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Genre: Puzzle & Trivia
Min OS X: 10.3

Rainbow Mystery
March 22, 2007 | Ted Bade

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Rainbow Mystery is a game of the Bejeweled genre enhanced with a story and animation. It is a non-violent game with a modicum of challenge and is good for all ages. This game offers three methods of play: relaxed, timed, and a dual mode against an AI. I found it a lot of fun and a great way to fill my spare moments.

In Rainbow Mystery, you play by exchanging the position of two adjacent pieces in the playing window to make rows of three or more similar tiles. The icons used in this game are flowers, which go along with the game’s story line. Each window has one or more goals that must be achieved before completing the board. The basic goal is to make a row of three or more tiles that include a special color outlined tile, releasing a ring which floats into a cauldron. This becomes more complex as more such tiles are added or when one or more blocks are placed over it, (an additional match is required to remove each block). Another goal is to work the pieces to allow a special tile to fall to the bottom of the board. This special tile contains an object which is then brought into the story line of the game helping Lily, the main character, on her quest. Doing this is made more difficult by locking a piece below the special tile. As the game progresses the player is confronted with various combinations and more difficult of these goals.

Points are scored based on the number of similar tiles in a matched row. The board also has spaces that are slightly different in color. Making a match over this space will change the color and gives bonus points. One also gets points for releasing the colored rings, and completing other goals.

When you start the game you are shown a map of a land with a winding path of dots. The main character, Lily, starts on the first dot. She is a herbalist, or perhaps a sorceress that has returned from an absence to find her land in need of help. You move her from spot to spot on the path by successfully completing a game board. There are two types of spots she moves onto. On the first type you simply move to it and play a board. If you win, Lily moves on. The second type of spot causes some effect on the map and perhaps an interaction of a character in the story with Lily. You then complete the board and Lily moves onward. The story behind the mystery is exposed as you progress through the map, interacting with various characters who reveal different parts of the story as they teach Lily about her true heritage. There is more then one map to complete in this fashion.

Rainbow Mystery offers three types of play. My favorite, and what makes this game a great past-time, is the relaxed mode. In this mode you have no time limits. Sit back, enjoy the game’s music track, and complete the board in your own time! I have played many games of this genre, and few offer a way to just play the board without any time limits. Sure, there is a lot less challenge this way, but when I just want to relax and pass some time, I am less interested in the added time challenge. I really enjoyed this mode of play.


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