Fun puzzles, but making progress can come at financial cost.
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A Lot or a Little?
The parents' guide to what's in this app.
What Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Royal Match is a puzzle game for iOS and Android devices. It offers particularly clear instructions and also offers a thorough FAQ with information about how the game works. If players don't make a move right away while playing, they'll get a hint -- symbols wiggle to show them a potential match. Technically, you don't have to buy anything to play, but if you can't complete a puzzle, it costs a life. As the puzzles get more challenging, it doesn't take long to run out of the five lives you've been given. You then have to wait until they've replenished to play again -- or will need to purchase packages of coins using real-world money so you can buy additional lives or moves. Additional coins and booster items are available in packages ranging from $1.99 to $99.99.
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Highly addictive and rigged
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What’s It About?
Players match three or more like-colored shapes to remove them -- and some surrounding items -- from the board in ROYAL MATCH. Aligning diamonds and other symbols in formations such as a square creates booster items like a propeller that knocks out a random obstacle. Players can also drag two adjacent boosters into each other for a bigger effect. Completing puzzles earns them stars, which are needed to perform castle-decorating tasks they've been given, and coins, which buy extra turns. Players unlock new castle areas with new tasks as they play.
Is It Any Good?
This match-3 game's premise is fairly simple, but it's the challenge that could cost players more than they expect if they want to make significant progress in the game. In Royal Match, players complete rounds to earn stars, which fund tasks they need to do to unlock new areas. For example, you may need top add a fountain in front of the castle or place statues in a throne room, an action that costs two stars. The game portion is well-designed. Levels include varied targets, ranging from clearing 32 patches of grass from the board to breaking boxes next to symbols. In addition to the standard matching game rockets and bombs, a number of fun booster items are also introduced as you play, such as a jester hat that shuffles the tiles on the board without costing you a move and a cannon that can blow away an entire row.
The initial dozen or so levels aren't too difficult, but the puzzles quickly start to get more intense. Players are asked to remove more items in a certain number of turns, and some have to be struck repeatedly. To succeed, you'll have to focus on combining symbols in groups of four or more to form booster items to succeed. If you can't finish a puzzle before running out of moves, you can buy additional turns with coins -- but doing that will quickly wipe out what you've earned while playing. You can also repeat the round and try again to complete the puzzle -- but you'll lose a life each time you fail, and some puzzles may take more than four attempts. Additional boosters that could be helpful also often cost more than you may have on hand, so once you're out of lives, you have to wait for them to replenish before you can resume playing, or start buying items to keep playing. That's unfortunate, because the gameplay otherwise offers a pretty fun experience. Unless you're able to easily finish each puzzle on the first try, you have to be OK with Royal Match having a start-and-stop pace -- or be OK with spending some money to continue.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about strategies to use when problem solving. How can players create a plan to clear rows in Royal Match?
What steps can players take to adjust their original plan when items shift as they play? Can you think of a time when a plan has had to be changed in real life?
- Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android
- Pricing structure: Free
- Release date: April 5, 2021
- Category: Puzzle Games
- Publisher: Dream Games, Ltd.
- Version: 4104
- Minimum software requirements: Requires iOS 10.0 or later or Android 4.4 and up.
- Last updated: April 12, 2021
Our Editors Recommend
Minimal pressure to buy anything makes playing feel sweet.
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Addictive puzzle game is pushy with in-app purchases.
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Clever match-3 puzzler taps your sweet tooth with fun play.
For kids who love puzzles
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