Fun, stylish, varied and engrossing, with that just-one-more-go feeling. Games of Monetzuma 4 are fast paced and filled explosive action, with fast fluid gameplay despite a fair amount of repetition. The variety of level challenges ensures that you rarely get bored and the learning curve is just right until you reach a good mastery of each game mechanic, required to complete the game. That and some patience and stamina.
Production is excellent and it doesnt feel like you are playing what is essentially a tablet game or an indie title. All mechanics and elements work sublimely together giving an explosion of sound and colour that makes playing the game such joy.
Match three nirvana!... More info below ...01. GENRE:
Casual Match 3 with story elements.02. SETTING:
The game is based around an imaginary Inca temple and setting.03. STORY/BACKGROUND:
You take on the role of an up and coming archeologist Anna, who is a direct descendent of Emperor Montezuma. Your aim is to uncover an ancient secret and reunite Montezuma with is beloved wife. To do this you must complete the challenges to unlock the knowledge of the distance past.04. GAME MODES:
There are three game modes: the campaign, puzzle challenges and the quest. Together they form a varied and challenging amount of levels, with many different objective types and mechanics to make each game different and interesting the previous ones.
The campaign comprising of 6 chapters of 14 levels. These levels have singluar objectives and are easy to straightforward to complete if only against the clock.
The puzzle mode consists of 8 different challenge types with mechanics that work in parallel to match 3, like revealing hidden treasures beneath the tokens/board or smashing the ice covering some tokens by repeating using match 3. Each challenge has 8 short quick-fire levels which when completed release an valuable collectors item that form a collection where all items must be obtained.
Finally the quest mode has multiple objective levels. Each completion of the puzzle mode sees the player move towards one of four temples each of which main contain two parts to Montezuma's fabled face-mask. Find both items and complete the quest. You do not have to complete all objectives to progess unless you want to achievement perhaps the hardest achievement.05. GAMEPLAY/MECHANICS:
Gameplay consist of your basic Match 3 mechaincs. At its core you must match three or more tokens (tiles) to collect points. Multiple sequential matches of the same coloured tokens provide chains which trigger totems. These provide much needed bonuses which can obliterate the tokens in play and award copious amounts of points to your score. Using these basic methods you can clear a level or its objectives in quick-time, circumventing the need to spend the limited time you have to complete a level.
Completing a level gives you experience points and a certain amount of coins. The more games of match 3 you complete the higher your level. The higher your level the larger the temple. You must get to max level to complete the game. There are 100 levels in total. Coins allow you to buy up to 14 unlocks which make completing level easier. These include: greater effects on matching 3 or a certain color, providing additional time, changing token colours, arming tokens with dynamite, etc. Each unlock can be upgraded four times to make using it highly effective.
Once you have all the unlocks you will still need to collect coins to unlock 12 temple collectibles which are just furniture, for another achievement06. ENEMIES:
No enemies here except the clock. All levels must be completed with the time-limit given, which can be extended through unlocks and matching chains.07. LEVEL DESIGN:
An excellent variation of challenging levels and game modes provides plenty to do and never gets boring even after 50+ hours.08. A.I:
No A.I required as there are no enemies.09. CONTROLS:
Simple mouse point, click and drag.10. GRAPHICS:
Bright. Colourful. Excellent. All graphic elements fit perfectly into the setting and the Inca theme. One of the high-points of the game. 11. SOUNDTRACK & AUDIO:
Sound is very atmospheric, with most tunes a variation on a theme. There are different tunes for different puzzles. If you're not a fan of pan-pipes you can always mute the musical score and whack on an M-player.12. VOICE ACTING:
The only voice acting can be found in the cutscene at the start of the game and the six end-of-chapter cutscenes in the story mode. All are brief but top notch.13. CHALLENGE/DIFFICULTY:
The game provides a pretty good learning curve. It may not be difficult to match three titles but to do so and complete the various objectives within the time-limit gets really taxing the further you progress with each game mode. Provides an engrossing and ultimately a frustrating challenge, if only at the very end to clear those last free achievements.14. PROBLEMS:
No problems to speak of. Once you understand which tokens (tiles) to manipulate and when to get the bonuses you should enjoy playing the game.15. ACHIEVEMENTS:
An almost perfect selection of achievements from those easy to get ones when learning the game to those few taxing ones at the very end. Achievements consist of those required to complete each game mode, using certain mechanics and acquiring all collectibles. An almost perfect set of balanced achievement is spoiled only at the very end, by needing to spend five or so hours grinding for the coins needs to complete the temple upgrades and find any the elusive puzzle collection items. But they are not far off being perfect.16. DLC:
None but there are other versions of this game available.17. PLAYTIME:
In total I completed the game modes in 40 or so hours. All achievements took another 10 additional hours to complete. 18. LONGEVITY/REPLAYABILITY:
How long have you got? You can of course replay any of the game modes as the puzzle mode collection can be continued until you tire of it and the quest mode can be reset multiple times. So in theory you can play and replay infinitely or until you find something new.19. ENJOYMENT/APPEAL:
Will appeal to casual players, fans of match 3 (tiles) or those who want kill a few minutes in between their main sources of video-game leisure.20. VALUE FOR MONEY:
Excellent. For an app game it actually plays well on the PC unsurprisingly. Its one of those titles worth the recommended price. Though if you wait for a sale you'll get more bang for your buck.