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Our overall verdict "silver"

If you go down to the woods today, you’re in for a big surprise. Why? Because Sparkle has returned to PlayStation and this time around slithers onto PS4. Last year’s Crowberry Woods adventure gave PS Vita gamers a fine reaction puzzler. Well now the gem popping puzzler is back – and thankfully still shining just as bright.

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If you don’t know, Sparkle 2 is a match three shooter. Using your slinger (which is fixed and can only rotate), your task is to smash marbles of the same colour before they slither down a set path and disappear unscathed. Different coloured maples join the foray and create a long snake like chain, so you’ll need quick reflexes and eagle eyes to move forward through each magical path. Sparkle 2 truly excels on the PS Vita – exploding coloured chains is executed with ease via the touch screen. Also, a quick touch on the slinger changes which colour orb to fire. Obliterating these maple type orbs also offers up random power ups which bring different surprises to the game. Sparkle 2 does certainly look gorgeous, but don’t be fooled by its whimsical fairytale like display, for under its glossy snake skin coat lies a puzzler that bites back.

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On completing the game and collecting the games 5 keys in default mode (there is a story to this), Sparkle 2 ups the speed and delivers a pretty heart racing shooter. In places, match 3 popping has never been so dramatic and with the Pirates of the Caribbean-esque squash buckling soundtrack, you have a game that definitely satisfies. In fact, everything about 10tons Sparkle 2 screams a polished and luxurious release. Even more so on PlayStation 4 as colours, backgrounds and textures look super bright, hence why it’s called Sparkle. The backgrounds are simple and never interfere visually with the task in hand. It’s a reaction puzzler that throws out quick and addictive levels. Quick thinkers and fast fingers need only apply.

Controls on the DS4 do lack the immediate accuracy that the Vita gives you. Mastering the game on the handheld is quick and easy, whereas slightly more time is needed to obtain the same amount of satisfaction on PlayStation 4. The DS4 gives you the option of using the touch pad but either way, it’s still pretty awesome getting both Vita and PS4 versions for the one price.

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CONCLUSION

With a decent length story and survival mode too, here you have one of the strongest puzzler’s on PSN. Sparkle 2 is a beautiful, dramatic, glistening little gem waiting to be downloaded. Now that’s a good reason to head into the woods today. Dismiss this at your peril.

Lizard rating: 8/10  EU only!! TF67-FRNC-QM2R     PR86-PJNQ-938L

Blondlizard is from London. His love of gaming continued onto the Sega Mega Drive, Gameboy, Sega Saturn, Dreamcast, PlayStation 1,2,3 and 4, PSP and PS Vita. Blondlizard loves his racing games and is yet to play a RPG, but tells us he is willing to change. His favourite inventions are the wireless controller and American size crisp packets.