The Cave Review: A Funny, Challenging and Delightfully Wicked Game
Sega is alive and well! And along with Double Fine (Brutal Legend, Psychonauts) and Ron Gilbert (Monkey Island) they have brought us a wonderful new adventure puzzle game called The Cave.
I’ll have to start out this review with the following statement: I generally suck at puzzle games. That means that I am not ashamed to consult a walkthrough if I get stuck. And I did have to consult a walkthrough a few times (some followed by a “dur” moment when I realized I should have been able to figure a particular puzzle out) during my first playthrough of The Cave.
The Cave is about, well, a cave. You choose three explorers from a total of seven and then go speluking in the dark depths of this cave. Each explorer has his/her/their own storyline and each gets their own special level where their skills are needed to proceed.
What makes The Cave so playable is its sense of humor. Of course, such is always expected of a company like Double Fine, and so they do not disappoint here. The story is narrated by the cave itself and you will want to pay attention as its always funny. The voice acting is very good and the narration goes for a cheesy “I am evil and will kill you” cartoon villain sort of vibe. Of course, it’s never scary, but that’s part of the fun.
The gameplay involves solving puzzles in order to progress to the next level. This generally means using all three characters simultaneously (switching through them is very easy) in order to solve the puzzle and move forward. You’ll also use each characters’ abilities in many of these challenges.
My playthrough involved The Adventurer, The Monk and the Time Traveler. The Adventurer gets to search through an ancient pyramid in search of treasure, while The Monk has to achieve enlightenment. The Time Traveler has to figure out how to travel through time to kill off a certain line of annoying employees of the month in order to obtain a key.
The Cave is also replayable. I plan on going back and trying out some of the other characters to see what their stories are and experience their levels, as well. Apparently, I’ve missed out on a subterranean amusement park and a medieval castle!
I played The Cave on the Xbox 360. Controls were very simple and easy to figure out (which is good as there is no in-game tutorial).
The Cave is available on Steam (PC, Mac, Linux), Xbox Live, PlayStation Network and WiiU eShop. And priced at just $14.99, it is definitely a good buy.