The Incredible Machine (video game)

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The Incredible Machine
Incredible Machine DOS Cover.jpg
DOS Cover art
Developer(s)Jeff Tunnell Productions
Publisher(s)Sierra On-Line, Dynamix (3DO)
Producer(s)Jeff Tunnell
Designer(s)Kevin Ryan
Programmer(s)Kevin Ryan
Artist(s)Dennis Clevenger
Composer(s)Christopher Stevens
SeriesThe Incredible Machine Edit this on Wikidata
Platform(s)Macintosh, DOS, FM Towns, PC-98, 3DO
  • 1993 (Mac, DOS)
  • 1994 (FM Towns, PC-98, 3DO)

Even More:

  • 1993 (Mac, DOS, Windows 3.x)

The Incredible Machine is a video game released in 1993, and the first release in The Incredible Machine video game series.


The Incredible Machine, the first game in the series, was originally going to be developed by Electronic Arts for the Commodore 64 in 1984, but Dynamix worked on Arcticfox for the Amiga instead and work did not start on The Incredible Machine until the spring of 1993. Kevin Ryan programmed The Incredible Machine in nine months, on a $36,000 budget.[1] The Even More Incredible Machine was an extended version of the original The Incredible Machine and had 160 levels, about twice the number of levels in the original game, and also had quite a few more parts.


Aggregate scores
65.00% (iOS)[2]
71/100 (iOS)[3]
Review score
Gamezebo4/5 stars (iOS)[4]

Computer Gaming World in 1993 praised The Incredible Machine, stating that while the 80 puzzles "are a blast" the Free Form Mode was the game's best feature; "the curious, tinkering 10-year-old is re-awakened, given a digital toy box and set loose in the backyard of his or her mind". The magazine concluded that the game was "one of the most innovative and deceptively addicting products to pass this way in quite a while ... a well-oiled imagination machine with a very broad appeal".[5] In 1993, Dragon gave the game 4 out of 5 stars.[6] Electronic Gaming Monthly gave the 3DO version a 7.25 out of 10, saying that its controls are too slow due to the lack of mouse support, but that it is nonetheless better than the PC version due to the dramatically improved graphics and sound.[7]

In 1996, Computer Gaming World named The Incredible Machine the 62nd best game ever. The editors summarized it as "fresh in concept and long on gameplay."[8]


The Incredible Machine was nominated for an award at the 1993 Game Developers Conference,[9] and was the winner of several prizes due to its innovative style and simulation abilities. It was innovative enough that Sid & Al's Incredible Toons earned Jeff Tunnell and Chris Cole a patent for the game concepts.[10]

The Incredible Machine for iPad/iPhone also won Best iPhone/iPad Game and was nominated for Best Puzzle Game at E3 by IGN.[11]


  1. ^ Matt Barton (July 14, 2013). "Jeff Tunnell on Software Patents, Betrayal at Krondor, Incredible Machines". Armchair Arcade's Matt Chat. YouTube. Retrieved July 15, 2013.
  2. ^ "The Incredible Machine for iOS (iPhone/iPad)". GameRankings. Retrieved 18 October 2014.
  3. ^ "The Incredible Machine for iPhone/iPad Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved 18 October 2014.
  4. ^ Zuccarelli, Dan (13 June 2011). "The Incredible Machine Review". Gamezebo. Retrieved 18 October 2014.
  5. ^ Lombardi, Chris; Weksler, Mike (April 1993). "Tinkering with Sierra's The Incredible Machine". Computer Gaming World. p. 52. Retrieved 6 July 2014.
  6. ^ Lesser, Hartley; Lesser, Patricia & Lesser, Kirk (May 1993). "The Role of Computers". Dragon (193): 57–63.
  7. ^ "Review Crew: Incredible Machine". Electronic Gaming Monthly (59). EGM Media, LLC. June 1994. p. 38.
  8. ^ Staff (November 1996). "150 Best (and 50 Worst) Games of All Time". Computer Gaming World (148): 63–65, 68, 72, 74, 76, 78, 80, 84, 88, 90, 94, 98.
  9. ^ "The 7th International Computer Game Developers Conference". Computer Gaming World. July 1993. p. 34. Retrieved 12 July 2014.
  10. ^ Tunnell, Jeffrey A.; Cole, Christopher M. (1994-11-10). "United States Patent 5,577,185: Computerized puzzle gaming method and apparatus". United States Patent & Trademark Office. Retrieved 2007-09-11.
  11. ^ "E3 2011: Best of E3 Awards". IGN. 2011-06-06. Retrieved 2011-06-11.

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