Even given the lack of good new releases on Vita lately, I get the feeling that a lot of people overlooked SPL/Alawar’s Treasures of Montezuma Blitz. I can kind of understand why: at first glance it just looks like a nothing-special freemium match-three puzzle game.
Yes, at a basic level, TOM Blitz is a simple match-three game, in the same vein as Bejeweled. You have a minute in which to collect as many points as possible by matching gems, with your final score appearing in a weekly leaderboard with your PSN friends.
As you play levels, you also earn experience, which means you can level up and unlock new slots for totems, bonuses and crystals, which you use to ‘rent’ the aforementioned bonuses.
The more jewel-generous update makes the it easier to get higher scores.
Using bonuses and totems (which can be upgraded to be even more useful) will cost you jewels, which can be earned by playing, by levelling up, by winning a tournament, from the daily scratchcard, and by buying them in packs from the PlayStation Store.
On top of that, you can share and receive half of any winnings via Near.
It sounds complicated – and it is.
Today, a new (and extensive) update has been released for the game that really changes things – for the better.
The gap between levels is smaller (which stops it feeling as grind-y), there are automatic hints after a few seconds, bonuses appear from the start of the game rather than appearing as it goes on, friend’s levels appear in the leaderboard, and there’s a play button on the results screen to go straight to the next match.
But those aren’t the biggest changes. In the original game, there was either a lot of trial and error (or using a guide) in the first few games until you could really figure out what everything did.
Now, there is a more extensive tutorial, better in-game hints, tips on loading screens, a redesigned UI for ease of use, as well as more information available on all the gameplay elements by tapping on their icons throughout the game. I’ve had a play, and it really does clear up a lot of confusion that at least I had when I first picked up the game.
This update doesn’t suddenly make the game Vita’s first 3D next0gen blockbuster interactive experience. But TOM Blitz is a damn good puzzle game, with plenty of depth for those who stick with it. Oh, and did I mention that the update added trophies?
TOM Blitz is free for Vita from the PlayStation Store, so give it a download, and if you don’t like it you haven’t lost anything.
Thanks to teflon for the help with this article.