Week in Arcade: Bejeweled 3, Dungeon Defenders

Dueling Arcade titles this week, with a grand total of $30 worth of gameplay.

Bejeweled 3

Apparently, EA is already pushing their influence over PopCap, Bejeweled 3 premiering as a $15 dollar premium title. Never mind Bejeweled 2 and Bejeweled Blitz are only $5 each and clearly the better value. The third XBLA iteration of Bejeweled isn’t bad, certainly fancier and flashier than ever before, plus more mode-heavy, but this is still just a swap and pop puzzler. You have to work to unlock the fresh content, meaning you’ll spend some time before accessing anything new, plus you get to pay a heftier price for the privilege.

Dungeon Defenders

A few weeks ago, XBLA was gifted with Orcs Must Die, essentially Dungeon Defenders without the focus on multiplayer. That’s the better choice if you’re going solo. Defenders is clearly designed for a mobile platform, the somewhat sluggish feel detracting from the an otherwise fun tower defense romp. Players defend crystals from the usual realm of fantasy denizens by setting up earned defenses or taking the brute force approach. Maps are too unweildly for single brawlers, so you’ll need to bring a friend for the full experience. With the additional help, it’s definitely a fresher, deeper experience, the mechanics springing to life as intended.