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Summarize the Game You Selected

Candy Crush Saga



About the Game

Candy Crush Saga is a popular game developed by King for Facebook and was later
introduced to mobile devices. The game is similar in design to Bejeweled, and it is a
match-three puzzle game. Candy Crush consists of different episodes and each episode
has about 15 levels to complete. In order to complete a level, the player must meet the
different objectives. Some objectives require clearing bubbles; some require bringing
down the ingredients, while in other levels players are asked to obtain a minimum score
within a short period of time.

In almost all the levels of the game, except in speeded tasks, players are provided with
only a certain number of moves, which means players must use their moves efficiently.
In order to pass many levels, a player must look beyond just matching three colors
randomly; he needs to make careful and calculated moves that will help achieve the
objectives. In some cases, the player will get lucky and surprised since he/she cant
predict the colors that would come down, but thats what makes the game fun and
surprising.



Challenge



Figure 1

Malone (1980) discusses the importance of a goal in order for a game to be challenging.
I am certain that all Candy Crushers will find this attribute present in their game. As
shown in figure 1, at the beginning of each level, players are provided with the scores
and ranking of the top three players who have successfully passed that specific level.
This creates a feeling of motivation and competition among players whose goal now is
not only pass the level, but also score higher than other members and thus rank among
the top-notch players. The other obvious goal is to progress in the game and complete
all the levels within the episode. Malone (1980) also mentions how players must be able
to tell whether they are getting closer to the goal. In the game of Candy Crush, this is
accomplished on two levels. Figure 2, for example, shows that the player has 3 cherries
to bring down in 25 moves, and that his score is 0. These three indications tell the player
exactly how hes progressing throughout the game.



Figure 2

In figure 3, however, this indicates how the player is progressing in general. In this case,
the player must complete three more levels to complete the episode. It is also noticeable
here that this map, which can be zoomed in and out, shows the progress of other
players as well. If other players are playing the game more regularly than you are, then
the chances that they will catch up on you are high. This is a smart approach by the
designers to keep the players involved and loyal to the game.


Figure 3

Another aspect I want to mention about the Candy Crush game is randomness. The
candies keep falling in a very random way, which makes the outcome of the game
unpredictable. Although in most cases the player implements the best strategy and
utilizes the available resources to reach the objective; however, in other cases, the
player will succeed depending on his luck with the layout of the candies.

Finally, the program automatically selects the Candy Crush game level of difficulty.
Players have absolutely no control over how difficult they want the challenge to be.
However, the game provides a perfect balance between challenge and players ability. In
some levels the player will breeze through, whereas, in some cases, he/she might be
stuck for days. But, I do feel that game allows players to feel good about themselves.

Fantasy


Figure 4

The game implements extrinsic fantasies, which Malone (1980) describe as depending
on whether skills are used correctly and how quickly the action takes place. Figure 4
shows a perfect example of extrinsic fantasies in which a fantasy catastrophe is avoided.
In this case the bomb shaped candies are set to explode after 15 moves, unless the
player crushes the candies in order to stay in the game. In addition, in my experience
with Candy Crush, I find that females are more attracted than males to this game. The
obvious fantasy of crushing candies almost creates a desire and feeling of eating
candies and chocolate among players. What makes this desire more irresistible is the
sound and visual elements implemented in the game (such as sweet, delicious, sugar
crush). See figure 5.


Figure 5

Curiosity

Candy Crush implements strong attention attracting values (sensory curiosity) through
sounds and visual design. Each time a player matches candies, he hears a sound of a
realistic unwrapping of candies. The changing music and backgrounds also arouses the
curiosity of players and keeps them attracted to the game. Different pleasant sounds are
also heard to reward players for certain actions. Cognitive curiosity, however, is
represented by inconsistencies in the players knowledge. For instance, although the
lollipop is used to crush candies and bubbles in certain levels, I also found out that the
same tool could be useless in other levels, which makes the game and challenge more
interesting.


Summary

In conclusion, Candy Crush is a well-designed game that keeps its player motivated and
engaged. It uses measurement achievement by giving star rating and measuring
performance against other players, all while providing instant feedback. As Kapp (2012)
explains, this form of evaluative feedback surely helps increase intrinsic motivation (p
220). However, what I specifically like about the game is how it offers players
competitive achievements through score while helping one another. As a social
networking game, players can ask for each others help and assistance while keeping
that competition going. The game helps keep my self-esteem high, and I am planning to
keep playing the game as long as it takes.



References


Kapp, K. M. (2012). The gamification of learning and instruction: Game-based methods
and strategies for training and education. San Francisco, CA: Pfeiffer.

Malone, T.W. What makes things fun to learn? A study of intrinsically motivating
computer games. Unpublished Ph.D. dissertation, Department of Psychology, Stanford
University, Stanford, Calif., 1980a.