Daily Independent: Speed Through a Cubic World in EDGE
The Daily Independent is a recurring feature in which we shine a light into the darkened wilderness of indie gaming, illuminating both the good and the bad of what we find there.
There’s only one shape in EDGE: the cube. The world is made up of cubes. You play as a cube. And yet, despite that lack of geometric diversity, EDGE stands as an intriguing puzzle title in which you’re graded on the speed with which you beat its 63 levels and the efficiency with which you do so.
Your one function in EDGE is to reach a goal in each level as quickly as possible, but there are distractions. Scattered around each stage are smaller cubes called prisms you can pick up, and it’s impossible to nab top scores without these. Thus, what was once a speed run becomes a task of exploration. Many prisms are hidden out of plain sight and require use of the game’s overhead map system to know their retrievable; others stand atop strange heights, the paths to which must be teased out with logic.
It’s EDGE’s simplicity that makes it most fun. You steer your cube around with WASD and can mantle heights that are as tall as your cube, so long as there’s nothing behind you to block your rotating. While there’s not a lot to you and your capabilities, the game’s many stages quickly become novel, as switches cause cubes to rearrange themselves or you’ll try to cross what turns out to be a causeway littered with fast-moving blocks as if this were a round of Frogger.
In fact, the feeling of old-school, low-res gaming is palpable in EDGE, and if that’s your thing you’ll be more than rewarded here. The game is all about reasoning out the best ways to reach things, and you’ll never face enemies. Death is just counted against your score and you only “die” if you fall off the side of the level. EDGE doesn’t need to be about fighting because it’s about intelligence and discovery first, practice and mastery second.
EDGE has a pretty phenomenal price on Steam right now at $7.99, and it’ll definitely keep you busy for a while with its 63 levels (48 you pay for, 15 “bonus” you get for joining the EDGE Steam community). Developer Two Tribes also has some free DLC in the pipe to add a few more levels to the mix. There’s some brilliant level design and quite a bit of challenge offered in EDGE, and with even more content on the way, this is definitely worth a look for players who like a bit of an old-school experience.