30 April 2013

Sokoban variants

What is a Sokoban variant? Sokoban "variants" are games that contain this element, indispensable in Sokoban: push boxes (or other elements) to a particular place.

The Sokoban variants incorporate many different elements, which sometimes provides a great interest to these games. Next I publish a selection of Sokoban variants for Windows and DOS (see a complete list here). 

I exclude from this selection two large families of puzzles related to Sokoban, but that they belong to a separate category of games: 1) puzzles with "sliding" blocks; 2) puzzles that you have to push blocks, but not to take them to a particular place, only to open a way to an exit.

The games are arranged chronologically.

Revaz S. Mesarkishvili / TbiliSoft
1990, 1996
Country: Georgia 

  Version 1.1 (January 1990) 
  Version 2.0.1 (December 1996)

One of the first Russian Sokoban games and the most classic. The game has 36 puzzles (from A1 to F6) and begins in the sector C6 (press F2 to view the map with the location of the puzzles). The puzzles are connected, so you can move from one to another. There are some quite difficult and complicated puzzles!

There is some amount of energy and time to solve the puzzles. The energy is lost as boxes are pushed. We must collect keys that appear in each puzzle to open locked doors. There are also fruit, to eat and replenish lost energy. Some boxes contain inside bags with money (those boxes are opened at the end of the level). The game can be saved at the time that you want (F4) and then restart it in the same position saved (F5). A drawback: the player moves with keyboard arrows, but does not stop it once started the movement. To stop the player should press space bar. This is very stressful because many mistakes are made.

GJID 2.0
John Remyn / Galifir Developments
August 1992. First version: 1990
License: shareware
Country: Netherlands


It comes to disposed of via the "holes" (goals with a "X") all the boxes of each level, and reach the exit (goal "E"). The boxes have several aspects, like the walls. There are special tiles that can only be crossed in the direction of arrows. There are 14 levels very clever in the shareware version. Score according to number of moves to solve each level. The registered version has editor.

Rescue Rover!
ID Software / Softdisk Publishing

November 1993. First version: February 1991
License: shareware
Country: USA


Rescue Rover II
ID Software / Softdisk Publishing

November 1993. First version: September 1991
License: shareware
Country: USA


The evil Robot has stolen your dog and you have to rescue him. Use the boxes to protect yourself from the laser beams, cross the furrows of water, divert the path of the robot-guardians, etc. There are keys to open doors, blocks-mirror to divert the path of the laser beams, balls (which play the role of sliding blocks), teleporters... There are 30 tricky levels (in shareware version there are only available the first 10). The game is automatically saved. "Rescue Rover II" is a second sequel.

SokoBall of Osaka
Jim Radcliffe
License: shareware
Country: USA


Sokoban variant in which you must to bring up the "holes" (black) all boxes for each level. There are special tiles: tiles-arrow that compel us to follow the direction of the arrow; tiles with pivots that are activated / deactivated through switches; tiles with a diamond that disappear when you pass over them and all row moves a place to fill the space...

There are 18 puzzles in total, 10 of whom are adaptations of the "Original" collection. It has an editor to create your own levels, which are added to the alphabetical list of puzzles of the program. The editor works even in this shareware version (I think that it is not possible to register the program), although the functions of the right side of the editor pane are disabled.

Spectacular graphic design!

Zeek the Geek 1.1
Paul H. Smith / Sidewalk Software
March 2000. First version 1.0: August 1995
License: freeware
Country: USA

  Part One: Zeek's Wacky World
  Part Two: More Adventures in Zeek's Wacky World

The nice Zeek has to collect flowers and treasures of each level (which provide points) and reach the delicious edible mushroom... But be careful with the flowers and poisonous mushrooms!, and above all be careful with the carnivorous flowers! The "Part One" contains 15 fun and ingenious puzzles. In the "Part Two" (30 puzzles) there are new elements and two cute characters: Piclasops, the dinosaur that eats flowers, and Atomic Eyes, that shoots laser beams. All the puzzles are very clever. The program allows you to save the game to resume later. There is a "Hall of Fame" according to score. Incredible graphics! Recommended!

"Part Two" file includes several packs with the following collections:
- "Nice 'n Easy" (30 puzzles)
- "Challenge Pack" (30 puzzles)
- "Puzzles Galore" (60 puzzles)
- "Challenge Pack II" (30 puzzles)
- "Kid's Stuff" (30 puzzles)
- "Fun Pack" (5 puzzles)


Pa Zoo!
Vichiro / NenGollo Software - Brownie Corp.
December 1998 - June 2005
License: freeware
Country: Japan
  Pa Zoo!
  Pa Zoo! 1
  Pa Zoo! 2
  Pa Zoo! 3
  Pa Zoo! 4
  Red Jade Edition (puzzles by Akashobin)
  Pa Zoo! X1
  Pa Zoo! 5
  Pa Zoo! 6
  Pa Zoo! 7
  Pa Zoo! 8

Sokoban variant very interesting, although a little complicated to explain. In each puzzle must collect the key and reach the exit door, but to do so we will have to remove some animals (boxes of colors in "Pa Zoo! 1") that hindering the way. If two animals are placed in adjacent way, they disappear; if two animals are placed in adjacent way and among them there is a tree (or a wall of color on "Pa Zoo! 1"), disappear all three; if two animals are placed in adjacent way and among them there is a bomb, the bomb explode and disappear all the elements adjacent to it to all four sides (cross-shaped "+"). If you solve all the puzzles, you enter the ranking according to score. "Pa Zoo! 8" has a separate editor.

The number of puzzles of each series is variable (between 11 and 26). The first series "Pa Zoo!" is a introduction, with very easy levels.

Items from the start menu (top-bottom): 1 = start game, 2 = go to the last played level, 3 = choose level, 4 = full/normal screen, 5 = exit. Shift, or click right button (in game) = context menu



Version 1.0 for Windows (Czech): May 2005. First version for MS-DOS: October 1999
License: GNU General Public License version 2.0 (GPLv2)
Country: Czech Republic

  Version 1.0 (Czech)
  Version 1.3 (English)
  32 extra puzzles
  Levels passwords

šky" is one of my favorite games, not only of Sokoban variants, but of all the logic games. I would not hesitate putting it next to the great mythic games, like "Prince of Persia" or "Lode Runner"...

"Berušky" means "ladybug", those friendly red bugs with black spots. Originally a game for DOS, now has versions for Linux and Windows. In total there are 120 puzzles, all incredibly clever and some of great difficulty, designed by Luboš Doležal and grouped in five categories: Training (10 puzzles), Easy (50), Medium (35), Hard (20) and Impossible (5). The puzzles incorporate many new elements: explosives, blocks, special doors that open with the key of the same color, boxes of different types, pickaxes and drills to break walls... In each puzzle you have to collect 5 keys to open the exit door, and sometimes you are available up to 5 ladybugs that cooperate to solve it. Excellent graphic design! The game has a editor.

I have used the first Czech version, whit music and editor (the keyboard shortcuts are also different from the version 1.3 in English). Except the "Impossible" last series, all the puzzles have solution, although some are very difficult... ;)

Pushy - 15 Level Mini Version
Ralf zur Linde

April 2003. First version: September 2000
License: freeware
Country: Germany


The old Macintosh users may remember the nice game "Blobbo" (1995, 25 levels) of Glenn Andreas, one of the best logic games I've ever seen. As well, in some aspects, "Pushy" reminds "Blobbo". As in "Blobbo", in each puzzle there are new elements, whose function you will have to find out by "trial and error". You learn by experience.

In each level you must remove the "bull's-eye", firing at them (you'll have to put them in line), perform other actions depending on each puzzle, and reach up to the "home". Almost all the elements are moved by pushing them, as the "boxes" in Sokoban, and unlike "Blobbo", there is no slide elements (at least in these 15 puzzles). A problem common to many Sokoban variants: the placed boxes are indistinguishable from the non-placed.

The program is actually a small selection of only 15 levels (the original game, called "Puschi", had 100 puzzles...). But where can I find the original game? I've spent hours to find out where you can purchase the full game, and -except error on my part- I think that is included in the package Lernwerkstatt 8 (Medienwerkstatt Mühlacker), which contains numerous educational programs (in German). There is a logic games section, and there you will find the original game, "Pushy Classic" (175 levels), and the collections "Pushy Island", "Super Pushy Island", "Pushy & Co.", "iPushy"... The downloadable "demo" has 609 MB, it takes more than 15 minutes to install (and other 15 minutes to uninstall...), leaves in your PC traces of programs, and best of all: the "demo" is only valid for 7 minutes (!). 100% genuine German. I wonder why 7 minutes?, and not 6, or maybe 7' 30''... Obviously, I advise not to download this "demo". There is also a Pushy version for iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad (260 levels).

Spych 1.4 finall
Paweł Sławiński
November 2001
OS: QBasic
License: freeware
Country: Poland

Collect the "chips" of each level and reach the exit. You have to fight your way through the boxes, collect keys to open doors, there are mines which explode if you spend above, and other elements... Use the boxes to detonate the mines. The game is saved automatically. The puzzles aren't too difficult, but there are small very clever details... There are 31 puzzles.

The Enigma (Jan Vinten, October 2006) is a game inspired by "Spych", but does not work on my PC.

Pushy PC! beta 0.6
Nigel Brown and R Fred W (FishNet Software)

March 2002
License: freeware
Country: UK


There are puzzles with balls (sliding), others with boxes, and others are mixed with boxes and balls. All the puzzles are original, and especially the puzzles with sliding balls are excellent and some quite difficult. Each puzzle has a password (the name written below on the left), so you can resume the game later. Ranking according to score. Excellent design with Lego bricks.

わにの庭 (Crocodile Garden) 1.0
Anahara Masataka
August 2003
License: freeware
Country: Japan
DOWNLOAD (English version)

Unlike the Sokoban, the player don't push the elements, but a bulldozer, which only has movement forward or backward. You must use bulldozers to push other bulldozers, or stones to fill holes. The objective is to remove all the obstacles of the way, and carry the crocodile (or crocodiles ... ) up to the pool. It's not easy! Keep in mind that workers should be able to raise and lower the

Space bar/Enter = drop down/up the crocodile


Logic Trap 1.1
Alexander Kasholkin / Fairygames
Internet Archive: web.archive.org/web/20090125172549/http://fairygames.com/logictrap_details.html
December 2004. First version 1.0: May 2004
License: shareware
Country: Russia
DOWNLOAD (Internet Archive)

It is a game similar to "Fitznik", but with really ingenious puzzles and some quite difficult. Each puzzle should collect the keys and reach the exit door. Use the barrels to protect yourself from the shots and the enemies, to cross the water, filling holes or activate switches... There are 60 puzzles. Recommended!

R = restart level, Space bar = place bomb


ルタ (Ruta)
Aru & Daisuke Yamaguchi
March 2010. First version 1.0: February 2005
License: freeware
Country: Japan

You have to collect the key and reach the exit. Use the barrels and the sliding blocks to plug the holes. There are 50 puzzles very ingenious.

Ctrl+F = full/normal screen

Crazy Boxes 1.8
Josef Stöckl
November 2007. Version 1.5: December 2005
License: freeware
Country: Austria

Sokoban variant with 163 ingenious puzzles, and several additional elements: revolving doors, blocks-obstacle, holes, water... To go to the next level there are to solve the previous one. German and English languages.

Blocks 5 1.1.1
David Scherfgen
October 2011. Version 1.0: March 2007
License: freeware
Country: Germany

Despite nothing retains just the game Sokoban, the 42 puzzles are excellent, some very ingenious and with many additional elements: bombs to destroy walls, teleporters, tiles of obligatory way, switches, laser beams... At each level there to collect a number of "diamonds" and reach the exit. There are up to 3 characters that work together to solve the puzzle. Languages​​: English and German. In the author's website you can download extra puzzles. It has an editor. Spectacular!

Dotty Blinkeyes 1.0
Jussi Ernsten
June 2007
License: freeware
Country: Finland

Dotty Blinkeyes 2
Jussi Ernsten
September 2008
License: freeware
Country: Finland


You must collect the keys (and the $) of each puzzle and reach the exit. In total there are 15 puzzles, all very tricky. There are various elements that hinder or facilitate the solution: switches, blocks, boxes, rolling balls (and destroy the wooden boxes if clash against them). There is a ranking based on the number of moves. Languages: Finnish and English. Recommended!

"Dotty Blinkeyes 2" is a sequel of the previous game. You have to pick up the keys (and diamonds) of each puzzle. Place the boxes in the tiles with an "x", to open the closed ways. There are a total of 12 puzzles, perhaps not as witty as the first version of the game. It has an editor.

Joachim Holmér
Language: Java
Country: Sweden

Amazing program in Java. The puzzles are a variant of Sokoban, with normal boxes (red color) and sliding (blue color). Excellent design. There are 20 levels, some very difficult. There is a record of puzzles solved, with time and moves. It has an editor.

Backspace = restart level, Esc = menu, H = help

Super Sokobang
Akita Multimédia
November 2009
License: shareware (Registered version: 9.95 $)
Country: Canada

Excellent program that actually is a Sokoban variant, with various elements that complicate the game: boxes of different colors, closed rooms (you need to open the door with a key), dark rooms (you need to activate a switch to turn on the light), conveyor belts for boxes, trucks... There are 40 puzzles easy but fun, suitable for the children. Excellent graphic design!

The Brave Bwock 0.2
Joseph Austin
June 2010
License: freeware
Country: USA


16 very clever puzzles. You have to collect the keys and reach the exit door. Beware of the Wizrats shots! Use the "stones" to cross the water or protect yourself from the shots. It is possible to create new puzzles in simple text files (see instructions in "resources -> levels -> README"). There are versions for Linux and Windows.

Karl Hofer
June 2010
License: freeware
Country: Austria

Use the "cheese" to plug holes and reach the exit. There are 20 very easy puzzles and other 20 "tricky", but not too much. Languages: English and German. There are versions for Windows, Mac OS X and iPhone. Excellent design!

Bloxes: In the Tower 1.00
April 2011
License: Creative Commons - Attribution 3.0 Unported
Country: Spain

As in Sokoban, you also have to push "boxes" and reach the exit. The first five or six levels are relatively easy, but the following levels are very complicated and ingenious... There are different kinds of blocks and tiling. Certain blocks can only be pushed in the direction of the arrow; there are "wells": to pass over them, you have to cover the well with special blocks; there are switches that enable/disable doors that close off the way... In total there are 30 levels. The game is saved automatically. Excellent graphic design! Recommended!

Push the Box
Maximize Games
Big Fish Games
January 2013
License: commercial (9.99 $)
Country: Indonesia

We need to free prisoners and open the way between the boxes until you reach the exit. As the level progresses new elements appear that hinder the game: ice blocks, tiles with spikes, a guardian, traps... There are 100 puzzles.


  1. I like variants, even if I prefer original sokoban games!

  2. Have you considering adding "Sokoban Online" to this list? It has normal Sokoban Puzzles, plus "Modern" Puzzles that make it a Sokoban variant.


  3. Hey, I have a full version of the game Pushy (aka Puschi) with 99 levels.

    1. Hello!Can you send it to me,please? My mail address is xwfh2009@yahoo.com
      thank you!

    2. If someone is interested in the full version of the game Pushy (aka Puschi) write to me at: ya.john458@ya.ru