The Game-Maker box is scattered with genuinely intriguing snapshots of potential games; between ordering the software and receiving it and figuring out how to use it, I used to gaze at the box and wonder how those games were supposed to work. I was reminded of floppy disks full of old shareware, or wandering into an arcade and marvelling at all the novel games, with their unusual mechanics and art styles, that I might never see again.
One of the key pictures was of the tile editor, and the tiles on display were from Pipemare. This game is the definitive Game-Maker game; it’s the sort of game that the software was made to facilitate. Furthermore, it’s the origin of most of RSD’s iconography, from the main character sprite to the pointy-headed monsters.
Pipemare is a top-down exploration maze action game thing; you play as a happy ball with four feet that rotate around the circumference like a walking machine. If you pick up a hamburger, you get fat. If you pick up a hat, you wear it. You can shoot lasers and drop bombs. You avoid or destroy monsters, pick up treasures, fix leaky pipes, and search for the exit. Everywhere you explore, you disturb the water — making it easy to see where you’ve already been. It comes off a bit like a disjointed early Commodore or Amiga response to Pac-Man.
The game is colorful, distinctive, well-drawn. It’s short; only a couple of levels. And yet it exudes atmosphere and charisma in a way that few end-user games ever managed. Frankly, I’d love to see a remake for the Nintendo DS — perhaps with a level editor.
The Bureau of World Water Works supplys the world with sparkling clear water. At least, it used to.
Underground where the water is 'worked', a lot of mopping up is desperately needed. Stop the water leaks, avoid or wipe out vermin, collect valuables.
Luckily, the vermin have collected a pile of gold which is yours if you can reach it. But first you must find the way out of the first level and then fight to the end of the second level.
Arrow keys or joystick move Smiling Savage Pete Pipeman. (You can call him Pip.)
The space bar fires the laser. The 'b' key throws bombs, if you have any. The 'p' picks up objects. The 'd' key drops objects.
Touch a bomb and you acquire it. Watch out for jets of steam spitting from faulty pipes.
Score lots of points if you stop any leaks or turn off any running water. Build strength by eating. Lose strength if any vermin even touch you. Find the hidden room of gold to progress to the next level.
Many of the same problems as on level one, but you are out of the pipe tunnels and into the underground pipe rooms. Win by finding and bombing your way into the chamber of infinite riches, where piles of gold are yours for the taking.
During game play, type F1 to learn about the function keys.
Designed by Recreational Software Designs.
Graphics, concept, and design by G. Oliver Stone.
Monsters by Joan Stone.
G. Andrew Stone:
- Pipemare: That was my dad's tour-de-force. Honestly it always confused me a bit...
- Several of the monsters are shared amongst all of RSD's games.
- Some of the items also appear in Sample and Terrain.
- The bird creature comes from the image used for Sample's title menu.
Distributed with all versions of Game-Maker.
In addition, full versions of Game-Maker and its gameware were illegally distributed on several shovelware CD-ROMs in the early-mid 1990s, such as Softkey Entertainment Pack (July 1996)
Pipemare was introduced to the archive with the purchase of Game-Maker 1.02 in September 1992.