Glass Masquerade
Gameplay 8
Graphics 9
Sound 8

Digital jigsaw puzzle games are a dime a dozen these days, but Glass Masquerade manages to stand out from the crowd thanks to its polished visuals, unique stained glass style and addictive gameplay. You get twenty five puzzles, each themed around a different country, that you can solve at your own leisure. The game looks great, sounds just as good and while it is a little short, it remains enjoyable right until the end. If you are a fan of the genre, then don’t hesitate to pick up this gem.

Gameplay: Solve jigsaw puzzles using stained glass pieces.

Graphics: The visual style of the game is very polished.

Sound: The soundtrack is a perfect match for the relaxed feel of the game

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Glass Masquerade

Developer: Onyx Lute | Publisher: Onyx Lute | Release Date: 2016 | Genre: Casual / Puzzle / Indie | Website: Official Website | Purchase: Steam

Jigsaw puzzles, which date back all the way to the 1760s, may seem like an odd choice for a computer game, but the amount of titles available on the market would suggest that the genre has its fans. There are certainly a lot of advantages to digital jigsaw puzzles, as it is impossible to lose pieces and you don’t have to sacrifice any space on your kitchen or coffee table to complete them. Best of all, you won’t return home one day to discover that your cat has managed to decimate your digital jigsaw puzzle. However, once you have played one digital jigsaw puzzle you have pretty much played them all as only the themes tend to change. There is some good news for puzzle fans in search of something a little different, though, as Glass Masquerade might just be the game you are looking for.

Glass Masquerade is an artistic puzzle game, but instead of traditional puzzle pieces, it features glass pieces of all shapes and sizes. The developers were inspired by the Art Deco movement as well as stained glass artisans of the 20th century and it certainly shows. Glass Masquerade is a gorgeous looking game and it is a lot of fun to see the stained glass image take shape as you complete the puzzles. Unlike traditional puzzle games where you are shown an image of what you are building, Glass Masquerade only tells what culture the picture is from. There are twenty five countries in total, ranging from Argentina and Australia all the way to Tanzania and the USA. Pictures range from the Statue of Liberty for the USA and Minotaur for Greece, to a Viking for Sweden and knight for Germany. They all have one thing in common, though, they look absolutely beautiful in stained glass form.

Glass Masquerade does have a bit of a story, which involves you having to travel from one country to the next in order to fix stained glass clocks, but you don’t have to pay attention to any of it to enjoy the game. What does matter is the gameplay and this is where the game really shines. Not knowing what the picture you are building is beforehand already makes things challenging, but to keep you on your toes you can’t see the images on the individual glass pieces either until you pick them up. Until then the pieces are shown only as silhouettes. The pieces are shown on a tray around the clock and you can rotate the tray to get to the pieces you want. Each piece has a unique piece and as the puzzles become harder, the amount of pieces increase. Most of the initial puzzles can be completed in less than five minutes, but you can expect to spend up to twenty minutes figuring out the harder ones. In total, it can take anywhere from three to four hours to complete the game, but it is addictive enough that it is easy to do it all in one sessions if you lose track of time.

The production values for Glass Masquerade is quite high and it features so much polish that it is hard to believe at times that you are playing an indie title. The game features a whole range of resolution options, which makes for a nice change from the usual “fullscreen” or “windowed” option offered by a lot of games in this genre. Furthermore, you can enable or disable Vsync, and even set antialising all the way from two to eight. However, there are a couple of issues with the visuals that are worth pointing out. First up, the pieces that are shown on the tray are usually not in the correct orientation and only swivel to their correct orientation when you pick them up. This, coupled with the fact that the pieces have a small border that makes them look bigger than the gaps on the board, can make things a little confusing at first. Sometimes it is also a little too easy to pick up a piece by accident instead of rotating the piece tray like you intended. Finally, you have to be precise when placing a piece that you have picked up otherwise it will fly back to the piece tray when you try and place it.

Glass Masquerade is not only a great looking game, but it also has the audio to match. The music complements the relaxing nature of the game perfectly and never becomes repetitive or annoying. In the unlikely event that you do get tired of the music, you can lower the volume while still retaining the sound effects. The whole game is controlled with a mouse and apart from the issues mentioned earlier with rotating the piece tray, everything works great.

If you enjoy jigsaw puzzles and you are in the mood for something a little different, but still very relaxing, then you can’t go wrong with Glass Masquerade. Despite the clock theme and the game keeping track of your completion times, there is no time limit, so you can solve the puzzles at your leisure. The game also keeps track of how much of each puzzle you have completed, so you can always move on to something easier if you get frustrated and come back later to finish what you have started. To help you get started on each puzzle, there is also a “hint” system that highlights a couple of the edge pieces, but this can be disabled if you relish the challenge of figuring out everything on your own.

Even with the wealth of jigsaw puzzle games that are currently on the market, Glass Masquerade really stands out thanks to the beautiful visuals and addictive gameplay. If you don’t like jigsaw puzzles at all, then this is probably not the game for you, but everyone else should definitely add this to their library. The 25 puzzles might not keep you busy for very long, but the price of the game is reasonable enough that you’ll get plenty of value for your money.

System Requirements

  • OS: Windows 7 (or higher)
  • Processor: 1.6GHz CPU
  • Memory: 1 GB RAM
  • Graphics: Intel HD4000, AMD HD 6550D (or higier), 256Mb video memory
  • Storage: 500 MB available space
  • OS: Windows 7 (or higher)
  • Processor: 2.0GHz CPU or higher
  • Memory: 2 GB RAM
  • Graphics: Nvidia GTX 650, AMD HD7850 (or higher), 1GB video memory
  • Storage: 500 MB available space
  • OS: Mac OS X 10.8 (or higher)
  • Processor: 1.6GHz CPU
  • Memory: 1 GB RAM
  • Graphics: 256Mb video memory
  • Storage: 500 MB available space
  • OS: Mac OS X 10.8 (or higher)
  • Processor: 2.2GHz CPU or higher
  • Memory: 2 GB RAM
  • Graphics: 1GB video memory
  • Storage: 500 MB available space

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