Cube Escape: Paradox
Play and watch CUBE ESCAPE: PARADOX.
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.
You explore the room wall by wall, clicking on objects for a closer view.
This is you, homicide detective Dale Vandermeer.