The game is set in a factory, where the player is a worker who must cut six squares out of a sheet of paper in various patterns to form cubes (or boxes) which, once folded properly, are lifted away from the playing field. The stylus is used to choose between three options to perform this task: Scissors, to cut the paper; Fold, which enables the player to assemble a cut pattern into a box; and Reattach, to erase cuts made in error. 
There are two modes of play: R&D Mode and Factory Mode. In both, the object of the game is the same—to form boxes until the timer runs out—and the player is penalized for any stray squares left over on the playing field afterward.
In this mode, different patterns to form cubes are introduced to the player. The player is given sheets of paper squares to work with, and must come up with the correct patterns to cut out of their paper sheets in order to clear the floor entirely before the timer runs out. R&D Mode allows the player character to rise in rank and earn promotions and new outfits or uniforms to wear.
In this mode, the player is given a time limit and an endless sheet of paper to cut into boxes that may be scrolled down from the top of the screen as it is used up. Periodically, bombs will fall onto the playing field, and the player may form a box around the bomb to earn a bonus, but if the bomb is allowed to explode, it will burn away adjacent squares of paper. The player is penalized for stray squares left behind and/or any paper that falls off of the screen as it is scrolled downward. Factory Mode allows the player character to earn money, and upon reaching certain amounts the character will gain new items for its miniature garden on the top screen.
HACOLIFE was originally released on February 25, 2009 in Japan. As BOXLIFE, it was released in North America on June 22, 2009 and in Europe on July 10, 2009. It was developed by skip Ltd. and published by Nintendo for the DSiWare service.
BOXLIFE has received generally favorable reviews, with an average score of 80.25% on GameRankings and 80% on Metacritic. Reviewers praised the unique presentation and gameplay, as well as the retro music and graphics, but criticized the sometimes iffy controls and steep difficulty.
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- "Cut Straight to the Fun with Paper, Planets, Puzzles, Mind Games and Mini Golf". Nintendo of America. 2009-06-22. Retrieved 2009-06-22.
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- "Art Style: BOXLIFE for DS - GameRankings". GameRankings. 2009-06-22. Retrieved 2009-08-29.
- "Art Style: BOXLIFE (ds) reviews at Metacritic.com". Metacritic. 2009-06-22. Retrieved 2009-08-29.