What Makes Gardenscapes: New Acres So Different from the Other Match-3 Games?

Apr 17, 2018 | 1 Votes by Aethyna 10 rate Your vote
…and why this game is the most fun we’ve had with a match-3 puzzle game for quite some time! WWGDB - What Makes Gardenscapes: New Acres So Different from the Other Match-3 Games?

For casual games enthusiasts, Gardenscapes: New Acres isn’t exactly something new – the game is still trending on the top 50 most popular game lists on both Google Play and the App Store, and it had won Facebook's Game of the Year back in 2016. This is definitely no mean feat especially on the mobile platform where match-3 games are a dime a dozen. Thus, this may get you wondering… what makes Gardenscapes: New Acres so different from all the rest?

Well, the main and obviously, most important, feature of all is definitely the restoration aspect. Unlike traditional match-3 puzzle games where every level you play simply brings you one step closer to the end on a pretty linear-looking progression path, Gardenscapes does away with all of that classic game design and replaced it with a massive project that you can actually feel invested in. So, what this means is that the game changes how we think about the match-3 levels that we play.

Choosing a fountain for the garden in Gardenscapes

Previously, they are basically the bread and butter of the game and is, through the 3-star rating system, the main way you get your satisfying gaming experience from. However, in this game, the match-3 games are now simply a means to an end. The focus is shifted away from mindlessly ploughing through the levels just to unlock the next one. You now clear levels to complete small tasks which are part of a greater and much grander undertaking. You actually feel like you’re doing something concrete despite the fact that everything’s pretty much virtual. This is also a so-much-better way to show progression rather than having just collections for you to complete.

Some of the tasks you do may involve adding decorations or restoring a building. When that happens, you will get a range of three equally-attractive designs to choose from. However, all is not lost if you realized you’ve chosen the wrong… say, fountain design for your garden, you can always spend game currency that you’ve earned from playing match-3 levels to buy the one you really like. This freedom to choose is something that many players utilize when expressing their creativity in the game.

Not to mention, the gameplay in Gardenscapes: New Acres is a whole lot different as well. It’s more strategic than luck, frankly, and if you do make a wrong match, this action of yours can actually cost you the entire level. The focus of this game’s gameplay is now firmly and heavily placed on the players’ ability to strategically form power-ups (special pieces that are formed by matching 4 or more pieces together) and use them in the right place and at the right time. The same goes for the Rainbow Blast meter.

Funny social media post by Austin's mom

Of course, let’s not ignore the role that the many quirky characters play in the game. Aside from fulfilling their roles in the game’s storyline, the characters will often say something objectively hilarious from time to time – just make sure you read the dialogues and don’t just skip through them all. Keep an eye out for speech bubbles while you’re in your garden and not playing a match-3 level or take a “scroll” through Austin the butler’s social media feed via the tablet. Some of these can be pretty funny too.

To put it simply, Gardenscapes: New Acres has a really nice mixture of elements that make a unique game design. Couple that with features that just works better for the players who enjoy playing match-3 puzzle games, it is no wonder the game made it to the top 10 most grossing games on Google Play.

Here's an extra good news for players who prefer to play games on their laptops or PCs - As long as you’ve got a web browser, you can easily play Gardenscapes online. No sign-in is required if you play the game via Plarium's site, though if you want your progress to be saved, you might want to sign in anyway. Be sure to check it out: https://casual.plarium.com/en/gardenscapes/

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