When someone is thinking in a black-and-white manner, it's often seen as a bad thing. It's seen as a failure to bring together the positives and negatives of a situation into something that would be more sensible, or the inability to find the middle ground. Despite this, Shift Quantum
is a game that forces players to think in black and white, because the world in which the cyber-noir puzzle platformer takes place relies on the differences between the two extremes for players to make progress.
Axon Vertigo is a company that professes to offer significantly improved artificial intelligence by playing their Shift Quantum gaming solution when you're connected to their system. You're supposed to feel happier and more fulfilled after doing so. Unable to resist the temptation, you offer to become a test subject and help them with their research. You control subject 32763, an avatar trapped in the depths of your own black and white mind. The only way he can escape is to use the shifting gameplay mechanic to escape the maze.
Shifting changes the world's perspective from black-on-white to white-on-black, and vice versa. By doing this, players can travel through areas that were previously barriers, but their previous routes might now be blocked. At its simplest, it can also rotate the world 180 degrees, but as players progress, more gameplay mechanics are introduced to make the levels more challenging. Blocks can be moved to create new routes, spike traps must be avoided, and there are fans that will either help you reach new places or throw you straight into one of those aforementioned spike traps. There are a variety of buttons that have different purposes, like generating movable blocks, or switching some areas of the level to a different colour. You'll have to make use of all of those mechanics if you're to reach the clearly marked exit door located somewhere in each of the game's 100+ levels. Take a look at the newly released gameplay trailer to get an idea of what to expect.
If this gameplay seems familiar, it may be because you've already tried one of the Shift
flash games created by Antony Lavelle, of which this title is a spiritual successor. If not, Fishing Cactus' own Shifting World
on 3DS took the gameplay into a 3D world. Shift Quantum
returns to a 2D world and while it seemingly simplifies the gameplay mechanics, it doesn't make the puzzles any less difficult. Although we didn't see it in action, players will also be able to create their own levels, as well as download those created by other players for even more of a challenge. Shift Quantum
is the first of the Shift
games to make it to Steam and its release is fairly imminent, arriving on May 29th in North America, and on May 30th in all other regions.