Intelligent Qube: Awesome Squared

Intelligent Cube

You hear a lot of praise for Tetris, and for good reason — it is, after all, the quintessential puzzle game. But I’d like to shed some light on another, lesser-known yet singularly awesome puzzle game: IQ: Intelligent Qube. Created by Tokyo University professor Masahiko Sato and released for the original PlayStation way back in 1997, this is a true classic.

I originally encountered the game on a demo disc and immediately fell in love. It was like nothing I had played up to that point, offering a satisfying challenge that required some real ingenuity and on-the-spot thinking.

Basically, you’re some poor schmo running around on a grid for reasons unknown, trying to destroy rows of cubes that roll toward you and drive you ever closer to the edge of the board until you finally plummet to your death.

Once you get the swing of things, it becomes incredibly addictive to try to beat the predetermined number of moves for each wave while trying to keep the grid intact. All of this is to ensure the highest score possible: your I.Q.

And, speaking of score, the bombastic, almost-Stars-Wars-like soundtrack is fucking amazing. How can you not feel like a badass Einstein killing (?) cubes to this shit?

As you progress through the ranks of each level, the tiles change color and you are treated to a whole suite of musical themes. And, of course, the challenge becomes maddeningly difficult. But with great adversity comes great reward.

If you can lay your hands on a copy of this gem, I strongly suggest checking it out, especially if puzzle games are your thing. Perhaps a spiritual predecessor of sorts to Influence, which is also a decent mind-fucker in its own right, this brain teaser is a no-brainer.

Class dismissed.

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