The third edition of the 7 Wonders series sends you on a journey to nine countries and their famous landmarks, beginning with the Monastery of Sergiev Pasad in Russie, the spiritual home of the Russian Orthodox Church. Build wonders to unlock ancient compasses that reveal more wonders to build, until you face a final journey in hopes of reaching the Treasures of Seven.
7 Wonders: Treasures of Seven remains faithful to the match three series with its spectacular and detailed graphics along with the cute characters who collect your broken runes — which turn into blocks — to use in constructing the buildings. When the blocks stop falling or slow down, the workers go on strike and eventually leave the site.
Like any match three, swap two runes to create a match of three or more to clear the tiles on the grid. Instead of power ups, players can rotate the entire board clockwise or counter-clockwise. As you clear the runes, a path develops. This comes into play after removing all tiles. A "7" key stone and a key hole appear in two places on the path.
The key stone can only travel within the confines of the path. The goal is to help the key stone reach the key hole by making matches and turning the grid. Players gain several bonus items: one being "shuffle," which shuffles the tiles. After shuffling the tiles, you can’t shuffle again until the shuffle timer refills. It doesn’t take long to do it by making matches. The path grows more difficult by putting a lock over the key hole requiring a match to take place over the key hole with tiles having the same color as the key hole.
In making matches of four, players gain an ice ball bonus. A fireball bonus appears with matches of five or more. The ice ball can break all the tiles horizontally while the fireball goes both horizontally and vertically. Also, a bonus match window appears on occasion. Create a match that matches the shown match to freeze the timer for a short time.
After receiving a few fireballs and ice balls, players receive a dice bonus. Move the dice and it randomly destroys runes often in your favor — another reason the game could be too easy. Don’t underestimate the toughness of clearing the runes and uniting the key stone with the key hole.
We give credit to MumboJumbo for creating an original match three game that has a great idea, even though it doesn’t quite captivate like 7 Wonders II, the second and so far best game in the series.
What’s more is that we never come close to running out of time throughout the game, and would finish with more than half of our time left. Workers go on strike a few times in the game even though the timer has more than half of the time left. It feels pointless to go on strike when only a few remain with plenty of time on the clock.
The game contains over 50 levels, most of which don’t take very long to complete. Some players may wish to replay the game using the Free Play mode, which lets you return to any country to play the levels again. Otherwise, there’s little replayability motivation. It’s hard to lose a level with the bonuses, the rotating grid and slow timer.
Kids, unseasoned match-three players and those looking for a challenge without pressure will find joy in 7 Wonders: Treasures of Seven along with its upbeat music. If you like to be on the edge of your seat and feel lots of action, this may not be one of the wonders you hope to find in the world of casual games.