KF on KND Editor April L. Hamilton here, back to share this incredibly fun, FREE app: Best Fiends (4/5 stars, all ages, currently FREE).
I’m chiming in personally on this one because there are some negative reviews that complain of game glitches: it takes a few tries for the game to start up and fully load (I’ve experienced this one), it “hangs” after a certain level is cleared, or it crashes.
Yet you’ll notice that overall, the game has a pretty strong average review rating. This is because, glitches and all, it’s just so darned fun to play! Here’s the iOS game trailer – note that play is identical in the Android version of the game.
The aim of this match-3 type game is a little different: instead of tapping or swiping three or more items in a row horizontally or vertically, in this game you “draw” lines with your stylus or fingertip to connect as many matching symbols as you can in whatever pattern you like: horizontally, vertically, diagonally, or a mix of all three. Each colored symbol on the game grid corresponds to a specific (adorable!) bug “Fiend”, and after hitting a threshold level of matches in a given color a power-up specific to that character is added to the game board.
Each level has a set goal: a certain number of enemy slugs your Fiends must defeat, a certain number of specific colored symbols you must collect and/or a certain number of special items you must collect from the grid by making matches next to them. You’re given a limited number of turns per level, so you have to plan your moves carefully to ensure you’re maximizing your matches (more items matched per chain boosts your attacks on enemy slugs) AND collecting the correct and right number of items to clear the level.
As you play through the levels you collect diamonds and “Meteor Mites”, which are used to level up your characters (and their special power-ups), and you also unlock new bug Fiends of different colors with their own unique power-up abilities. There are in-app purchase options to rush your progress by buying Meteor Mites and Diamonds with real money, as well as offers to use Diamonds/buy Diamonds to skip levels, but since you can always just repeat a failed level it’s not really necessary to spend real money on this game. I’ve played through level 13 so far and have only had to repeat one level.
At the end of each round the player is prompted to Share on Facebook or return to the game map to proceed to the next level. It’s easy enough to just tap the game map icon instead of the Share icon, but I’d have preferred that the game just take me to the next level and skip the intermediate screen.
I’m a big fan of match-3 games, going all the way back to Bejeweled on the PC. All in all, even with the Share prompts and the glitchiness, I’m enjoying this game a LOT and can still recommend it pretty highly. Hopefully future updates will address the glitches.