I mean, it worked. I tried Puzzle & Dragons a couple of years ago on my iPhone because I heard it was the biggest game in Japan at the time and it didn’t set my world on fire. Add Mario though, and apparently its worth losing all kinds of sleep over. Ok, the Puzzle & Dragons Z + Puzzle & Dragons Super Mario Bros. Edition formula isn’t that simple, but Mario got me in the door.
The real hook here was in making the match 3 puzzle mechanic a bit more dynamic by giving me the ability to drag my selected tile anywhere I wanted. Along the way, the position of other tiles adjust and all of a sudden I’m setting up huge combos. The fireworks on screen respond in spectacular fashion and before I even know what I’m doing, I am kicking all kinds of ass.
Suddenly, I have a crazy mob of my favorite Mario characters, and they are hungry to be leveled up. Obsessive completionist mode kicks in and not only do I have to get one of every color, but I have to overlevel them. Days go by. I can’t stop. The game can’t stop me. Then it does. The difficulty spikes and things get serious. I crack my knuckles and match 3 harder than any puzzle game has seen before. I lost again, wait, what? Thanks, but I won’t go away that easily, Puzzle & Dragons Z + Puzzle & Dragons Super Mario Bros. Edition.