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Sega Swirl is a puzzle game that Sega has distributed for free. While Sega will continue to find ways to distribute the game, the first place it can be found is on the demo disc in issue #4 of the Official Sega Dreamcast Magazine. PC users can also snag a free copy by downloading it from the game's official website.
At the start of a game the game screen is covered in swirls (swirls look like the Dreamcast logo) which come in four different colors. The objective is to remove all of the swirls from the screen. Swirls are removed simply by selecting one or more and pressing a button. What players will want to do is try and remove as many swirls as they can at one time. When same color swirls are touching each other they will all be removed from the screen when selected, resulting in bonus points. As swirls are removed the remaining swirls will drop down and compress until they are touching another swirl. If only swirls of different colors remain they will have to be removed one at time. For every single swirl removed the player will lose 100 points. If a game can be completed without ever having to remove a single the total score will be doubled.
Modes of play include: Level Challenge, Versus Challenge, Single Game Challenge, Split Screen Challenge and E-mail Challenge. Level Challenge and Single Game Challenge are the one-player games. In Single Game Challenge players play the game by the exact rules mentioned above. Level Challenge follows the same rules but for each level a set of goals must be met in the following categories: column bonus, score, max combo, time, singles and total moves. For example, on one level players may be required to finish with a score of at least 1,500 while on a later level they may need a score of 3,000. At the end of a game if all of the goals are met the player will advance to the next level. If all of the goals are not met then the game will end. Both the Level Challenge and Single Game Challenge provide users with the option of playing with a 120-second time limit turned on or off.
Versus Challenge can be played with up to four players — computer or human controlled. All of the players will be given a color and use the same game board. Taking turns each player attempts to find the group of swirls that will net them the most points. When a player removes a group of swirls of the color that they represent they receive double the points. However, you may not always want to remove your own colored swirls for a variety of reasons. One is that there may be a larger combination with other colored swirls that are worth more points even when not doubled. Another reason is that if you are stuck removing a single swirl, one of your own color will cause you to lose twice as many points as normal. If your move will set up the next player with a huge combination you may also choose to avoid a combination of your own color. Yet another reason is that once your color is completely removed from the board your game is over and you must wait for the other players to finish. At the end of the game the player with the highest score wins.
Split Screen Challenge can also be played with up to four players. Here players will play on their own game boards. Also, when one color is removed from one player's board then that color will be removed from every player's game board. E-Mail Challenge is also for up to four players on the same board. However, as the name suggests, players e-mail their moves back and forth via the Dreamcast modem. The modem can also be used to upload scores from Single Game Challenge and Level Challenge games. ~ Jonathan Sutyak, All Game Guide