May 05

Saqqarah USP’s revealed!

In case you missed it, today we have announced the gameplay details of Saqqarah, our biggest and most ambitious project so far. Jumping right to the point, the biggest single innovation in the game is the “distorted grid” board system. Basically while other match-3 games use grid like regular boards, in Saqqarah every single level is a graph with an unrestricted layout of nodes and curved connections.

Saqqarah Gameplay

 

I remember the day (about one and a half years ago) when we came up with the idea. By that time we were very impressed with strategic games like Pax Galaxia and Galcon and wanted to do something similar, but all our initial ideas were basically simplified war games played on graphs and we knew that it just wouldn’t appeal to the casual audience. Suddenly we asked ourselves the question: why not make a match-3 game played on graphs? After making a quick prototype we knew that this was a great idea as all of the popular match-3 mechanics (swap, rotate, drag select, pop, etc.) worked well with such a setup and felt very fresh. Now the question was: which one should we implement in the final game?

We could just forget the whole problem and implement the most basic token swap mechanics from Bejeweled, since everyone is already familiar with them and this is a safe bet. But then again, fans of Magic Match would be disappointed. Also we knew that the “distorted grid” was very good and even if Saqqarah proved to be successful clones would follow soon, implementing matching  mechanics other than what we would initially choose. Striving for perfection there was only one possible decision we could make – to implement all of them!

Well most at least. Saqqarah features 7 Egyptian temples each with unique gameplay mechanics  played on the distorted grids. Each temple has 72 hand crafted levels spread over 3 difficulty levels which gives an amazing total of 504 levels. And this number does not include the hidden hieroglyph bonus rounds! I ‘m very excited about Saqqarah (in case you haven’t guessed already) and I can’t wait until you all can play it and judge it for yourself. Fortunately we won’t have to wait long as I can tell you in secret that an open beta version of the game is to be released in less than two weeks from now. If you want to be notified when the beta is out just subscribe to our newsletter available on the official Codeminion website.

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