Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Completed - Q.U.B.E.

Q.U.B.E. (Quick Understanding of Block Extrusion) is a first person physic based puzzler developed by Toxic Games. Like all games of this genre, the obvious comparison is Portal, but in Q.U.B.E. this comparison is even more apt, the game takes place in a sterile environment with the environment and walls composed of primarily of white cubes. There are occasional opportunities to peak behind the scenes and see something a little more messy and run down.

The game is split up into 7 sectors, each one introducing and teaching new mechanics in a gradual process and creating a theme for each section. The titular block extrusions are split into 5 different colours, each with their own properties. Red blocks can be extruded and retracted, blue blocks are retracted to become springboards for the next thing to touch thing, yellow blocks are always found in threes and extend to form stair structures, green produce a sphere or cube to move around in the puzzle and purple blocks rotate a section of room.

There is no voicework at all to be found in Q.U.B.E. nor text to explain the story. This makes for a strange contextless game, you are given no clue as to how you found yourself at the start of these chambers nor to what end you are completing these tests if they are indeed tests. The ending was particularly baffling. I won't spoil it, but it definitely caught me off guard and I given that I would love to play another game in this series to find out what the heck was going on, so on that level it certainly worked for me.

This certainly was an intriguing title and one I would suggest people pick up if it goes on sale during the current Steam sales, it didn't take me very long to finish and this is one of the rare games where I then went back to find the one achievement you do not get from doing a run through of the main game.

One thing I was intrigued to find out when doing a little research on this game is that none of the developers were programmers, the game was created using the Unreal Development Kit and at no point did any of the creators have to interact with the source code. It is pretty amazing that a game of this quality can be created using what are freely available tools even without low level programming knowledge.

Games list at time of post: 400+ unfinished titles     
Changes since previous post: Finished 1 titles, added more

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