This game is by far one of the most visually stunning games I have ever played, much less seen. This is simplistic, easy to learn, and fun to play. The game is a love letter to the stained glass artwork throughout the world. The music is well done, the controls are easy to pick up, and the different levels of difficulty are well balanced.
You start the game with an overview of the world. There are a total of 100 countries (including DLC's). In the beginning there is only one country to visit, and it's a pseudo tutorial. It's a good introduction as to how the game is played. It has a level 3 (of 5) difficulty so it's not too easy nor is it too difficult. As you complete each country's piece of artwork it opens certain surrounding countries, allowing minor freedom as to how to progress. You can see which countries follow which pathway so if you're looking to complete a certain country you should know which path to take.
As you start each country / puzzle you will see the outline of the puzzle and the hands of a clock in the middle of the artwork. It looks as if you're building the artwork behind a clock face. If you have the hint option selected you will start with a few pieces that will glow red with a circle on the piece, to show that it matches to a specific edge on the puzzle. They help get the puzzle off with the right start. The pieces are set up in rings around the puzzle, where you can spin the rings to look for specific pieces. They start with black shadows over colors and spin, giving little but their shape away.
Once you click on the piece it will color in and orient itself to how it is supposed to fit in with the rest of the puzzle. If it connects with the correct piece it will snap into place when you let it go. Finding the correct piece can be a struggle sometimes as many of the pieces won't fit into the part of the puzzle that you would guess. Pieces will look like they fit in as a long edge piece when they will actually fit into the middle of the puzzle. Some puzzles will have you filling in the edges of the frame, outside the main body piece. Pay attention to how the piece orients when you select it as it can tell you the general idea of where it will go. Also, at the top of each puzzle is a total piece count as well as how many of the pieces that have been placed.
The early stages of the puzzle can, and were, the most frustrating part of the game. The 5 star difficulty (the hardest difficulty) puzzles are the most challenging as the pieces are small and it can be, and is, difficult to find the beginning pieces to start building out the puzzle. Near the end it is fun to see the artwork coming together. Some maps will have a certain uniformity to the designs, having parts that mirror others or help guide as to which parts will come next. As you work and see which pieces you have it will become evident which pieces you've seen before will the ones you need. As you finalize the puzzles it will unlock the next maps. It will also show you the completed puzzle if you select the maps you have already completed. It's a good way to see how far you have progressed as well as see the beautiful pieces of stained glass art from around the world.
This game was visually stunning. The colors mixed well and watching the pieces come together as you worked was a joy to experience. This game made me appreciate the amount of work that the artists that originally put the pieces together went through. The music was beautiful and fit well with the country you were working on. The music wasn't too obtrusive as it added to the ambiance, helping to relieve stress in case frustrations were mounting when having a difficult time finding a good piece. Seeing the finished work of a puzzle that truly challenged your patience was a glorious feeling. This is a great game for someone that is looking for a casual game that is mildly challenging.
In the end this game was a fun game. Once you learned how to use the controls the only challenge was finding the missing pieces to complete the stained glass artwork. The difficulty placements seemed a little confusing, as it had more difficult pieces right at the beginning instead of later on in the world. Many parts of the map were locked behind DLC, so be prepared to spend a little more money if you want to complete all of the challenges. Once you finish a puzzle there is little purpose in going back to do it again unless you want to beat your old score. The game is a great one for its first play-through, but seems to have little value to necessitate a second visit to old levels. It is a great game to have in your library and at the lower cost it would be worth purchasing. If this game comes on sale it would be worth buying at least for the experience of completing it once. It is definitely worth the time investment.
The music is beautiful! It adds to the casual gameplay without standing out too much or detracting from the game.
Once you have finished the challenge, there is little worth to go back and do it again unless you're trying to beat your original completion time.
All you need is a mouse. It's easy to use with point and click.
There are a variety of difficulties depending on which country you are completing. The difficulty is quite accurate. The harder ones are indeed harder, but even casually each map shouldn't take too much time to complete.
This game is one of the most gorgeous games I have ever played. It is indeed an ode to the great stained glass artwork from different countries!
PROS / CONS
- The Visuals!
- Easy controls
- Variable difficulty puzzles
- Simple gameplay
- Little Replayablity
- Difficulty starts out quite high at the beginning
- Quite repetitive
- No storyline
- Maps are progression blocked