If you enjoy abstract puzzle games, then The Last Cube is a multiplatform release that should interest you. It’s out now for all major systems, and we took a look at the PlayStation version for you.
If you regularly follow us, then you might remember hearing about The Last Cube quite a while ago, as we did a developer interview with the team at Improx Games back in 2020. Back then the game was scheduled for a 2021 release on Steam, but since the interview the game has gone multi-platform and is now available for nearly all current platforms – we think that’s a pretty good reason for a delay.
At first sight, The Last Cube looks like a rather generic 3D cube-rolling puzzle games – the kind that’s perhaps a rare sight on consoles but fairly common on PC platforms like Steam, with Edge as a standout example. On consoles, we really enjoyed Cuboid on the PS3, though that one’s not strictly about cubes.
In The Last Cube, cubes are sentient beings, there’s a world full of lore out there as well. In an abstract puzzle game like this, that was certainly a surprise, but it’s not an element that makes or breaks the game. A lot of the lore can be found as unlockable content, so it’s safe to say that you can enjoy the game’s puzzles without diving into the lore as well – just sticking to your main mission of saving your habitat by completing ever-more complex puzzles.
While the objective of each level is to get to the exit, there’s a lot more to it than just rolling yourself over a grid and getting there. The big novelty in The Last Cube is the use of special abilities that you can attach to any of the six sides of your cube, which come in the shape of special stickers that you pick up by rolling over them. When the sticker faces up, you can use the ability, which includes skills like dashing forward and skipping cubes – which of course comes in handy in certain situations.
Picking up these abilities, and positioning yourself so you can use them at the right moment, is the core of The Last Cube and what sets it apart from other, similar puzzlers that require you to tackle switches, lasers and doorways. Other obstacles will dissolve your stickers, so there are quite a few things to wrap your head around, and it’s a huge credit to the developers that levels were designed in such a way that you never appear to fully get stuck and require a restart.
With over 100 levels to complete, The Last Cube has a rather lengthy story campaign, though some levels are much shorter than others and mainly act as tutorials to help you get familiar with specific abilities. The game world is split up into six different areas with their own audiovisual and gameplay style, and additional levels can be unlocked if you manage to find enough little cubes.
It may look like just a another typical abstract puzzler, but very strong gameplay design, a narrative element and a decent amount of replay value make The Last Cube stand out from the crowd. Recommended for puzzle fans.