1. Candy Crush Saga Introduction
Candy Crush Saga is a game developed by King.com that invites you to a wide variety of match-3 challenges similar to bejeweled. Candy Crush Saga was released on April 12, 2012 for Facebook, and then released on November 14, 2012 for smartphones. As of March 2013, Candy Crush Saga surpassed Farmville 2 as the most popular game on Facebook, with 45.6 million average monthly users. It is a variation on their browser game Candy Crush. It’s the most downloaded mobile game on both Android and Apple devices, and it’s the top-grossing mobile app. Think Gaming estimates that Candy Crush brings in around $633,000 a day—more than $230 million a year—for King, its British creator. Candy Crush is a particularly fiendish example of “freemium” software. There’s no initial charge to download the app or to start the game, but just as you start to experience pride in your chain-building skills and feel the thrill of accomplishment, the learning curve stalls. You discover that we all have but five lives to give in the quest to crush candy, and if you use them all up before clearing a level, you’re locked out of the game for 30 minutes before you can try again. Wait 30 minutes, lose that life, and you have to wait for 30 more. I mostly play on my phone and tablet, and if you happen to have two devices, you can postpone the inevitable wait by switching from one to the other. Or you can cough up 99 cents to buy more lives so that you can carry on playing. You know, while you have the hot hand.
2. Game Breakdown
This game is a variation of match-three games such as Bejeweled. Each level has a game board filled with differently colored candies, and might contain obstacles. The basic move of this game is horizontally or vertically swapping the positions of two adjacent candies, to create sets of three (or more) candies of the same color.
This game is separated into levels, and each level has its own requirements to complete. The Facebook version of Candy Crush Saga currently has 455 levels, and a new set of levels is released approximately every 3 weeks. The smartphone versions of Candy Crush Saga currently have 395 levels.
The player is given a default maximum number of five lives. The player needs at least one life to play a level. If the player fails to complete a level, a life is deducted. Lives will regenerate at a rate of one life every 30 minutes. The player can also restore lives by asking Facebook friends for help, or by paying Facebook credits (or, on ios and Android, by setting the clock/date forward although this will result in the clock being wrong).
Special Candies are created when four or more candies of the same color are matched together. Special Candies have special effects (e.g. clearing an entire row of candies) when they are cleared. Examples of Special Candies include Striped Candies, Wrapped Candies and Candy Bombs.
If a player tries to swap two adjacent Special Candies, it will generally create a special combination effect. These effects are often more powerful than the individual candies’ effects.
Obstacles appear in some of the levels. Obstacles have a wide variety of properties, and they are all designed to make it more difficult to complete a level. Examples of obstacles include chocolate that tries to slowly fill the entire game board, and tornadoes that randomly destroy spaces on the game board.
A booster is a single-use item that can be used to help the player complete a level. Boosters are usually bought with Facebook credits. Every level in Candy Crush Saga can be completed without the use of boosters, but the game difficulty ramp is designed to encourage the purchase of boosters. Examples of boosters include a Lollipop Hammer that can destroy any game square, and a Free Switch that can swap any two adjacent candies.
In previous versions of Candy Crush Saga, a player could purchase charm items to help them complete a level. Charms were much more expensive than boosters, because charms could be used repeatedly. As of June 27, 2013, Charms are no longer purchasable.
After starting to play, the candy man takes you through a quick tour of the game and asks for your help with some local bandits and troublemakers. This will walk you through a short tutorial on how different actions work in Candy Crush Saga.
3. Beginners Quick Start Guide
- In Candy Crush Saga, you move across a board to different spaces, each a different match-3 level. Only when you clear a level, can you progress to the next there are three basic types of levels: jelly levels, ingredient levels and timed levels.
- The basis of the game and each of the types of levels is as simple as it gets: move a candy in order to make a row or a column of at least 3 same-colored candies. If you make a line or row of more than 3 candies, you will get a special candy, which will be explained later.
- Aside from the timed levels, you can take as long as you want to think about your next move. The only limit the game gives you, is the amount of moves you use to reach the level’s target.
- When you have either reached the level’s target, or the time limit is over, Candy Crush will happen. Any special candies left on the board will be activated and make extra combinations to improve your score even further.
- In Jelly levels, the goal is to remove all the jellies from the board. A jelly is removed by making a match over the jelly’s square. Almost fully transparent squares need one match to remove the jelly, while only slightly transparent squares need two matches: one match to make it almost fully transparent and one more match to completely remove the jelly.
- There are also stone squares: the squares don’t actually have any candies to use, but they need to be opened up. When a match is made on one of the squares next to the stone square, it will break open and can be used.
- While you’ll spend most of the matches clearing the normal field, there are two things to always watch for: jelly squares at the top of the field, and jelly squares in odd corners of the field. As these are kind of tucked away on the board, you have to make sure that whenever there is a possibility to remove those, you have to take it, because you won’t know when another chance comes up.
- In ingredient levels, the aim is to move ingredients from the top of the board to the bottom, by removing candies from underneath them.
- There is not much of a special strategy to these levels, other than keeping your focus on how to bring down the ingredients, rather than just making matches.
- Timed levels are the most straight-forward of all the types of levels: you need to reach a certain score within the time limit. Make quick decisions, go for combos and use as many special candies as possible to rack up that score!
- When a candy appears that has “+5” written on it, use that candy in a match to get an additional 5 seconds before the timer runs out. Even if you haven’t quite reached the score when the timer runs out, fear not: Candy Crush also appears in timed levels and will give your score an extra boost.
- If you make a match of more than 3 candies, the candies will transform into a special candy, with special powers. There are three primary special candies, but by combining special candies you get even bigger effects.
- By matching 4 candies of the same color in one row or column, a special candy appears that, when activated, clears the entire row or column it is in. When combined with another 4-match special candy, both the row and the column it is in will be cleared.
- By matching candies in a long L-shape or in a T-shape, you get an explosive special candy. When it is matched, it will explode once, fall down, and explode another time, clearing loads of candies off the board.
- If you are able to match 5 candies, you get a really special candy. This can be switched with any other single candy on the board; it doesn’t need to match to activate. When activated, all the same-colored candies as the candy it was switched with, will be removed from the board. If you combine this special candy with a 4-match special candy, all the candies of that color will change into that special candy, and clear out all the rows and columns that color is in.
- Take your time to think of what move to make next. Unless you’re playing a timed level, there’s no time limit.
- Learn to recognize when you can make a special candy. They’re very powerful items that can make the difference between finishing or failing the level.
- Only use the ‘flashing’ suggestion the game gives you if you don’t see any other matches you can make. While the suggestions helps you a little, they are usually not the highest-scoring matches you can make at any point.
- If you are unable to reach the level’s goal, you will lose a life. Your lives will refill up to a maximum of 5. Refilling one life takes 30 minutes.
- As good a player as you are, there is always a random factor that sometimes make it very hard to actually finish a level. Don’t give up! Given enough attempts, you will find that chance to progress.
4. Fundamental Candy Crush Tips
- Find the patterns. There are things that will make a sprinkle donut whole or special candy effortlessly. Recognizing and repeating them allows you to wipe the board and earn your ticket to the next level faster. I’m always looking for these patterns. I memorize which patterns lead to which special candy and then set them up whenever possible and as needed.
- Start at the bottom. Crushing candies on the bottom is better than crushing candies at the top, because candies drop down, creating the potential for a cascade effect that essentially gives you free moves.
- Go for the combos. The two best combinations are the wrapped candy and the stripped candy, and the sprinkle donut hole and the stripped candy. Together, they can wipe out over half the board for you. This can also help you get to places which are off the board or otherwise difficult to reach. This is the only way you will get by levels such as 181, which have unreachable squares. Also, a wrapped candy switched with another wrapped candy will ignite a 6 by 4 square which can clear a huge area.
- Know your stripe. Candy is stripped in the same direction as the final candy moved to complete the previous formation. If your move a candy horizontally, it will make a horizontal stripe, which will then explode horizontally as well.
- Assess your threats. Prioritize getting rid of evil candy by their threat levels. For example, I usually make it a rule to kill low number bombs first, then chocolate, then got after the blocks.
- Clearing jellies on the edge. When getting rid of jellies, only worry about the edges, especially the corners and bottoms. These jellies have the least number of combinations which can eliminate them, so will be the hardest to get rid of. Take a moment each move to see if you can get rid edge jellies and, if not, go after an easier one.
- Have a plan. Each time you start a new level, look at the hardest element on that level and think out how you can defeat it first before you use up lives. Also, pause between moves. You may have a sprinkle and not even realize it if you’re watching the candies from a lesser move get crushed.
- Understand chocolate. If you’ve eaten a piece of chocolate one round, chocolate will not regenerate the following round. This is a great way to keep chocolate at bay. Try to destroy chocolate each round so that it won’t regenerate the next. You can clear the entire board of chocolate using this method, though in later levels there is a chocolate maker which will bring them back in vicious fashion. Chocolate will avoid special candy if it can. Chocolate will also not eat a fruit or nut, though it will absorb bombs.
- +5 Candy is your friend. Make a candy crush chain with +5 on whatever levels you can. This will add 5 seconds to a time trial level. You can tell if it is a “time trial” level or a “clear the jelly” level based on the small icon in the lower left corner of the start up screen for each level.
- Reshuffle your candies without losing lives Sometimes just by looking at a new level you know if you’ll be in for an easy or a hard time. Luckily, there’s a way to change that, and reshuffle a challenging level, without using up any of your lives. On your mobile device, open the level and then press the exit button before you make any moves. When you come back, the candy will be reshuffled and in new, hopefully easier to handle positions. You can do this as many times as you want and no lives will be lost. This trick does not work on the time challenges as the game has already started as the time counts down.
- Infinite lives on Facebook On your web browser you can keep multiple tabs open and on Candy Crush at the same time. This means that for those really hard levels you will never have to wait for lives to refresh as on each open version of Candy Crush you have 5 lives ready. When you do pass a level you will have to refresh each webpage but this is exceptionally helpful for those levels which take a lot of lives to pass. Below you can see I have 5 tabs open to Candy Crush and each with 5 lives. Yes, I stole Rene’s facebook account to play Candy Crush on it.
- Time Challenge add time The trick to passing timed levels is getting as many +5 candies as possible to add more time to clock. Understanding why the +5 candies drop really helps as they do not just drop randomly. The +5′s drop every time you make a move which causes a cascade of 4 or more combos. Then make sure you crush that +5 to add it to your timer. You increase your chances of creating a cascade by crushing candies at the bottom of the board as there are more candies above you to make a second, third and then fourth set. Try this on level 252 and you can play until you get bored of the level, I stopped when I hit 1,000,000 points and still had the full 30 seconds on the clock.
- Use striped candies strategically Do not waste your striped candies as soon as you get them. Try to plan out where they would be most beneficial and use them to reach those hard to get candies. There are some levels that this skill is essential for passing the level.
- Save your fish for last Fish candies will zone in on any remaining jellies. Save them for last so you can have them get those hard to reach jellies. They will also get rid of jellies which are under frosting blocks without needing to get rid of the frosting making passing levels even faster.
- Finish with extra moves left If you complete a level with extra moves left over they will transfer into more points as a school of jelly fish or striped candy will clear parts of the board. This does not guarantee that you will garner more points but usually it is a safe bet in order to hit those high scores
- Pink bow If you have a level with a pink bow on it, then one of your Facebook friends have given you a gift of 3 extra moves. To use this on mobile, just play the level and the three extra moves are added automatically. If you are playing on the web on Facebook you can see the number of +3 moves you were given in the starting screen. You just click on the +3 moves in the starting screen to activate it.
- Gifts from friends you only have a maximum of 5 lives (or sometimes 6) so don’t accept lives from your friends until you can use them. If you accept lives when you are already maxed out the lives are wasted. I use the X to close the screen and wait until I’m under 5 lives remaining to click accept. Also know that the level you happen to be on when you accept a +3 moves will be the level that gift must be used on. So I only accept a +3 moves gift on the levels I am really struggling with.
- Battle Plan You want to eliminate the most dangerous candies first. Usually that would mean clearing the bombs then chocolate and finally any locked candies.
- Dealing with ingredients You do not want to start a level with ingredients on the far right or left of the board. Along the sides of the screen, you have many fewer options to create a set of three or more similar candies. You can restart the level if you notice this before you have moved (see tip 1). You can also try to move the ingredients closer to the middle by crushing candies. Unless forced never move an ingredient to a square with no exit underneath it or to the side of the screen. The exits look like small green circles with white arrows inside them.
5. Useful Techniques
Candy Crush is one of the most addicting games ever. And because of this there are some people who are pretty obsessed with it. The best players have their own Candy Crush techniques they implement and use to beat those extra difficult levels. At the beginning of the game, you can just do about anything to win. But once you hit Level 65, things start to get serious.
There are no shortages of annoying elements in Candy Crush; from chocolate blocks to licorice to time bombs, and so on. These things just make Candy Crush that much harder, and that much more fun and addictive. So as you start to encounter these horrible items, you need to be prepared to deal with them.
One of the things you need to decide to do is whether or not you are willing to spend money on Candy Crush. If you are playing on your phone, you know how expensive and tempting those in-app purchases are. But if you really want to beat the game, playing without power ups and extra moves is recommended.
Make use of your special or power candies. Keep in mind that sometimes it is best not to use the special candies right away. If you save them, you may get another special candy that you can match with the other special one. But if you need the special candy to clear something out, then you should definitely use it. It just depends on your current situation in the level.
Also you need to clear chocolate squares as soon as possible. Those things will spread like a disease if you don’t get rid of them. It is suggested that it would be top priority when starting a level with chocolate. If the chocolate is trapped, then you need to think and be careful before you make the matches that will release the chocolate.
You also want to clear time bombs as soon as possible. Clear them when you get the opportunity because if you put it off, then it could explode. And if it explodes, then you have lost the level.
You want to study the board before making your moves. Especially on levels where you don’t have many moves to work your strategy. Also, when you have to bring ingredients to the bottom you need to really plan, especially if there are warps involved. You want to only make moves that will help you bring the cherries and hazelnuts to the bottom.
Clear locked candies, like licorice, as soon as possible. Letting these candies live could later end up costing you the level. Licorice prevents you from using striped candies protecting candies that are out of reach. So getting rid of the licorice is something you want to do quickly because you only have so many moves. Depending on your situation, finishing the level in as few moves as possible may not be a good choice if you are going for a high score. If you have plenty of moves left, then it may be a good choice to get a few more power candies before finishing the level. That way more power candies will go off when the ‘Sugar Crush’ bonus round starts. It’s up to you. If you just want to finish the level, then go for it. But if you are going for three stars, then it may be smarter to get a few more power candies.
6. Candy Crush Cheats