Wildlife Match is another tile matching game (match 3) derived from the well-worn genre of “Bejeweled” style games. Wildlife Match features a timed mode as well as a casual mode. In the timed mode, the player has about 7 minutes to complete the level. Most of the levels have some number of specifically matched items that have to be cleared. There is a level progression tracked between levels, with some unlocks for utility items and a vague backstory centered on wild animals, which can be skipped.
This version of the match 3 formula adds in locked tiles, panes, frozen tiles, and diagonal tile replacement (a spill-over effect). Some of the levels utilize these mechanics in surprisingly difficult combinations, making them difficult to clear, especially with a time limit. One early level features a snowman that sporadically freezes random tiles every 10 seconds or so. This makes for quite a time challenge to clear the board while tiles are being randomly frozen. There are limited use tools that can be acquired that give the player the ability to quickly knock out troublesome tiles, as is standard in this genre of games.
As is typical of the developers and publishers of these games, Wildlife Match is cross compiled for many platforms and is likely to be a bigger seller as mobile app than a PC game. The graphics are somewhat pixelated on a high-resolution screen and there are only a few options like music and sound volume. The sounds and music are appropriate and well made.
The same elements of pure chance exist in Wildlife Match as other match 3 games, however due to the powerups being more akin to Bejeweled, unwinnable positions don’t appear to be likely. Most of the board layouts in the advanced levels have sharp choke points, but line and column clearing powerups go right through gaps and barriers. There is also a match 5 powerup that acts exactly like the Bejeweled version clearing all of one type when used. Something fairly unique to Wildlife Match are situations where tiles can’t be replenished due to the diagonal “spill” mechanic, yet there may be “empty” panes that have to be cleared. These always have locked or frozen tiles above that have to be cleared first, this makes some of the levels much more difficult than average. Wildlife match is a skillfully constructed game, but it is one from a sea of similar titles. It is recommended for people that love match 3 or have never played one before.