Forest Home is a maze-like puzzle game where the player needs to guide a group of cute forest critters back to their homes. The player does this by clicking on the animal and moving them along on a grid until they reach their habitat. The paths of the animals cannot cross, so the player needs to think about the optimal route for each animal. The game keeps track of every movement an animal makes and awards stars to the player based on how many moves it took to complete the puzzle. Some puzzles require that every square on the board be filled, making the animals’ paths slightly more complicated.
Players have the option of playing the game in two different modes: Quick Play and Adventure. Quick Play presents puzzles without any narrative, while Quick Play takes the player through a story with boss fights and a map that you travel along as you solve puzzles. As the player progresses through Adventure mode, additional animals are found and added to your rescue list. If playing in Adventure mode, the player also receives biographies of each animal, giving their names, their likes and dislikes, and favorite foods.
Players earn acorns by completing puzzles, which can in turn be used to purchase hints or other rare animals such as unicorns, pandas, and dodo birds.
Each puzzle within the game Forest Home features different combinations of animals and their habitats. This means that the location of their home and the path they need to take to get there is never the same. Furthermore, additions to the game board like brambles and bridges provide obstacles and opportunities respectively. The player must be flexible in their thinking and be willing to try different routes to get all of the animals back to their correct homes. Players who struggle with flexibility might be convinced that there is only one correct path or spend more moves than necessary to achieve their goal. These players should try a few games in Adventure mode, which starts off with some simple puzzles and builds up to harder levels. This way, they can get used to the mechanics of the game before they go on to puzzles with more squares, more animals, and more obstacles.
Planning: Developing a systematic approach for setting and achieving goals.
Forest Home keeps track of every move the player makes to get the animals back to their homes. The number of moves it takes you to complete the puzzle directly affects how many stars you receive for that level as well as how many acorns you are awarded. If the player has poor planning skills, they may find themselves spending more moves than necessary or using excessive hints because they cannot find the solution to the puzzle on their own. For these players, using the Quick Play mode and trying to visualize the paths before making any moves will help practice this skill in a way that is lower stakes than starting the longer, more involved Adventure mode.
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