Cub, a post-apocalyptic parkour video game review

Cub, a post-apocalyptic parkour video game review

Demagog Studio creates a short but intense platform video game, able to entertain and make us think about the present and future of our planet.

For many years, dystopia has been the science fiction genre of choice for pursuing political, environmental, and social musings about our world. Certainly the world inhabited by the cub protagonist is a dystopian one, a kind of Mowgli from the new millennium who admires Moskowitz's missiles disappearing into the distance. Lead the richest humanity to MarsIn search of the future, fleeing an Earth that is now almost uninhabitable due to a major environmental catastrophe.

The word “almost” is important, because the child manages to survive very well in this disastrous environment and does so with the help of a pack of wolves. These are the narrative foundations of The Cub, the sequel to Golf Club: Nostalgia (the original name, Golf Club: Wasteland, has been changed for copyright reasons). At the playing level, we are facing Classic platform game It is inspired by SEGA's works of the 1990s, from Aladdin to The Jungle Book. With the exception of a few minor flaws, The Cub manages to be a captivating experience throughout its duration.

Let's discover more about the Earth after the great environmental catastrophe and the adventures of our human cub in Cub review.

man cub

The future Mowgli finds himself navigating the ruins of a beautiful Earth that never gave up, and manages to move forward despite the massive environmental catastrophe caused by humans.
The future Mowgli finds himself navigating the ruins of a beautiful Earth that never gave up, and manages to move forward despite the massive environmental disaster caused by humans.

the Serbian development studio Demagog Studio In recent years, he has been working hard to create a series of video game adventures that belong to different genres, but all share the same setting. They started with “The Golf Club: Nostalgia,” in which an Earthling transported to Mars returns to his home planet to play golf among the ruins of human civilization. Then there was the previous version of Highwater, with turn-based combat in an isometric view, which was set before the departure of the Moskowitz Missiles. The cub has also been added to the picture, an immediate sequel to the events of Golf Club: Nostalgia, which is connected with a development that can perhaps be expected by the most attentive and passionate players in the adventure of the Hungarian golfer.

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With biting irony, Demagog Studio shows us among the ruined skyscrapers of companies like Fakebook and Goopgle., and tells us how the great Moskowitz periodically returns to Earth to practice golf. The honesty and brutality of the child, the near-future Mowgli, is the perfect counterpart to telling a story of resilience and quiet revenge, made possible by an alliance with the non-human life forms that Earthlings have benefited from for millennia. Along with works like Saltsea Chronicles, The Cub is a perfect example of a video game able to point to a different path for our future. And if you please.

Simple and instant gameplay

Earth after a major environmental catastrophe is a dangerous place: between chases and exploration phases in which one mistake can lead to death, we will have to be extremely careful to bring the child to the destination of his journey.
Earth after a major environmental catastrophe is a dangerous place: between chases and exploration phases in which one mistake can lead to death, we will have to be extremely careful to bring the child to the destination of his journey.

The cub is A platform game that doesn't sacrifice the importance of its message (proudly anti-capitalist and condemning the predatory mentality of many human beings) on the altar of compromises associated with a certain quantitative way of conceiving the gaming experience. There are no objects to retrieve with mysterious jumps to increase the score and no on-screen indication of the child's health status; The collectibles available in the place are newspapers and books that are useful to build a context for the adventure, and tell the story of a world that has gone through dramatic moments, but finds a way to move forward. Just like our protagonist.

The child moves from left to right and must face a long series of obstacles over the four hours it takes to complete his adventure. Checkpoints are particularly forgiving And we never found ourselves faced with frustrating situations: The Cub flows like fun, with a level of challenge that can be tolerated even by newbies to the genre, but thanks to its story and exceptional art direction (both aesthetically and sonically) it also manages to keep console video game fans hooked. On it, proving to be an excellent addition to this collection of video games set in the aftermath of a major environmental catastrophe on Earth.

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The Cub is simply stunning visually and sonically.  Radio nostalgia from Mars returns, and visions of a destroyed, but undefeated, Earth return
The Cub is simply stunning visually and sonically. Radio nostalgia from Mars returns, and visions of a destroyed, but undefeated, Earth return

Continuity and topic of discussion are maintained from before Radio Nostalgia from MarsWhich continues to be sent even when the child faces a deadly obstacle. The game restarts very quickly, with a sense of urgency and speed that invites the player not to give up and continue the adventure and story. To be strict, the stealth sections are sometimes ambiguous, due to the unclear management of enemies' field of view and the presence of static shots: if an opponent leaves the screen, there is no way to understand where he is and where he is looking.

Then there's the matter of animation: more flexibility, especially in certain specific stages (for example, when clinging to a ledge) would certainly increase the spirit of speed that Demagog Studio wanted to convey to its creature capable of moving among the ruins of the Earth and surviving Martians must now wear protective suits and helmets. But the management is excellent Adventure pacewhich lives in the contrast between moments of quiet exploration and more exciting stages, between chases and crossing dangerous areas, with a pace marked above all by the element of sound: the radio that a child can listen to through a Martian helmet.

Radio Nostalgia from Mars

Radio Nostalgia from Mars is an essential element in managing the pace of the adventure and in defining the game environment: between the stories and the musical compositions belonging to the most diverse musical genres, Radio Nostalgia from Mars is the glue of Demagog Studio's video games
Radio Nostalgia from Mars is an essential element in managing the pace of the adventure and in defining the game environment: between the stories and the musical compositions belonging to the most diverse musical genres, Radio Nostalgia from Mars is the glue of Demagog Studio's video games

Nostalgia Radio from Mars returns, and this time it can be listened to thanks to a convincing digiti element: the child finds the helmet of one of the humans who returned from Mars to visit Earth. there Sound design management To say the least, Radio Nostalgia from Mars is a real proponent of adventure pacing, alternating Martian stories with loud disco music, in a completely practical way compared to the iteration of the story by Demagog Studio, which is certainly faster and faster compared to Golf Club: Nostalgia. It's a shame that there are some important character-building stages told through a series of simple graffiti: especially at the end of the adventure, we would have appreciated these stages being translated into the actual game.

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Visually, Demagog Studio emphasizes the exceptional talent of its artists. The child and his animation are hand-drawn, and the same goes for the backgrounds. On several occasions we found ourselves frantically taking pictures of the screens, which showed a devastated but beautiful Earth: sunrise breaking through ruined skyscrapers; A cave filled with radioactivity and strange luminous creatures; A museum full of masterpieces of the past, and in the center of it is a statue of a woman taking a selfie. We would like to point out that The Cub is available in English and has not been translated into Italian.

Conclusions

Tested version PlayStation 5

Digital delivery

PlayStation Store

The chronologically final chapter of what has so far been Demagog Studio's major climate disaster trilogy proves to be an intense adventure with a strong message. A sequel to the popular Golf Club: Nostalgia, retaining its location and the fantastic Nostalgia Radio from Mars, The Cub changes everything in terms of gameplay and completely succeeds in its goal of offering an accessible, but not trivial, course. By stripping away elements – such as intrusive results and interfaces – that were not suitable for the message that Demagog Studio wants to convey, the developers from Serbia send to the world an important work for our contemporaries. The Cub, with its post-apocalyptic parkour moves, is the perfect way to start 2024: don't miss it.

forefront

  • Radio Nostalgia from Mars is back
  • Fast and always stimulating exploration
  • It is not complicated by unnecessary elements and/or potentially harmful to your message

against

  • Some animations to review
  • Some important narrative stages are not playable

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