Cube 2003 12 23

Review: Cube (build 2003_12_23) by Cybrid


From the website:

Cube is an open source multiplayer and singleplayer first person shooter game built on an entirely new and very unconventional engine. Cube is a landscape-style engine that pretends to be an indoor FPS engine, which combines very high precision dynamic occlusion culling with a form of geometric mipmapping on the whole world for dynamic LOD for configurable fps & graphic detail on most machines.

This review will deal with the FPS game aspect only, not the editor. 

Installing – 9 of 10

Requirements for this game are:


Installation consists of simply extracting the archive (in this case, a .zip file) and running the precompiled executable.  Clients are provided for Win32, Linux and LinuxPPC environments, and servers for Linux, Solaris and FreeBSD.  These are included in the archive.

Sound  – 6 of 10

First off, I was very impressed with the original soundtrack that comes with Cube.  It blends well with the provided maps, and doesn’t overpower the action.  Sound effects abound, from grabbing ammo, to jumping, to firing weapons.  The only complaint in this
department is the lack of ‘richness’ to the sound.  Effects are flat, particularly for ammo pickups, and don’t seem to be robust enough to be appropriate for the action.  Also, creature sounds suffer from the same problem, as well as lacking variety in effects from creature to creature.  The music definitely saves the day here.

Graphics – 9 of 10

Graphically, this is an amazing game.  A totally unique graphics engine, this is easily on par, and in some cases much better than, Quake 3, or the Torque Engine.  From full sky rendering, to shadowing and water effects, the environments are very eye-catching.  New models and tilesets are being worked on constantly by the Cube community, and things can only get better as time goes on.

Gameplay – 8 of 10

Wow, what can I say about the gameplay.  First off, I’ll deal with the single player missions.  The AI is hard.  Very hard.  For the first 2 or 3 levels, it’s not overly difficult, but as you progress, they seem to become more and more agressive, not to
mention much more numerous.  This seemed to be a sticking point for me, as progression became no more than slogging through hordes of enemies who, in some cases, come right at you and stay there.

For the multiplayer aspect, it’s outright deathmatch.  And, it’s fast.  I’ve played
quite a few first person games, but nothing seems to have the maddening pace that Cube sets.  Especially on servers with a lot of players, the kill counts rack up quickly.

Also, the Cube community has recently released a CTF addon which, from all indications, is going to become popular fast.

Replay – 7 of 10

Lots of replay value for this one.  With fully functional multiplayer in place, plus a mountain of maps to choose from, it will take a while before you run out of places to frag your friends.  The only downside is that most of the single player maps provided have
no bots, which means lots of running around empty spaces.  Still, there’s nothing wrong with a good online fragfest, whether with friends, or on a public server.

Overall – 8 of 10 Tuxes

This game has a lot going for it.  Great music, graphics and gameplay make this game as addictive as any other major FPS out there.  I know I can’t stop playing it. 

Check the Cube Sourceforge page for downloads, and try it out for yourself.  Who knows, maybe we’ll frag each other sometime!