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Current Projects: Americana Engine (Game Engine Development)

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Testing: Blitz+ Beetle

Six weeks in the development of Top 200 leaderboards, it was quite obvious that cheaters in the leaderboard are inevitable. Some are not that easy to spot, however, such as those who slow down the game, etc.

There were a few options to counter this, however. One was adding infinite time (like survival in regular Zuma games, but difficulty is based off of time, and not by points).

Another one was to 'mod' the game somehow to continue making the game competitive and give everyone more equal footing so that games weren't entirely based on luck, but more based on skill. (Even using spirit beetles was considered luck since typical players could only use them once in a while, and you had to be really lucky with the game layout and time for a really high score.) I had a solution for this.

Introducing: The Blitz+ Beetle.

Bringing the classic blitz mode from Zuma's Revenge with a few minor tweaks, it was designed to address a few issues in mind with the time ball stuff. The only factors for your high score is a bit of luck as well as your skill.

Good luck, you have THREE minutes.

I'm planning to roll this out by March for group approval and planning to implement a separate leaderboard for using this beetle.


  • No time balls, but game starts with 3:00.
  • No Multiplier Limit (start with 3x)
  • Fruit/multiplier spawn rate slightly increased.
  • Ball Speed +50%
  • 3x Crit Power (12.5% crit chance)
  • Jade beetle (no spirit blast)
  • Completely free (for now)
    • Probably 40k mojo to use, but gives you 9x mojo/XP than a normal game.

How to use

It's still in testing, so I'll give instructions on it as soon as I get the OK on it.\

Test Results

  • The difference isn't much, but still significant at higher scores - in three minutes, best scores achieved were 13.2m on the blitz+ beetle, and 10.1m on a L80 beetle, maybe it has to do with the extra 2.5% chance to crit?