I have been playing Threes on my phone more than any other game lately.
At its core, it is a very simple matching game, but achieving higher and higher scores takes a lot of foresight and a little bit of luck.
Each game starts with a set of numbers on a four-by-four grid. These can be any combination of ones, twos and threes.
Any time you swipe the board, all tiles that can move will move in that direction. If they’re up against a wall, or have no matches in that direction, they simply won’t budge.
The trick is to join up the numbers to get the highest possible score without getting into a scenario where nothing can be moved.
Twos and ones join together to become threes, and from that point on it’s a game of math and matching.
Threes join to become sixes, sixes join to become 12s, then onto 24s, 48s, 96s, 192s, 384s, and so on.
The game isn’t new, and I don’t know whether or not it was the first, as now there are quite a few of these kinds of games out there. I’ve seen one that uses twos instead of threes, and I’ve seen another that has you matching the mugshots of Korean boy band members. That one was just a bit odd.
Those, though, had a slightly different playstyle, too. Sliding the board would send all pieces flying to the opposite side, instead of one space at a time. Still, though, they are all highly entertaining and present a challenge that doesn’t give you that feeling of impossibility.
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