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Qbix

Published by Arowx Games
Price $9.95
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I see no point in drawing out a review of a game that is so exceedingly simple in concept and appeal. To that end, this week I shall be brief and concise in appraising this abstract puzzle game from Arowx.

Welcome to Qbix! A game in progress.

In Qbix, the object for the player on each level is to simply clear all the cubes from the 10 x 10 matrix that serves as the playfield. Cubes are cleared by rolling them up, down, left and right, such that the colour on the top face of the them matches for at least 3 adjacent cubes. Points are allocated depending on the number of cubes cleared in one go, encouraging the player to make large blocks of like coloured cubes disappear in one hit. As the player progresses thorough the levels, more blocks are added to the initial starting layout, but this neither adds much in terms of additional gameplay elements, nor significantly adds to the astoundingly low difficulty level of the game.

The only way that I can see for the player to lose the game is to be left with less than 3 cubes on the playfield. This happened to me on a couple of occasions, but even this is not a frustration since the game gives an instant option to restart from the beginning of the level. It is never difficult to make matches, and youíll find that youíre often able to make them by randomly clicking and dragging a few blocks around. I played through to about level 20 before my interest wore thin.

The entirely mouse driven interface is both intuitive and effective, allowing the player to click a cube and then click a target square, or alternatively, click and drag a cube to roll to a desired location following a path of the playerís choosing.

Some very basic features like a highscore table and options to run the game windowed or in full-screen are present, as are options to control sound effects and music. The game is now available on the Mac platform as well as PC.

The game is bright and colourful, and there are a few graphical effects to assist the player in predicting which face will be on top at the end of a move, as well as an exploding type effect when a match is made. Animations are smooth. No complaints here. The soundtrack is melodic and varied featuring what seems to be a good few house/trance type backing tracks, and also proves to be the high point of the game.

The speed of play is wholly dictated by the player (there are no timers whatsoever), and I came across no obstacles to contend with. The whole experience is more in line with an executive toy rather than a game since the levels can be completed effortlessly, with virtually never having to shift the brain out of low gear.

Qbix is not an unpleasant experience by any means, in fact, I found it quite relaxing to play, but itís still a very difficult game for me to recommend due to the shallow gameplay and questionable longevity.

Graphics 75%
Sound 93%
Playability 68%
Longevity 28%
Overall Score 54%
Bronze Star

Published on 31 Oct 2008
Reviewed by Steve Blanch

Keywords: qbix review, arowx games reviews, arowx games games, qbix scores, pc game reviews, indie game reviews, independent gaming.

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