HAX (Alex Raymond)

This game was inspired by people who hack Pokemon save files in order to get rare monsters or infinite items or whatever. These folks figured out how to change just the right characters to give them what they want without (completely) breaking the game. I thought it would be interesting to make a game where this was something you had to do in order to progress. – [Author’s statement]

[Windows/Mac Download]


  1. Notepad: The Game.

    This was actually pretty fun, if a bit silly of a concept.

  2. Had to dig out the source code to figure out the robot puzzle… Too much cheating?

  3. You just out-meta-ed the game, Norgg.

  4. Good idea, but I don’t think it was executed that well. The puzzles are pretty obscure; I’m not sure what to do with the robot or the box, for example. I only got “25 out of 58”, so…hm.

    The way I see it, if you’re going to make a game like this, you should make it so that the player really feels like they’re cheating. Like they’re defeating the game and doing something amazing. Not, “oh, the entire ineraction with the game is through save files, lol”.

    • Yeah, I’m stuck on the robot and the box puzzles. I can sort of solve the robot one (as I found the accomplishment for it) but I think there must be another way to solve it. OTOH the rest of the puzzles seemed pretty straightforward. I didn’t even think you could get 25/58 without deleting some of your accomplishments after you’ve earned them? There are three accomplishments I think you need to get to the end, and they add up to 30 points, even if you just guessed the accomplishment phrase instead of guessing the items required to earn it in-game.

  5. I’m always confused when developers cite strange inspirations (messing with a hexadecimal value locator and editing tool is less impressive than, say, modifying the entire game by replacing sprites, animations, and even text and events within the game, in my opinion… though making a game based around the latter may be ridiculously difficult in comparison) when other games that use the same concept (Nifflas’s Riddle and Thrompd’s nifty) appear to have preceded their fleshed out idea without citing muses- though for all I know they could’ve all been inspired by the same thing out of sheer coincidence. It makes me hesitate from picking up and playing their game because I go in with expectations that are probably unfair to the result of their hard work.

    It’s one of those feelings when you’re seeing someone submit the patent for the telephone two years after it’s been invented, in a place that seems to be worlds apart from where the telephone is already a commonplace addition to most households. There’s a comic strip that probably describes my feelings a little better than my weird analogy, anyway.

    Speaking of Nifty, I remember there being a Nifty+ (a browser based take on Nifty, so not really involving the reading, making, and modification of files so much as difficult puzzles and surreal atmosphere) and a ‘sequel’ in development called gifty Gifty- both games not really by Mr. Yes/Thrompd, I think, but I can’t seem to find anything about ’em online anymore.

    • Did you actually play the game? I tried out Riddle, and I guess I’m supposed to open the dll or the exe in a hex editor, but frankly if I felt like hex editing a game, it would be more fun to do it to a game that isn’t intended to be (ROMs are usually a fun choice). Same goes for nifty. Really, just CBA. Even as a programmer this doesn’t sound like fun, just a way for people to wave their dicks around while pretending to be `real hackers`.

      Yeah there are a million and one “hack this x” puzzles out there, but the point of HAX isn’t to figure out HOW to edit the file, it’s to figure out WHAT to edit it to. It’s not a ‘hacker game’ but a text adventure game with novelty UI/puzzle design. It’s extremely easy to put whatever crap you want in the file, the trick is putting in things that are actually helpful. The author states on the page that she intentionally made the save files plaintext. That’s not “less fleshed out”, it’s more accessible.

      • I mean, for chrissakes, the game even tells you where the file is saved, which AFAICT is also an intentional addition by the author.

      • Wow. It’s been a year, and unfortunately I didn’t really see this thing until today. Sorry that I upset you?

        But no, you’re not supposed to use a hex editor with either Riddle or Nifty… I don’t really know why you ended up trying that.