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Five Cells

Five Cells is a Nikoli puzzle in which the aim of the game is to divide the grid into rooms of five cells based on the number hints given. It can be played on any grid size, but the bigger the grid the bigger the challenge can become. This does depend a lot on the amount of number hints and rooms however.

The rules are as follows:
- Divide the grid into rooms of five cells. The entire grid has to be covered, and there can be no smaller (1-4) or bigger (6+) rooms.
- The numbers show how many room walls surround that number. This number includes the lines of the edge of the grid.
- There is no limit to how many numbers can be in a single room.
- Rooms cannot contain the same cells.

Standard version

Five Cells can be a little daunting to those unfamiliar with it or to those who simply aren't enthusiastic about puzzles. The best place to start however, is either a number cluster or a 0. Number clusters allow for some easy deductions, while a 0 will automatically show a room shaped like a plus. If this doesn't make sense, remember that rooms cannot be bigger or smaller than 5 cells. Since the cell with the 0 has no walls it therefore must extend in 4 ways, adding to a total of 5 immediately.

Five Cells Example

Converting it to an RPG setting.

There are some fun adaptations to be had with Five Cells. The layout of a building, the division of farm land, the locations of specific buildings, a rough layout of countries, grids of power, and so on.

For my example I went with the building layout adaptation. My character is on her way to part of a dungeon divided into 5 rooms, but these rooms are in turn blocked off at specific points, which could contain hidden loot. To keep things simple I left out the extra divisions on the example below, but imagine there's a secret wall-door between the 1 and the chest in the third image.

Five Cells RPG Example

If she figures out the puzzle she'll know there are hidden parts in some of the rooms, which she can then inspect. If she simply goes through the dungeon without solving the puzzle she'll still manage to progress, but she'll miss out on a few extra, possibly helpful items. As well as some possible lore tidbits.

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