The object of Bejeweled Twist is the same as that of Bejeweled: You earn points by lining up three or more of the same gemstones. (If you've never played Bejeweled, don't worry: You'll have no problem catching on to Bejeweled Twist.) In Bejeweled, you swap adjacent gems to create matches; in Bejeweled Twist, you twist a set of four gems clockwise instead. It's a lot more fun to watch--and it gives you a lot more flexibility in how you can move the gems around the board. Unlike in Bejeweled earlier games, you don't need to match gems with every move.
Bejeweled Twist offers four modes: Classic, Zen, Challenge, and Blitz. Classic includes timed, ticking bombs that you must align before they explode. The Zen version--which forgoes these timed bombs--is designed to be less stressful. Once you earn certain rankings or reach high levels in the Classic and Zen modes, you can access the Challenge and Blitz modes. In Challenge mode, you're tasked with perfecting a specific high-level skill, such as destroying 10 gems in one move. In Blitz mode, you race against the clock to score as many points as you can in an allotted amount of time.
The look of Bejeweled Twist is very similar to previous versions of Bejeweled: Colorful gems are lined up on a board that looks almost like a game of Tetris. Instead of blocks dropping into the screen, though, the playing field is already full of gems for you to mix and match, Bejeweled Twist features much crisper and clearer graphics than seen in past versions; overall, everything looks more modern and much sleeker. New backgrounds and lively animations--especially for powered-up Flame and Lightning gems, and the gratifying Instant Replay feature--add to the nicely updated look, too.
Another plus: You can minimize the game without quitting the application. The last version of Bejeweled I tried allowed you to play in full-screen mode only; if you tried to minimize it, you shut down the application. This version of Bejeweled Twist lets you play the game, while still monitoring your e-mail or other applications you may have running.
If you like Bejeweled, I think you'll love Bejeweled Twist. And if you've never tried either game, prepare to get addicted.
Note: This level-limited demo works for ten levels of Classic Mode. To make the game go to eleven, you'll need to buy the full version.