Rocks'n'Diamonds is a scrolling tile-based computer puzzle game that can be described as a combined Boulder Dash, Supaplex, Emerald Mine, and Sokoban clone. It is a freeware and open source video game created by Artsoft Entertainment and designed by Holger Schemel. With its release in 1995, it is one of the earliest games available for Linux, and it also runs on MS-DOS, Windows, Unix, and Mac OS X systems. The DOS version is based on code by Guido Schulz. There are currently more than 50 000 levels available on Rocks'n'Diamonds-related pages. Rocks'n'Diamonds can also read native levels from the games Emerald Mine, Supaplex and Diamond Caves II. The native Emerald Mine game engine is based on an older version of Emerald Mine for X11 by David Tritscher, which is used to read and play all native Emerald Mine levels.
Rocks'n'Diamonds features gameplay elements from all the games mentioned above, usually in the form of sub-games, although levels can feature combinations of elements from any of the games mentioned above, as well as new ones.
The Boulder Dash game involves collecting a set number of diamonds after which an exit door opens through which the player can enter the next level. The levels are filled with dirt which can be dug simply by moving through it. This creates empty space. Diamonds can be collected by moving into them. Rocks and diamonds can rest on dirt, walls (only indestructible and slippery/magic walls), or other rocks and gems, but once these are removed (or the space next to them), they will fall down. This is sometimes useful, as the player can drop things on top of monsters (butterflies and fireflies) roaming the levels. Some destroyed monsters drop gems necessary to achieve the necessary number to complete the level. Amoeba can be dangerous and unpredictable, but also occasionally useful for several reasons of too few diamonds, or if you need to destroy a monster.
Supaplex and Emerald Mine
The Supaplex and Emerald Mine games can be considered clones of Boulder Dash themselves, although they have added elements, including explosives, acid, locked doors with matched keys, and more. Rocks'n'Diamonds provides a download of approximately 50000 Emerald Mine levels, however, it can only play a very limited amount of them under its primary engine; because of this, it also includes a [now] obsolete copy of Emerald Mine for X11 to play those levels. One significant feature missing from this implementation (but present in Emerald Mine for X11) is wrap-around movement.
The Sokoban game is a transport puzzle, and can be considered to be viewed from above, as its elements are not affected by gravity. This game lets the player push giant light bulbs into sockets in order to finish the level.
The game includes a level editor that lets the player create his/her own levels. The game also supports custom graphics, as well as whole new level elements (custom elements, also called CEs, see below), which can be created without any programming knowledge.
Custom Elements (also known as CEs) are elements created in the level editor. There are only a few things impossible to accomplish with them, although some things are more difficult to do than others nearly anything can be made. New custom element techniques are being discovered by users every once in a while.
- ↑ Changes readme for the early versions of Rocks'n'Diamonds. Retrieved on 07-may-2008.
- ↑ It belongs e.g. to the standard install size of the games package for SUSE Linux.
- ↑ Free Software Game Favorites: Rocks'n'Diamonds - Free Software Magazine
- ↑ Gifts for Gamers: Some End-of-Year Recommendations, Part 3 - Linux Magazine
- Artsoft Entertainment - Rocks'n'Diamonds Official website
- Forum Official forum
- 'Rocks'n'Diamonds' at MobyGames
- Rocks'n'Diamonds at The Linux Game Tome
- Rocks'n'Diamonds page A complete overview