Developed by one-man team Miro Straka, Euclidean Skies is a colorful puzzle game about rotating cubes and taking out the bad guys. This indie project was originally released on iOS, where it did relatively well according to the reviews.
Complete with the beautiful art style and head scratching puzzles that draw many in, the game landed on Steam yesterday. We’ve received a copy of it, so let’s take a look at this intriguing puzzler together.
A Different Perspective
When I turned eight, my dad brought me a Rubik’s Cube. He wanted me to learn perseverance, problem-solving and above all patience. Euclidean Skies has tested all three of these skills; not necessarily for the right reasons!
My biggest issue with the game, for example, is the control options; or rather the complete lack of options. For some reason I don’t seem to understand, the left mouse button moves the player, rotates the camera, and also turns the cubes.
More than once I went to rotate a block and walked myself right into the path of a enemy. Or, even more frustrating, tried to move the camera to get a better look of the level only to rotate the cube and, by extension, mine or the enemies’ position.
The fun thing is that, with just a bit of refinement and the ability to map the controls, this issue would be easily solved. I think the problem here is also that Euclidean Skies was born as mobile game, and it still tries to control like one even on PC!
A Real Headscratcher
On top of that, there are some tricky levels in Euclidean Skies. Honestly, some took me a while to clear. The first was an extremely bad tutorial that taught me little of the actual game. It’s a strange experience when the tutorial leaves you feeling no better off.
All of this was quickly forgotten, however, once I started the main levels. This is where Euclidean Skies hits its stride; the puzzles began simply enough, with new mechanics being added as you got used to the game. The learning curve was smooth, I was enjoying my time, and slowly getting acquainted to the gameplay.
Then, all of a sudden, you get levels like the one above. I will put my hands up and say I had to walk away for a while with this one. At one point, I found myself surrounded and lost all ability to move. I could rotate the blocks, but I couldn’t move to another one without crossing paths with an enemy!
Couple this with the control issues we saw before and you can see why I found the level unbearable. I think that is the weirdest part about Euclidean Skies: as a puzzle indie game, there is something there! It’s complex and interesting; infuriating and yet satisfying, it just has some issues that drag it down.
If players had the chance to use an undo button, maybe as a limited skill to turn back a single move, I think the game would feel more forgiving to newcomers without taking out the challenge that the veterans are going for.
Euclidean Skies – A Promising Puzzle
Now that it’s time for a conclusion, I am honestly torn about this one. On the one hand, there’s a lot to enjoy with Euclidean Skies but also a lot of faults The puzzles are sleek, but hugely let down by the controls. And personally, after the first few levels, I stopped caring about winning in as little moves possible.
If you like puzzle games, Euclidean Skies an interesting one to try; but also one that I feel would be more enjoyable on a phone. As such, I’ll leave the choice up to you. Euclidean Skies is out on Steam for $6.99 (or your regional equivalent). That’s 2 bucks more than the iOS version, but still a low-enough price to risk on a promising title that you may or may not like.