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On March 17, 2014, I reached the end of the long journey known as Candy Crush Saga, by King.  There were 530 levels plus 170 levels in the “dream world” for a total of 700 levels.  It is an accomplishment, albeit a dumb one, and I am at last quitting the game.  (Note:  I saw that King has released additional levels, but I’ve already gone!)

You must be thinking I loved this game, but that is far from the truth.  In fact, I despise it and I think it’s a very dumb game.  It’s mostly luck based so you don’t develop much skill of gameplay; there is no plot/character development; and there is no social/personal benefit that comes with playing Candy Crush.  Then why did I play so much?  Because by the time I fully decided this was really dumb, I was already 60-70 levels into the game (back then the game had less than 400 levels released). It was too late to turn back.

Take a look at how the beginning portion of the game looks:

CandyCrushBegReality

And look how the end of the game looks:

CandyCrushEndDream CandyCrushEndReality

Many start, but few finish.  For some unfortunate reason, I didn’t want to be one of the many people who turn away shortly after the entrance.  I refused to let Candy Crush claim victory over me.  So I spent the past 7.5 months finishing a game I didn’t like.  However, there are always lessons to learn in even the dumbest things.  Allow me to share them here (to save you from having to go through all 700 levels of Candy Crush (you’re welcome)).

1)  Luck favors those who persevere.

Candy Crush is a luck-based game where skill is mostly irrelevant.  If you had something like twitchplayspokemon for Candy Crush (twitchplayscandycrush?) I think it wouldn’t be much worse than actually playing the game.  However, this is precisely the reason that anybody can play, and anybody can succeed.  Say a hard level has 1% chance of success.  Then the probability of NOT beating it in 300 tries is just (99%)^300 = 5%.  You’ll beat it as long as you keep trying.

2)  Once you eliminate the impossible, whatever remains, no matter how improbable, must be possible.

Among the 700 Candy Crush levels, there were plenty that were easy enough to beat in one try.  The harder ones took a few days.  And a few took SEVERAL WEEKS (a couple of the levels with the tornadoes come to mind). When there seems to be no hope of beating a particularly hard level, only the truth can sustain you: if it’s not impossible, it must be possible.  When you see that a Facebook friend has passed this level, you know it can’t be impossible.  Then see #1.

***

Candy Crush Saga is like an allegory for life.  Life can be such a toss up, which can be a bad thing or a good thing, depending on how you make it.  When life seems arbitrary, long, and highly improbable, just remember lessons 1 and 2 from Candy Crush.

Splendid days indeed.

 

Simeon Koh

 

 

 

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