Mahjong has always been a fantastic way to pass the time, but mahjong in under a minute? That’s genius. Mahjongg Dimensions takes the three dimensional spin of Mahjong Dimensions Deluxe for the PC and gives it the under-a-minute Bejeweled Blitz treatment. What results from this strange combination is a game that’s as fun, fast, and as addictive as the titles that inspired it.
Like its bigger download counterpart, Mahjongg Dimensions is a tile matching game with a special twist. Rather than placing tiles on a flat surface as you would in a traditional game of mahjong, the tiles form three-dimensional puzzles that force you to rotate the playing field. A tile’s match could be hiding on the other side of the puzzle – you won’t know for sure until you spin things around.
Controls here are identical to the PC version. You can spin the puzzle using the A and D keys and make matches by clicking identical tiles that aren’t boxed in by other tiles. Yet while the basics of Mahjongg Dimensions will be familiar to veterans of Mahjong Dimensions Deluxe, the object of the game is wildly different. Much like Bejewled Blitz, your goal is to get as high as score as possible in under a minute.
Scoring in Mahjongg Dimensions is all about speed. You’ll get points for each pair of tiles you match, and the faster you move the higher a multiplier will be applied to your score. So long as you make matches in less than 3 seconds, every match you make will build that multiplier higher and higher. Nothing was more exhilarating and heartbreaking than seeing a 40x multiplier dashed to the heavens because I couldn’t make a match in time.
The social aspects of the game rely heavily on a healthy sense of competition from your friends. Like Bejeweled Blitz, the big incentive in Mahjong Dimensions is rising to the top of your leaderboard to put all of your friends in their place. Gifts also add a nice element of social play, as you’ll be able to send your friends special items that can help enhance their game – things like time bonuses or starting multipliers. The developers aren’t without a sense of season, either. During the course of our review we were fortunate enough to witness a special St. Patrick’s Day puzzle gift that turned all of the tiles into shamrocks and pots of gold.
Normally I’m the first person to cry foul whenever there’s even the slightest imperfection in a game, but there’s really very little to find fault with here. Sure it would have been nice to have seen an enhanced version of the game built into Deluxe and tied back into Facebook, but really more wishful thinking than it is a complaint. If anything it speaks volumes about how enjoyable this product really is. We liked it so much that we want it packed into our retail purchase so that we can have that slick Deluxe presentation while getting our Facebook on.
With so many simulation games crowding the Facebook marketplace, it’s easy to forget that other great games can exist on the platform. Mahjongg Dimensions is a reminder of that. There are gamers out there looking for a new addiction with quick-fix gameplay, and I can’t think of a better title to suggest than Mahjong Dimensions.