in the same physical space. I feel like the game did a great job at this.

Some puzzles were great successes, which I’m happy about – especially the earlier levels. The later levels became more complicated, taking longer times to complete, so I would consider those my failures.

If I were to change components of the game, I’d add more narrative to the game to create an arc where I can immerse myself in. Other than that, the game mechanics do a great job at inciting fun.

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