Lyle in Cube Sector


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Rating: 4.6/5 (47 votes)
| Comments (21) | Views (233)

Lyle in Cube Sector

SonicLoverMy name is Lyle. Unfortunately I can't tell you my last name; video game heroes usually have one-word names, and I'm no exception. Also like most video game heroes I can jump several times my height, my head is larger than my torso (heck, my eyes are larger than my torso), and my health is determined not by X-rays or by blood pressure, but by a simple display at the edge of the screen

lyleincubesector2.gifI live in a small shack in the middle of Cube Sector, a realm populated by all sorts of nasty monsters. And yes, there are lots and lots of cubes around: durable green cubes, explosive red cubes, double-size orange cubes, and so on. In fact, I've got a green cube right in my front yard. My only living companion is a kitten by the name of Keddums. Seriously! Just look in the readme file if you don't believe it.

Last night when I was asleep a hooded figure sneaked in and made off with Keddums. Needless to say I'm not going to stand for that; the fewer friends you have, the more attached you grow to them, and Keddums is my only friend. So I set off on an adventure to claim back my cat.

It's not easy, of course. When I first leave my house I'm completely defenseless; I can't even jump on enemies like that plumber can. I have to find upgrades that improve my abilities, and they're all cube-centric. Throughout the game I'll learn to pick up and throw cubes, kick them around, double-jump with them, and even create my own out of thin air. I'll use cubes for everything from attacking enemies to playing basketball to feeding a dog. I can also find blue HP Orbs that improve my maximum stamina, as well as red CP Orbs... rumor has it that you can trade those in somewhere for new upgrades...

Analysis: Lyle in Cube Sector is a relatively old game, and it turned up in an old Weekend Download; the second one ever, to be more precise. Someone commented on it saying that it deserved a full review, and after playing it I have no choice but to agree. Normally it's only downloadable for Windows, but with CrossOver Games that's not an issue, it ran perfectly fine on my Mac.

lyleincubesector3.gifMetroid-esque. I don't know if anyone's ever used that word before, but it's the perfect word to describe this game. And I'm not just talking about the gameplay. The graphics and audio both seem to have come straight from the NES with their simplistic pixelly goodness, and the tall climbable shafts and long runnable pathways bring back Metroid memories as well. The whole thing is so Metroidesque I kept expecting to find a Morph Ball (Morph Cube, perhaps?) power-up somewhere.

I played the original Metroid once. It quickly repulsed me because its environment was too large to be explored with any efficiency, especially without guidance, and I kept feeling lost. Lyle in Cube Sector doesn't have that flaw; its map feels much more easily explored, and I never felt lost. I think it helped that this game had a "warp room" that allowed speedy transportation to handy locations. The lighthearted sense of humor LiCS bore, especially near the end, might have helped as well. So perhaps this game is better than that one.

It's not perfect, of course. One inherent flaw with Metroid-esque games is that with no indication of what to do next, you can run around aimlessly without a clue and be unable to find your next step. I did run into a moment like that near the end. Also, the "game over" sequence in this game is a bit too long and non-skippable, especially considering how many times I saw it. To boot, there's nothing more frustrating than accidentally hurting yourself with your own cube, which feels all too easy. I know Samus never accidentally shot herself with a Missile.

But overall, this game is worth a download. It has plenty to find (I'm still missing one CP orb, and I've heard of a secret room somewhere...), and it should keep you occupied for a while. The likelihood of a sequel is slim, but we can hope...

Now if you'll excuse me, I've got a cat-napper to cube.

WindowsWindows:
Download the free full version

Mac OS XMac OS X:
Not available.
Try Boot Camp or Parallels or CrossOver Games.

21 Comments

Thank you for reviewing this awesome game fully! I need to redownload it and finally finish the end bit.

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i'll have to take your word for it that this game is awesome. at the beginning, at least, it is WAY too frustrating for me to feel it's worth sticking it out.

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Skaramuche Author Profile Page December 14, 2008 8:38 PM

Er, the game might be good, but my safe-browsing extension is freaking out at the download link provided. That domain has malware warnings,virus warnings, privacy issues...what's going on there?

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The domain, sitesled, is a Web hosting provider, and therefore it is possible that some pages on it have been known to contain malware.

However, the McAfee Site Advisor page says this game author's site is OK:
http://www.siteadvisor.be/sites/sitesled.com/members/bogo/

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My antivirus is calling the exe a virus whenever I extract the files. I'm sure the game is great, but I'd rather not risk it unless I know why the game is being treated as a virus.

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This game was made with Multimedia Fusion (MMF)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Multimedia_Fusion

Unfortunately, there have been many false positive reports related to all MMF and MMF2 software. Even clickteam (authors of Multimedia Fusion) had to officially announce that MMF and MMF2 applications do not contain trojans:

http://www.clickteam.com/CTforum/showflat.php3?Cat=&Board=click&Number=276554

More information about false positives related to MMF apps:

http://www.clickteam.com/epicenter/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=36367&page=1

http://forum.grisoft.cz/freeforum/read.php?4,87772


Nifflas, creator of Within a Deep Forest, Knytt, Knytt Stories, and others, also uses Multimedia Fusion and passed this information on to me back when we reviewed his games.

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Awesome review, SonicLover! I've played this game before, but your words made me want to play it again. I really laughed at the

"I know Samus never accidentally shot herself with a Missile"

part!

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I'm on an intel Mac running Crossover Games and I can't seem to get this to work. It loads up fine and goes to the main menu. I can highlight the available options (New Game, Options, Quit) using the arrow keys, but I can't actually select them. What am I supposed to press to select an option? I thought enter/return or space would work, but it just won't respond. Other applications respond to the keyboard just fine.
Help?

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I get a "Cannot load platform.COX" error message. I'm using Vista, anything I'm missing here?

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OK You've convinced me to download this game!

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Ezrabbit, I played it through Crossover on an Intel Mac, and my keys were:

Shift: Button 1
Control: Button 2
Space: Pause

In particular, shift should get you through the menus.

Anyway, great game! I've got a weakness for Metroidvanias, and this one didn't disappoint. I do agree that it was more frustrating than others in the genre (mostly because, despite the warp points, it took a long time to get back to where you were when you died).

Man, the vertical shaft near the first warp point? Climbing that thing sucked. I was pretty disappointed when I found out that the reward wasn't even important.

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Ezrabbit - press [shift] to select. :)

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Works OK under Wine on Linux. Shift is button 1, Control is button 2, Space to Pause/Map.

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Well, i considered playing it, too, but still i haven't found the item with which i can pick up a cube yet. tI says i have to search more. But where? Left theres no possibility to get up into the big whatever-it-is and right i can only hope to get as far as possible until the blue frog-like-hoppers kill me. *gmbl*
Any hint or even help?

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@ Sardia:

Right is the right way. Just keep going and dodging the mutant frogs, and you'll eventually get to the power-up. Don't worry, it's not too far. I won't say where to go next, though. After all, exploration is the base of this game!

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I love exploration based games on the same vein as Metroid, and I've explored quite a bit of this so far considering how... frustrating it is! I mean, everything hurts you. You push the wrong button, you fire the cube in a direction where it bounces off the wall and hurts you. You throw the cube at the enemy, it bounces off and hurts you. You throw a different cube at the enemy, the enemy explodes and hurts you. And the one that gets me the most is landing on top of a cube that's not quite settled... hurts you.

Aside from that, its a neat game with a neat concept. I just wish you didn't die all the freaking time. I can only stand to die maybe three times before I get frustrated with it and leave to do something else. I guess that makes it a good casual game though. And you're right, that GAME OVER sequence is much too long given how often you visit it.

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The other thing that really gets me is that regardless of how many "energy tank" type items you get, you always start with 5 hit points. And I haven't found any way to completely refill your health unless its by acquiring another "energy tank". So the only way to get more health is by defeating enemies that will hurt you often as not.

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Billy_Kane December 18, 2008 6:51 PM

Great game! I always loved the Metroid games. I do have some problems:
1)For a game that can get very frustrating, you're only allowed 5 hp at start
2)Anything you touch can hurt you (see Aeon's comment above)
3)Every time you die, you have to start at the same place. Sometimes I'll get far into a dungeon, die, and have to start back at the stupid house.

Aside from these things, the game isn't bad.

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The low life, starting from the house every time you die, your own blocks hurting you, and pretty much everything you touch hurting you are all things I actually like about this game. It gets rid of button mashing as an option. However, the control setup is terrible(shift, ctrl, space) and there is no way to change it. This would be a great game otherwise.

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Has anyone found that secret room?

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nvm, found a video of where it is...clever hiding spot

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