July 22, 2011 in Games (E)
[prMac.com] Columbia, South Carolina - Created by a retired research mathematics professor, the free app Peg Pals is the only puzzle of its kind on the App Store. The initial version appeared in Apple's "What's Hot in Puzzles," and also in "New and Noteworthy in Board Games."
The puzzle consists of the classic triangular board with 15 peg locations (such as those commonly seen in the Cracker Barrel restaurant). The object is to reduce the puzzle to a single peg by successively jumping a peg over an adjacent peg and into an empty location. Puzzles can vary in difficulty from about 30 seconds to solve, to much more complex.
What's special about Peg Pals is that it does not restrict the user to a single-peg removed puzzle, but rather generates random - but always solvable - puzzles with varying number of pegs removed. As an option, puzzles may require that the final peg be in a specific spot. The user also has an option to use a timer and the option to show a solvable indicator that turns pink when there is no solution for the current puzzle.
This update provides the player with the option to set up any position as either a puzzle or for analysis. Several advanced aspects of mathematics, including the theory of groups, are involved in the computer's internal analysis. Peg Pals also uses artificial intelligence search methodology to analyze positions.
The game allows for unlimited hints and the app will show you, move-by-move, how to solve any puzzle that you like. This makes the app great for both playing and learning how to solve any such puzzle.
The game play is smooth, fluid, and nicely animated. The pieces resemble smiley faces that beam when they are about to jump, or show horror when they are about to be jumped.
All settings are preserved between sessions, and the user will resume a puzzle exactly where she left off.
The app includes detailed and easy to access documentation of all its features.
The app's analysis option shows how many (if any) solutions are possible beginning with each possible move and also how many solutions end at each location. By repeatedly using the hints button, it is also possible to see detailed move-by-move solutions for each puzzle - including positions set up by the user.
Features of Peg Pals Include:
* Automated generation of solvable puzzles
* Unlimited hints
* unlimited undo's
* Optional timer
* Optional indicator turns pink if there is no solution
* Set up custom puzzles
* Completely analyze any puzzle
* Move by dragging pieces like the real game or optionally tap to move
* Graphics are designed for the retina display
* Complete documentation included
* iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad
* Requires iOS 3.1 or later
* 5.6 MB
Pricing and Availability:
Peg Pals 1.1 is free and available worldwide exclusively through the App Store in the Games category - specifically Board Games and Strategy Games.
David Sumner is Distinguished Professor Emeritus of mathematics at the University of South Carolina in Columbia, SC. He is also the author of PentoMind, a board game/puzzle app for the iPhone, as well as Circular Tic Tac Toe for the iPad. Both Games have appeared in Apple's What's Hot in Board Games. He has been an Apple developer for about 20 years. He is the author of numerous research papers in mathematics and articles in popular computing magazines. Copyright (C) 2011 David Sumner. All Rights Reserved. Apple, the Apple logo, iPhone, iPod and iPad are registered trademarks of Apple Inc. in the U.S. and/or other countries.