Glyphs appear all around the world — from England to Egypt, South America to even Utah.
So, what’s a glyph, you ask? Well, it’s a fancy name for a figure or character that stands for a letter, sound or word. Ancient cultures — the Egyptians, Mayans and Native Americans for instance — inscribed these “writings” in rock to communicate.
But for our purposes, Glyph is an addictive match-three diversion from Sandlot Games. Yet, like those inscriptions of old, it’s guaranteed to leave its mark indelibly on your life like symbols carved into stone.
As the story goes, the elements of Wood, Fire, Water, Metal and Aether once held an ancient world in perfect balance…until something went terribly wrong. Now this world is dying and you must uncover and reassemble ancient glyphs that will reverse the damage and restore balance to the land.
An epic puzzle adventure, Glyph is an engaging, highly addictive game. Visually and aurally stunning, this action puzzler offers 255 impressive levels of stone-matching, rock-blasting fun across five distinctive landscapes. All you need concern yourself with is what you’re not going to get accomplished once you download it.
Two game modes are provided: Quest and Action. Quest Mode steps you through the game’s 250+ levels on your way to freeing and combining the hidden glyphs buried under layers of rock. Action Mode, which is more frenzied and time-centric, I’ll describe later.
Glyph is really simple. You click on three or more stones of identical color to remove them from play. When a match is made, the stones disappear in an explosion proportionate to the number involved, and new stones then take their place. In the process, layers of rock under the detonated stones are destroyed, one layer at a time. When all layers are gone and the glyph beneath exposed, the level is complete.
Fail to clear all layers before time expires, or by running out of matches, and you forfeit a life. Lose the three that you start with and the game’s over — at least with regard to your score. You can continue from that point onward, but you score starts fresh, as well.
Key elements of play are Artifacts, as power-ups, and Obstacles, as deterrents. Artifacts come in 14 varieties and three power levels-small, medium and max! To use an Artifact you click on it, then on the stones you wish to affect. They include Color Spread, that changes all stones to the same color; Chroma Bombs, to remove all stones of one color; and Stone Sorter, for sorting stones by color for easier and more powerful removal.
Obstacles, as the name suggests, have an adverse effect that keeps you from advancing. Obsidian Stones, for example, require special Artifacts like Flash Bombs that clear the entire screen. Another impediment, on some levels you’ll have one or more stone colors “locked.” You can still match and destroy them, but they have no rock-breaking abilities. For diversity, interspersed every five levels is a Simon-like bonus level. Mimic the visual and audible pattern displayed to “assemble the glyphs” shown, and you progress onward.
Remember Action Mode? It differs from Quest in that it’s significantly more frantic, has no underlying rocks to break and lacks a story. A kind of reverse Tetris, stones move up from the bottom of the screen as your try to match and destroy them before reaching the top. Artifacts assist, while Speed Challenges occasionally rain down stones rapidly from above. Bonus Levels provide large groups of matching stones, allowing you to score mucho points if you choose the correct order. It’s all frenetically fun!
Due for an imminent arrival, Glyph is one of those games you can play in brief sittings…if you have the willpower. That’s the problem, though. Its addictive, match-happy, rock-splitting play will keep you glued to your seat for hours. You can etch that claim into stone.