Cuboid for iPhone review
Cuboid is a fun 3D puzzle game for the iPhone and iPad of flipping and rolling a cuboid through a maze-like puzzle placed in the setting of mystic, ancient ruins.
Cuboid is available on the iPhone and iPad as a universal app, but the screenshots in this review will be from an iPhone, only.
For those who may not know, a cuboid a rectangular solid that is in the shape of a box. In this game, if you were to cut the cuboid in half (longways), the result would be two cubes.
The goal of the game is simple, roll the cuboid through the puzzle so that you get it to fall through the square hole. It's possible to roll the cuboid off the board, so be careful!
As you progress through the game, new elements such as buttons and teleports will be introduced to the game. When this happens, Cuboid has you play a simple tutorial level so that you understand how the new addition to the game works.
Once you succeed, you will receive 1-3 stars based on how many moves it took you to reach the goal. If you complete the level in the least number of moves possible, the level will also be marked as "etalon". (An etalon is actually a physics device used to measure wavelengths, so I'm not really sure why this word is used.)
If you're stuck and can't figure out how to beat a level, Cuboid includes a hint button that will quickly show you how to beat the level from the cuboid's current position. You are only given a few hints for free, though. If you want more, you must purchase them from the Cuboid Store.
Which brings me to the parts of Cuboid I do not understand. As you play the game, you earn coins. If you tap the button that says how many coins you have, or you tap the hint icon when you don't have any left, you are taken to the Cuboid Store. I was expecting to be able to purchase hints with the coins I've earned. Nope. My choices are to buy hints or to buy coins… but I can't figure out what I can do with my coins! Why do I want to buy 1500 coins for $4.99? As far as I can tell, these coins don't actually have a purpose.
The other horrible thing about Cuboid is ads. Not so much the ads themselves (all ads are always horrible), but the fact that it's not clear how to get rid of them. I've searched through every menu and there is no obvious method of purchasing an upgrade to remove the ads. However, through some trial and error, I discovered that if you tap the X on an ad, you'll get the offer to remove ads for $0.99. It's well worth the $0.99, in my opinion, but I can't believe how difficult it was to find this in-app purchase.
In general, everything except the actual gameplay is very poorly done. There's no written directions to be found (and that's a shame, because I'd really like to know why HeroCraft is using the word "etalon" when perfectly beating a level). I would also like to know what all the icons mean in Settings. Music, sound, and hints was easy enough to figure out, but I'm not really sure what the movie icon is for. Despite the ample space on the Settings screen, there is no written description for what settings are actually being changed.
When tapping the ribbon on the main menu, you are taken to the ranking section in Game Center for Cuboid, but there doesn't appear to be any way to exit this screen. It turns out that the "Done" button is just invisible. If you tap in the upper righthand corner, it briefly appears and activates.
- Awesome graphics
- Universal for iPhone and iPad
- No clear, written out directions
- To purchase the upgrade for no ads, you must tap the X when an ad pops up
- Not sure what the movie icon in settings represents. Again, no words to describe what it is
- Game Center ranking page has an invisible Done button. You can't see it, but if you tap in the upper righthand corner, it briefly appears and activates.
The bottom line
Luckily, none of the bugs I experience affect the actual gameplay of Cuboid. Cuboid is a very fun game and I really like how they've added a star value to each level. This allows the game to be played leisurely with the goal of just passing each level, or competitively with the goal of reaching "etalon" status for each level. With that said, HeroCraft does have some serious issues they need to address, mainly the horrible discovery of upgrading to no ads and giving an actual purpose to coins.