|Developer|| DMA Design|
|Publisher|| Bandai Namco Games|
|Platform|| Bandai Extreme|
|Ratings||K-A for Kids to Adults|
Chiyo Chans is a puzzle-platformer video game based on the character Chiyo Chan from Azumanga Daioh developed by DMA Design and Azumanga Interactive, published by Bandai Namco Games and co-published by Psygnosis for the Bandai Extreme, Bandai Revolution, Bandai CD, Bandai Chaos, and Bandai PocketTurbo.
The game is similar to the action/puzzle game Lemmings.
Chiyo Chans is divided into a number of levels, grouped into four difficulty categories. Each level includes some or all of the following elements: entrance and exit points (at least one of each per level), destructible landscape elements such as rocks or soil, indestructible elements such as steel plates, and obstacles including chasms, high walls, large drops, pools of water/acid/lava, and booby traps.
The goal is to guide at least a certain percentage of the pig-tailed, pink-robed Chiyo Chans from the entrance to the exit by clearing or creating a safe passage through the landscape for the Chiyo Chans to use. Unless assigned a special task, each Chiyo Chan will walk in one direction ignoring any other Chiyo Chan in its way (except "Blockers"), falling off any edges and turning around if they hit an obstacle they cannot pass. A Chiyo Chan can die in a number of ways: falling from a great height, falling into water or lava, disappearing off the top, bottom or side of the level map, being caught in a trap or fire, or being assigned the Bomber skill. Every level has a time limit; if the clock counts down to zero, the level automatically ends.
To successfully complete the level, the player must assign specific skills to certain Chiyo Chans. Which skills and how many uses of each are available to the player varies from level to level, and the player must assign the skills carefully in order to successfully guide the Chiyo Chans. There are eight skills that can be assigned:
- Climber: Climbs vertical surfaces, falling if it hits an overhang.
- Floater: Uses an umbrella as a parachute in order to fall safely from heights. A Chiyo Chan that has been given both Climber and Floater skills is known as an Athlete.
- Bomber: Continues whatever it is doing for five seconds (indicated by a countdown timer above the Chiyo Chan's head) and then explodes, destroying itself and any destructible landscape in close proximity. Surrounding Chiyo Chans, traps, etc. are not destroyed.
- Blocker: Stands still with arms outstretched, preventing other Chiyo Chans from passing. Any Chiyo Chan that hits a blocker reverses direction.
- Builder: Builds a rising stairway of up to twelve bricks. The last three bricks make a sound when placed, giving the player a warning that it may be time to assign the skill again in order to continue building, or assign the Chiyo Chan another skill.
- Basher: Digs horizontally.
- Miner: Digs diagonally downwards.
- Digger: Digs directly downwards.
While the player is able to pause the game to inspect the level and status of the Chiyo Chans, skills can only be assigned in real-time. Chiyo Chans are initially released at a rate predetermined by the level (from 1 to 99). The player can increase the rate as desired to a maximum of 99, and later decrease it down to, but not lower than, the initial rate. The player also has the option to "nuke" all the remaining Chiyo Chans on the screen, converting them to Bombers. This option can be used to abort a level when in a no-win situation, remove any Blockers that remain after the remaining Chiyo Chans have been rescued, or end a level quickly once the required percentage of saved Chiyo Chans has been reached.
The four difficulty groups – "Fun", "Tricky", "Taxing" and "Mayhem" – are used to organize the levels to reflect their overall difficulty. This rating reflects several factors, including the number of obstacles the player has to surpass, the limitation on the number of types of skills available to assign, the time limit, the minimum rate of Chiyo Chan release, and the percentage of Chiyo Chans that must be saved.