Sparkle HD ($4.99) by 10tons Ltd Sparkle is a marble shooter game akin to Zuma with a central shooter, and the marble chains flowing around the center. The game is practically a full port of the PC version providing all the content with a similar aspect ratio as in comparison to the smaller iPhone version. The game is from the makers of the match three game Azkend.
The game itself: Sparkle is an amazing game giving you the fun of the action arcade game that is a marble shooter. The centrally located shooter provides a whole different way to play rather than the bottom side scrolling shooter, and Sparkle executes it wonderfully. This is like having a full computer game right on your iPad with the great touch controls.
Just tap where you want to fire a marble, and it launches right in. The game is set up with each level progressing to a different location, and you earn abilities along the way known as amulets. Sparkle HD also has tons of power-ups from the simple slow motion and wild ball to a meteor shower, and ice blast.
The levels are set up so the marbles intertwine over each other to make tough shots from the center position shooter. With that said the one main concern with the game is that it's too easy for veterans of the genre. If you're a casual gamer fan this will be right up your alley, but if you've played Luxor, Zuma, Stoneloops, and others, there isn't much of a challenge, and it's more on the boring side because of the simplicity.
Every marble train is set up well to make chains of matches, and multiple combos. That's all in an effort for score which isn't very important in the game, and instead it's more about completion. The game does have tons and tons to do with so many levels that if you like the style you'll spend hours and hours with this game.
Sparkle HD is really beautiful on the iPad running at the native resolution it was originally made at. There is a sheen on every marble, and the animations from popped marbles to the various power-ups are exquisite making this game truly "sparkle". The game doesn't change the perspective from the iPhone version so it's not as though the paths are longer so you can have more trains on screen at once.
Sparkle is the best marble shooter in the app store, and one of the best puzzle games overall. If you're a fan of this genre you'll have fun, but you'll have even more fun if you're new to the genre. The game looks amazing on the iPad, and it has a great control method.
Sparkle HD is a should buy for $4.99, that will have you spending tons of time shooting marbles.
If you own the iPhone version: If you already own the iPhone version that was a great purchase. The iPad version offers nothing new in terms of content giving you the same exact levels and game modes. On top of that the perspective doesn't change, and the visuals are so good on the iPhone that they translate well running at double pixel. If you already own the iPhone version you should play that on the iPad, and skip the HD version of Sparkle.
If you only own an iPad: If you only own an iPad, and are looking for some fast paced puzzle fun then Sparkle is a great candidate. From the opening level you'll be hooked shooting marbles all around making long chains of combos. The game gives you so much to do in a beautiful package. It's a should buy for $4.99.
If you never bought the iPhone version: If you never bought the iPhone version it's now $2.99 compared to $4.99 at the time of review. It's the best marble shooter in the App Store with Stoneloops being long since removed. Read our full review of the iPhone version to help you decide.