Bejeweled 3 ReviewPhillip E. Price
Over the past ten years, Bejeweled, one of PopCap's oldest and most successful series, has become a household name. Everyone has played this game in one form or another and so when the announcement for Bejeweled 3 on the Nintendo DS came about, I was not quite sure how to feel. The core objective of the game is to swap one gem with an adjacent gem to match three or more of the same gem in a row. I knew the game would be fun, much in the same manner as FreeCell or Minesweeper will always be fun. What else could PopCap do with the series that has not already been done? Bejeweled 3 sets out to answer that question in a phenomenal way.
Upon starting the game, the first thing gamers will notice is the music that almost seems too epic for a simple game of Bejeweled, yet at the same time still managed to retain a very retro feel. Throughout the entire game, the audio performance has an amazing effect on the tone of each stage; when timers are running out the audio picks up the pace to stress the situation. Depending on which of the several different modes of play gamers choose, whether it be the calmness of Zen mode or the pressure of Lightening mode, the music matches up precisely. The sounds of gem explosions, clearing a huge block, activating star gems (and a few new gems) all retain their amazing sound effects that we all know and love.
In Bejeweled 3 there are now multiple different modes, including a Quest mode that houses minigames that can only be found therein. Classic mode is still present, as well as a new take on the previously names “Endless” mode; Zen mode allows gamers to relax and take their time while playing. This mode also allows you to back out and play other modes while retaining your current level and score so that gamers may return to it at any given time. One thing to note, I am not sure one can even lose in Zen mode as I have actually tried to lose for almost an hour and miraculously have not been able to. Secret modes also make a return in the third entry to this series, all of which are incredibly easy to unlock (achievable in less than four hours) and are all incredibly fun to play.
Bejeweled 3 is a game for all ages, and should not be passed up as gamers will lose hours at a time thanks to the addictive gameplay, and eye popping colors. The images displayed on the top screen are hand drawn and can be quite stunning. Bejeweled 3 is hands down the best-looking entry in the series. Having the option of switching up the type of gameplay is a huge plus, as is being able to simply close your DS to pause the game. Being able to save up to three different profiles in a single DS makes in-house competition between family members a viable possibility. Seeing grandma beat her grandkids' high scores is something that few games on today's market can make happen.
Disclosure: We are provided copies of games from the game companies for some games that we review.
Phillip E. Price has been a "hardcore gamer" for as long as he can remember. His earliest memories of gaming were playing Pole Position and Frogger on his father's Atari 2600. Since then, he has owned almost all the systems from NES to PlayStation 3. Phillip loves single player games and misses the days of split screen co-op.
About the Author: Phillip E. Price
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