Over the course of video-gaming history, several games in the puzzle genre stand out as noteworthy. Columns, Tetris and Portal all stand out as influential. In 2001, Popcap Games launched a browser-based puzzler that shook the world. To date, it has been downloaded more than 150 million times, and been adapted to many platforms and devices. That game is Bejeweled.Like all great puzzlers, Bejeweled is simple in concept, easy to pick up, and painfully tricky to master. Players are presented with a grid of differently colored gems. To progress, they must swap adjacent gems to form three-gem chains. These chains will then vanish, causing the gems above to fall into place. When those other gems fall in the right way, they may cause new chains to form and vanish in a spectacular ‘cascade’. The immediate visual reward you get from forming a chain is part of the reason the game is so addictive.After the success of the first game, two sequels followed: Bejeweled 2 in 2004, and Bejeweled 3 in 2010. There were also a series of spin-offs: Twist, Blitz, Stars and Legend. More than 10 billion hours of play have been put into these games since they first arrived. Part of the reason for this astonishing success is the fact that anyone can pick up and play the game: there are no barriers, and no irritating cut-scenes to wade through.The game’s creators famously once offered the franchise to Microsoft for a mere $50,000 dollars, only to be turned down. Just a decade later, they ended up selling the company to Electronic Arts for more than US$1 billion. That’s what we’d call a success story! Here, you’ll find Bejeweled, and all of its copycats and variants, available unblocked, to play for free in stunning HTML5. Start matching those blocks, and you’ll see why these games are so popular!