A good casual game has a funny way of hooking you when you least expect it. You know, what begins as a quick five-minute diversion while finishing your lunch at your desk somehow turns into a two-hour ordeal.

No one knows this more than GameHouse, one of the more prolific providers of downloadable and online games in cyberspace. And so these savvy folks are about to do it again with the third installment in the popular Super Collapse games.

Gamezebo was privileged to get our hands on a near-final version of Super Collapse 3, so here’s the scoop…

Before we get into what’s new, if you’re one of the few who haven’t played a Super Collapse puzzler before, the game-play is as follows:

You’re presented with a 2-D board of little squares of different colors. New squares are pushed up at the bottom of the screen, so your goal is to clear the board before the squares touch the top. You do this by clicking at least three adjoining squares of the same color, which causes them to disappear from the board.

More points are awarded for removing a decent size chuck of adjoining colors, such as nine touching green squares, and even more points are given for clearing the entire board completely.

Power-ups include squares that blow up a portion of the board, other bombs that only destroy a particular color, ones that removes an entire horizontal line or an hour glass that temporarily stops the squares from rising to the top of the screen.

Collapse 2 offered additional game modes, such as: Relapse, where lines appear both on the top and bottom of the screen; Strategy, where every square you click pushes up a new line (so you must think before you act!); and Puzzle, where the board colors are laid out in a special pattern and you must remove all the squares in as few moves as possible.

Super Collapse 3 adds 140 brand new puzzle levels and yet another layer of depth to this popular game franchise.

For one, a new Quest mode lets you travel through various locations and play different kinds of game types, including the classic game from Collapse 1, the abovementioned types from Collapse 2 (e.g. Relapse and Strategy) as well as three new types found in Collapse 3: Slider (where squares slide in from side to side), Continuous (squares appear on the board with increasing difficulty and no level breaks) and Countdown (where you must race your way to a high score).

This Quest mode — which takes players on a journey through towns, waterfalls and castles — also includes secrets to discover (Easter Eggs) and special Casino mini-games that include slot machines, shell games (find the coin under the walnut shell) and pattern matching puzzles.

You can chose your particular path throughout these Quest levels, but you need not play the game types to advance to the next level.

Another new feature is the Shop, in which you can spend your earned points in between levels. For example, you may invest in a red bomb that you can use when things get tense (purchased power-ups appear on the right-hand side of the screen during game-play). Or you may pay to unlock some game hints and other secrets. Or you might just unlock a new game type to play from the main menu’s Quick Play tab instead of via the Quest mode.

Players can also earn and display accolades in the virtual Trophy room, and show them off to visiting friends.

Overall, fans of this celebrated series will find even more to sink their teeth into with Super Collapse 3. GameHouse preserved what made this franchise a popular one, but added a few new twists to satiate demanding players looking for even more game-play.