Lab access too restrictive?

I wonder if access to the lab puzzles should be made easier. I’ve recently been playing eterna after a long absence and seem to have been granted “grandfather” access to the labs but it seems that new players have to go through the Puzzle Progression to be granted access. Most of the puzzles are fairly straightforward but some, particularly in Liquid Robotics, are pretty diabolical. I had real trouble with these and eventually solved some of them either by random clicking or by pasting solutions that some kind soul had posted in the comments. It’s easy to see how off-putting this might be to newer players. That and the fact that the recent TB puzzles seem to require a different skill set from that emphasized in the puzzles makes me wonder if some of these puzzles should be eliminated.


This is definitely something I agree with! It would be great if lab access could maybe even be stratified, so that you could have access to some more basic labs (or somehow have an easier task than designing a full lab from scratch) earlier on, and as you complete more tutorials you can unlock more.

The biggest question would probably be how useful such simpler tasks would be science-side.


i think the start up puzzles are designed for the more easy transition to labs. I do agree with 18-18 particularly being too restrictive for a player to gain access to lab. Also the next set of labs are more simple  (rujui said in chat) I would hate to see anyone miss out on the next simple round of labs we do.  Thanks!

For the record i have solved all labs that i have tried to dating back at least 7 rounds. and I will say this i dont have the solve for 18-18 which i luckily solved after twisting it around for a couple of weeks!!!  There actually no comments at the start up page of 18-18 that gives any good direction on how to solve (and other sc puzzles do). Hope this perspective helps with the question at hand! 

I received Lab access after getting i think only 5000 pionts a bit over a year ago. That said i have lab design winners. ;The progression puzzle 18-18 is too hard and should be removed in my opinion.

Even after creating winning designs in labs for years I found it hard to get through the “new” lab access suite when I finally ran through it. Some of them I solved by exhaustive trial and error rather than “figuring it out”. I think we should scale it back folks, or as LFP6 suggested, make lab access stratified, so you get into the simpler labs first (e.g. getting started) and “success” there (however defined) grants access to harder labs.

I feel that there are enough lab slots (and enough difficulty in filling them) that we don’t need to restrict access so tightly. Let more folks learn by doing as many of us did back when lab slots were even more of a scarce resource.


Some raw “brainstorming” thoughts:

  1. What if new players who completed the basic “lab-intro” were given “limited” lab access (say max 5-10 slots per sub-lab), but could earn/unlock more slots by creating designs that solved current or past labs, say one more slot for each sub-lab solved up to the per sub-lab maximum? Note: it might have to be something other than a simple single-base mutation for this to be meaningful. Perhaps players could not see prior submissions for candidate labs until they design/submit at least one design of their own?

  2. Or what if scoring above some threshold score (say 70? 80?) on a design in an actual “wet-lab” run upgrades/unlocks that player’s ability to submit designs up to the sub-lab per-player maximum for subsequent labs. You get 5-10 slots for doing the (simplified) puzzle progression and earn more by showing that you can create/modify a decent design.

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