facebook rss twitter

Timeshift – Hands On

by Nick Haywood on 20 August 2005, 00:00

Tags: TimeShift, Atari (EPA:ATA), Vivendi Universal Interactive (NYSE:VIV), PC, Xbox 360, FPS

Quick Link: HEXUS.net/qabos

Add to My Vault: x

Timeshift – Hands On

Timeshift – Hands On

So what do you do when you’ve pretty much ruled the world with Unreal Tournament 2004? What’s the next challenge? How do you carry on bringing innovation to the gaming scene? These are the rather introspective questions that Kyle Peschel asked himself before deciding to embark on a new FPS… and that FPS is called Time Shift.

Sitting down with Kyle for a go on Time Shift, he explained his thinking behind the game. In essence, Kyle believes that one thing missing from games in general and FPSs in particular is any sort of real innovation. To some extent, what he says is true. Most FPSs nowadays are just a variation on a theme… or a slightly new way of doing an old trick. Max Payne, Punisher and Matrix all have their versions of bullet time, no shooter worth it’s salt would dream of not having alternate fire, dual wield and more rocket launchers and grenades than a Rambo film… so other than setting the game in a different era of history, what is there to really differentiate from one FPS to another?

This is the question Kyle posed himself before setting out with Time Shift, and although Time Shift follows many of the FPS tenets, it has a new kick to it that hasn’t been seen or done before and the name of the game gives it away… it’s time control. Yes, yes, I know you’re all screaming ‘Prince of Persia: Sands of Time’ but just hang on a second and we’ll let Kyle explain:

Lot’s of people say Prince of Persia, but the time travel in Prince of Persia is really an “Oh crap!” button. When you miss that jump and are plummeting to the spikes in the bottom of the pit, you hit the button and rewind back to before you leapt… it saves the 2 minute load on the the PS2 as well... Time Shift is different, because of how you control time, you are still separate from it. You’re in your own ‘time bubble’, so if you fall off a ledge, you’ll still smack into the ground, it’s just how fast or slowly you do it from an outside view.”

What Kyle means is that rewinding, slowing or stopping time for short periods affects everyone EXCEPT you… after all, you are the guy inside the time travelling suit… no point slowing down time if you slow down too as you’d not notice any difference. So that’s Time Shift’s big hook… you can control time in small bursts. Now, at first glance, that doesn’t exactly sound exciting does it? But if you just think for a moment what you could do if you knew everything that was going to happen ten seconds before it happened, imagine what you could do then. Kyle has, and it’s been so well implemented into Time Shift that it’s not juts a frilly extra on the gameplay… the gameplay revolves around it.