Threes! is one of those number puzzle matching games that everyone is playing or have played on their mobile devices. It is easy to start playing by matching red 1’s to blue 2’s to make threes and then it gets tricky and trickier as the numbers double with each match.
Good to Know
£1.49 in the App Store, £1.20 on Google Play.
Rated:4+ Apple, Google Content Rating: Everyone
It is a mathematical puzzle matching game to the factor of three and is definitely aimed at older children and adults who are able to match numbers comfortable into triple digits.
Adult Annoyance Factor
None. The sound effects and music can be muted separately and neither is required.
Features and Accessibility
Design & Visual Accessibility
It is a beautiful game and a lot of love has gone into the small details. It is an accessible design with no flash or flicker and although the sliding of tiles may affect those with severe motion sickness or migraine, I could not play it during a migraine but at other times it was a smooth inoffensive glide and flip that did not even catch my attention.
The font was easy to read and the black on white tiles have a high contrast and for the blue and pink tiles the contrast does not matter as all pink tiles have the letter one and all blue tiles the letter 2. There are some low contrast text, but they are combined with distinctive icons. There is no reliance on colour alone. I would have loved to see a voice-over for the numbers included, but even without, it is an accessible game for anyone with a visual impairment or who has motion sickness or photophobia.
Audio & Accessibility
The audio is a combination of a catchy jazz track and unique voice-overs for each letter. It enriches the game and contributes to the ambience but is not integral to the game and Threes! is accessible to anyone with a hearing impairment or sound hypersensitivity. The sound effects and soundtrack can be muted separately.
Input and Touch
It is a touch screen based game that uses sliding to play and taps to access the menu. It is accessible to anyone who are able to use a touch screen with no timed elements and although some precision is needed, the tiles are quite large and there is no penalty for sliding it slowly or incorrectly (other than tiles will not compile unless slide accurately).
It can be played with a few seconds to hours and progress is automatically saved and players can stop or pause at any time. There is no left/right hand bias and it is easy to play with one hand.
Ease of Use
It looks like a simplistic game and in many ways it is. There is only one screen that holds a grid, there are no inventories to keep track of or paths to navigate. No reading or writing skills are needed. Threes! has little social interaction, not in the game itself but through challenges from or two friends to achieve certain goals. The principle of the game is matching tiles in factors of three and as such, some mathematical skill is required, most crucially at the start where 1’s and 2’s are matched. It is widely accessible and easy to use as long as numbers can be recognised and matched up.
Threes! encapsulates one of my favourite game genres and it does what it does extraordinarily well. An average game only lasts for a few minutes and the player always looses at the end, but the satisfaction that comes with the simplicity of matching numbers that grow bigger and larger with each turn makes you start the next game the second you loose the last. It is also a very accessible game and most people with visual, hearing, physical and cognitive issues should be able to share in the enjoyment.
Product: Threes! | Developer: Sirvo LLC | Platform: iOS, Android | Genre: Matching | Players: 1 | Version: Europe | Release Date | Last Update: 26 February 2014 (Apple), 16 March 2014 (Android) |Content Rating: Apple 4+, Google: Everyone