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Sunday, December 12, 2010

Zuma Blitz + Tips

So... at the start of Bejeweled Blitz, I managed to stumble upon Zuma Blitz. And it's just as addicting as Bejeweled Blitz. In fact, they imposed a limit on how many times you could play in a short period of time (represented as lives). That didn't stop me, however, from playing ~180 one minute games and reaching level 25 in a period of two days. Three months later, I reached lvl 80.

At the time I started the game, none of my friends have found out about this game, so I had a decent head start.

The game was in a beta state until they removed that status on January 25, 2012. They relaunched the game under the title "Krokatoa Island" featuring two additional powers, a reworked coin and XP system (not for the better), and the ability to use food.

The Gameplay

It's like Zuma, but you get only one minute (typically more than this). Basically it was one board, 60 seconds to get as many points as possible. The thing that kept me in for quite a while, however, was additional perks upon leveling up, such as Additional multipliers (at lvl 34 / 79), time balls (can extend your play time to well beyond two minutes) as well as the Double XP Potion (Level 12), I got to a million at around lvl 34 the first time through.

In the end, if you want a high score, playing fast isn't all that matters; you've got to play skillfully.

Playing through 2nd level of mastery, one year later

Gameplay Tips

I have found official tips to be of some value, but likewise, once my friends start to play this, they'll probably be asking me for some pointers, just like on Bejeweled Blitz. So here are my tips:

General Tips

  • Go for multipliers first, then timer bonuses. If you are short on time, go for the timer ball. If necessary and possible, you may discard balls off the screen rapidly until you get a color that you need to get that bonus.
  • If any bonus disappears, you can still get it if you destroy the ball that used to have the powerup.
  • Either play fast or play strategically. Since additional points are rewarded based on both your chain bonus and how close you are to the red frog bonus, it's helpful to work fast.
  • If you're fast enough, it's best to keep making matches until you get a red frog for curve clears, then when you have a high multiplier base, work on gap shots. The multipliers gained instead will more than make up the difference from those shots.
  • If you're strategic, make sure you don't miss. Each ball that doesn't hit its intended target (either to set up a combo or hit a powerup) is costly and you might not get the correct ball you want for a while.
  • As you approach the red frog bonus, the balls you fire will speed up significantly. The speed bonus will be preserved after you fire your hot frog shots.
  • Gap shots are key to high scores, especially very close gaps. They typically add five (and sometimes six) digits to your score if pulled off right. You can set them up in a way to continuously do this. See this post on gapshots. Don't do this too early though - if you can't get to time / multiplier powerups easily, which could be anywhere on the board, it is usually not worth setting them up until around x5.
  • On boards with lots of gap opportunities, don't be hasty into blasting every single ball right away - sometimes the best option is to wait until you can shoot two balls in a row and get a gap bonus on the second.
  • Don't invest in ball-clearing powerups when going for gap shots, they kill these opportunities easily. Additionally they do not provide as many points.
  • Go for fruit if possible. Hitting them won't break your chain bonus, and they are rewarding over time, especially with the Epic Fruit power.
  • If you hit a time bonus via a combo when the timer is up, you get a huge 'consolation bonus'. Same goes with remaining in Hot Frog when time is up, as well as in Cannon Mode (though you get significantly less points in this case)
  • XP points are based only on curve clears / hot frog / fruit / gaps / extra time, which is discussed in the level up table.
  • Red Frog + Cannon Shot = three explosion balls.
  • The red frog meter takes 18 ball matches to fill up (15 with Ignition Sauce). If you wait more than a second between matches, it will start decreasing slowly.
  • Try playing with no sound; it can help you concentrate better during the last 15 seconds of the game. Not looking at your score counter either until after the game also helps.
  • Keep playing for XP. For returning players, they're essential to giving you coins... and that's about it. (Also, for new players, leveling up gives you better powers to earn more points easily and dominate the board.) A near comprehensive list is listed on this post.

  • And one more thing... SHARE. Every daily spin, spirit animal promotion, monument, high scores (this includes a high score of zero) - each has the potential of giving others 1k in coins. TIP: If you've got lots of extra lives, at the start of a new week, start a new game (no powers), immediately quit the game, and you can share your high score of zero to others for the sole purpose of giving others coins. Repeat as many times as FB will allow.
  • Also, collecting other friend's feeds might help too. Link to filter only Zuma Blitz posts

List of Levels

This is a comprehensive listing of all Zuma Blitz Kroakatoa levels since its release (Sept 23, 2012). A list of classic Zuma Blitz levels can be found here.

See also: Current High Scores.

Supply Drops: A supply drop of one power and food item will be released each week, and will be publicly available upon final approval of Popcap. Until then, it will display what the daily gifts were for that week. They will be highlighted green if they are collectible and you haven't collected them yet. All goods are provided 'as is'.

On the other hand, there is the daily gift that you can send to other players...

  • Scores with links contain actual video proof of that particular score. Powers that were used in that game will be displayed if info is available. Most board screenshots show the best way to get high scores on that board.
  • Board Specific Tips / Video replays are highlighted in green/blue text. Board changes every Tue 4PM PST.
Level Image Level Name Introduced Recordholder Supply Drop
Eagle Eyes September 18, 2012 Radek Domański
14,888,200 (Fixed Gap Scoring)
Jerome Ooi
(Old Gap Scoring)
Journey to Kroakatoa September 25, 2012 Jerome Ooi
(Old Gap Scoring)
Candy Lei (x20)
Warp Ball (x20)
Bronze Board October 2, 2012 John Chan
Gapple Sauce (x20)
Epic Fruit (x20)
Crab Board October 9, 2012 黃柏雯
Kiwi Kebab (x20)
Wild Shot (x20)
Roots Board October 16, 2012 Brendan Chan
Neil's Strongarm (x20)
Inferno Frog (x20)
Platter Board October 23, 2012 Brendan Chan
Curvy Fries (x20)
Epic Fruit (x20)
Halloween Board October 30, 2012 Brendan Chan
Combo Corn (x5)
Sticky Apple
Hot Springs Board November 7, 2012 Tle Athimon
Gold Mine Board November 13, 2012 John Chan
4000 Coins
Gapple Sauce
Hog Wild Sliders
Hasty Pudding
10x Bombs
Hog Wild Sliders
Thanksgiving Board November 20, 2012 Brendan Chan
10 Pound Turkey (5x)
Canned Cran Blast (5x)
Whipped Taters (5x)
Hasty Pudding
Kroakatoa Wave
Key Lime Pie
The Last Bite
Candy Lei
Smokin Hot Links
Clockwork Board November 27, 2012 Brendan Chan
Kiwi Kebab
Animal Crackers
Pyro Popcorn
Igntion Sauce
1x Bomb
Gapple Sauce
Hog Wild Sliders
Sea Turtles Board December 4, 2012 Suzanne Freeman
Spirit Turtle
50k coins
Hasty Pudding
Kroakatoa Wave
Reef Madness December 11, 2012 Bembenk Flash
Winter Board December 18, 2012 Brian Santiago
3x Christmas Cake
3x Candy Spin
10k coins
Christmas Board December 25, 2012 Suzanne Freeman
Lava Board January 1, 2012 Marío Herní
Gold Board January 22, 2012 Brendan Chan
Fireflies Board January 29, 2012 César Bobadilla
Heartwood Board February 12, 2012 Brendan Chan
Shamrock Board March 12, 2013 Bembenk Flash
Progressive Board March 19, 2013 TBA
> 27.9 million
Major Mouthful July 2, 2013 Suzanne Freeman
Zulu Bravado July 16, 2013 Radek Domanski
Dig It! November 5, 2013 Savas Topal

Questions or comments?

Questions here will be either answered on future posts, or can be answered by another reader's comment here.

Answered: Part 1 - Part 2 - Part 3

Revision: Oct 2012 (First version posted in Dec 2010)

Zuma Blitz on The Other Side
General Level Up Table · Scoring Mechanics · General Tips · Questions Part 1 · Questions Part 2 (Gapshots FTW) · Questions Part 3
Levels (See above table)
Video Examples Playthrough: 1200k · 2 million at lvl 33 · 4.7m on Above and Below · 10m Technical Demonstration · 4 Million (90 Degree Nightmare) · Beach Ball - 6.1M at lvl 67 (most points per second record)
Articles Detailed Point Breakdown · Death by Curve Clear · Game Recording · Malware Issues · 2x or 3x Mojo? · Double Gaps - Sliding Gaps · On Mastery Mode · Multiplier Powerup Frequency Study · Triple Rollout Board (beta) - The Other Zuma Blitz Guide (completed, pdf) · Making the most out of Fortune Cookies


Dayna said...

What does XP do in the game?

Brendan Chan said...

XP basically gives you access to powerups. Example: Chrono Balls, which add even more time for each time ball hit, isn't available until level 30. Additionally higher levels increase the value of fruit and regens your life faster.

Anonymous said...

This is probably really stupid. But I can't seem to get the Last Hurrah or the Bombs to work when I play. How do I make them work?

Ernest said...

Have you figured out what the ZUMA in the upper center of the screen does? It randomly starts getting full. Also I don't know what to make of the blue bar on top of the frog.

Inez said...

What does the potion do? Also, there is a 'dog' that is on the refill screen, after you clear a level...what is that 'dog' for?

Ernest said...

Okay I figured out the blue bar - that's just for the red frog. Didn't notice that element till now b/c i was more focused on pts. Still dont know what the yellow ZUMA is for though.

Anonymous said...

the yellow zuma is a timer for the game.. it drops back as you score more time bonuses.

Anonymous said...

What value is MOJO? What use is it? What can you do with it apartfrom sharing with friends???

Helen said...

How do you win idols from the treasure chest? All I get is mojo.

nolimitz said...

I just search the sites for tips on this game but haven't come across anyone suggesting the strategies that I've been using, so here it is. I only concentrate on TWO things in the game: the timer and the multiplier. Timer will give you additional 5 seconds for each timer ball hit, and multipliers speaks for itself. For me, time + multiplier = higher score.

Anonymous said...

Great Site. LOVE this game!!!

Anonymous said...

i started playing this game on facebook during wednesday but i have school so homework and bedtime is realy hard to deal with when youve found such a great game, i remember my first 3 scores 1st, 7500 2nd, 56000 3rd, 4,600,000 i was realy disapointed with my 3rd score because i was only level 2 when i got it so i got no trophy to prove my luck of beating all 94 friends (that play) on my 3rd round. however i have since got a 1million score still beating all of my friends and getting a medal, now to get to the point, im only level 19 and i would realy like some serious people who play this game so add me on facebook if you want ( or (Thomas Honeysett) before you add me inbox me to let me know why you want to add me or else i will decline. it would be good to have someone to personal hints and tips with! thanks!

Anonymous said...

Why does the stupid frog double shoot sometimes and break my chain?

Anonymous said...

I saw on youtube the 2 million video and he have a yellow frog yith feather on the head

i wanna know at wich level you can have this skin (called battle frog)

Anonymous said...

Thanks to Zuma crashing whenever I try to add a Power, I'm not able to use them. (yes my Mojo is building up!)
It would be realy REALY cool if you could add a 'No Powers Used' high-scores column for me to compare to! ;)

Anonymous said...

What good are the fortune cookies? what do you do with them? Who gets the points?

Anonymous said...

What powers do you have the best luck with?

Brendan Chan said...

If I do use powers, I get the best luck from time / multiplier, and fruit if they're easy to get.

Anonymous said...

how do you get different frog skins??

Anonymous said...

I wish they would add the feature to post the game to your wall.

Anonymous said...

Wen I press play the timer to start gets to 3 seconds then starts counting backwards and never starts. How can I fix this to play the game?

Nassos Kranidiotis said...

Hello. In Snowpocalyse board record you make a notice that one can gain more that 4M! In fact, Snowpocalypse never gave me the opportunity to score above 2M. Would you mind giving me a hint on how to achieve the high score you talk about, please?

Thanks in advance

Brendan Chan said...

The board record says > 4M, meaning "the current board record is larger than 4 million", indicating that you need at least that many points to set this week's board record, there's still leeway for competition as I don't wish to announce exact scores until the end of the week.

TIP: Try to set up gap shots on the right of the inner circle, and keep holes open to grab fruit on the top left and bottom right. Powers: x3 multiplier, timelord, epic fruit/warp ball.

Example of this strat: (whether or not you use a spirit animal the strat is the same)