Glopy ($1.99) by Loquat Games is a skill-based puzzle game that is reminiscent of various wooden ball toys that children play with. If you enjoyed recent releases like GNOG and PUSH, then you will like what Glopy brings to the table.
I've always been fascinated with puzzles throughout my lifetime. Even when I was a kid just playing with physical toys, I was also drawn to the puzzle-type ones that you'd have to solve. Granted, I wasn't great with them and it would take me a while to figure out, but I still found peace and joy in them. When I saw Glopy on the App Store, I was intrigued, because it invoked fond childhood memories for me. So of course I had to check it out for myself. Needless to say, it doesn't disappoint.
App Feels Like
App Feels Like
Visually, Glopy is stunning. Everything in Glopy is rendered in 3D, and it all looks realistic and beautiful (reminds me of Shadowmatic). Glopy is full of elegantly crafted wooden balls that shine brightly, as if they've just been polished with oil. The wood texture is full of detail, and honestly, it looks like the real thing on the screen. The colors in Glopy range from the muted, earthy tones of the wood to bright and vibrant hues of the selected theme and decor of the level you're on. Animations are incredibly smooth and fluid, with zero issues of lag or choppiness on my iPhone 8 Plus. There's also an upbeat and quirky soundtrack that reminds me of children songs, which is fitting for the theme. Sound effects as you solve the puzzles are fairly true-to-life as well, since they're balls rolling along a wooden surface and clinking along.
Like other puzzle games, Glopy is level-based. At the moment, there are four different themes: Toybox, Rocket, Surfer, and Racer. These themes serve as chapters, and the backdrop and environment for each level is dependent on this theme. It also affects the color of the Glopy ball, as well as the game mechanics. Each theme has about six levels each. While that may not sound like a lot, it's plenty considering how challenging the game can be — don't be fooled by kiddy appearances!
The goal of the game is simple and straightforward: get all of the balls at the top of the wooden sphere into their matching slot at the bottom. The sphere itself is split up into four sections: the top, two middle sections, and the bottom. You use your finger to rotate the sectors of the sphere, and if you drag on the screen outside of the sphere, you rotate the sphere as a whole, giving you a better perspective on what you're looking at. Glopy also utilizes your device's gyroscope hardware for the physics, so you can have gravity take care of the ball positioning and more just by tilting your device.
The game starts out easy enough with the Toybox theme, but the difficulty picks up as more colored balls are introduced. That's because if a ball ends up in the wrong pocket at the bottom, then you've failed and must start over from the beginning. As you reach the other themes, there are more complications on the Glopy balls, as there are switches, winding pipes, and even color-changing pipes.
On top of all of the new mechanics that get introduced as you go, you have to also think about how gravity plays a role in the game. Since the flow of movement is mostly in the gyroscope controls, the balls can all go down at the same time if you're not careful. You have to be skillful to get the right balls moving at once, because the moment a ball ends up in the wrong spot, you'll have to try again. Glopy is a puzzle game about physics and patience.
A finely crafted 3D puzzle game with ornate spheres to interact with.
Glopy is one of the more gorgeous games I've played recently, and the wooden balls look good enough to be real. The music harkens back to childhood days, and the sound effects are as realistic as they can be, which is a nice touch. The concept of the game is unique, and the puzzles can be rather challenging. The controls work well and feel intuitive. New mechanics that get added as you go keep the game fresh and make you think.
While Glopy is a fun and creative little game, it's definitely not a good fit for those who get frustrated with puzzles. This game relies on being patient and getting the timing and pipes lined up properly, so if you're looking for something a bit more action-packed, then this game isn't it. I did also find that rotating the bottom can be a bit jerky when you quickly move your finger in a circle, so the sensitivity there should be tweaked.
As a fan of cute toys and puzzles, Glopy is a winner for me. I'm in love with the incredibly realistic graphical style, and the music is rather catchy. I like the gradual increase in difficulty for the puzzles, and the introduction of new mechanics comes at a steady pace. Controls work out well and feel natural on the touch screen, though the sensitivity could be slightly adjusted for better optimization.
I recommend Glopy if you like puzzle games that test your skills. Glopy is on the App Store as a universal download for your iPhone and iPad for just $1.99.