Glover is an experimental goal oriented exploration game from 1998. The main character, interestingly enough, is a sentient glove that can do magic. You kind of feel like Master Hand’s kid brother, in a way. While many critics have bashed Glover for difficult to learn controls/mechanics and a bland plot, I think that this unique N64 game can provide curious gamers with a solid several hours of entertainment.
In an idyllic kingdom, a kind wizard ruled with magic and reason. His two sentient gloves helped him with his magic, so he had things pretty good. But then the plot hit him like a truck. A bad batch of potions caused an explosion that turned him to stone and flung Glover out the window of his castle and the other into the potion cauldron. It also shook the seven magic crystals from the castle’s peaks, which spurred Glover to use his magic to turn them into rubber balls so they wouldn’t break. Unfortunately, they rolled into different world portals, and the other glove was befouled by the horrid concoction and turned into the evil Cross-Stitch.
A little bland indeed, but the gameplay makes up for it. Glover’s got a wide array of things he can do, which probably accounts for the frustration from the critics. He can transform his ball into a metal ball, a bowling ball, a rubber ball, a powerball, or its original crystal form, depending on what you need for the current puzzle. And, he can toss, slap, dunk, and roll his ball, or point it out if it’s missing. Yes, he can slap his ball. That’s very mature of you. Be sure to keep it away from spikes, and god forbid you play around with the crystal form. It smashes, Glover screams and points, the world explodes.
The worlds are certainly fun. It’s hard not to enjoy the variety of levels that the developers implemented: Atlantis, Carnival, Pirates, Prehistoric, Fortress of Fear, and Out of this World. I’m ONLY going to be talking about the Carnival world, because that place was the most fun I’ve ever had playing Glover. It’s a linear level, but every once so often, you encounter an area full of mini-games! Oh my god! So fun! Roulettes with the dings, strength tests with the dongs! You can even ride in little roller coasters to collect goodies. It’s amazing. The boss is a giant clown, and even he is fun to fight. If you’ve ever played Chameleon Twist 2 and gone to the carnival level, imagine how fun that was, then double it. Pure liquid happiness.
When all’s said and done, there really isn’t too much to this game, nor is there too little. In this case, simplicity is far from a vice. Though a sequel was due, the modest success of Glover negated that chance and it was cancelled. Probably for the best. Glover feels like one of those games that’s grand all on its own and doesn’t need a sequel to further glorify itself. Simple yet complex, blocky yet pretty. Definitely worth it to add to your N64 game cache.