Match Three Game
Casual Video Game sub-genre that is Exactly What It Says on the Tin. The object is to match three objects of similar color/shape/species to eliminate said objects from the playing field. Specific objectives vary from game to game, but include:
- Play until you run out of time or space.
- Match a certain amount of Object X to advance
- Rack up a certain amount of points to advance
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The player must control each piece as it falls from the top of the screen, moving it around and usually rotating it or shifting parts of the piece. A few have pieces arrive from some other direction, but the principle is the same.
- Columns (1989; the Ur-Example)
- Magic Jewelry (Its NES bootleg)
- Klax (1989; possibly tied for Ur-Example) - the challenge, as well as certain staged, tended to need complex formations for big points or by making other tiles fall into scoring positions.
- Dr. Mario (match four)
- Lumines (match a 2x2 square)
- Super Puzzle Fighter II
- Puyo Puyo (match four)
- Taisen Puzzle Dama and its numerous sequels and themed Spin Offs:
- Tetris 2 (can best be described as Dr. Mario with Tetris pieces)
- Yoshi (match two)
- Critical Mass has you manually place the blocks on a cube that gradually expands, but the spirit is the same.
- Blastris B, one of the six games sold with the Super Scope.
- Bomberman: Panic Bomber
- Hatris (match five)
- Tidalis has you match disconnected blocks using "streams".
- ''Hebereke's Popoon''
- Baku Baku Animal (match animals with their Stock Animal Diet)
- Teki Paki (match five in any configuration)
- Oh My God!
- Kirby's Star Stacker (match two)
- Battle Balls (match four)
The player has to swap two or more pieces. As blocks are cleared, the field is replenished with more pieces, either immediately after they're cleared or continuously from some source.
- Ai to Yuuki to Kashiwa Mochi (match four)
- Bejeweled (Trope Codifier, what a lot of people think is the Ur-Example). The first ever was called Shariki, developed by Russian programmer Eugene Alemzhin for DOS in 1994.
- Cradle of Rome
- King Games' Saga series: Candy Crush Saga, its sequel Candy Crush Soda Saga and sister/spin-off titles, Farm Heroes Saga and Pepper Panic Saga.
- Elemental Story
- Gyromancer, which was co-developed by the same people as Bejeweled and is basically a hybrid of that and a Role-Playing Game.
- Henry Hatsworth In The Puzzling Adventure
- HuniePop, a Dating Sim which uses the puzzles to advance relationships with the girls.
- Jewel of Atlantis
- Jewel Quest
- Legend Of Fae, a hybrid of this and a simple side-scrolling RPG
- Panel de Pon, a.k.a. Tetris Attack
- Pokemon Battle Trozei, a sequel to Pokémon Trozei! but removing the falling mechanic. Also, it has nothing in common with Puzzle League which is a simple Panel de Pon reskin.
- Puzzle Quest: Challenge Of The Warlords
- Puzzle Quest: Galaxtrix
- Puzzle Kingdom
- Puzzle Chronicles
- Puzzle Quest 2
- Sally's Quick Clips is a combination of piece-swapping Match Three and a Time Management Game.
- Taisen Tokkae Dama, the "swapping pieces" sister series of Taisen Puzzle Dama
- Yoshi's Cookie (match five)
- Yes Chef
- Zoo Keeper
Swapping and Falling
The player has to swap two or more pieces. However, blocks also come down from the top of the screen at the same time. There is limited control in where and how falling pieces will land.
The player chooses the direction or location each piece will go before it starts moving. Once a piece is in motion, it is out of the player's control.
- Magical Drop
- Puzzle Bobble a.k.a. Bust a Move
- Bubbles (browser game requiring Flash).
- Bubble Witch Saga
- Inside Out Thought Bubbles.
- Palamedes, with the twist that blocks can only be matched after being individually eliminated from the board
- Plotting (match two)
- Money Idol Exchanger (match two or five)
- Pop'n Pop
- Zuma from the Xbox Live Arcade
- 7 Wonders
The mechanics in these games don't fit in any category above or are unique.
- 2048 is a match two game where the player uses the arrows to shift gravity and make two similar tiles merge together to get a tile of double the value.
- Chromashift, which uses a relatively unique game mechanic, in that you change the color of the gems, instead of moving the gem positions. .
- Similar to Klax is Audiosurf, which combined the concept with levels generated from your music files.
- Puzzle & Dragons: You touch and drag a piece, and the piece can go anywhere at all, shifting other pieces behind it as it goes. Any pieces that are eliminated get filled with new pieces. You only have a few seconds to shift it around and line up three before it counts as a turn.
- Doctor Who Legacy: Ditto.
- Wrecking Crew '98: Each row of panels can be shifted, though unwanted panels can usually be demolished individually.
- Triple Town: the player places objects on a field, combining them to make other objects. Three grasses make a bush, three bushes make a tree, three trees make a house, and so on until the board is full.
- Two games in the With Friends line:
- In Matching With Friends you drag and drop pieces onto the board to match three or more of a color to be removed from the board.
- In Gems With Friends, you drag and drop individual gems onto the board; once three or more match a color, they condense to form one gem of the next higher number.
- Tic Tac Toe (Noughts and Crosses) might be the simplest match-three game. Two players. The first to get three X's or O's in a row, column, or diagonal is the winner.
- Game show The Hollywood Squares and its UK counterpart Celebrity Squares are based on this.
- Big Kahuna Reef
- Bounce Out!
- Fruit Smash and its seasonal sequel, Trick or Treat Smash
- Glissaria (match five)
- Molesting the Match-3 Market
- Puzznic (match two)
- Tip Top
- The Bilge Pumping and Rumble games in Yohoho! Puzzle Pirates. The Sailing game also has a match-four mechanic, but it's not the primary goal.
- The developers at Three Rings really like these; the Foraging and Treasure Haul games are also Match Three.
- As an April Fools' Day joke, Kongregate featured a Match One game.
- Paris Hilton's Diamond Quest. Really.