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Cube Escape: The Cave review - A decently creepy point-n-click


For: iPhone   Also on: iPad

Mystery cave

Product: Cube Escape: The Cave | Publisher: Rusty Lake | Format: iPhone | Genre: Adventure | Players: 1 | Version: Europe | App version: 1.32
 
Divided across a series of free titles and several paid titles, the Cube Escape games have all been linked by several key elements, mainly an overarching narrative, a surreal atmosphere, creepy imagery, and unnerving puzzle solutions.

Cube Escape: The Cave doesn't quite reach the unsettling heights of the Rusty Lake spin-offs, but those elements are all present in this decent adventure game.

Watch your step

Much like the past Cube Escape and Rusty Lake games, The Cave is an odd beast narratively. The Cube Escape series revolves around the secrets of a mysterious family, each game exploring different events and jumping around the series' timeline.

The Cave is actually the twelfth entry in the series, providing insight into story elements of Cube Escape: Seasons, Rusty Lake: Hotel, and Cube Escape: Theatre.

In other words, if you've been playing the series from the start, The Cave offers interesting new insight and lets you explore an area only glimpsed and mentioned in past games.



But for those entering here for some fun point-n-click puzzles, Cube Escape: The Cave can be confusing. And the lack of a clear story means there's nothing to push you on past frustrations or tricky puzzles.

Conundrums of the Cave

Yes, frustrations. The adventure game genre has always been home to a fair bit of trial and error, and Cube Escape: The Cave's surreal nature sometimes sidesteps the more logical nature of puzzles in other games.

While some item interactions go as you'd expect - wood plus matches create flaming kindling - others can require confusing leaps in logic.

But get in the right mindset to unlock The Cave's copper machinery, and you'll find an engaging point-n-click that packs a surprising amount of varied puzzles into its claustrophobic location.

In many ways, success in The Cave feels reminiscent of The Room - each step reveals a new mechanism and a new cryptic clue.



The unsettling imagery returns as well, from unexpected puzzle solutions to visual changes in the environments. However, The Cave never quite reaches the disturbing nature of the Rusty Lake games.

Long-time fans of the series will find Cube Escape: The Cave a worthy entry, expanding upon elements of the overarching narrative.

A less coherent story and confusing puzzles can frustrate, but overall polish and creepy atmosphere helps to elevate The Cave above those aspects.
 
Cube Escape: The Cave review - A decently creepy point-n-click
Reviewer photo
Christian Valentin | 27 March 2017
Creepy visuals and complex puzzles make up for Cube Escape: The Cave's confusing story and potentially frustrating design
 
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