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Happy Glass

App review by
David Chapman, Common Sense Media
Happy Glass App Poster Image
Simple, cute puzzler drowns in a flood of ads.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Educational Value

The game does reinforce problem solving skills, challenging players to work through creative solutions that take into account things like gravity and physics as they engineer the best solutions to the puzzles.

Ease of Play

The gameplay is extremely simple, but the difficultly ramps up quickly. Many puzzles require a higher level of precision to fill the glass which can be difficult to draw, particularly on smaller screens without a stylus.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff
Language
Consumerism

The game is almost bursting at the seams with ads, whether its the ever-present ad to buy the publisher’s other games, the constant pop-ups at the bottom of the screen, the push to watch ads for “prizes”, or the random ads that run between stages with no real rhyme or reason. Players can opt out of some of these ads by subscribing, at the insane price of roughly $20 per month or $100 per year.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Happy Glass is a free-to-play puzzle game available for download on iOS and Android devices. Players are challenged to draw lines on the screen to direct a flow of water into an empty glass. Players need to account for things like physics, gravity, and other factors in order to progress through the increasingly difficult and complex puzzles. While there’s no violence or offensive content in the game, it does suffer from an overabundance of advertisements. Players are constantly barraged with ads during gameplay, between stages, and even at the title screen. There's a subscription option to “remove” these ads, but it comes with a hefty price tag and still leaves some ads peppered throughout the game.

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What's it about?

HAPPY GLASS is a simple, creative, free-to-play puzzle game for iOS and Android devices.  Players turn sad and empty glasses into happy and full glasses by using ingenuity and creativity to direct a flow of water through each stage and into the eagerly waiting receptacle. The only tool at players’ disposal, outside of their wits, is the ability to draw lines and shapes on the screen, creating ramps, platforms, hooks, and more, using as little ink as possible to achieve higher ranks.

Is it any good?

According to the age-old adage, the optimist is the one that sees the glass as half full, while the pessimist sees the same glass as half empty. In Happy Glass, though, the optimist is the one that sees a puzzle game with a simple concept and challenging gameplay, while the pessimist sees little more than cash grab drowning in a deluge of advertisements … and the average player is bound to agree.

Happy Glass has a lot of potential on the surface. It’s a basic puzzler that requires some creative forethought, as well as a bit of trial and error, to come up with the best possible solution to move water from Point A to Point B. It’s interesting to see how all the pieces fall into place once the player makes their move. Some stages add extra elements like the need to keep the glass from falling off the screen or to fill two glasses simultaneously. It can be a little difficult to draw the lines or shapes accurately if you’re on a smaller screen or lacking a stylus, but there’s no penalty for restarting the stage and trying again. The problem is that the game feels absolutely bloated with ads. Between pop-up ads, ads between stages, and even self-serving ads from the publisher on the title screen, there’s no escape the intrusiveness of the marketing. Sure, you can pay to turn off ads for a period of time, but the price is absolutely insane. And to make matters worse, even if you do pay, the game still tries to shove ads down your throat, offering useless cosmetic items that only last for 24 hours. Unfortunately, this sucks every drop of fun out of the experience and makes the game nearly unbearable.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about advertising and marketing in video games. How do advertisements in games affect the overall experience? What are some of the more intrusive ways some publishers use to generate extra revenue from players?

  • What are some ways that skills like observation, problem solving, etc. can be practiced in video games and applied to the real world?

App details

Themes & Topics

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For kids who love puzzles

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