In an era where it’s hard to tell where a game stops and an interactive movie begins, Remedy (Alan Wake, Max Payne) is looking to blur the line completely through their upcoming Xbox One exclusive, Quantum Break. In what is being described as “the ultimate Remedy game”, Quantum Break will mix the drama of a live-action television series with the intense thrill of a third person shooter.
Quantum Break follows the story of an experiment gone wrong, and the three characters whose lives have been altered with time-manipulating powers because of it. While it falls within the genre of an action styled third person shooter, not unlike their power-wielding protagonists, the game has a few tricks up its sleeve.
Through a series of unique game mechanics that aim to distinguish Quantum Break from mere Quick Time Event sequences, the game seems as if it is trying to bridge a gap between watching and playing. The game features passages of gameplay, each of which are followed by an ‘episode’ of a live- action television series. It is hoped that players will engage with the action packed third person shooter sequences, but be able to kick back and immerse themselves in the live-action segments as they watch the story come to life. Not much is known on the number or duration of these live-action segments, but based on the emphasis shown in early teaser footage and interviews, it is expected that they will play a major part. Interestingly, players also have the option of watching the episodes immediately after unlocking them, or later on devices such as a smartphone or an iPad.
Choices having consequences is not unique among games, especially in recent years, however Quantum Break wants to do it differently. Creative Director Sam Lake urges players to choose their ‘director’s cut’ of the show, and plans to do so by offering a branching storyline and the ability to play as two protagonists, Jack and Beth…as well as the antagonist, Paul Serene. By playing as the villain, you’ll be offered choices through a system of ‘junctions’ that allow you to choose a specific future, altering present events and glimpsing the consequences before they even have a chance to happen.
While no concrete release date has been set, Quantum Break is expected to be released sometime this year. With a slew of amazing games for the Xbox One coming out throughout the year, we will have to wait and see whether Quantum Break has what it takes to make a mark. Hopefully it won’t be too long as wait, because just as in the game’s aptly chosen tagline, time is the fire in which we burn.
Written by Miranda Nelson