How to Make a Match-3 Game

A match-3 game is a type of puzzle game where the player must match three or more identical items in order to clear them from the board. The goal is usually to score as many points as possible before the board is filled up.

Making a match-3 game is no easy task. But with the right resources, it can be a fun and rewarding experience. This curated list of resources will help you get started on your journey to creating the next big match-3 hit.

Essential Elements

There are many variations of match-3 games, but they all follow the same basic rules.

  • The player must swap two adjacent pieces in order to create a row or column of three or more matching pieces. When this happens, the matching pieces will disappear and new pieces will fall into place from the top of the screen.
  • The goal is to create as many matches as possible in order to score points and clear the board.

Key elements:

  • Combo: A combo is created when the player makes multiple matches in quick succession. Combos are usually worth more points than a single match.
  • Chain: A chain is created when the player makes a match that causes other pieces to fall into place and create additional matches. Chains can be very valuable, as they can often lead to combos.
  • Power-ups: Power-ups are special items that can be used to clear large groups of pieces or breakthrough obstacles. They are typically earned by making certain combinations or meeting certain requirements.

Tips to Get Started

Now that you know the basics, here are a few tips to get started on your match-3 game:

  1. Start with a small board. Too many pieces can be overwhelming for players, especially if they’re new to the genre. A smaller board will also make it easier to test and balance your game.
  2. Keep the gameplay simple. There are many ways to complicate a match-3 game, but it’s important to start simple and gradually add complexity as needed. Players should be able to understand the basic mechanics within a few minutes of playing.
  3. Use clear graphics. The pieces in a match-3 game need to be easily distinguished from one another. This is especially important if you’re using a smaller board.
  4. Create a goal. The player should always know what they need to do in order to win the game. This could be something as simple as clearing all of the pieces from the board, or it could be more specific like earning a certain number of points.
  5. Make use of combo and chain reactions. These are two of the most important mechanics in a match-3 game, so you’ll need to find ways to encourage them. This could involve giving players bonuses for making combos or chains, or designing levels that are specifically meant to be completed with these techniques.
  6. Add power-ups. Power-ups can give players a much-needed boost when they’re struggling to make progress. They should be used sparingly, however, as too many can make the game too easy.
  7. Test, test, test! It’s important to play your game as often as possible during development. This will help you catch any bugs or balance issues that you might not have noticed otherwise. You can also get feedback from players to see what they think of your game.

Resources

Tutorials

Match-three puzzle games algorithm

The developer was trying to write a match-three puzzle game like 'call of Atlantis'. The most important algorithm is to find out all possible match-three possibilities. Are there any projects that are open-source that he can reference? This will help him find a faster algorithm to calculate all possibilities. If you want to learn more about match-3 algorithms, then read this discussion.

Solving Match-3 Games with Graph Algorithms

There are many different types of graphs, and they can be used to solve all kinds of problems. In this post, the writer will introduce how graph algorithms can be used to solve match-3 games. She starts with a basic overview of what graphs are and how they are used, and then we'll move on to the specific algorithms that can be used to solve match-3 games.

Make a Match-3 Game with Unity

Gamekits

Match 3 Jelly Garden Kit

The Match 3 Jelly Garden Kit is the complete match-3 tool for Unity, offering a host of features to make your game development process easier and more efficient. It has stood the test of time and has been improved over the years so that you can create the high-quality games of your dreams. The kit features Facebook integration for leaderboards, friends on the map, and invite and share functions.

The easy-to-use level editor allows you to create unique levels without programming knowledge, and it is optimized for mobile devices so that the UI resizes to all types and resolutions of mobile devices.

With Unity IAP purchases integrated, you can easily set the cost and number of IAPs in the game. Ads Monetization is also included, allowing you to use Unity Ads, Admob, Chartboost, or Rewarded ads. In addition, the kit comes with game tutorials, visuals, and tabs, to help you get started quickly and easily.

The Life Shop allows you to purchase coins or watch the video ad. And finally, the in-game privacy policy ensures that your game data is protected.

Puzzle Match Kit

Match-3 Puzzle Kit is the bestselling and most complete match-3 solution for Unity, and it features an easy-to-use visual editor that lets you create your own unique levels. You can also change the properties of your game without needing a knowledge of programming.

Match-3 Puzzle Kit supports many blocks, booster (with combos), and blocker types. Special boosters can also be purchased in-game. All the game tiles are prefabs and can contain animations and extra features.

It's optimized for mobile devices, easy to re-skin, and comes with 30 unique levels that you can use as a foundation for your own game. It supports rewarded ads and in-app purchases, giving you plenty of ways to monetize your game. 

Match 3 SDK

The Unity Match 3 SDK is a great starting point for anyone looking to develop their own Match 3 game. It includes a game sample with three implementations of how to fill the playing field.

The Match 3 SDK takes advantage of Unity's features to help you create your own match 3 game quickly and easily. With Unity, you can create breathtaking graphics and passable gameplay with only a few hours of work. The Match 3 SDK makes it easy to get started and includes all the necessary tools to get your game up and running in no time.

Make a Match-3 Game with Unreal Engine

Tutorials

Unreal Match 3 Game

This game was created to showcase the versatility and flexibility of UE4, and it certainly does not disappoint. Unreal Match 3 is a great example of how UE4 can be used to create a mobile game that is both fun and engaging, while also being extremely easy to play.

The object of the game is simple - match three or more of the same symbols in order to clear them from the board. However, don't let the simplicity fool you, as this game can be quite addictive!

In addition to being a blast to play, Unreal Match-3 also features social and money-making features such as achievements and in-app purchases.

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