Rusty Lake

We are Rusty Lake:

Creators of the praised Cube Escape series and the premium point-and-click adventures Rusty Lake Hotel and award-winning Rusty Lake: Roots.

Dear visitor,

Welcome to Rusty Lake, a surreal place where anything can happen. We offer you the most mysterious game series you'll ever play.

Why not try out our praised Cube Escape series first? Let the cubes guide you the eerie and atmospheric point-and-click adventures with an "escape room" feeling. Currently we have ten Cube Escape games taking place in the Rusty Lake universe. Cube Escape: Paradox is our latest installment which is combined with a short film! Download them for ten on iOS, Android or play on Desktop.

Next to our Cube Escape series we created three premium adventure games with unique story lines taking place in Rusty Lake as well. Serve deadly dinners to five animal-headed guests in Rusty Lake Hotel, expand the bloodline of the Vanderbooms in our award-winning adventure Rusty Lake: Roots or stop the ten plagues on a small island in Rusty Lake Paradise.

On the right, you can find a list of all our games sorted by release date.

On our game portal you can play our free games but also find other adventure, room escape and puzzle games. We selected games with a fascinating story, ambiance or unique game-play made by more forward-looking developers.

Check out our blog, social media or newsletter for new updates and content.

We wish you a pleasant stay in Rusty Lake!

Read more about the studio
  • AwardIndie Prize, Best Narrative Award ‘16
  • AwardTop 10 Google Play Indie Games Contest ‘17
  • AwardPremiere Paradox - A Rusty Lake Film @ LIFF '18
  • Award"Most Inventive" App nomination Google Play Awards ‘18
  • AwardFinalist Google Play Indie Games Contest ‘20

The Past Within – Devlog 2

The Past Within – Devlog 2


Thank you so much for your support of our first devlog! Today we will share more about why The Past Within became a multiplayer game and the main inspirations during this process.

Although we started very enthusiastically on this project, it took us almost a year to design the first 3D single-player experience with the right structure. With most of the Rusty Lake games, we could always rely on the boundaries of a 2D room together with the core gameplay concept of gathering items and solving puzzles. But when creating a 3D puzzle game we needed a new way of thinking and we had to start from scratch. Of course, we played The Room, Birdcage and similar puzzle games which are designed around 3D objects, but our plan was to intertwine the 3D and 2D world. The shoebox idea (Devlog 1) was the base of this design, and we were eager to prove this could give a unique touch to this genre.


First testplays with a 3D Puzzle Cube

While working on the first levels we got the opportunity to showcase a demo of The Past Within at Indie Megabooth, PAX East, March 2020. This event became the perfect milestone for us to finalise and present a version of our first 3D cube game that had enough puzzle and story elements for players to test. For this demo, we created a tombstone-styled cube with a peephole that players could use to get hints from the inside, to solve puzzles on the outside. It was a big challenge to create a 3D cube that had a similar (graphic) style and feeling as a Rusty Lake game. Our usual drawings and designs used in the 2D world didn’t easily translate to the 3D world. However, after playing with different concepts and models, our team came up with a style that, in our opinion, managed to blend in both worlds perfectly.


Showcasing the first demo of The Past Within at the IndieMEGABOOTH, PAX East 2020

During PAX, fans and players really enjoyed the first demo of The Past Within; interacting with a 3D cube was fun, the puzzles worked well, and everyone confirmed that the style and gameplay maintained the Rusty Lake feel, while also being new and exciting. Unfortunately for us, before and after the event it became clear that the game, in that initial state, was lacking certain elements. The more we brainstormed about creating new levels while keeping the inside (2D) and the outside (3D) gameplay interesting enough, the more we realized that we couldn’t make the puzzles and (the progressing) story for this project as fun and engaging as we normally could.


It was a month after the event that we got the idea of separating the rooms completely. What if one player is playing in 2D and the other in 3D? Creating two separate experiences would turn out to be the key for this project. It was not easy to throw almost everything we had in the bin and change the experience completely, but the more we thought about moving from a single-player experience to a multiplayer experience, the more excited we got. We were already big fans of awesome multiplayer escape room games like Tick Tock: A Tale for Two, the We Were Here series and we also had fun playing Keep Talking, Nobody Explodes (all amazing games we strongly recommend to everyone). The idea of having two separate worlds was a much better fit for a 2 player experience, and after a while, it almost felt weird that we never thought of this idea before. The second question we needed to ask ourselves was: should this be an online or offline experience? In the end, we settled on an offline experience and centred the gameplay around the communication between both players, similar to Tick Tock and Keep Talking, Nobody Explodes.


First concept of a 2-player experience; helping each other to progress

As you can see, we had quite the wild ride till this point. After the challenge of creating a Rusty Lake experience in 3D with the right style and an interesting gameplay concept, we were now faced with a new difficulty: creating puzzles for a 2-player experience. We will go
more in-depth about creating puzzles for Rusty Lake and The Past Within in the next devlog, so please stay tuned for that!

Thank you for reading! We hope to see you in the next one!

Rusty Lake

PS. Now we’re here why not have a contest as well!! ? Tag us in your Albert fanart on social media (or send it via contest[at]rustylake[dot]com) and we’ll giveaway a T-shirt to 5 of our favourite submissions!

42 responses to “The Past Within – Devlog 2”

  1. iliad says:


  2. Fermi says:

    You rock a lot, I cannot wait for playing it! Thank you all, I hope to work like you someday!

  3. ROBBERT says:

    could not be better
    This is great✨

  4. 4iu4fy says:

    I’m very excited! I can’t wait

  5. A guy thats gonna lock his windows tonight says:

    Damn, im actualy play we were here together and was just playing the room, is the rusty lake team watching me?

  6. Nerdy says:

    This is awesome
    I can’t wait!!

  7. Icy says:

    Great work as a,ways!

  8. Tecyoshi says:

    I would offer my soul if I could play this early

  9. Christoffer says:


  10. Abeer says:

    Hey guys just commenting to let you know I wholeheartedly support everything you guys do and don’t you ever feel that there isn’t a big enough audience for your games because there is, and the way you’re making these, your audience can only increase!
    Lots of love

  11. Tavo says:

    I hope to play it soon and that it has relevance in the story

  12. sailorknightwing says:

    I LOVE Tick Tock and Keep Talking! I’m going to needle my husband to play the series too so he can be ready to play with me when Past comes out!

  13. Benjamin says:

    The anticipation is killing me…can’t wait! Ballpark a release date? Maybe? haha

  14. Azrael says:

    when will the game be released

  15. Valentina says:

    Awesome! I want to play it already!

  16. Laura says:

    Awww ya lo quiero jugar :3

  17. Lai says:

    eu e meu primo estamos ansiosos para jogar!!!!

  18. Bondx says:

    oh that’s pretty gooood!i will keep waiting till you finish it!(though i really want to play,haha?

  19. Jean Amaguaya says:

    Great, I hope to play it soon!

  20. Monkey says:

    This is amazing! I love that you’re always striving for higher standards in your game innovations. Thank you for being so dedicated to your fan base!

  21. LB says:

    I can’t play it on my own? Thats a pity! I played all the games. Will it stop here?

  22. Heike says:

    Ich freue mich drauf! Es wird gut werden, wie alles, was ihr macht.

  23. Emily B says:

    This looks so great and I’m excited to play whenever it’s ready! Thanks for sharing updates and also, omg that stained glass!?!??? Is AMAZING

  24. Satscout says:

    When the time comes that all the 1P people who will not be able to play give up and start straying from the Lake… maybe the answer will be to allow 1P OR 2P, where a 1P experience will let the player toggle between inner and outer views. Because I will be one of the ones who can’t do 2P but will be sorry to miss this. It looks like it would have been a good game.

    • Redwood says:

      Yes, and it can be so challenging to get friends or family into a new game series, especially one that’s not in their usual genre or format.

  25. yjyjj says:

    Cool. But I have no freinds…!!

  26. shade says:

    I’ll never stray from the Lake, I’m totally fascinated by the overall feel. Though, reading Satscout post, I started wondering if I’ll be really able to involve a second player up to the point of completing the game as I did for every Rusty Lake release. If only you could include a possibility to play both gamers on one’s own it would be great! Pleaseee….

  27. Johanna says:

    No. 3D is a bad option. Why change anything when having a working concept?? Not good.

  28. Eiman says:

    I am sooooo excited to try it and play it .
    I always recommend rusty lake to my friends but now we can play it together..i looooove this idea sooooo much ♡♡♡♡♡♡♡

  29. Chip says:

    I’m requesting a way to play this solo. It’s not a matter of being unable to find someone to play with; it’s a matter of specifically wanting the ability to play alone, especially on a first playthrough.
    I don’t want to rely on someone else to help me progress. I don’t want someone slowing me down, and I also don’t want someone showing me information before I’m ready for it.
    I want to experience both “perspectives” without spoilers. Interacting with someone else playing the other perspective (before I’ve had the chance to do so) necessarily robs me of some of that experience forever.
    I don’t want to rely on someone being available each time I get the urge to replay the game. And when I do, I don’t want to feel like I can’t slow down and enjoy the atmosphere because I’m making someone else wait on me.
    I understand that there are people who will enjoy playing this game with others. Please understand that many of us won’t.

  30. mr.Duda says:

    Just get a second mobile phone (or borrow it from someone) and play solo – that’s a solution for solo play. Definitely on it.

  31. Chip says:

    Yeah, I thought about playing on PC + phone, or getting a second Steam account. It just shouldn’t be necessary to resort to such tactics.

  32. Karo says:

    I can’t wait to recommend it to my friends to play it with me!!!

  33. Hatty says:

    It’s so cool!!!

  34. Jenna says:

    Since I am not good at English, I can’t interpret everything, so I read all the writing by using a translator.ꉂꉂ(ᵔᗜᵔ*)
    Wonderful!!? For some reason, it makes me sad that I don’t live in an English-speaking country?
    Every time I play a game, I’m moved and impressed….
    Soooo wonderful and perfect always!!!
    When I was a 17-year-old senior in high school, I was preparing for an exam to enter college, and yet I was still preoccupied with doing Rusty Lake lol
    And now, for the first time, I’ve been on the Rusty Lake site. And I signed up for the newsletter too!?
    I’m looking forward to your game series all the time??
    We are having a hard time during the covid-19 period, but please cheer up?‍♀️?‍♀️ଘ(੭ˊᵕˋ)੭* ੈ✩‧₊˚
    Always be careful of covid-19, and please stay healthy(*´ ˘ `*).。oO ( ♡ )
    Rusty Lake forever!!!!

  35. Angela says:

    I’ve been waiting for a new release from you. You are my favorite game developers. Unfortunately I can only play solo (and prefer to) as well. I am glad you are exploring new things though. Maybe you can work on a small solo game as well. Love you Rusty Lake!

  36. Eya says:

    Seriously can’t wait TT, 2 players sound sooooo awesome

  37. Icebear says:

    Amazing! Love you guys so much! I can’t wait to play it (though I don’t have have a friend)

  38. Juniper says:

    A complete surprise!!!!!!
    can’t wait for this❤

  39. Siamak says:

    You guys are awesome ❤❤

  40. oli says:

    once in 2018 my best friend came to me with a scape room game. now everytime i see spirals and squeares my brain starts to work on an order to them. cant wait to play the past within!!

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