Pixel Puzzles: Japan combines traditional jigsaw puzzle style gameplay with light video-game interactivity.
User reviews: Very Positive (1,093 reviews)
Release Date: Apr 17, 2014
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Recommended By Curators

"Like jigsaw puzzles where the puzzle pieces move around? If so then get this game, its a great challenge and great for casual players."
Read the full review here.

Reviews

“If you are looking for a nice relaxing game where you don't have to worry about quick reflexes then you can't go wrong with Pixel Puzzles: Japan.”
8/10 – GAMERamble

“Pixel Puzzles: Japan a game to relax too!”
NerdMaldito

About This Game

Pixel Puzzles: Japan combines traditional jigsaw puzzle style gameplay with light video-game interactivity. As you build puzzles your monk will gain higher consciousness states. The higher the level of your monks concentration the bigger the puzzle you can attempt. All hand drawn in a beautiful Japanese aesthetic, Pixel Puzzles: Japan is perfect for puzzlers and gamers alike.

Features:

  • Traditional puzzle gameplay.
  • Relaxing Japanese atmosphere.
  • 26 Steam Achievements.
  • 19 puzzles in a range of sizes from 60 to 350 pieces.
  • Multiple FREE DLC bonus puzzles
  • Beautiful photos taken on site in Japan.
  • Interactive play environment.
  • Progressive I-ching powers that give insight into puzzles.

System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows 7, Vista
    • Processor: Core 2 Duo
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: DirectX 9.0 Compatible
    • Hard Drive: 85 MB available space
    • Sound Card: Generic Sound Device
    Recommended:
    • OS: Windows 7, Vista
    • Processor: Core 2 Duo
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: DirectX 9.0 Compatible
    • Hard Drive: 85 MB available space
    • Sound Card: Generic Sound Device
Helpful customer reviews
33 of 35 people (94%) found this review helpful
18.8 hrs on record
Posted: March 14
Some of you may remember your grandparents, parents, and/or assorted relatives (maybe even their friends), sitting around a foldout card table when your were little. They'd be talking, laughing, and staring down at the surface of the table with perplexed expressions on their faces. Their hands were in constant motion. Standing on tiptoes, you'd try to see what all the fuss was about... The table legs were so high up and you were so very small. Someone milling about would pick you up and settle you on a lap. And there to your amazement was a strange and wonderous mystery being solved. A picture of exotic wild life, mountains, a river, a famous landmark, horses galloping on an open plain, or maybe fairies and unicorns dancing under a starry night's sky filled your eyes. The picture wasn't complete but you were told that if you were good and didn't knock the strange, funny shaped pieces of cardboard to the floor, that you could help solve the picture too!

It's now been many years since I sat at a table and put a puzzle together. Many of the people I once sat across are sadly no longer with us, having passed on. But I still remember that thrill that ran through me on "Game Night" when puzzles and board games ruled the living room! Pixel Puzzle: Japan, took me back to those fond days and made me feel that I was once again sitted at that magical card table. The imagery and audio are quite lovely. The actual puzzle pieces are designed beautifully and lock in place just like a real jigsaw puzzle. They are also nicely challenging. If you are looking to relax, and leave your cares for a while, you could do far worse.
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31 of 32 people (97%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
7.7 hrs on record
Posted: January 14
I enjoyed Pixel Puzzle: Japan, for what it was.

This game was exactly what it claimed to be. A Jig-Saw Puzzle Game with the puzzles being pictures from Japan.
It's fairly relaxing, due to there being no timer, alowing you to take as long as you need to complete each puzzle.
The game has 19 puzzles. There's not much variety, other than the different puzzle-pictures, & different sized puzzles.
Sizes start at 60pieces, then 112 pieces, 153 pieces, 220 pieces, & the last puzzle has 350 pieces.
There are 26 Achievements, & all are easy & involve finishing all the puzzles.
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18 of 18 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
9.0 hrs on record
Posted: December 7, 2014
Very nice game to relax with. :]
The overal idea of the game is what I like mostly.

+The puzzle pictures
+Different 'skill' levels
+Different shapes of the puzzle pieces which can make it a bit of a challenge in some cases.

The moving pieces makes me a bit 'nervous' at times though.
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15 of 15 people (100%) found this review helpful
0.7 hrs on record
Posted: March 13
For what it is, its a good little game. Its a time waster when you want to relax from blasting aliens or racing cars at 200 mph.

The pictures are really nice, and the music is pretty relaxing. The extra pieces float around the board in a pond, so that you can see the remaining pieces you havent yet put into the puzzle.

Achievements are easily attainable, each one cooresponds to a puzzle you need to complete. No time limit, no fancy business, just complete the puzzle, achievement pops.

One thing I didnt see was a save feature. Kinda silly not to have one. I've only done the shorter puzzles, but later on it could get annoying if you want to hold onto your progress and finish up another day.

If you want a jigsaw puzzle game, this will scratch that itch.
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12 of 12 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
26.3 hrs on record
Posted: January 9
There are some minor technical issues (like volume control bugging and piece fishing being annoying at times).

But other than that the game is fun, beautiful and relaxing.
(I only wish you'd be able to turn off the music but keep the sound effects on).

Absolutely recommended.
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23 of 33 people (70%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
8.8 hrs on record
Posted: February 23
何の工夫も変哲もない、至って普通のジグソーパズル
時折あるアタリのピースを嵌めると陰陽ゲージが貯まり
ゲージ解放で五秒ほど完成図を閲覧できる他は特殊操作もない

模様を頼りに隣接するだろうピース同士を隣に置いても
スナップして塊にはなってくれず、代わりに周囲8マスの
どれとも接続していなくても正しい座標に置きさえすれば
正解の音が鳴ってそこに固定されてしまうのには首を傾げる

ミルクパズルだろうとひたすらそこらに適当に置いてみる
の繰り返しでクリア出来てしまうっていうか桜の絵柄のとか
模様が何のヒントにもならないのでそれをせざるを得ない

なにかしら悩んだところで解決しない類の問題を抱えてて
頭空っぽにして単純作業に没頭したい時にオススメ
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10 of 10 people (100%) found this review helpful
23.4 hrs on record
Posted: March 20
I thought this would be a "few clicks" puzzle game and I am done. Boy, was I wrong.

Things that make it different than an ordinary puzzle game, thus better:
- You have to catch your puzzle pieces floating in the pond
- The cut-outs of the puzzle pieces are insane shapes
- You have to "earn" the ability to see the whole puzzle picture
- YOU CAN FISH!

Things I am not fond of:
- Your options reset everytime you exit the game
- You cannot save in the middle of the puzzle. That is my biggest dissapointment, as some puzzles can take hours.

Overall, it's a very relaxing and frustrating game at the same time. I like it.
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9 of 9 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
19.8 hrs on record
Posted: January 14
If you like jigsaw puzzles this is a good game to try. The music is soothing and the puzzles make lovely pictures. There are 26 achievements that are fun to get. It took me almost 20 hours to get them all.

There are three drawbacks. First there is no save feature. So you have to complete each puzzle before leaving the game or start over. Some of the harder puzzles took me a couple hours or so to complete so this was quite annoying. Second the piece size decreases since they cannot increase the puzzle size. If you have a small computer screen or poor eyesight this may make things difficult. Third a few of the puzzles make it hard to pick up the piece you want you have to grab other pieces and move them away from the piece you want in order to grab it.

Even with these drawbacks it is an enjoyable experience and I am glad to have purchased the game. However waiting for a sale might be a good idea.
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10 of 11 people (91%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
21.0 hrs on record
Posted: December 24, 2014
Relaxing puzzle with beautiful Japanese images, different levels and shapes.
I like the overall idea though I need to point one thing: the moving pieces makes me a bit 'nervous'.
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8 of 8 people (100%) found this review helpful
11.6 hrs on record
Posted: March 15
Nice jigsaw puzzle game, that reminds me of puzzles from my childhood. The theme is as title says, Japan and various famous places from there. Actually it's fun to play, you pick one of available puzzles, as your character - Monk gets older while meditates and that lets you play more difficult levels. Puzzles are varied in themes and depicted beautifully, settings are right below the screen and allow to change color of backround or volume of music quickly. Nevertheless, in the middle of campaign some awful things start to interfere, like same music over and over or problem to pick a specific part from plenty of others floating around. These problems show up and bother only later in game and, also, who decided to make later puzzles 1-2 hours long each, without feature to save? It really kills the point of this game, which should be some quick, casual gaming when you are tired from bigger games.

At the end, it's an enough enjoyable jigsaw puzzle game and even boring later stages and other problems should not stop you from trying it, especially when Steam lacks these type of games.

ReDiR's rating: 7
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8 of 8 people (100%) found this review helpful
11.9 hrs on record
Posted: May 3
A fairly straight forward jigsaw puzzle game, in fairness.

I think I got this game for free from some kind of site promotion and it seemed like a fairly easy game to 100% so I thought, why not?
After all, nothing wrong with a good jigsaw puzzle every now and then.

This is a nice and relaxed game for when you just want to chill out but exercise your brain a bit. (But not too much)

You have 19 main puzzles, which vary in size and difficulty and 2 bonus puzzles that must have been added in later on. The way it works is that the pieces float and move around on the sides of the screen in the water, you pick out pieces and put them together. Simple!

The only problem I had with this game was that towards the end, the bigger puzzles with around 300 or so pieces in the water, it became harder and more tedious trying to pick out the right pieces you want. Although it’s not all that hard to get around so that’s as far as you are going to get in terms of stress.

To 100% the game you just complete every puzzle. That’s it. It’s an easy one.

The scenes are nice Japanese themed scenes, some are harder then others but in general they are all nice to look at.

All in all it’s a nice little game to steer you away from the bigger more stressful games that you may have in your games library.


TL;DR : It’s a nice relaxing little jigsaw puzzle game, it’s pretty straight forward and it’s an easy 100%ed game.
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7 of 7 people (100%) found this review helpful
15.8 hrs on record
Posted: March 14
If you are looking for a nice relaxing game where you don’t have to worry about quick reflexes then you can’t go wrong with Pixel Puzzles: Japan. Being a fan of jigsaw puzzles obviously helps, but the game has enough unique touches to make it appealing to all fans of casual titles. It is the type of game that you can just keep open in the background and play for a few minutes at a time while your mind wanders. It is also very competitively priced and features Steam trading card which is always a bonus.
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14 of 21 people (67%) found this review helpful
13.0 hrs on record
Posted: February 4
While I enjoyed this game, and played it to completion, one particular flaw was simply to big for me to recommend it.

First, the Good:

1. It's jigsaw puzzle game on Steam!

2. Plenty of pictures gives you plenty of jigsawing to do

3. Different puzzles have the pieces "cut up" very differently, adding to the variety

4. As you'd expect, it's pretty relaxing just slowly taking your time to work on the puzzle, and then it feels really good when the puzzle is almost completed and you can just plop the remaining free pieces in the remaining holes without any searching :)


The Bad:

1. The worst issue with the game - picking the puzzle piece you want out of a group of other pieces is an exercise in frustration, especially in the latter puzzles when so many pieces are floating in the river. You can click directly on a puzzle piece, and the game then hands the piece that was hiding underneath it - over and over again. I sometimes took me literally a dozen tries to pick up a single puzzle piece! This one flaw by itself is what had me click the "No" for this review.

The final puzzle is by far the largest, and has 350 piece. As soon as I started it and saw the river absolutely full of overlapping pieces, I despaired - only to find out, to my amazement, that I was flawlessly picking up every single piece that I was intentionally clicking on! 30 pieces in a row, with no mistakes - what sorcery is this??? It's as if the QA testers complained to the programmers that this puzzle was unplayable, and they fixed the issue only in the final puzzle. Yes, it seems ridiculous, but I honestly cannot think of any other explanation.

2. No way to save progress in the middle of a puzzle. Some puzzles take hours to do, and if you exit the game, you gotta start them all over!

3. The music, while pleasant enough in the beginning, just loops over and over and over, and it's the same song for every single puzzle. Thankfully you can mute it, though that also mutes the few sound effects.

4. The colors in a most of the pictures seem washed out, though maybe that's a style thing.


The Differences From Physical Jigsaw Puzzles Which May Be Good or Bad Depending On Your Point Of View:

1. The puzzle pieces are always oriented in the proper direction, so there is never any need (or ability) to rotate them.

2. When dropped on the board close to their correct spot in the picture, the puzzle pieces automatically shift and stick there. There have been many times where I'd accidentally plop a piece down in the right spot. This also allows you to "hunt" for the right spot by just moving a piece around the board in small increments.

3. There is no way to stick two puzzle pieces together when you know they match each other, but do not know where exactly in the picture they belong.

4. The only way to view the full picture of the puzzle you're solving (without taking a screenshot of the level-select screen) is with a hint-style button, which slowly lights up as you place pieces in their proper spots. When you do use the button, it turns the board you're solving into the complete picture for a few seconds during which you can still move and place the puzzle pieces.

So yes, I mostly enjoyed the game when it was not frustrating me with the puzzle piece selection issue. If the devs fix that, I'll switch the recommendation to Yes.
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6 of 6 people (100%) found this review helpful
10.5 hrs on record
Posted: March 18
TL;DR – If you enjoy real life jigsaw puzzles at all, this will give you hours of joy. Use it to unwind! If not, I don’t see how this game would differ from the real thing enough to show you the joy of matching pieces for hours on end.


Recently Indiegala had a free giveaway of Pixel Puzzles: Japan and Commando Jack so that’s how I came about this game. The most I’d heard of Pixel Puzzles: Japan was from achievement threads on the forums and how it was an easy finish(?). The achievements may be straight forward enough, but this game, like the monk that smiles peacefully at you through the whole experience, will make you start twitching like a broken robot (it ain’t easy). I spent 10.5 hrs, spanning two days finishing this game.

When I pick it up I’m thinking this’ll be easy as I’m an intermediate puzzle completist and completionist. This was a calculated presumption as when I was twenty one, I had a crazy stalker who scared my family and me so intensely that for a while (until we sorted the whole situation out) I would be cooped up at home and with a fixation of my own, jigsaw puzzles. I’d start at the living room table and end up moving to the floor for space. Family members would come and go to help with the progress and basically it would be hours of just staring at a bunch of puzzle pieces. This went on for a few months and by the end of it I was a fairly confident matcher of jigsaws. I also found some fantastic jigsaw puzzle enthusiast friends along the way! Even without the relaxing chimes and trickle-clunk repertoire of the shishi-odoshi (bamboo water pipe), which can be enjoyed whilst playing Pixel Puzzles: Japan, jigsaw puzzles are the epitome of equanimity and tranquillity. Some people wonder how exactly the tedious matching of a couple of hundred jigsaw pieces can ease stress. Most I know tend to feel better when they have something to keep them busy. Jigsaw puzzles enhance this experience by giving you improved concentration and a zen state of mind.

The first two hours of my play time sprung from my idiocy of not knowing how to start the game. I had no idea I was meant to choose one of the lower levels to the left and then press the black and white go button to the bottom left of the screen to start my journey. So I spent 2 hours piecing together two high level puzzles and failing to level up for it. Like actual puzzles, the more pieces in the puzzle, the higher the replay value is so even with the actual 8.5 hours I took to complete this game, I bet I could play it over a few more times before getting bored. I actually had fun playing the harder levels straight off the bat even though it was challenging.

The puzzle pictures are pretty and pleasant and everything is simplified with just you and your mouse clicking away. You have a koi pond surrounding your “puzzle board” where a nishikigoi swims around with the pieces of your puzzle. Puzzle pieces keep floating around the pond and it will be difficult to “fish out” the exact piece you’re looking for because of this. You click the piece you’d like to use and put them on the board in front of you and keep looking for jigsaws to make your final picture. The board can be viewed in a variety of colours which will help later on if you’ve misplaced pieces at the end. It is possible to take the koi out of your pond and place it into your bamboo stick (part of achievements). When you place pieces on your board there are two points to consider. One is that when your piece is put onto or very near its proper place, it’ll automatically shift into that spot (handy). This means you can use this when you can’t quite place a puzzle piece but you know whereabouts it may go. The second is a little cheekier and visibly up voted in Pixel Puzzle: Japan’s community hub as a cheat method. You can pile pieces directly on top of each other so that when you click the pile, the pieces will be selected in order from left to right of the actual puzzle. It’s simple and effective even if it isn’t placed quite on top of each other and isn’t in perfect order, but this play method will bore you so I recommend you don’t do it unless you’re near the end of a puzzle and would just like to stack pieces so you don’t lose any of them. I’ve already mentioned this twice so I might as well articulate this problem; you may lose sight of the last 1-2 pieces of a puzzle when you’re close to finishing it because it’ll be on top of some other puzzle piece and camouflage itself. This isn’t too bad because when you find the correct spot for a piece and it clicks into place, you can no longer move it. So when you lose a final piece and can’t find it, just drag your cursor around until a random piece moves. This is in relation to one of my favourite parts of this game because with physical puzzles, you’re constantly left with extra identical pieces and missing pieces that you have to send out for which is the downside of physical jigsaw puzzles. I no longer have to fret till the end, wondering if I’m going to be left minus a puzzle piece. Hooray! Another lovely part of this game is that puzzle pieces have the wackiest shapes. Some look like various animals, others are swirling like something Dr. Seuss made and are very cool. Though first impressions make it seem daunting, the original shapes will work out in favour of your game play as it’s easier to spot pieces which fit.

The first few levels aren’t necessarily in order of difficulty. I find lines easy and flowers hard so the levels fluctuated for me but by the last few levels, difficulty rises progressively and steeply. Yet it was always rewarding to see the final completed puzzle image (you don’t see a clear image of the original picture beforehand) as a fan of Japanese culture (the theme).

Even with a simple game like this there were points I found were in need of improvement. There isn’t a save button so if you feel tired and want to rest your eyes a bit or try and pick it up tomorrow, TOUGH! You either lose your progress or keep pinching yourself so you won’t fall asleep. I literally kept falling asleep in the middle of one puzzle last night and I finished it in twice my average completion time. I also didn’t enjoy how small the puzzle pieces became later on as they grew in quantity, because I use a laptop and though I’m not sure what it looks like on a PC screen, I was forcefully squinting by the end.

At the end of the day, Pixel Puzzles: Japan is a great addition to any puzzle lover’s game collection and though I was gifted it for free, the cheap $0.69 price tag is quite agreeable.
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7 of 8 people (88%) found this review helpful
155.4 hrs on record
Posted: February 4
Most beautiful relaxing puzzle game I have found. It has alot going for it.
Pluses-Nice music.
Floating puzzle pieces that you have to catch.
Nice pictures of Japan that you have to build.
Cons-No save. You cannot save your puzzle so you have to build it all at once. It can take a really long time. Such an easy feature that is missing it seems.
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7 of 8 people (88%) found this review helpful
1.0 hrs on record
Posted: March 12
PIXEL PUZZLE JAPAN

I just started playing this game and although classic puzzle games aren't my taste at all, sometimes it's a variety to some gamers playing classic games like this.

It's a very relaxed puzzle game with no pressure at all. There is no time limit or any other reason to stress yourself.

It's really relieving to enjoy the relaxing and calm asian music in the background while putting some jigsaw pieces (with unusual edges) together into an one big beautiful picture from japan.

There are plenty of nice pictures and the floating jigsaw pieces are funny to watch, especially when you catch the fish by accident instead of a piece.

If you have troubles to put them together you can collect some kind of points ( by previous put pieces) and use them at a certain amount to see the full picture for a short time of period which might help a bit.

My advice to you is starting with the edges of the entire puzzle and then compare the patterns especially the colours to find easier matches.

ALL IN ONE

✓ This game is recommendable for gamers who want to get rid of their daily stress and want to try out this classic puzzle game and waste a bit time, although i felt like i never really wasted time because it was really relieving & relaxing at the same time.

*IMPORTANT NOTE*: This game is currently for free on the Indiegala Website so grab it today and don't miss your chance ( Date : 12.03.2015)
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7 of 8 people (88%) found this review helpful
1.9 hrs on record
Posted: April 16
If you just fancy a nice slow jigsaw game then this is the one for you, i must admit its really relaxing

ill give it a 7/10
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5 of 5 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
3.9 hrs on record
Posted: April 26
Played with this track on:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9htPNo9rND8

Felt like this song was specially made for Pixel Puzzles.
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6 of 7 people (86%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
31.8 hrs on record
Posted: March 17
A jigsaw puzzle game that you can shove the expensive carp in the bamboo fountain.
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6 of 7 people (86%) found this review helpful
12.8 hrs on record
Posted: March 23
This is almost the ultimate in casual gaming in that it's so relaxing that I managed to fall asleep while playing it one evening.
It's perfect for playing while listening to podcasts or just generally winding down.
I honestly never thought I would enjoy jigsaw puzzles this much :)

A save feature would have been nice though,
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