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For this next release, e-Funsoft has produced version 8 of Amanda's Magic Book. Subtitled Among the Spirits, this Match 3 game continues the story of Amanda's adventures as she sets out to put right the problems caused by others through the completion of numerous levels of Match 3 action.
In this case the adventure starts as Amanda and her friend Charlie set out to visit a festival in Japan. However due to forgetting to take with them a map with the appropriate directions, the two friends get lost and finish up at a deserted remote village. On eating some of the food found left there, Charlie is turned into a pig and other matters take a turn for worst.
Following the appearance of a strange mysterious figure, Amanda discovers that, along with Charlie in his new pig guise, they have been transported to a strange land inhabited by mysterious creatures. Along with monsters and spirits this was a land that featured numerous Match 3 grids that needed solving and the game starts in earnest.
Spread over five chapters, the game uses the familiar format of presenting Match 3 action covering a series of grids filled with embellished tiles and blocking cells. Each grid comes with a small selection of power-ups that can be used when required. As power-ups are discarded once used, you are provided with a means of creating others. Every time you form a group of five or more tiles, you will be rewarded with a bomb which can clear an area of the grid. There will also be a set challenge consisting of the number and type of tiles that need to be removed in order to complete the grid and move on to the next stage.
Appearing in a central screen position, the grid will be sandwiched between the supplied power-ups on the left and the challenge for that grid on the right side. The required tiles are removed by creating groups of three or more tiles of the same type. These groups are created by swapping two adjacent tiles. The group then disappears with the resulting space being filled by other tiles falling downwards. This process can then result in more groups being formed and disappearing. This cascading effect can often prove useful as it helps with clearance.
There is, however, one type of tile that can not be removed by this method. This tile is identified as an artifact. When appearing in the grid, an artifact will also be included as part of the current challenge. In order to remove an artifact, you will need to create a pathway beneath it so that it descends to the base of the grid from where it can be removed.
At the completion of each grid, you receive a reward made up of a number of stars. By building up your supply of stars, you will be able to purchase the four upgrades that need to be collected for each chapter before progress can be made. These upgrades can only be carried out in a specific order.
Following each of the various upgrades, a linking scene will occur and help the story line progress. This scene will involve Amanda meeting other characters that could be regarded as allies or enemies in the work Amanda will need to carry out to make matters correct to ensure that she can return, with Charlie, to their own world. The dialogue in these sequences will be delivered by voice actors and also presented in text format. A Skip option is provided to cut short these scenes.
Despite a couple of additions to the game play and features in recent e-Funsoft Match 3 series, I still feel these titles could still benefit from a little more variety in its content and challenges. I downloaded my copy of this title from Gamehouse.com where it is priced at $9.99. The game requires a 1.5 GHz processor with 1024MB of RAM and 153MB of hard disk space running Windows 7 and later.
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