App Review: Azkend by MythPeople
Azkend is a fun game based on an earlier PC and Mac game. The game play is similar to many other iPhone games like Bejeweled and Monkey Jewels. This game is different in that there is story behind the game and a long term mission to accomplish. You are part of an archaeological group that discovered a powerful relic. This relic must be returned to the Temple of Time to lift the curse. Proceeding on your journey involves playing individual levels and progressing on the map towards the Temple.
These levels are simple and easy to pick up on. Your job is to turn all the tiles on the screen blue. When all the tiles are blue, a piece of a talisman will be added to the top of one of the columns. If you remove all of the tiles below the talisman piece, it will fall to the bottom and you win the piece and beat the level. The only constraint placed upon you is time. Unlike other games where the game is over when there are no more moves, this game will simply shuffle the tiles around on the board if there are no more moves. Keep an eye on the clock in the lower right corner, though, because the clock signals the end of the level. When you lose a level, you don’t have to start over at the beginning of your quest, you just start that level again. If you complete the level with enough extra time on the clock, you can earn a star for that level.
To turn the tiles blue, you just have to remove tiles from the board. Tiles can be removed in groups of three or more tiles of the same type. Simply drag your finger on the screen connecting all the tiles to be removed. After the tiles are removed, they will be replaced with blue tiles. That is if they are just regular tiles. Some of the tiles are steel and must be removed twice before they turn blue. Others are frozen in ice. To release them, you must remove a neighboring tile and then remove the tile itself. Tar tiles must be dealt with quickly by removing a neighboring tile before they spread. Wild card tiles can be a part of any group and can be very helpful.
Probably the most helpful tools in your quest are the talisman. You earn these a piece at a time over 5 consecutive levels. Once you earn them, you can choose which one you want to use in the level. They appear on the screen as tiles with the talisman symbol on them. If you connect 4 or more tiles with that symbol, the talisman will be activated and will remove random tiles from the board often in just the right places. You can also call lightning to your aid to perform much the same function in two different ways. The first is by removing seven or more tiles in a single group. The second is by charging up your lightning meter. This is done by removing groups of tiles that have at least one non-blue tile in it. Be careful not to remove a group with only blue tiles. Removing a group like this will wipe out all the charge in your lightning meter.
In playing Azkend, I found that I was not a huge fan of the long story line, but I quickly grew addicted to the game play. Azkend is a very well-designed game that will keep you coming back for more.
Azkend is $2.99 in the iTunes App Store.
Developer’s Website: www.azkend.net