A downloadable game for Windows, macOS, and Linux

Buy Now$2.99 USD or more

Cardinal Chains is a minimalist puzzle game centering on the concept of non-decreasing sequences.

Each puzzle begins with a monochrome grid of numbers, plus a few colored cells marked with an X. Starting at these cells, you must link up numbers in non-decreasing order until the whole grid is filled with color.

  • 500 unique, carefully handcrafted puzzles, each with a single solution
  • Varied difficulty and puzzle types to keep things lively
  • Minimalist, elegant design with a clean interface and smooth animations
  • Looks great on all screen types and resolutions
  • No timers, limit of tries or other annoyances of any kind - just pure gameplay

Made by Daniel Nora: https://twitter.com/DanielNora999


Buy Now$2.99 USD or more

In order to download this game you must purchase it at or above the minimum price of $2.99 USD. You will get access to the following files:

Cardinal Chains - v1.0.4b7 Windows 12 MB
Cardinal Chains - v1.0.4b7 macOS 17 MB
Cardinal Chains - v1.0.4b7 Linux 32 MB

Also available on

Download demo

Cardinal Chains Demo - v1.1.4b8 Windows 12 MB
Cardinal Chains Demo - v1.1.4b8 macOS 17 MB
Cardinal Chains Demo - v1.1.4b8 Linux 32 MB

Development log


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Viewing most recent comments 4 to 43 of 55 · Next page · Last page

Great game! looks pretty too.

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I really love that. The sound effects are so well done they give the minimalist design real depth. It almost feel like hacking an alien state of the art system. It's also relaxing and thought inducing similar to staring squares and numbers while resolving some sudokus. Nice concept !


Really fun!!!

[in browser mode] How do you complete level 15?

doubt this will help now but you start by going right, then up and doing an anti-clockwise circle with the 1s until you reach the single one in the fourth column.


I really like this game! I think I've played this the most up till now of all the games from the racial justice bundle. Perfect for when I don't know what to play in the evening when I don't have much time.


This game is exactly what I needed. I got it in the Bundle for Racial Justice and Equality and I'm so glad I found it while trawling the massive list. Thank you for this gem!

Hey, thanks a lot! To make it even more enjoyable, soon there will be a free update with (optional) background music, adjustable color themes and some accessibility options. Keep having fun!


Neat little game. Quite addictive, actually. I've made a habit of playing it while listening to video essays.

One minor thing (spoilers?): I kind of expected a little more fanfare when you get through the whole game and finish the last puzzle. But it just loops around and takes you back to the tutorial and that's that. Might be nice to add a congratulations screen, where you can also plug stuff like "this was a game by Daniel Nora, here's my twitter, and here's some other games by me that you might like". 

(I played the full Windows version, going up to puzzle 501, if that makes a difference.)

The game worked in the browser on my Android device! Relaxing gameplay, worth supporting the creator.

A nice, simple puzzle game. Got up to level 50 tonight, can't wait to see what I'll get stuck on next.

Having now completed the final level, I can say that this is my favorite puzzle game of this year - I kept coming back to it day after day until I ran out of levels to solve. I'll be keeping an eye out for any more of Daniel Nora's work.

What a brilliant little gem!  I'm up to level 200 and loving the twists in some of the levels.  It's deceptively complex and expertly crafted.  Can't believe I've still got another 300 levels to complete! 

up to level 9-8, sooooo stuck :| (any tips?)
great game though!

it's mostly wiggly like a brain...

start by going down... and i don't want to spoil too much.  Write if you need more hints

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i got this in the big bundle last week and i was wondering if there is any way for me to get the app on my phone too without paying again before i do.

Very well done!


I have finished the demo and found it very fun and challenging! Some of the levels require quite a bit of thought, so it's very rewarding to figure them out. Excellently done!

Neat game!

For the mac version on Catalina, I had to do the chmod +x trick (https://superuser.com/questions/898124/the-application-someapp-app-can-t-be-open...).

Very fun, have played through around 50 levels and I am really enjoying it so far!


I'm a big fan of Nikoli-style pencil logic puzzles and I think you've got a hit here. Slowly working my way up the difficulty ladder.

I'm interested to learn whether you can characterize the difficulty of a random level and generate endless levels. But for now I'm enjoying the design and curation.

Thanks for the game.


Lovely gameplay, sweet difficulty curve so far. Puzzles are complex enough to test the brain but not to overstress it, which I'm finding a beautiful thing right now. Actual sense of accomplishment on working out the puzzles, which can sometimes be lacking in other games!

I love how I can play the game right in my browser window. The puzzles are so much fun to solve! The concept is so simple and elegant and walking through the more complex levels is so rewarding when the solution falls into place. Highly recommended and completely worth its low price.

neat game! love how it looks simple/minimalist, but has great puzzles!

This game is a ton of fun! I'm a huge fan of this type of puzzle game. Thank you for building a lot of fun levels. :)

This is so nice, exactly what I want from a puzzle game.


This is a really fun puzzle game, I can imagine classmates playing it during lessons on their phone. Simple concept and very well-executed, every level is neither too simple nor too difficult!


Fun! I am having the same issue with it starting to hurt my wrist after about 30 levels, as mentioned below.

Hey, thanks for the feedback! Sadly I won't be able to tackle this for a while due to lots of other work. But I will definitely consider implementing different input options in a future release.


Very fun! An option to be able to play it without mouse, or with less mouse, would be great. Having to drag the squares with my mouse made my wrist sore after a few levels. I thought perhaps you could move by the arrow keys, but that doesn't seem to currently be the case.


This is a super nifty puzzle game! Well done!!!

can't stop playing.
great concept, great execution!!


I pressed play and only now I realized that I have been playing your game for 1 hour genuinely enjoying it, I loved it!! Everything works nice! The sounds, the difficulty levels, the mechanics! 

Really neat!


The puzzle is very interesting and the style looks really good, but I wish there was a way to disable the flashing that happens after you solve a puzzle. It is slightly nauseating for me.

Awesome puzzle. Rushed through a few dozen, but then 39 made me think.

Love the game! A hint button or online walk through would be nice for less skilled players, but definitely not a needed addition by any means. The only real critique that I have is that I wish there was a sound for each block as you dragged a line through, but it's only when you press, so the majority of the game is silent.


A suggustion would be to add an option to not have it in full screen. Love the game


Hello there, glad you're having fun! That option is already available by default, it's just a little hidden away. Depending on your OS there are different ways to achieve this:

  • On Windows, press ALT + ENTER to toggle between fullscreen and windowed modes
  • On macOS, press CMD + F to toggle between fullscreen and windowed modes
  • On Linux, pass the argument "-show-screen-selector" to the command line to show the screen configuration dialog

Have a good time and stay safe!

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I can't believe I've never saw this, you need to post it on reddit, send it to games reviews websites ....

well, im stuck at level 70 (for now!!!) but i just wanted to say that this is amazing, so smart, so simple and nice :)))

Very nice puzzle game, love how simple yet hard it is. 

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Really pleased with the game. Simple, but hard. Maybe just try adding some music. You can download some from my itch account. I have free music there. Otherwise the game is perfect...

Haha, finally I played 10 more levels before quitting

Levels get more interesting, and the 43rd was amazing !

Very interesting core mechanic, really simple, perfect little mobile game :)

On level design, I understand the care for being the most accessible possible by providing a succession of reaaaaaaly easy levels, but I felt like it was too much, and it can lead some players to be bored soon

First it was time to understand the mechanics, in level 3 I got it, a little more understanding about the use of numbers came only in level 12 (13rd is a good one too for this) but most of the levels inbetween are too similar and don't add anything more to the understanding of the game

So the challenge I met was only at level 24 ! And there I said to myself ("Oh, this game looks interesting")
level 32 was a good one too !

I stop playing the demo for tonight, but I'm curious of playing the full game soon !

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