It’s your 9th birthday and everybody’s there: grandpa, your parents, the cat, everybody. And there’s this black creature-guy standing outside as you can see him through the kitchen window. It’s your birthday, and instead of having fun with other kids, you have a lot of weird things to do first. And the telephone call saying that “there will be blood” and how “it’s not over yet” doesn’t sound too optimistic either. The phone call and a threatening letter came either from mr Owl to warn you, or white rabbit, the killer, sent it. Finding your parents dead in the kitchen is a resolution of these events. The grandpa got bullet to the head too.
Grandpa, he wants a glass of water and a couple of ice cubes in it. He likes music too. Mother, she just needs a bubble gum (!?). Father seems as the only sensible person in the room. It’s birthday of his son and he naturally asks for a cake slice. When you eventually find a knife, you come to realize that making a cake slice is quite a job. Knife just won’t cut through it.
To play some music from the old gramophone you will have to find a record and a needle. Cat is hungry, and she wants a fish, so logically you set up a mouse trap(!?). Pictures on the wall obviously hide some secret messages. One of them is actually a tetris game.
So the game basically consists of whole bunch of mini puzzles with hidden items and items you need to find usage for. And the concept of memory cubes is still there. The cube holds memories of dead people, trapped inside and you usually do a series of tasks to unleash one of those souls or something like that. The place where these cubes float is called Rusty Lake and this is something that is woven into story throughout the whole series. And if you find the atmosphere too old and vintage it’s because the story takes place in 1930s. Obviously that’s the time when your parents got killed to have their souls and memories transferred into cubes. Back in the days you were just a little boy and now you need to deal with your parents death. By going back you might even change the course of past events.
All in all “Birthday” edition of Cube Escape series is everything expected from Rusty Lake. It’s weird, senseless and depressive. To be honest, I never managed to finish not one of their games without peeking into walkthough occasionally. It’s because these are more like brain and escape than really scary games.