Jewel Link Legends of Atlantis – Review

A review of Jewel Link Legends of Atlantis I wrote for the website www.square-go.com

Bejewelled was a game that was, weirdly, a defining moment; since that game was first loaded in a web browser the match-three-item game has been everywhere with all kinds of franchises and names plastered all over it. So it goes that we now have Jewel Link Legends of Atlantis wherein we must match at least three of the same items in order to rebuilt Atlantis. I mean, sure, why not?

Jewel Link is a game that doesn’t move far from the Bejewelled template; you have a grid of items, you switch them around to line up three or more which vanish hopefully creating chains and scoring you lots of points. The game mixes things up by having different coloured squares in the grid that you have to clear by matching items within them. So it isn’t necessarily about switching items willy nilly, it’s about clearing the right item in the right place.

Is it enough to separate it from any other item matching game? It’s difficult to say, especially when you’re paying for a DS game. Similar games would probably be free or less than the price of a newspaper on an app store of your choice. That isn’t to say that the game doesn’t give you a decent bang for your buck; there’s plenty of levels for you work through as you rebuild Atlantis.

Wait, what? That’s right, Jewel Link throws in a story for you as, following a period of war, you get to rebuild Atlantis. You select types of buildings then play through the levels to build them up. Although, it is a bit of a shame that you miss out on the cool sounding war epic and turn up in time to clean up everyone else’s mess.

Everything looks okay but, to be honest, all that a match-tree game needs to do is make sure that you can easily distinguish between the items when you’re in a hurry. The game does this for the most part, although there are a few times when items are a little too similar. The rest of the game doesn’t let the side down but isn’t anything spectacular. But, again, that isn’t what you’re expecting from this kind of game as for the majority of the time you’ll be staring at small items in a grid.

The question then is if you should buy it. This will come down to your enjoyment of this genre. Match three item games are easy to play and can be addictive as a bowl full of Colombian white gold. Not everyone shares this opinion and the design of the game isn’t going to help. Ignoring this the game itself plays well, has enough changes to keep things interesting at least in small doses. The wrapping around Jewel Link is just that, wrapping, so it doesn’t matter if you’d much rather send the Atlanteans back to where they come from rather than rebuilding their community centre as long as the game bit of it works for you.

So Jewel Link is a decent Bejewelled style game that will fit a niche for fans of the genre. The only problem is that there isn’t anything to the game that you wouldn’t be able to find elsewhere.

Three stars out of five

Originally published January 26th 2013

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