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(Note: the Windows version of this game is called
NETGAME.EXE to avoid clashing with Windows's own
I originally saw this in the form of a Flash game called FreeNet , written by Pavils Jurjans; there are several other implementations under the name NetWalk. The computer prepares a network by connecting up the centres of squares in a grid, and then shuffles the network by rotating every tile randomly. Your job is to rotate it all back into place. The successful solution will be an entirely connected network, with no closed loops. As a visual aid, all tiles which are connected to the one in the middle are highlighted.
This game can be played with either the keyboard or the mouse. The controls are:
The following controls are not necessary to complete the game, but may be useful:
(All the actions described in section 2.1 are also available.)
These parameters are available from the ‘Custom...’ option on the ‘Type’ menu.
The grid generation in Net has been carefully arranged so that the barriers are independent of the rest of the grid. This means that if you note down the random seed used to generate the current puzzle (see section 2.2), change the Barrier probability parameter, and then re-enter the same random seed, you should see exactly the same starting grid, with the only change being the number of barriers. So if you're stuck on a particular grid and need a hint, you could start up another instance of Net, set up the same parameters but a higher barrier probability, and enter the game seed from the original Net window.
On platforms that support user preferences, the ‘Preferences’ option on the ‘Game’ menu will let you configure when loops are highlighted as errors. By default, they're always highlighted; by changing this option, you can ask for a loop to be highlighted only if every tile forming part of the loop is locked. This avoids the loop highlighting acting as a spoiler for available deductions about squares you haven't even looked at yet.