SpaceChem and Infinifactory creator Zach Barth has released his latest thing-making puzzle game, which sits somewhere between fiddling with chemistry and building automated factories. TIS-100 [official site] is an assembly programming puzzler, having you literally learn and write code to fix up corrupted code in the mysterious eponymous ’80s computer. Yes, you do need to learn and write the TIS-100’s assembly code. Computers are puzzles!
After a seven-week stretch in Steam Early Access, TIS-100 properly launched yesterday.
The final major update added the TIS-NET DIRECTORY, a series of 25 player-made puzzles which reveal more of the strange system and brings the game to 45 head-scratchers in all. Puzzles have leaderboards so you can compare your coding efficiency with your pals, and the game has sandbox modes so you can make whatever you want. Yes, you can make games within the game.
The fictional TIS-100 has its own manual to pore over, though someone has helpfully made a text version so you can see what you’ll be getting into if you play it. I had a quick glimpse, flashed back to programming lessons, and closed it very quickly. But you might dig that.