Developer: Viacheslav Klimov
Price: free Download on the App Store
Have you ever visited a foreign county where you didn't know the language? Did you spend your days trying to decipher the encrypted codes on street signs and store-front windows? Imagine now, that your life depended on your ability to recognize these strange symbols, to somehow match the disparate shapes into pairs as you passed them on the street at an ever-increasing pace. This is the gist of Alien Glyphs.
Alien Glyphs, the puzzle-based arcade app from Viacheslav Klimon, is a fast-paced matching game. Glyphs — alien glyphs to be precise — slide into view at the top of the screen and you must find it's mate from the control panel below. The control panel contains a dozen or more glyphs depending on which level your on. As you get deeper into the game, the glyphs also come faster and become more complex.
Most memory-matching games don't require a whole lot of strategy. Alien Glyphs attempts to overcome the standard by adding in a variety of power ups and penalties. Certain events slow down or speed up the time, or trigger the glyphs to rearrange their position. Honestly, I had enough on my plate just trying to match the glyphs before the screen filled up and time ran out. However, serious gamers with better skills will appreciate the extra challenges.
Alien Glyphs has all the little extras that make a game truly polished: personal and worldwide high scores, OpenFeint integration, four different skins for customization, options for difficulty, a thorough tutorial, and an active developer dedicated to improvements and upgrades. In fact, this puzzle game has the feature set of apps well above it's price point. It's easy to see why the App Store reviews are overwhelmingly positive.
If someone told me that I would be testing out a memory app to train my brain and increase mental acuity, I'd have probably said "thanks, but no thanks." Memory and concentration games sound more like work than fun. Alien Glyphs is slick enough that I'm more than happy to be proven wrong.