Cube Es­cape: Para­dox

Play and watch CUBE ES­CAPE: PARA­DOX.

PC GAMER (US) - - CONTENTS - By Tom Sykes

It’s only been three years since the first Rusty Lake game, but we’re al­ready on our 13th puzzler set in the macabre world. The lat­est game, Para­dox, be­longs to the Cube Es­cape sub-se­ries, mean­ing it’s shorter, and free, and tasks you with es­cap­ing, yes, a room by point­ing and click­ing. Where Para­dox dif­fers from pre­vi­ous en­tries is its pre­sen­ta­tion. It’s a lit­tle more pol­ished, and a tiny bit more story-fo­cused, once again rop­ing in se­rial puz­zle-solver Dale Van­der­meer, who en­joys noth­ing bet­ter than un­rav­el­ling mod­er­ately tricky puz­zles.

As part of his mur­der in­ves­ti­ga­tion, de­tec­tive Dale has to prod at lamps, open draw­ers, and use ob­jects in un­usual ways—if you’ve played pre­vi­ous en­tries, there will be lit­tle here you haven’t seen be­fore. And if you haven’t had the plea­sure, these games are pop­u­lar for a rea­son: Each of­fers an en­gross­ing clock­work world to ex­plore for an hour or two.

Para­dox is un­usual in that it in­cludes a free short film. Ac­ces­si­ble from the menu, it’s a well-pro­duced, well-acted short that suc­cess­fully cap­tures the game’s Lynchian at­mos­phere—even if Dale’s filmic coun­ter­part makes the puz­zle-solv­ing seem al­most triv­ially easy. With a set re­con­structed, in near-per­fect de­tail, from that in the game, you can watch the film for a few tips, and to flesh out your un­der­stand­ing (such as it is) of the sur­real story. Through the TV set, it even in­trudes upon the game at cer­tain points—this is the rare case where such trans­me­dia shenani­gans make per­fect sense.

Film aside, there’s lit­tle that sets this apart from the other games. But it’s an en­joy­able pack­age—keep them com­ing.

73

You ex­plore the room wall by wall, click­ing on ob­jects for a closer view.

This is you, homi­cide de­tec­tive Dale Van­der­meer.

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