Have you ever played the classic 1981 arcade game, Qix? You know, the one where you try to uncover the background by drawing lines from wall to wall, all while avoiding sparks and a weird flying creature. It's a game that has managed to find its way onto dozens of game systems, from the NES to the Lynx to the Xbox 360. I'm sure you've heard of it. I do know one person who has played Qix, and that's the guy who dreamt up the idea for Cubix on the PSP.
Look, I'm not about to start demanding that every game I review needs to be original. I'm sure we can pick any game I review apart and say that it came from some classic game that nobody remembers. But Qix had very specific gameplay. You know Qix when you see it, it's the only game that dared to give you the power to uncover a background. There are no-name knock-offs, but there's no question that Qix is a unique game. Cubixx, in contrast, is not a unique game. But that doesn't stop it from being worth a few dollars.
Much like the game it's openly mimicking, Cubixx is a game where you try and uncover as much of the background as you can. Instead of being a flat 2D wall, this game gives you a six-sided cube to destroy, complete with flying monsters and sparks looking to stop you along the way. The rules are the same, if a flying creature hits your line before you complete it (have it go from wall to wall) you die; take too long and the spark will come and get you. As you progress through the game the enemies will become faster and you will need to uncover more of the background. Last long enough and maybe you'll be rewarded with a spot on the leader boards.
There is some technique to the gameplay that makes this more than just a 3D Qix clone. To move into the open field you have to push the PSP's shoulder buttons. However, the longer you hold down the button the more points you'll get from the multipliers. But there's a catch, you don't get those points until you let go of the button. You can keep it going as long as you want, but you're left with nothing the moment you get hit.
The game's graphics are good, even if the presentation gets old after only a few levels. The game plays fast enough and the controls are easy to use, which is all you can ask from a game like this. It may not be the best looking or sounding game, but it's the type of thing I would come back to when I only have a few minutes to spend gaming.
Cubixx is hardly the most original game of the year, but in just about every way it outdoes Qix. The game is cheap and addictive, the perfect combination for a PSP Minis title. Even if there's not a whole lot to do and see here, Cubixx is a worthwhile download.
Cubixx shows Taito how to make the next generation in Qix. While this is hardly the most original game of the year, I found the simple gameplay and solid presentation appealing. Best of all, the game is only a few bucks!
Rating: 8.5 Very Good
* The product in this article was sent to us by the developer/company for review.
It's questionable how accurate this is, but this is all that's known about Cyril Lachel: A struggling writer by trade, Cyril has been living off a diet of bad games, and a highly suspect amount of propaganda. Highly cynical, Cyril has taken to question what companies say and do, falling ever further into a form of delusional madness. With the help of quality games, and some greener pastures on the horizon, this back-to-basics newsman has returned to provide news so early in the morning that only insomniacs are awake.