Vivid Games has just re-launched its excellent and unique match-three puzzle/strategy hybrid, Samurai Puzzle Battle, now qualified as the 'Game of the Year' edition.

This surreal steampunk strategy has been a Pocket Gamer favourite since we first fiddled with its jewels on mobile, and the iPhone and Android versions have really kept us playing.

But this isn't your usual Bejeweld clone. Samurai Puzzle Battle uses the match-three puzzle mechanics as a form of combat, while the turn-based strategy gameplay allows you to move all manner of units and regiments across Japan as you attempt to unite the Land of the Rising Sun under your warlord's banner.

It's a complex set of skills to master and combine, so we got in touch with the game's lead designer Tomasz Strzelczyk for a few hints and tips on how to conquer Japan in the awesome re-release of Samurai Puzzle Battle: Game of the Year Edition.

Take it away Tom:

Samurai Puzzle Battle Hints & Tips


Strategy:
  • One regiment can store five regular units and one hero. So if one unit falls during battle, the next one will immediately attack your weakened opponent.
  • Don’t let any regiment with ghost units enter a location with a Torii shrine, or you will lose ghost unit.
  • As soon as possible try to reach a cave, fight Yu hero and recruit him to your regiment. He is one of the strongest non-regular units in the game.
  • Once you beat Master Fu enter the location with the shipwreck again to get his hidden treasure.
  • Maintaining a variety of units in your regiment is a key to success, especially in the first phase of the game.
  • Morale is very important – each positive action (like wining a battle or gaining a unit) increases your regiment’s morale and battle abilities.
  • Keep a strong regiment in your castle to defend your Shogun.
  • The more territory you have, the bigger amount of gold you will gain during Gems Mode. Cash is King!
  • There are some units or events which may take away your territory. Keep some regiments located at the frontlines to take them back.
Battle
  • Study your opponents’ strengths and weakness before a fight (i.e. if it uses some blocks to perform massive damage to you, make sure to remove them first).
  • If you are aware that your unit will fall, make sure to lower the strength and mana statistics of your opponent. The next unit from your regiment will have an easier fight then.
  • Don’t try to save the Devil hero unit for upcoming battles. This unit will eventually escape from your regiment after few days. Although you will be able to hunt him down and recruit him to your army again for short amount of time.
  • In order to get an extra turn, match four or more complex patterns.
  • Matching fours will give blinking blocks which gives 3x3 explosion once triggered.
  • Matching fives give white masks. Switching it with any block will collect all of them from the board.
  • Matching more than five blocks gives other exploding symbols.
  • KI attack causes massive destruction, but remember to have enough mana and strength or it won’t be effective.
  • Be sure to keep a high level of mana. It will give you strong magical attacks and defence.
  • Same goes with strength statistic. High level gives strong physical attacks and defence.
Puzzle
  • Explosive blocks and blinking blocks can trigger themselves. Make use of this to create magnificent explosions.
  • If you have created a white mask block, don’t lose it in an explosion.
  • If you make a massive explosion on the bottom of the board there is a big chance that falling blocks will create lots of matches by themselves.
Arigato, Tomasz-san! May your pen and sword always remain in accord. Hit the App Store button to go check out Samurai Puzzle Battle: Game of the Year Edition now.Heading

Want more? Check out our growing collection of Samurai Puzzle Battle (iPhone) articles!