Zuma Terminology

This listing of terminology is in addition to the achievements post and the points post, so if you don’t see what you’re looking for here, check those out. If, after exhausting all of these posts, you don’t find what you’re looking for, leave a comment and I’ll add your term to the list.  I started doing this to document the difference between chain, chain bonus, chain reaction, and combo, so hopefully this will clear up any confusion for people. 

Accuracy ball: A ball of any color that has a target on it. When you eliminate an accuracy ball, you are able to shoot the balls quicker for a limited amount of time.

Adventure mode: The basic Zuma mode where you play through multiple levels and temples to finish the game. The goal is to finish the game with as many points as possible.

Backwards ball: A ball of any color that has an arrow on it. When you eliminate a backwards ball, the front of the chain moves backwards, pushing back all attached balls.

Board: The unique background of each level. Each board repeats every third stage. Also known as a realm or platform (incorrectly).

Chain: A group of balls.

Chain bonus: A bonus awarded for eliminating five (5) or more sets in a row.

Chain reaction: Making one move which causes another. See Combo.

Coins: Gold pieces which you can shoot at to earn 500-800 extra points. Coins are also earned at the end of a level for the amount of track between the last balls eliminated and the golden skull.  This can be worth thousands of points.

Combo: Firing a ball at one set of balls to eliminate them when there are balls of another color on the outside of that set, which come together and eliminate after the first set has been eliminated.

Explosion ball: A ball of any color that looks like a jewel and flashes. When you eliminate an explosion ball, it explodes, eliminating many surrounding balls.

Frog: You.  The dude who spits balls.

Gap: A break in the line of balls that you can shoot balls through at the row behind to earn a bonus.

Gauge: The orange bar in the upper-right corner of the screen which fills up with green as you earn points until you reach the minimum points for the level and new balls stop coming out.

Gauntlet mode: The mode of Zuma where you play one board only until you die. The longer you play, the faster the balls come out.

Golden Skull: The skull in the middle of the board that the balls move towards. Also known as Sun God.

Leaderboard: The ranking of all Zuma Deluxe players of the Xbox. 

Mode: One of two ways to play Zuma. See Adventure mode and Gauntlet mode.  There are separate leaderboards for each mode.  

Orange Gauge: See gauge.

Platform: Generally used to describe the framework your application runs on (Xbox or Mac OS, for example), but has (incorrectly in my opinion) been used to mean the board (see entry for board, above).

Realm: See board.

Slowdown ball: A ball of any color that has an 8 shape (possibly meant to be an “S”?) on it. When you eliminate a slowdown ball, the speed at which balls come out slows for a limited amount of time.

Stage: A group of five to seven levels. There are 13 stages.

Stone Frog Idol: See Frog.

Sun God: See Golden Skull.

Temple: A group of three stages.  There are four temples in Adventure mode.   

Track: The path that the balls travel on.

Zuma Deluxe: The official name for the enhanced version of Zuma available on Xbox and some other platforms. 


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  1. * Brendan1001 says:

    I alwas thought the symbol on the slowdown ball was supposed to look like a pause symbol similar to those you would find on a cd/dvd remote?

    Posted 11 years, 3 months ago
  2. * Sacha says:


    That’s funny, I never thought of it that way. It would make more sense. I’m going to look closer next time I play.


    Posted 11 years, 3 months ago

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