Don’t Doubt My Commitment to Sparkle Motion!
Alright, let’s get this part out of the way, it’s been a bit since I’ve written, and I feel terrible for leaving you hanging! There’s a lot of excuses I could give, but you all know how life happens, so please find it in your adorable hearts to forgive me!
Speaking of life getting you down, if you’re like me, you might look to some retail therapy to cheer yourself up now and again. But what happens when your blue, but also broke? This time, I bring to you a bargain bin game with a glowing review. My current main squeeze is Sparkle 2!
Sparkle 2 is a marble-shooter; what on the surface may look like another Match-3-of-the-Same-Color type games. You control an orb slinger that fires different colored orbs at other orbs in a moving string on the screen, trying to eliminate sets of the same color. As the level continues, you are earning rune rewards as you match orbs to make them disappear. Around your orb slinger is a circle of these runes, each symbol lighting up as you earn them. Once the rune circle is complete, no more orb strings generate, and once the remaining orbs are gone, the level is finished. Fantasy words aside, you’re trying to match all the marbles before they fall down the hole, and if you do a good job for long enough you win!
But there’s something about it that’s both beautiful and relaxing. The detailed orbs in their brilliant colors move steadily along to calming music throughout each interesting level. If you struggle with color blindness, there’s a color assist option provided to give you an equally dazzling experience. And if you have hearing difficulty or would rather play a game without any volume, you’ll miss no game-play required sounds having it quiet or off. (This comes in handy when I want to play and watch true crime shows!)
As you play through the 90+ levels, you unlock enchantments for your orb slinger that allow you different abilities or incentives you can apply to each level. During the levels, for every 3rd match in a row, one of many various power-ups spawn to give you a certain temporary advantage. This makes the opportunities for replay-ability nearly endless and most certainly interesting. This is what will keep you coming back to the game. 10Tons did try to tie in a “story” about keys and an adventure into their game, but to be honest, they should have just left that out all together.
Sparkle 2 surprisingly falls into the easy to learn but difficult to master category, despite it having very little tutorial or in-game instruction. And for those of you who just can’t get enough of the game, or have a weird desire to Platinum it like I do, there’s plenty more! After you beat the levels on normal, you can then restart the game in either hard mode or nightmare mode. There are also a couple other game options to choose from, like Survival mode or Challenge mode.
Here’s some tips to get you started!:
1. Hold X before firing your orb, this gives you a little light streak to aim better with
2. Building chains (x6, x9, etc) do not give you stronger power-ups, they are all random
3. Do not expect to breeze through Nightmare mode, it’s not for the faint of heart
While I was lucky enough to snatch up this gem on the PS4 when it was featured as a free game for the month, you can still find it in the PS Store for just $7.99. It’s also available for XBOX, Steam, Nintendo Switch, and even Android. Happy match-making puzzle lovers!