Pokémon Shuffle, did they get it right?

Mid february saw the release of another Pokémon title, nothing at all like the big adventures that Omega Ruby or Alpha Sapphire are, but a puzzler. Pokémon Shuffle made it’s way into the eShop in all regions as a free to download title. Free to download, free to play to a certain extant, but not with unlimited playing time. The game uses a match-three mechanic, very familair from app games like Candy Crush. You get five free hearts, and the hearts replenish after half an hour each. If you want to play on, you will have to pay for more hearts. Sounds familair, right? So what’s the game about?

Shuffle, special_stage, Meowth, coin_mania, 24_hoursEach heart gives you a number of moves to capture a wild Pokémon. On the touch screen there’s a 6×6 grid of smiling, Pokémon faces and using your stylus you swap pieces attempting to match three or more of a kind. When that happens, you deal damage to the wild Pokémon on the top screen that you are trying to capture. Trying to make good combos helps you catch the Pokémon quicker, and with more moves you didn’t need, you get a higher chance of catching the creature. Aside from that they’ve thrown in typical Pokémon traits: you can let the grid be filled up with Pokémon you’ve caught before, taking into account the nature of the Pokémon you are pitting against. So when you are trying to catch a Charmander, be sure to put your Blastoise in the frontlines. In addition to catching the Pokémon you get coins, with which you can buy special items.

Along with the standard stages the game throws in Expert levels, making for a nice change of pace. You unlock them gradually as you progress, and though they give you unlimited moves, you are required to catch the Pokémon within a set amount of time. There are also time-sensitive Special stages, that will be find you game through SpotPass, they offer special Pokémon to be caught. There’s Mew that can be caught to commemorate the release of Pokémon Shuffle, but you’ve got to be quick for that one, the stage ends March 9, 2015. Then there’s the special Meowth’s special_stage, mew, commemorate, power_of_5Coin Mania daily challenge stage from Saturdays to Mondays until March 16, 2015. Here you can earn a great deal of Coins mixed in among the Pokémon on the lower screen.

I guess we can be sure the company will keep us entertained with this game. Even though the game has been dowloaded more then a million time within two weeks after release, they’ve got to get their revenue out of people buying Jewels with real eShop credit. It’s an enjoyable little game to play if you are into match-three and I must say the Pokémon angle makes it more special. It’s all a matter of sticking to the rule your wallet will set you, and not throw too much money into it to get that extra special Pokémon!


  1. I have to say I like Pokemon Shuffle.
    It is my first match-three type of game, so I can’t draw any comparisons, but it’s fun for what it is.
    I like that you can catch and level up the Pokemon you are fighting against.

    Right now I wouldn’t pay any money for it, at least not for the content that’s available, maybe if they were to add some interesting content later on.

    1. I agree, it’s fun for what it is, and I think they did a good job. I wouldn’t put money into it either, but then I’m not so much of a match three fan myself. What makes this game nice is all the special Pokemon you can catch through spotpass. The company always does an excellent job of making it special!

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