Novoludo strategy guide – reaching the million


So I thought I’d share my strategy how to get a good score in Novoludo.

First, some explanations on terminology:

Aligning 5 in a row or a column gives us a worm power up.
For every 80 exploded tokens  a super star drops in.  Also, sometimes you get lucky, and you get one beforehand.

If you activate it, the game goes into slow motion and you can make combos that are “sticky”. I mean, they don’t blow up immediatly. This is perfect for trying to get 5 in a row or column because normally, this is much harder to do.

First important fact is, that the faster you are, the higher the score is that you get per move. This is not easy to do, and the multiplier quickly resets so it isn’t the most reliable way to get a good high-score. Listen to the audio. If it goes higher, you’re getting more points for each move.

Another important fact is that each consecutive cascade scores more than the previous one until the board completely resets. A cascade is when more than 1 set of gems gets destroyed before the game stands still again.

There are therefore 2 key components that you need to master:
1) Make a worm using 5 in a row. Worms give you a LOT of points. Use the super star as efficiently as possible to get worms. Scan the board to find the places where you can align 5 of the same colour. Expert players might even get 2-3 worms with one single super star. Super advanced players might focus on preparing the board to get 5 in a row BEFORE even getting the super star ;P

2) Try to activate the worm power ups in sequence (not together) just as you think that the board resets, to maintain the cascade multiplier. If you are good enough, you’ll get another super star right as the worms explode. Then you can chain from one super star mode to another without ever breaking the cascade multiplier. As soon as the board resets, your score resets back to 200 points per move, so this is really bad for your maximum score potential. However, if you manage to switch from super star mode, to activating the worm and back, you can get massive amounts of points for each token that the worm eats, and for each combo.

Additionally, try being as fast as possible at the beginning. If you get 5 in a row and get a worm, all the better. After 80 gems have been destroyed, you are guaranteed that you’ll get a super star. A perfect run would be to have 5 in a row IMMEDIATELY, go into worm mode, destroy as many gems as fast as possible, and get the super star as quickly as possible. Once in super star mode, you should try staying in it for the full duration of the game. I’m not sure what the score would be if you did it, but it is more than 1 million.

Another pro tip. The longer the worm, the longer it lasts. Your worm can be up to 8 long.  Prioritise more worms, rather than longer worms.

Last tip, when the worm is active, you can still continue to make combos. This is super tricky, but gives you that extra score.
Hope you find this informative and good luck getting to the million,




Adding another platform – Samsung Apps


Having developed and released Novoludo on the App Store and on Amazon I thought I should tackle Samsung Apps as well.

So I was happy to get approved after my second attempt at Samsung Apps. The cool thing about them is that they send you a fully-blown video review if something isn’t working on one of their devices. Crazy cool.

The process was pretty easy, not too dissimilar to Amazon or the App Store, however knowing what devices to choose out of the 131 wasn’t easy at all and I had no idea what to add and what not to. There are all these different resolutions to choose from, and it doesn’t seem obvious at all. I eliminated (WQVGA) 240×320, (LQVGA) 240×320, 320×320, (HVGA) 320×480 and (LHVGA) 360×480. I’m not sure if all of them were necessary to be eliminated, but a 320×320 seems a very odd one to keep. It’s TINY.

Some of these resolutions suggest relatively old touch-screens, and I got feedback from Samsung that the game doesn’t even install properly on a G4. It complains about the lack of disk space. Secondly, I had a problem where the music wouldn’t stop on HVGA devices. Luckily I saw this thread:

Basically, it’s a bit of a weird issue that doesn’t always happen, and it can get you rejected from releasing your application, so not a nice thing to happen.

Finally, when I got the green light from Samsung I heard a lot of talk about 100% indie:

I like the initiative, because Samsung is upping the contributions to the developers up to 90% instead instead of 70% if you take part in it and fulfil the criteria. I should try and see if I can still be part of it retroactively, since I managed to get my app live before contacting them. Oh well, knowledge is power as they say. I will get in touch with them before my next game.

I know this is pretty technical, but I’m sure that I’ll be looking this up in the future for my next Samsung Apps release.

Take care,

Alex G.