What, this old thing?

March 29, 2020

Tags: javascript, showcase

I made this for an interview once. The assignment was an open challenge to “Save the Pony” by communicating with an API. Every time you send a command to the game server, a monster is moving one step closer. The goal is to get the pony to safety before it is caught by the monster.

It was an open ended problem, and my initial idea of a solution was to solve it algorithmically. I did that by reducing the maze to a set of edges and vertices that lend themselves better to automatic navigation. It turns out, however, that there was no guarantee that any given level was solvable, the consequence of which is that any automatic solution would only work 50% of the time.

Faced with this new information, I had to reevaluate my priorities for this project. An automatic solution that does not work every time is not going to be a good showcase for anything, and I decided to take the project in another direction.

At this point, I had two ideas for what to do. Either I’d embed my algorithm into a web-scraper, collecting data that could feed into statistical analyses for creating an autonomous player character. Or I could go for a more straightforward solution that illustrated my ability to handle the API end-point without going overboard on data modeling. I chose the second option, and the result was a cute, graphical, horror puzzle game.

Save the Pony

Click the image to have a go.