Friday, 11 December 2015

Kickle Cubele - Arcade

So glad for the translation, makes less sense now

It's an odd form for a puzzler, but Kickle Cubele (Or Cubcicle depending on your version) seems to have a healthy mix of block sliding puzzle, adventure, action and madness that doesn't translate too well. Especially if you can't understanding the game and what it's showing you. However that's not to say that just because we don't exactly get the plot, we can't play a game and keep at it until we're done.

Dream? Nightmare!
At its purest, Kickle Cubele is about a snow-bound character trying to collect items to red bags that house his land's sleeping population after a wizard froze everyone and set them asleep and oddly our protagonist was somehow immune. Using his ability to freeze enemies and kick them around (kicking cubes of ice... there's the title) to form bridges and kill enemies is how you're going to save the day. On top of that, he can also create blocks that will stop the ice cubes from sliding too far and then use those to re-direct the angle of the block in order to fill in other gaps around the level and continue making progress.

Questionable shapes there

Each level in Kickle Cubele has 3 bags that must be collected in order to win the level and progress onwards. Also in each level are an unlimited supply of enemies that will spawn and assault you across the level, up to a set number maximum of enemies on screen at once which can change from level to level. Later levels will have other traps and situations like springs and more enemies, hammers that will rebound blocks around the level. Enemies will steadily evolve over levels to be able to stop blocks, kick them back and even create their own, leading to further puzzles where you'll have to get the enemies to make the bridges for you or face being slammed in the face by a frozen brick.

And there's bosses too!

The difficulty in Kickle Cubele doesn't accelerate or hit a brick wall but is instead a rather gradual and steady increase as the levels progress. Ideas introduced become more critical as the game progresses and usually where a skill or system is essential in the level, the previous level will have been solely about that specific skill or system. Once you've passed the first set of worlds, you'll find the difficulty does begin to ramp up quite significantly. You should be able to get the first set of levels done on a credit or such but after that you may take several credits to get past a single level.

As the levels progress, the traps become more deadly. Exponentially so.

Eventually you'll (hopefully) get to a boss fight and have to use various skills and tricks you've learned in that particular set of levels to overcome and defeat the boss. They usually don't take much to defeat and have fairly predictable patterns of attack. Some might surprise you at first, but after that it's plain sailing and significantly less of a challenge than the previous set of levels would have you suppose the boss would be.

And the butt-faced star says time is up

It's a very charming game is Kickle Cubele, brightly coloured, light music (repetitive to the point of brain-killing) and is happy and cheerful enough to appeal to the younger audience in about as saccharine and diabetes-inducing delivery a game can get. It's not going to be a bank breaker either as you'll eventually stop and decide that enough is enough and move happily on to the next world. Worth a look but not really worth going out of your way to take a look at.