Mine Seeker is a single-player and multiplayer puzzle indie game created by DeWazzher. The objective of the game is to guide a man through a minefield and deactivate any mines that he comes across while trying to avoid stepping on mines.
There is a lot of mystery surrounding the game, including who the person with the screenname DeWazzher is and why he continues to update such a simple computer game. Regardless, the game has spurred a mass cult following and is played by many people all across the world. The game has even been featured during the OmeGame Expo and continues to be a popular choice for gaming tournaments. The game has also won countless awards.
The game has a reputation of being a very simple and easy game, mostly from its popularity and ease of access. In reality, the game can be pretty challenging, especially in Mine Master Mode and Mine Master Mode +.
The game starts with you controlling Billy, the local mine man. Billy has been tasked to deactivate all the mines in a minefield. To make matters worse, Billy's pet cat is trapped in the middle of the field. Every few seconds the cat will move in some direction. If the cat sets off a mine and dies, you'll lose a lot of bonus points.
There is also the dreaded Yellow Smiley Face, a demon from another dimension who flies around the top of the screen. He will usually berate the player at how terrible they are and the likelihood thst they will die. Sometimes, Yellow Smiley Face will give you hints about where a mine is or where to step. Sometimes these hints are truthful and other times they are bluffs. If you call him on a bluff and you are correct, you'll score bonus points.
There are currently 209 levels in the single-player mode.
In Multiplayer mode the game is mostly the same however the objective of the game is to deactivate more mines than anyone else to win. The Yellow Smiley Face isn't present in Multiplayer other than a powerup which can be used against other players. Multiplayer features many powerups that aren't present in the Single-player experience.
There are 45 different map types each which are randomized with mines and powerups at the beginning of each match.
The first version of the game made for public release. It is unknown how different this release was from the unreleased Version 1.01 and Version 1.02. This version of the game was the most simplistic and considered more of a beta version of the game than anything else. This version only had single player and 10 levels. The graphics were very simplistic. This version didn't contain Yellow Smiley Face whatsoever.
A pretty small update to the beta version to address many game breaking bugs. Some fixes included preventing Billy from going completely offscreen rendering the game unplayable until reset, fixing the ratio of bombs on the field to reduce difficulty, and fixing a strange graphics glitch that left the field rotating between the color green and brown.
There were a couple things added to this version including a more diverse soundtrack and the ability to save from the last level you played.
One of the first big updates to the game. This update introduced a lot to the game including:
- A total of 34 playable levels
- Introduction of Yellow Smiley Face
- Three powerups added
- Limited ability to customize the look of Billy
- Mine Master Mode (Hard Mode)
- 5 new songs
- Ability to record high scores
This version of the game started to attract a little more attention to the game than any of the previous versions, however it was still a pretty unknown game.
The biggest update to ever come to the game to date. The update was so big and there were so many changes and updates that most people considered it to be a completely different game even though much of the gameplay remained the same. This update is what got Minesweeper into the spotlight and garnered a lot attention. The update also took a year and a half to make.
Some big things that were added to the game included:
- 137 levels total
- Complete graphical overhaul of the entire game
- Ability to pick Billy's gender
- Addition of pet cat aspect of gameplay
- Bigger role for Yellow Smiley Face
- Twelve total powerups
- Addition of unlockable achievements
- Unlockable outfits, hairs, and skins for certain levels completed and achievements unlocked
- Addition of Mine Master Mode + (Very Hard Mode)
- Different endings for completing the game on each difficulty setting.
- Super Secret Ending for completing Mine Master Mode + without letting pet cat die once
- Catastic Day Mode unlocked after completing Mine Master Mode + without letting pet cat die. In this mode you the roles of Billy and the cat are switched.
- Multiplayer Mode added with 10 map types.
The second biggest update to the game to date and the latest update. This version was also given the name of, "The Multiplayer Update" because of its entire focus being on the Multiplayer mode. Some additions to Multiplayer included:
- Update from 4-player online to 12-player online
- 15 new powerups not available in Single-player
- Further customization options for Billy in Multiplayer
- Online leaderboards and unlockable ranks
- Assigning matches based on ranks
- Reduced loading times and increased performance during matches
The game was created by a user with the screen name DeWazzher during The Era of Great Promise! He put the first version out on its own discussion thread in the GamesByUs forum. A few people downloaded it, played it, and gave him feedback on it. After that he updated the game a couple more times until he got to Version 1.10. After that update the game attracted a little more attention and was spread around to other gaming forums and even some independent gaming sites with his permission.
For a while nothing happened. People believed he had started working on a different project, but then a year and a half later Version 2.41 was released on a few gaming platforms. Popularity seemed to explode for the game overnight. The game was downloaded over 3 million times and people were celebrating how great the game was. Later that year, the game started to win awards including, "Best Strategy Game" and "Best Game Featuring Cats." DeWaazher was even invited to attend some gaming award conventions but he couldn't make it because he was working on a new update for the game.
At the beginning of the next year, a preview for Version 3.13 premiered at the OmeGame Expo. Hype for the new version led to more downloads of the game. A month afterward, the new version was released. The new version was praised for its focus on the Multiplayer Mode. Some were disappointed at no new additons to single player, but DeWazzher reassured people that there would be increased focus on single player during the next update.
Currently, DeWaazher is working on the next version. During an Ask Me Anything, he revealed that he was probably going to be working on Minesweeper the rest of his life because he enjoys making the game better and adding new things to it. He isn't planning on ever making an official commercial release because he wouldn't know what to do with all the money anyway.
Mine Seeker has generally been clean of controversy in the eyes of the gaming public, but there was one incident that occurred after the release of Version 2.41 involving the Organization for Respect and Decency of Extinct Animals (ORDEA). Their main complaint of the game was what they considered the improper scenario where Billy's cat would be stuck in a minefield. Their claim was that cats were incredibly intelligent and would never accidentally wander into a minefield.
ORDEA put out many claims that the game was horrible and should be banned from public viewing. They even got an audience with The Order of All Gaming to get it banned, but they denied their request.
Surprisingly, ORDEA eventually stopped their previous claims about the game and reversed their overall judgement. This was because of one the employees finally beat Mine Master Mode + and unlocked Catastic Day Mode. Seeing this mode, ORDEA appreciated the role reversal of a cat minesweeper having to save a dumb Comican from a minefield and thought it was hilarious. They then decided it was a good balance and the game wasn't that bad after all.