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Match-three games, even when they're called "adventures" aren't burdened by a ton of story, and Fairy Tale Twist follows this model. It quickly sets you up as the savior of your favorite fairy tale heroes, pitting you against their nemesis.
To stop Rumplestiltskin from bedeviling people like Little Red Riding Hood and Jack (of beanstalk fame), you move around a storybook map by clearing sequences of match-three levels. Common as they are, match-three games grab and hold players by offering them pretty graphics, satisfying sound effects, cool powerups and levels that continually change and challenge. Fairy Tale Twist has all of this. Its characters are appealing, its maps are colorful, and its visual effects make using powerups a fun, visceral experience. Even better, it continually offers new setups that require you to constantly revise your match-three strategy.
In addition to the usual match three (or more) gameplay and the idea of matching to remove obstacles, Fairy Tale Twist throws in a couple of cute new reasons for making matches: freeing trapped ladybugs and waking sleeping birds. It's ridiculous how gratifying doing either of those things can be, but thanks to some great audio/visuals, it is. This could be because something about Fairy Tale Twist calls to mind modern slot machines. Perhaps that's not too surprising, since Zynga has previously tried its hand in the online casino space. Whatever the reason, when all the sparkles, music and bells associated with a good string of powerups get going, you half expect the word "Jackpot" to appear on your screen.
Other fun additions to the match-three gameplay include lightning-packed storm clouds that must be cleared out repeatedly, and whirlwinds that rotate the icons surrounding them. These two elements keep the maps dynamic, and combined with the ever-changing map layouts, make for levels that demand more and more skill as you go along.
Like most everything else offered by Zynga, Fairy Tale Twist is designed to be a money sink. Perhaps gamers who would prefer to pay a single, up-front price for unlimited access are in the minority, but does anyone really want to pay $80.00 (or more) for a free-to-play game? Social games have limitations built in; that's how they make their money.
Fairy Tale Twist is a fun little game. It's cute, lively, clever, and offers plenty of thought-provoking map layouts and exciting powerups. Its only negative is that it was conceived as a social game and as such, has a hand perpetually in your wallet.
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