Aomori tourism council makes super-hard tile-matching game using different apple varieties – The Foreigners magazine In tokyo
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Aomori tourism council makes super-hard tile-matching game using different apple varieties

Written by on November 26, 2021


You better know your Fuji apples from your San Fuji apples.

Although it was recently the target of some shade thrown by a certain Sega exec not too long ago, the tile-matching puzzle game Puyo Puyo is a classic of the genre and now a highly competitive e-sport.

Perhaps as a way to say thanks to everyone for supporting its success, Sega has now graciously lent its source code to the Monaca Education e-learning service to help teach people of all ages how to code games. All materials are free of charge and simply registering with Monaca allows users to compile their creations for use on a smartphone or PC right away. Courses cover JavaScript and HTML5 through four skill levels which range from four up to 1,050 lines of code each.

Image: PR Times

It’s only in Japanese, but anyone is welcome to participate in these Sega Challenge! Puyo Puyo Programming courses. One surprising enrollment was the tourism board for Aomori Prefecture, who are charged with promoting the area’s many fine products, such as apples.

So, using the skills learned in the Sega Challenge! they crafted their own tile-matching game using the many varieties of apples that Aomori is known for. Called Puyo Ringo, it is free to play on a website set up by the tourism board.

Be warned, though. This game is not for the faint of heart and requires a keen knowledge of produce. The game has three difficulty settings in which beginners must distinguish between Fuji, Sekai Ichi, Pink Mutsu (Crispin), and Jonagold cultivars. Selecting the medium difficulty will include Chiyuki apples, and the highest level of difficulty adds Jonathan, Hokuto, and San Fuji to the mix.

This genre of video game is often criticized for its simplicity, but Aomori Prefecture has brought a never-before-seen level of difficulty to the table. In online comments, even people experienced in apples doubted they could do well at this game.

“This…might be the most difficult game of its kind.”
“I used to work at an orchard and still think this is difficult.”
“Even people living in Aomori would panic in this game.”
“I’m from Aomori and I don’t have a clue.”
“I would be too worried about dropping them too hard.”
“Easy mode isn’t easy.”
“They couldn’t even throw in a green apple to help us.”

On the bright side, it isn’t necessary to know each type of apple by name. Players simply need to distinguish each one’s particular shade of red or skin markings. Granted, that isn’t much of a bright side, and having played it myself I can vouch that this game is actually harder than it looks.

Feel free to give it a spin for yourself via the Puyo Ringo link below, and if you run into trouble maybe you should pay a visit to lovely Aomori Prefecture and learn more about its rich bounty of apples.

Source: Puyo Ringo, Sega Challenge! Puyo Puyo Programming, My Game News Flash
Top image: Puyo Ringo
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