Step into the minds of giant monsters and set off an unusual journey full of wonder. Get eggs from eggplants, hug a pig to get some meat, make diary out of butterfly milk, and protect trees from being eaten by pigs. Is it a fairy tale made up for children? No, they are bits and pieces from Glitch, a browser MMO with giant imagination from startup Tiny Speck.
Imagination sets the keynote for Glitch, and Glitch just starts from imagination. Players enter a surreal world, a world conjured up inside a brain of one of eleven imaginative giant monsters. It’s not a game free from any form of combat; instead, it’s all about being creative in developing characters, learning skills, making stuff and shaping the world shared with other players.
Glitch presents artistically crafted world with hand drawn animations. Players can drink in the artwork mixed with rich visual styles of classic cartoon, animations, pixel art and modern media, as they conduct a wide range of activities. Pet a tree to get its fruit, give a message to a butterfly, squeeze a chicken from midair to gain a piece of grain, get a pig hatched from an egg, play music from certain blocks, learn different skills to create stuff, hold dinner party, and so on and so forth.
It’s a persistent world with its own ecology and economy. Players will influence the growth and shape of the world with their activities. Players plant a tree, water and pet it to grow and harvest the fruit; that’s not the end – the tree will stay for other players to tend to and harvest on, for instance. And the entire ecosystem needs to be cared for to set everything in balance and in order.
Unlike in most games, players don’t unlock skills based on levels. In-game skill system is separate from the XP. Players can learn skills over time, even at work, when the requirement is met. And skills in turn unlock more actions or recipes that can be used to make objects. Single player missions will keep players occupied, but the social life is also incorporated to allow players to complete quests together, play multiplayer mini-games, or interact with everyone inside the universe freely.
The game is free-to-play with optional cash shop or subscription choice. Non-paid players don’t need to worry much though, since it’s strictly paying to be pretty with premium items being purely cosmetic. As to the items used to progress, all players can buy with money earned by playing. Besides, there is no win or loss in Glitch, but only infinite exploration to the deeper side of imagination.
Glitch was once launched in September of 2011 and then taken back to beta testing in the Dec. 30th of last year by its developers (declaring “unlaunch” the game), due to two main huge improvements needed to make. One is the to “make the early game reveal itself more easily to new players so they can get into the fun faster”, and the other, more importantly, is to offer more committed players the creative tools to change the world in more tangible ways – “building whole new locations themselves, designing new buildings, setting up resource flows and forming flexible organizations to create bigger things together”. It’s assumed that Tiny Speck will need months, less than a year, to realize the improvement. Hopefully, players can jump into play this year.