The makers of Bejeweled and Zuma have a game about cute fuzzy colored balls. Chuzzle is a game of strategy and a little bit of luck to match a group of 3 or more same colored balls. What’s the big deal about colored balls? These colored balls are alive, with eyes that move and follow the cursor, and giggle if you click them with your mouse. It sounds like a kid’s game, but is designed for adults. In the full version, there are speed levels, trophies, mindbenders and a chance to play in a never ending game.
Chuzzle is available for a free download off several sites including PopCap Games and Raptisoft, but with the free download only comes the “Classic Chuzzle” mode. This is the untimed mode where the chuzzles have to be matched in groups of 3 or more to be “popped” (and therefore freed from the magic potion the evil wizard was going to use them for). One row of chuzzles can be moved at a time, either horizontally or vertically. As a group of chuzzles pop, more slide down and wait to be rearranged. Line them up correctly, you can get bonus points by creating “combos”, where chuzzles slide into place and pop themselves. Arrange five or more together, get a super chuzzle that will blow up chuzzles around it when matched. The magic potion bottle fills up, you get to continue on to the next level. Rainbow chuzzles are worth more points. The Classic Chuzzle games end when there is no longer any moves.
The full version really is “full”. There are three additional modes besides Classic Chuzzle, not to mention that Classic Chuzzle comes with both “casual” and “expert” mode. The expert starts throwing locks on your chuzzles starting in the first level, so that you cannot move the row (either horizontally or vertically) until you match that chuzzle up with a matching group and break the lock. The full version also offers a speed level of Chuzzle, much like the classic, but with a timer that will throw locks on you if you don’t match up chuzzles in sufficient time. It also comes with casual and expert modes, with the expert mode going nearly twice as fast.
“Zen” Chuzzle, the never ending game of matching chuzzles actually has rewards that come with it. If you play long enough, you’ll notice that five chuzzle-filled bottles equal a rainbow stripe, and then six rainbow stripes equal a charm. Once all charms have been collected, they start to turn gold after each set of 30 chuzzle-filled bottles. All chuzzles popped in Zen Chuzzle also count towards trophies.
The “Mindbender” is puzzles where you have to match the pattern of chuzzles on the left with your scrambled board on the right. It helps teach the strategy of how to move chuzzles so that in regular games, you can create combos. There are five puzzles per level, but you can advance to the next level by solving just three of them.
Scrambles are a great addition to the full version, and can be earned through multiples of 50,000 points. These scrambles are another chance, a “life” if you will, where the board will reset itself once there’s no more moves so that you can keep playing. It does not detract from your score.
Getting trophies is pretty straightforward, such as when you create a chain of 7 chuzzles to be popped, you get the “Seven at Once” trophy. Others require more time and effort. The “Flawless” trophy, where you play a perfect game, actually means you play a full game without picking up a chuzzle and returning it to it’s original spot without using it in a group to be popped. The “Fat Boy” trophy, where you play an entire game with popping a fat chuzzle, can be pretty frustrating if you don’t cheat your way through it. The easiest way to obtain that trophy is to use a speed level, and wait for a fat chuzzle to come into play, and then don’t move. The locks will pile up, the scrambles will come through, and if, during one of those scrambles a fat chuzzle pops, start over. There are several websites that have found a way to manipulate the game data so that you can reach the millionth chuzzle and thousandth fat chuzzle trophies faster, but that really defeats the purpose of playing.
Additional fun features of the full version of Chuzzle:
Click a chuzzle many times, it will giggle. Click it enough, it will sneeze and lose all it’s hair.
Click a fat chuzzle many times, it will make a noise. Click it enough, it gets bloated and burps.
Randomly a chuzzle will appear with sunglasses or 3D glasses.
Move a row of chuzzles back and forth quickly, and they will get dizzy.
Leave your cursor on a chuzzle, and it will get mad and throw it off.
Expect to play for hours, especially when you see “just one more move”!