GOOD IDEA, BAD EXECUTION
I love me some non-violent sandbox games and Cubic Castles caught my attention instantly. The design is somewhat cute and the camera position didn't bother me at first (it gets annoying later). However, as the title of this review says, it was just a good idea on the wrong hands.
It's promising. Build your own realm (I'd rather say home or town, but let's go with the game definition), dress up, decorate... and you can even craft stuff! However, things soon start to fall short. The tutorial layout seems like one of those really bad Android/iOS games that oblige you to read lines and lines and lines of badly written dialogue that are supposed to teach you something, but fail greatly. At least you don't have to read every sign, so score!
After the disapponting tutorial comes the overworld. Now, when I first played months ago there was barely no one around, but I redownloaded and fooled around a bit and not even I couldn't remember where my realm was, I couldn't even find it on the map because there are just too many realms. Creating more servers and giving the players the ability to easily find their homes is MMO 101. That aside, the whole thing of jumping into the realms sounds fun. Can be an issue if you just want to get to higher ground, but loading time is so incredibly short that this can barely be a complaint. But, once you get to your very first realm, it gets boring. Building seems a major pain since you will need a lot of time and in game currency (in fact more time and numbers than decent sandbox games require, not to mention those are rewarding) and there seems to be absolutely nothing on the realm. It gave me the feeling that everyone starts with the very same standard level, so the developers didn't even care to make them be randomly generated. The cost benefit of playing to actually build something that you like and decorate and everything someone expects from a non-violent sandbox seems unworthy
The icing on the cake is the fact that this is one of those horribly developed games aimed towards people with no sense of real enterteinment (or perhaps they just don't have a computer capable of running The Sims 2... Yes, 2, cos if you can run Cubic Castles, you can run the first The Sims). The scheme "buy cash today, become VIP, have access to the rest of the game" is usually pointed as the worst point of MMOs that keep you from the whole game as a way to make you pay fees. The idea is quite common on Android/iOS games where you can breathe if you pay and surprisingly enough people fall for that. If you have money to spend on such an insulting system, you have money to buy a decent game with better features and that won't likely charge extra fees, so it's actually shocking that you spend your time on Cubic Castles while you could be treating others like trash (let's be honest, games like this are flooding with people like that) on something built to entertain instead of stealing.
So, if you're thinking of playing Cubic Castles because... Well, because your computer can't handle The Sims 2 or even a Nintento DS emulator (no one's to blame because they don't/didn't have a DS) to play Animal Crossing, then just play The Sims 1. If you're looking for something similar to Minecraft, YOU ARE LOOKING AT THE WRONG PLACE! In that case, go play some Terraria or Starbound or any other of those side scrolling sandboxes. They're a lot more similar to Minecraft than you think!