Ten Fascinating Facts About The Cube

Secrets to the show’s most formidable character revealed.

Each week you’ve held your breath as contestants take on challenges that look like they should be easy peasy, but tend to require more than nine lives to master.

From throwing to catching, estimating to balancing, memorising to reacting, everyday Aussies compete in games that test their mental and physical ability. And all from within a 4m x 4m x 4m Perspex cube, with limited time.

The host is superstar funny man Andy Lee, the prize is a whopping $250,000, and the moving parts that make up the ultimate skill test are countless.

Here are 10 fascinating facts about The Cube:

  1. Each team starts with nine lives. And each game they play is worth dollars. It might take you several lives to win a game. If you win one, you win some money. If you lose a game on your ninth life, you go home empty-handed.
  2. In the UK version of the show, only one person has ever managed to beat The Cube -- Olympian Mo Farrah – who took out the top prize during a 2012 charity event.
  3. The show uses ‘bullet time’. Which is a slow-motion effect – think Neo bending over backwards with bullets flying over him in The Matrix – that requires a whopping 123 cameras!
  4. The Cube itself is kind of sentient -- as well as occasionally speaking, she communicates by illuminating in colours and patterns. There’s blue for thinking, gold for winning and red for losing. Red is also used for when she’s angry, but with a different pattern. You don’t wanna make The Cube angry.
  5. There are more than 30 games at The Cube’s disposal, with many of them entailing the use of several thousand balls, of various kinds and sizes. Stage balls, weighted balls, sand-filled balls, stainless steel balls, ping pong balls, squash balls, racket balls, solid balls. So many balls.
  6. And what’s more, these balls had to be sourced from five different countries, across four different continents.
  7. There’s nothing worse than greasy fingerprints on your big Perspex cube. At first it took eight people, scissor lifts, and around six hours to polish. Regular maintenance got that down to four people in two hours. The Cube is constantly cleaned throughout filming. Please, no touching!
  8. Setting up a game in The Cube is kind of like playing The Cube. Except it takes six people, and they only have 15 minutes and one life.
  9. Getting a Cube is a whole other thing. Ours had to be built in one location, then broken down and reconstructed in the arena. Construction took about a week.
  10. Finally, weighing in at a few tonnes, our Cube is no pushover.