Quantum Break Review
Quantum Break, Microsoft Studios latest publication Developed by Remedy Entertainment. This Sci-Fi, choose your own action – adventure, third person shooter is one of the most graphically detailed gaming experiences of its generation. The detail is astounding, actors like Shawn Ashmore “Bobby Drake from X-men”, and Aidian Gillen “Petyr Baelish from Game of Thrones” who play the protagonist and antagonist respectively, look so amazingly detailed sometimes it’s hard to tell if you’re watching the live action cinematics or the in game cut scenes.
Quantum Break “in my opinion” is first and foremost a story before a game. The gameplay almost seems to be designed just to help you make decisions in the live action Episodic story that unfolds as you progress through the chapters. A story “might I add” that is exceptionally captivating; You, Jack Joyce, start your adventure by receiving a phone call from your old pal Paul Serene. You arrive at the university he works at to find that not everything is going his way. Funding is about to be cut and he needs to take some drastic measures to prove that his time machine “Yes he is building a time machine” actually works before the project is cancelled. You help him set it up and in he goes, but something goes terribly wrong. An explosion in the core of the machine sets off a chain of events that will eventually lead to the End Of Time.
As time arounds you become more and more unstable you have to use your powers “yes the accident in the lab gave you an amazing amount of control over localised time lines” to save the universe from ending.
At the end of each of the four chapters of gameplay, you get to view things from the perspective of your old friend come arch enemy Paul Serene. Here is where you will make the larger decisions that will affect the outcome of the next live action scene and possibly the events of the next chapter. Your goal as Jack is to fight through the waves and waves of Monarch employees “Pauls company” travel back through time and change the course of history, but it’s not that simple. I don’t want to give to much away so I’ll leave it there.
The story line, aside from some really cheesy terminology regarding time and the constant MS product placement reminding you that Microsoft published the game, is amazingly captivating. I screwed up my whole sleeping pattern this week because I couldn’t stop playing/watching it.
The game itself is really enjoyable; you have an incredible feeling of power as you tear through the hordes of Monarch soldiers, some of which are fitted with devices that give them powers similar to yours. The control you have over time allows you to speed around the room like the Flash, slow down time in isolated areas to stop bullets, slow down enemies, and even create a shield around yourself. There is a slight RPG aspect to the way you progress your powers, by collecting tokens in the game world called Chronons you can purchase upgrades for your set of abilities. The controls are extremely intuitive (note: I played it on PC) and it doesn’t take long for you to learn how to best use your powers, taking into account their cool downs and the capacity to stack abilities on top of each other. Albeit the combat / movement controls are a little dicky, this still makes for a really intuitive and immersive gaming experience. But there is nothing more frustrating then not being able to mount a small wooden crate because you have approached it at the wrong angle, or kicking a wall then pushing yourself off of it instead of scaling the wall. These are the moments in the story that cause you to remember you are playing a game. You might also become truly frustrated when you’re about to launch a shot gun shell to the face of a time slowed enemy and effects no damage because you’re just a little too close. Control flaws like this are a little 2005 and, to be blunt, it’s a real shame that a game with such a high budget like Quantum Break possess these blemishes.
That being said the overall presentation of the game is on par with what we have come to expect from Remedy Entertainment, after titles like Max Payne and Alan Wake, Quantum Break is another impressive step forward in the right direction. And not to give any SPOILERS but we might be expecting a sequel if the last scene in the game is anything to go on.
The world around you is very realistic in its graphically stunning visuals, even in the feel and ambiance. You are constantly reminded that the world is going to end via small “Matrix like” glitches in time. Radio news announcements, emails sent from character to character, notice boards and billboards, diary entries, even random objects throughout the game world can add a massive amount of immersion. The world is full of extra content so I think it’s really worthwhile replaying through the game and exploring the world, this can even change the course of events in the future, and the past. This along with a strange soundtrack gives you a really unsettled feeling like anything can have an effect on your future as Jack Joyce. Because of this the overall presentation is excellent and wildly immersive.
I would strongly recommend Quantum Break as a must play for any sci-fi lovers out there and I hope that it will turn into a very impressive franchise.
Check out my gameplay video embedded below, and don’t forget to check out our YouTube channel for heaps of video interviews and gameplay videos.
About: Simon Mawson
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