I jumped off the love seat and dove across my living room. I tore through my laptop case until I had a hold of my lifeline: a power cord for my Samsung Galaxy tablet which had just alerted me with a low battery notice as soon as I was about to win level 38 on Candy Crush Saga.
With one move left in the game, I had only one jelly left to clear before I won. I COULD NOT lose this one to a battery death. I mean, I might even pass Usagi who’s stuck on level 39. This would be really something to boast about over our next dinner at Mom-in-Law’s.
I hastily plugged my tablet in to the wall. I had passed my level. And I felt a bit guilty.
I did not feel right beating another level on a game that is the center of a legal battle centered around trademarks and ethics.
Albert Ransom, of Runsome Apps, recently released an angry open letter to King games, the makers of Candy Crush Saga.
In a nutshell: King knocked off Ransom’s game, Candy Swipe, with a very similar game, Candy Crush Saga. (Candy Crush Saga came after Candy Swipe.) Ransom battled King’s effort to trademark their game for “likelihood of confusion”. King now wants to have Ransom’s Candy Swipe trademark cancelled.
When I first read the article (article can be found at this link: I Can’t Believe They Are Doing This, It’s Disgusting) a friend shared in my Facebook news feed, I was in denial. I didn’t want it to be true that by playing my second favorite Facebook game (first favorite is Papa Pear Saga, also owned by King.), I was supporting an awful, disgusting company corrupted by greed. After denying it to myself and making sure not to send requests to my friend who informed me, I had to confirm it for myself that Runsome Apps was telling the truth.
I googled “Candy Crush legal battle”. Instantly, my results confirmed the worst. The myth is busted; these guys say it’s true: Truth or Fiction. Furthermore, Forbes, also wrote about it too here: ‘Candy Swipe ‘ Dev Pens Furious Open Letter to ‘Candy Crush’ Makers. So, Ransom is not a big fat liar and it is hard to stay apathetic to all this.
I took a few steps in boycotting King games and supporting Runsome Apps. I tried out Candy Swipe to compare the two games. I also played more Facebook puzzle games to fill the hole where Candy Crush had once been.
The two games are actually fundamentally different. In Candy Crush, you play with a set amount of moves and the game only ends when you run out of moves. In Candy Swipe you play to beat the clock. The games’ similarities are in the visual art and sound effects. In both games, a voice says “Sweet” when you score special points, the logos are similar, and even the candy looks alike.
I found the mechanics of both games equally fun. But, King is a bigger budget developer. They have all the bells and whistles that make them so popular. Their graphics are smoother, music is hypnotizing, and their economy keeps players coming back to send and receive boosters and travel on a pretty map of all the levels.
I won’t play King games anymore, even if all my friends are, because what King did is corrupt and greedy. I paid $2.99 for the paid version of Candy Swipe in solidarity for Albert Ransom and then looked into some fun internet gaming alternatives. Puzzle games are very common on Facebook. So common that most games are repeats of a few archetypal game mechanics. It is very easy to find games like King’s, who is not the first for their game mechanics. After much gaming, here are some games I recommend:
CandySwipe and Blingword by Runsome Apps:
Support Runsome and play their games! Blingword is a word matching game full of shine and glitter.
Jewel Epic by Six Waves Inc: A match three game with really pretty art.
Color Zen by Large Animal Games: This game is hypnotizing and addictive. Watch colors move as you click squares with the goal of covering the screen in one color.
Panda Pop by SGN Games: A bubble popping game covered in cuteness. The music is pleasant and baby panda bears float down by parachute when you pop enough bubbles.
Doodle God by JoyBits: Pair elements to make more elements. It is a very interesting concept.
Vector by Nekki LLC: A running game with parkour moves.
Please support Runsome Apps and other more ethical developers. There are tons of good games on the web. If you want a game that is popular among your Facebook friends, look under the Friends tab in your games search on Facebook or build your network and send out those pesky game invitations.