The Game Factory has released Rubik’s World, a puzzle game for the DS inspired by the famous Rubik’s Cube. Developed by Two Tribes (Toki Tori), the game plays and feels more like a toy than anything else. The basis of the game is that cubies, a personification of the smaller cubes that make up the Rubik’s Cube, are shy creatures with which you must play in order to teach them about the world.
Offering both single player and multiplayer options through DS download play, the game gives players eight different modes from which to choose.
In Calculate players must create images by solving simple math equations. Each problem contains two equations for which players have 15 seconds to solve. These equations represent coordinates on a grid. To enter your answer, touch the right point on the grid with your stylus. As you progressively enter your answers, you will be drawing shapes on the grid with cubies, which create a picture when solved properly. Read More…
Fit mode has you manipulating cubies to fit them through walls. Only one cubie can be moved at a time, with players given 25 seconds to solve each puzzle. Pieces that cannot be fit through the wall in time will become damaged. Depending on the difficulty of the puzzle, some will allow for a certain amount of damage to your cubies and others none at all. This mode has three difficulty levels: easy mode offers 3 puzzles, while the medium and hard difficulties offer 20 puzzles each.
In Create, you must “teach cubies about the world”. There are seven items you will be asked to describe by drawing a picture made up of different coloured cubies. This portion of the game feels rather pointless as there is no pass or fail. The game has no means of evaluating your design, but some may simply enjoy using their creativity in such a way.
Players are asked to create four different tunes by using a mini-sequencer in Compose. Each song is meant to teach cubies what music sounds likes when it conveys a specific emotion. There are also four preset songs to draw inspiration from. This mode is similar to Create in the sense that there is no right or wrong answer. I found this mode interesting and somewhat of a challenge, especially if you are trying to recreate a familiar song.
In Switch, you will find a cluster of cubies of different colours. You must touch a cubie to switch it with one you have in queue in order to match groups of five cubies or more. Matched cubies will break off, taking with them any others attached to them from the outside. The goal is to clear the screen, as more cubies get added periodically. This puzzle was fun and felt familiar in its gameplay.
Roll tasks you with guiding cubies around a map to the exit, while avoiding obstacles. Cubies will keep rolling in the specified direction until they hit a wall. This game can become quite challenging and will see players restarting a few time until the right sequence of moves is found. There are three difficulty levels; easy (4 puzzles), medium (20 puzzles) and hard (20 puzzles).
In Color, players will also be guiding cubies to the exit, this time through a 3D map. You must adjust the colours of your cubies as they will stop rolling if a coloured side rolls over the same coloured square on the map. This additional challenge requires players to think ahead and effectively plan their cubies’ paths. There are again three difficulty levels, with three easy, 20 medium and 20 hard puzzles.
Finally and most importantly, the Rubik’s Cube game offers three modes to learn and play with. A tutorial mode teaches players some of the essential tricks to solving the cube, with diagrams. I found the inclusion of this information very neat, though I had difficulty applying some of the tips presented.
A solving mode offers three different Rubik’s Cube sizes; 2x2x2, 3x3x3 and 4x4x4. An assignment mode starts players with a solved cube. From there you must manipulate the cube to match the pattern presented on the screen. The Rubik’s Cube section is really the highlight of the game, giving you hours of play time for a great value.
Rubik’s World has a nice presentation, with colourful graphics and cheerful, well-designed music. Though it feels more like a toy than an actual game, this title is creative and unlike most games I have played in the past. Fans of the classic Rubik’s cube will be happy to find the original puzzle as part of the package and will likely enjoy at least some of new games presented. For the price, Rubik’s World is a great alternative to the real thing and then-some.
+ Good value
+ Great presentation
+ Creative concept
- More of a toy than a game
- Some levels offer no challenge
Game Forward score: 4/5
Nathalie Caron – Game Forward
Rubik’s World (DS) Quick Facts:
Developer: Two Tribes
Publisher: The Game Factory
Release Date: November 4, 2008
Price: $29.99 US/CAN
ESRB Rating: E (Everyone)