Candy Crush Saga (iOS) Game Review: A Case For Not Paying To Win

“I want to continue the game, but it’s giving me a choice of paying for extra lives, or wait 8 minutes for another chance at the game”. I was driving when my wife made that comment, and it did raise my interest on what sort of game she was playing. It was definitely a freemium, but the from the way she described it further, it was the type that I didn’t like the most, the one where you needed to pay….to win.

But then again, pay-to-win freemium games such as the one my wife was playing, Candy Crush Saga (a match-3 game of all things), provide a different kind of challenge for skinflints: going through the game without paying a single cent, and to make things even more interesting, go ahead against each other to see who can pass the higher levels in the game and not paying a cent.

Candy Crush Saga’s gameplay provides a diverse range of objectives for a match-3 game. In one level, you may be required to break down all the obstacles on the board, or let particular items reach the bottom of the board; any move you perform is deducted from a bank of moves available from the start of each level. Empty the bank before you finish your objectives and it’s game over with a potential long wait before you can continue again.

The going was definitely tough. Often we were just a few steps away from fulfilling a particular level’s objectives, only to run out of moves. And we could definitely¬† gain from several power-up IAPs, and the addictive nature of the game made buying lives in-app a tempting proposition just so we can continue playing immediately. There was an unintended effect when we forgo-ed the IAPs, we end up thinking and strategizing more during each play-through.

It took quite an effort for my wife to reach past the 25th level, and while some people may complain about pay-to-play, the challenge provided by the game proved to be exhilarating. You should try it sometime. Nine Over Ten 9/10 rates the game at a 4 out of 5. Candy Crush Saga is available over here: Download it, play the game and tell me about your experience.

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