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Sheep is a puzzle game with strategy elements. Players are put into the shoes of a herder and have to guide as many sheep as possible through 7 different worlds. Each world has a unique theme and consists of 4 levels. The story is a humorous tale that features aliens a mad scientist. The game was originally released for Windows and the PlayStation by Empire Interactive; it was ported to the Mac by Similis Software and published on it by Feral Interactive; it was also ported to the Game Boy Advance by Capcom, with Empire Interactive publishing it for the platform. 8 years after the original release the game became available on the Playstation Store for Playstation 3 and PSP.
The basic premise of this game is that sheep were once intelligent beings from the planet Ovis Aries. These smart sheep sent a group of their species to Earth millions of years ago to learn about Earth's society and customs. Unfortunately their ship was damaged on the trip which left them stuck on planet Earth. As the years passed they forgot their mission, they soon became domesticated by mankind.
Now their ancestors have come back to Earth to regain the lost sheep and stop the evil plan of mad scientist Mr. Pear. In order to keep their presence unknown they abduct 2 humans (Adam Halfpint and BoPeep) and 2 dogs (Motley and Shep) and implant them with the desire and will to herd sheep like mad men. The goal of the herders is to herd as many sheep as possible back to Mount Mouflon and return them to the sheep paradise of Blue Hawaii.
When starting the game players must choose either easy, medium or hard difficulty and at the start of each level players can choose a herder: Adam Halfpint, BoPeep, Motley or Shep and a breed of sheep: Pastoral, Factoral, Longwool or Neogenetic.
Herding sheep in Sheep involves simply running behind them at which point they will start moving in the opposite direction, however they can be highly sensitive to the herder's movements and odd sheep will often stray from the flock. Herders also have a shout to make the sheep quickly scatter in the opposite direction and can pick up and throw individual sheep. The object of each level is to guide the sheep to the end under a time limit, avoiding the obstacles that can kill them along the way. If all of the sheep in a single level die or the time runs out the player fails the level.
The sheep themselves have the ability to jump over certain obstacles, stand on switches and knock down impassable bails of hay but levels often also contain cattle grids which only the herder can pass across. Occasionally additional sheep in need of rescue can be found within a level and each level also contains a golden sheep. If the player manages to collect all the golden sheep in a single world they will unlock a sheep-theme minigame at the end of that world. At the end of each level players are scored on how many sheep they saved, how much time was left on the clock when the level finished and bonus points (which can be earned through getting sheep to eat carrots, knock down scarecrows etc.), players also receive an additional bonus if they have safely rescued all of the sheep in the level. Various powerups throughout the game such as a radio which will make sheep follow the player can also be found.