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Overview

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Sheep is a comedic 3D isometric real-time strategy-puzzle game developed by Minds-Eye and published by Empire for the Sony PlayStation and PC in both North America and Europe on November 2000.

Players control one of four characters (humans BoPeep and Adam Halfpint, regular dog Motley, and anthropomorphic dog Shep) as they herd semi-autonomous sheep through each level while avoiding deadly obstacles. The PS1 version also supports local two-player multiplayer, where each player herds their team of sheep to push a soccer ball at the opposing player's goal.

The premise of the game is that sheep were once intelligent alien beings that became stranded on Earth and left to become domesticated by mankind. Now in the modern day, their ancestors have come to retrieve them (by abducting the main characters to help herd as many of them as they can to Mount Mouflon).

Along with a Japanese PS1 release (by Syscom in June 14, 2001), it was also ported to the Mac (released exclusively in North America by Feral on July 2001) and was digitally re-released for the PlayStation Network as a PSOne Classics title in both Europe (on August 14, 2008) and Japan (by GungHo on April 25, 2012).

The game also received a handheld port by Capcom for the Game Boy Advance in April-May 2002. Published by Capcom in Japan (as Hitsuji no Kimochi, which loosely translates to "A Feeling of Sheep") and by Empire overseas, this port strips all of the bizarre comedic elements while adding a new cutesy art style (with a new playable cast of sheep dogs) and a new "arranged" mode (where players level up both their sheep and herder).

Gameplay

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.

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