Atari Video Cube

Graphics: 5
Sound: 3
Control: 4
Depth: 4
Overall: 5

Atari Video Cube

By: Atari, Inc.
Released: 1982

Atari Video Cube tried to cash in on the Rubik's cube craze of the 80s. Luckily, it's a great game.

Instead of rotating the sections like the actual physical puzzle, you control a little guy who runs around the cube, swapping out the colors. The catch is he can't walk on a section with his color. It’s an abstraction of the concept, yet it forces you to think spatially and ends up being a cross between a Rubik’s cube and the game of Concentration.  

The graphics may seem basic at first, but the “3-D” rotation animation for the cube is impressive for the hardware.  Sound is minimal, but serves the game well enough.

Like many of the earlier first party Atari titles, you can choose from several variations.  You can play for best time or number of moves taken, Invisible Cube mode keeps the tiles black (except when rotating to another side) and Restricted Movement mode – where your man can only move up or left – really forces you to remember what is on the other sides and is the most challenging of the bunch.  There are even modes where you can watch the computer solve the puzzle! 

Ultimately though, it’s just a really fun puzzle game with a concept that hasn’t been improved on since, making it one of my favorites for the Atari VCS.

- Ben Langberg


Game Variations

If you set the LEFT DIFFICULTY switch to the A position, a buzzer will sound each time Hubie tries to run on to a square of the same color as he. Set the switch to the B position to change the buzzer sound to a "beep."