Revenge is a dish best served cold
The original Columns is one of those games which sprang up from the colossal success of Tetris, adding color-based elements to the gameplay to create a superbly addictive little puzzler. This second sequel, however, just doesn't quite live up to its predecessor, as although it adds some new elements, the shift in focus takes away from the fun somewhat. It's still a nice little game, but you might be better off with the original, especially if you're playing by yourself. The essential concept is similar to previous versions, the goal being to match falling jewels into lines of the same color so that they disappear from the screen and rack up the points. You can switch the order of the colors as the blocks fall but you'd better be quick as everything happens pretty fast. You've got a few modes to try out here, including Arcade, Versus and Time Trial, where you take on a real opponent, the clock, or where you can try to complete specific challenges. The version also adds in some extra items to mix the gameplay up a bit. There's no denying that the core concept here is still entertaining and there is some fun to be had with the game, as it is pretty addictive. The new modes promise to add some variety but the main problem with Columns III is that the central conceit just isn't handled as well as it was in the original. You've still got the simple but effective and vibrant colors but the gameplay just feels a little flat, making it less entertaining than it should be. It's worth a look, but you might be better off with the original.