Cheating on Candy Crush
Everyone who reads this blog regularly knows how I feel about Candy Crush. It is a passionate love affair that knows few limits. I am not above calling friends and whispering into the telephone, “pretty please, I’ll cook dinner for you for the rest of the week. Just give me a ticket to the next level.” I have reset the clock on the phone to get more lives, paused the game on timed levels in order to think through my moves, and begged for advice. But now, I am really and truly cheating on Candy Crush.
I’ve started seeing Dots.*
I love it so so much.
Dots is a game very similar to Candy Crush except there is only one level. And you never need to ask anyone for anything. And you never run out of lives. And you can remove dots by connecting just two of them (instead of needing three to clear out the pieces). The dots cascade down like the candy in Candy Crush, making a square clears all of that colour temporarily off the board, and the game makes a happy noise as you get rid of the dots. Plus, it doesn’t have that creepy man who oversees Candyville who gives me nightmares. And you can turn the sound off easily so no one knows that you are obsessively playing Dots.
See? It’s the perfect game.
The game is the electronic equivalent to consuming Doritos. In the same way that you may look down at the bag and realize that you mindlessly ate 3000 calories worth of artificially-flavoured corn chips, you may end up playing Dots for several hours before you realize that you just missed the entire episode of Saturday Night Live because you were too busy trying to best your score of 206.
But I’m strangely okay with that.
So there are two ways you can play Dots. You can set a personal goal and keep playing until you reach it, such as “I will best my score” or “I will get over 150 dots.” You get cute badges for completing certain tasks on the screen, so I’m currently working my way through the badge system and will sometimes tell myself that I can continue playing until I earn a new badge.
Or you can challenge someone else in the room and pass-and-play the same board. Meaning, you begin with the exact same dots in the exact same order, and from there, each move creates a different path. I am constantly challenging everyone in our house to games of Dots. For instance, Josh and I played each other this weekend to see who would have to go downstairs and get dessert (I did… I lost big time).
Plus, because you can always play and you don’t need to wait for lives to regenerate, I tend to stay on it much longer than Candy Crush. It works the exact same part of my brain, searching for moves that will cause the dot I need to cascade into place so I can wipe out a long row of dots or form a square. It is so relaxing. Like popping mental bubble wrap.
So I’m cheating on Candy Crush. It’s not that the Crush is going anywhere; I’m now on Level 241. Believe me, I’m still going strong with the Crush. But sometimes I need a game that is a little less complicated. That doesn’t make me jump through hoops. That keeps the same difficulty for every board, and it’s up to me to find the good moves. Sometimes I just want a clean white screen, neat rows of dots, and a little less noise. You know?