Eryn returns in Glyder 2 a much more confident flier.
She's worn slip-on shoes to make getting through security less of a hassle, her ID is at the ready for inspection, and a new carry-on enables her to efficiently pack several pairs of wings without the need to check bags.
The experience is streamlined, yet as any traveller knows the best part of any trip is the destination.
Glyder 2 embarks on a fantastic journey to new worlds filled with creative challenges and surprising tasks that make it the destination of choice. For each mile flown in the original, Eryn reaps the rewards of improved design that make this sequel a first class flight.
Up, up and away
Tilts of your handset guide Eryn through five islands laid within an enormous, open world to be roamed at will. Your ultimate goal is to open a dimensional portal and return home, though carefree design allows you to pursue any number of challenges, collection tasks, or achievements.
Of course, you can do none of these things and glide around aimlessly if you wish. Self-motivated gameplay is the wind beneath Eryn's wings.
The game's non-linearity make it ideal for portable play without the overwhelming quality of a sandbox shooter. There's no pressure to do any particular thing - on the contrary, you're driven to explore out of curiosity and a desire to unlock the game's many secrets.
New environments and tasks are expected of any follow up, yet Glyder 2 impresses by virtue of the creativity of these new challenges. Not content with creating new levels and just filling in the obvious hiding places with crystals, clever placement has collectibles wafting with air currents through the skies and bubbling up alongside magma in the crater of an active volcano.
Dressed to impress
Dynamic goals go well beyond the basic platform-hopping of the original and play out like proper missions. Amassing the parts for a sun flare essential to revealing a new landmark, for example, requires rolling boulders to drain a lake, installing gears to a water wheel, and growing mushrooms. There's far more going on here than ever was in the first game.
The introduction of customisable wings and outfits adds yet another layer of sophistication. Uncovering treasure chests and paper parcels unlocks new duds that can be equipped for their specific qualities.
Outfits are cosmetic, but wings possess attributes that make one pair better suited for turning versus another ideal for avoiding stalling. Some wings boast special abilities too, such as the energy set capable of drawing in crystals from a distance.
Air traffic control
While undeniably phenomenal, improvements can yet be made. Better graphical textures would make it easier to navigate through enclosed spaces. Judging the edges of rocky cliffs in the Magma Core, for instance, is tricky because of the flat brown shading.
An iconic objective indicator on the heads-up display could identify the next goal to be tackled. Right now, you have to sift through the Progress Log to figure it out.
Such criticisms are akin to complaining about the flight attendant not having your favourite liquor on board when you're sitting in first class drinking from a bottomless cup. They're minor when considering the exemplary gameplay that propels Glyder 2 to the select rank of iPhone classic.
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