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Sparkle 2 Review – Xbox One

Posted on January 26, 2016 by Weston Terry

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Game – Sparkle 2
Release Date – January 27, 2016
Platform – Xbox One
Developer/Publisher – 10tons Ltd.
Sparkle2 Title 2
I have never reviewed a game in my entire life. I have always spoken about how much I enjoyed a game, or how frustrating a game was to me,  but to say that I have done a review would be false. So, this is my first review. I normally gravitate towards games that are in the First-Person genre, or even action adventure. The game I was assigned is neither one of those. Sparkle 2 is a game that is very different from my usual tastes.
Sparkle 2 is an action puzzle game that consists of matching three marbles that are following along a predetermined path. If the marbles make it to their goal then you lose the game. The game is very simple and straightforward, which is what makes this game great. The player’s job is to shoot the marbles to match three colors in a row. To me, the game is like a modern day Tetris, a moving puzzle that the player is trying to stop. The player is actively matching the marbles by hitting a moving target, but is also having to be sure that he/she is quick enough to not let the marbles reach their goal.
As you progress, the game’s difficulty increases. More marbles can appear, the speed of the game can increase, and more colors can appear to increase the difficulty. To help the player, power-ups will begin to appear in the game. Also, the player will be able to customize their marble launcher with different equipment, such as an ability to increase the speed of your launcher. If you ever find yourself stuck on a level, then try switching out some of the equipment so that it benefits your playstyle.
Visually, Sparkle 2 looks amazing. The game is very well-polished, from the background of the puzzle board to the attention-grabbing details of the marbles. The music in the game is very enjoyable as well. The music changes to mirror how the game is progressing. When the player begins, the music is very relaxing and peaceful. However, if the player begins to struggle, the music will reflect by becoming more hectic. I have always enjoyed when a game uses music to influence how you feel, and Jonathan Geer (as well as 10tons Ltd.) did a fantastic job of that!
When you first boot the game up, you will begin playing the story mode. Honestly, I found the story mode to be pointless. The game tries to tell you a story, but you quickly find yourself ignoring the goal of finding keys since that task is completed by simply completing the puzzles. The voice overs are extremely well done, but the story itself is not needed. Within Story Mode, there are over 90+ levels, which is a great amount of content. Playing through story mode is how you will begin to unlock the other game modes.
I only played a few matches of Challenge Mode, but I enjoyed it. You pick a level out of a small handful, and then play it on the easiest difficulty. As you beat that difficulty, the next difficulty will unlock for that level. After beating all difficulties on a level, you will unlock an additional level. It is simple in the early levels, but I noticed how quickly the difficulty increased. If you find yourself looking for something more difficult, then Challenge Mode will be the gametype that will excite you. I can’t even imagine how tough the highest difficulty will be.
In Survival Mode, the player will try to “survive” a level. There are endless waves of marbles that keep appearing until you lose. The goal is to earn a five-star rating. To earn this rating, you have to endure a certain amount of waves. This ongoing gametype is different than both the story mode and challenge mode because you are playing until you cannot win, which is a different kind of challenge for puzzle genre lovers.
Cataclysm Mode is the new mode that is being released on the Xbox One. It is super intense. “More marbles, faster speed, and total chaos” is the only way that I can describe this gametype. I completed two levels on Cataclysm Mode, and I am still not sure how I made it. It was early levels, so they were very basic, but I was able to complete it. The elite puzzle genre fans will be delighted at taking on the daunting task of completing Cataclysm Mode.
Sparkle 2 is an incredible video game that really surprised me. I did not think that an action puzzle game could hold my attention as long as this game has. I often find myself wanting to try and complete more and more challenges. Honestly, I had never found games like this to be addictive, but this game certainly is! Besides the forced narrative in story mode, the game is fantastic. Definitely a game that any puzzle gamer should pick up!
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