|Columns III: Revenge of Columns|
|Publisher: Sega (JP), VIC Tokai (US), Samsung (KR)|
|Developer: Sega CS, Minato Giken (programming)|
|System(s): Sega Mega Drive, Virtual Console, Steam|
|Peripherals supported: Team Player|
|Number of players: 1-5|
Columns III: Revenge of Columns, known as Columns III: Taiketsu! Columns World (コラムスIII 対決！コラムスワールド) in Japan, is an entry in the Columns series of puzzle games developed by Sega in 1993 for the Sega Mega Drive. The game was only released in Japan and the US, with VIC Tokai publishing it in the US (consequently, the incorrect myth that VIC Tokai also developed the game is very widespread). The game has been brought to the Wii's Virtual Console service.
Columns III adds several new gameplay features, including new puzzle modes and up to five simultaneous players. It re-introduces the "Crush Bar" from Columns II, a competitive-play gambit which is now a staple feature of the Columns series appearing in every game since (each time with a different name). But this time around the players are able to do "Crush Bar" attack anytime they want and able to instead of having the game do that immediately.
Columns III removes the single-player solo mode and brings the focus to competitive gaming. It's the first Columns game where you can play competively against CPU in a single-player campaign. Like with Columns, the D-pad moves blocks and cycles the jewels. Each character now has a meter under the "next block" bar that counts up from 0 to 30 each time a player removes jewels. Once it goes over 10, the player can hit or to "crush" whichever jewels are currently falling from the opponent's board, removing them and adding a row of bricks to the bottom of his field called the "Crush Bar." This will also lower your own Crush Bar. In multiplayer games with 3 or more players, and decide which opponent to crush (to the left or to the right, respectively).
After doing several chains in a row you will get a block containing a glowing jewel, called a Flashing Stone. It must be removed before it stops glowing to do one a random effect on the competitor for a short period of time, such as making his jewels black and white (impairing visibility), flipping the game board upside down, or making him unable to cycle jewels. Most of these are ineffective against CPU player.
A special type of block appears after every 20 removed lines of jewels called a Magic Stone which takes the form of two triangular jewels with a square jewel in between. If you place the block with the upward pointing triangle touching the jewels on the board, your opponent will be crushed. If you place with the downward pointing triangle touching, your Crush Bar will go down. If you place with the square touching, all jewels on your board of the color of the jewel that is touched will be removed from the board (though no crush points will be awarded for consequential clears).
Outside of single-player campaign, once the field gets filled with considerable amount of jewel the game sometimes turn one of bottom rows jewels into a Super Flashing Stone, such situation being somewhat similar to Flash Columns. Removing it gives a powerful effect, such as removing all jewels on player's field or disabling Magic and Flashing Stones for opponent for the rest of the match.
The Japanese version of Columns III also includes a 2-on-2 multiplayer mode. It's similar to 1-on-1 with the third and the fourth players playing the supportive role, doing Rock-Paper-Scrissor matches to get the prizes onto their side.
|Sega Retro Average|
| Based on|
|Games in the Columns Series|
|Columns (1990) | Columns II: The Voyage Through Time (1990) | Columns III: Revenge of Columns (1993) | Stack Columns (1994) | Super Columns (1995) | Columns '97 (1996) | Hanagumi Taisen Columns (1997) | Columns Arcade Collection (1997) | Columns GB: Tezuka Osamu Characters (1999) | Hanagumi Taisen Columns 2 (2000) | Columns Crown (2001) | Columns Deluxe (2008) | Columns Jewel (2011)|
|Columns (Mame Game) (1997) | Columns (Pocket Boy) (1997)|
|Columns Related Media|
|Columns・Columns II (1991)|
|Hanagumi Taisen Columns Official Guide (1997) | Hanagumi Taisen Columns 2 Perfect Guide (2000)|