Big Fish Games' upcoming mobile title Zombie! Zombie! Zombie! or Zx3 for short) is putting a new spin on match-3 puzzle games. Instead of tasking players to match three or more of a kind to clear columns and rows, it tosses players onto a field where hordes of different zombies rain down the screen — the only way to clear the level is by drawing triangles around the zombies to destroy them.
In Zx3, when players connect three zombies of the same type — creating a triangle — every zombie within that triangle gets blown up. Players have to stop the zombies from reaching their base, so they have to use a combination of triangle drawing and environment power-ups to wipe out the hordes. Every level is played out in a different environment, and each environment has its own unique power-ups.
In a level we played, the game was set in a farm-like environment, so when the zombie hordes were getting too close and we couldn't create matches fast enough, we could call on the help of a tractor that would drive right over a group of zombies. In another level, which was set near a train station, we could activate a train to run right through the horde, squishing a third of the zombies that were coming at us. These boosts could only be used when a meter filled up, so we couldn't overuse them.
In later levels, we were introduced to more zombie types, some of which carried a shield and needed to be disarmed before they could be blown up. In this case, we had to first tap on the zombie to disarm it before frantically finding big enough matches to draw triangles. Players who are after even more of a challenge can access a mode where they're limited in how many triangles they can draw, which means they have to be more strategic and try to enclose as many zombies as possible with each triangle they draw.
Zombie! Zombie! Zombie! will release later this year on mobile devices.