Instead of switching the positions of two gems vertically or horizontally, the cursor in Bejeweled Twist is a circular lens that rotates four gems clockwise on the gameboard. Not every move has to form a line of three, but each time a line is formed during a move, a multiplier chain will increase which will multiply points earned during the game. The multiplier chain will be broken if a move is made which does not line up three or more gems. There are several different modes of gameplay available.
The player tries to match gems together, and the resulting matches contribute to a level up bar at the left of the page. When the bar is filled, the player is warped onward to the next level. The game ends when an active Bomb Gem or Doom Gem counts down to zero, at which point the game board is destroyed and the game ends.
The Zen mode is similar to the classic mode, without the Bomb Gem and Doom Gem. This game is intended for beginners and for those who want a more relaxed place of gameplay.
Challenge Mode is made up of several different challenges. Each challenge has a certain requirement or amount of gems to destroy. In the first level of the 'Detonator' challenge, the player must destroy 8 gems in a single move. The second level has the objective of destroying 12 gems. Another challenge, the 'Spectrum' challenge, at level one, the player is tasked with having 3 red matches on the board at once.
Blitz is the new name for the original Bejeweled game's timed mode. The game is the same as the classic mode with the five minute limit to get the highest score as possible. The game ends when an active Bomb Gem or Doom Gem counts down to zero or when the five-minute time limit expires.
Normal gems come in seven different colours and shapes such as diamonds, rubies, sapphires, etc. There are also several gems only available in Classic and Blitz as well as gems caused by matches of more than three gems:
- Flame Gems - These gems appear to be flaming brightly. When matched, they explode, taking adjacent gems with it. They are formed by matching either four gems in a line, or five gems in two intersecting lines of three (i.e. a cross, a T, or an L).
- Lightning Gems - These gems appear to be sparking brightly. When matched, they break, causing massive destruction on that column and row. They are formed by matching five gems in a line.
- Supernova Gems - These gems appear to be bristling with white-hot energy. When matched, they cause a massive explosion taking 3 rows and 3 columns with it. They are formed by matching six or more gems in a line.
- Fruit Gems - These appear as fruit of the representing colour. When matched, all the gems on the board that match the colour of the Fruit Gem are destroyed, and the Mega Fruit Challenge starts. In normal mode; any Bomb Gems not matching the Fruit Gem will have their clocks rest with at least 10 extra turns; and all Locked Gems will be freed. Fruit Gems are formed when a multiplier meter reaches its maximum, or a Mega Fruit Challenge (started by another Fruit Gem) is completed.
- Locked Gems - Locked Gems cannot be rotated, but can still be matched or destroyed.
- Bomb Gems - Bomb Gems are available in Classic and Blitz. These have the appearance of underwater mines with timers on them, and they count down on each move. When the timer counts down to zero, the player has one last chance to disarm the Bomb Gem with a spinning wheel. If the wheel lands on a Bomb wedge (at least a one-in-four chance, cumulative with each successful disarmament). the Bomb Gem explodes and the game ends.
- Doom Gems - Doom Gems are available in Classic as well as the Survivor Challenge.They also appear in Chain Reaction Eclipse,with the counter showing 1 These have the appearance of solid gray bombs with timers on them, and cannot be moved or matched. Doom Gems can only be destroyed by Flame, Lightning, or Supernova Gems; in Classic, 12 multiplier boosts are awarded when a Bomb Gem is destroyed. Unlike Bomb Gems, Doom Gems do not count down on any turn in which a match of three or more gems has been made. When the timer counts down to zero, the Doom Gem explodes with no chance to disarm it, and the game ends.
- Coal - Coal appears as miniature lumps of black coal. These cannot be matched, but they can be rotated and cleared off the board by explosions caused by Fire, Lightning, or Supernova Gems. When cleared, they give off one to up to six Geode "drops" which award additional bonuses to the player.
The soundtrack to the game is composed partially by Finnish musician Peter Hajba, known by his demoscene nickname Skaven, and partially by Phillipe Charon.
A sequel to Bejeweled series is Bejeweled Blitz, which can connect to a Facebook account and play with other people.