Artwork by Shrd

I think it's time to tell you about the MAZE game =)

On one hand, MAZE is a prequel to "Journey to Hammerdale", on the other hand, we have decided to make things easy and give up some features, to concentrate on core gameplay, level\puzzles design and other important things. We're just an indie team of three persons, so we have to take some tricks to let you try it as soon as possible.

At this point MAZE is a puzzle oriented adventure game with a large non-linear world and hand-crafted dungeons. It's like "Zelda Link's Awakening", but without action elements.

Game is aimed at a leisure gameplay, exploration of entangled mazes and solving different puzzles. So, dungeons contain secret locations, forks, crossroads, implying non-linear walkthrough.
Also action scenes and enemies always are parts of the puzzles and nothing more.

Artwork by GreenHour

Gameplay is a mix of two main parts — Maze exploration and puzzles solving.

Each map in Maze has one key and 2-4 doors with 1-3 different types:

Key can open an ordinary door (first door type) or can open the chest with skull-key inside, which opens the door with the skull (second door type). Also player can spend normal key to open treasures chest:

For example if Elsa is low on HP, player has a choice — don't risk it and go into ordinary door (but then he gets fewer coins) or take a chance and break through the crowd of enemies (and get a lot of rewards).

There is a third type of door — a guard who demands some coins to let player go through. These guards usually hold entrances to  towns where player can refill health or buy some potions.
In other words there is a motive for the player to collect more coins and there is a reason to think twice before spending a single key.

Fragment of Maze:

S (map 1) — starting map.
B — the beginning of the second branch
F (map 6 and 11) — the place of forks
A — map with artifacts (on global map, they will be marked with "?" signs)
Skulls labeled maps with enemies / death traps (card number 7, 9, 10, 12, 13).

On the other hand, behind danger door with skull may be a branch of Maze leading to artifact ( artifacts are needed to complete the game, it's main quest ) or a dead end.
The player doesn't know it and thus the choice between doors is more dramatic for him.