Friday, July 1, 2011

Freebie Friday: Prometheus

Genre: Puzzle (First Person)
Developer: Quantum Flux Games
Publisher: Quantum Flux Games
Release year: 2009

Freebie type: Demo
Paid option: Not yet.

Zolgar paid: Nothing!
Beaten: yes
Zolgar's rating: 6/10
Replayability: Low

I was first planning to review one F2P MMO or another for my first Freebie Friday, but let's face it. F2Ps come and go faster than a John. I stumbled across this little gem by complete accident though, and instantly fell in love with it.

Prometheus is.. well, on the surface it seems like a Portal rip off. Oh who am I kidding? It IS a Portal rip off. It's a mod for a FPS engine (Unreal), which uses an atypical mechanic to create a rather unique puzzle game. But you know what? It does it well! So well in fact, that I decided to review a fairly short demo (of a game that doesn't look like it'll actually get released).

The game play in Prometheus is simple and honestly, not all that original. It's been the central focus of several Flash games.. however, Prometheus brings it to 3D and actually puts a story behind it. A story that leaves you wondering what the bloody hell is going on, and wanting more of it at the end.

The game starts up with you coming to your senses in a testing chamber (Portal anyone?) initially you hear a brief conversation between two people, then you're welcomed to the Prometheus Project by a man who then explains that it's a project dealing with quantum states. In the brief tutorial he gives you, you are given control of a device that will split you in to multiple Quantum States.

Your Quantum States are like clones, to an extent, except that the whole thing exists within a set amount of time (say a minute and a half), and each Quantum State does a specific task.

So you run in, trigger a switch and then activate the next quantum state. You watch the previous 'you' hit the switch, and then you go through the door it opens. Simple, huh? Well, it gets a little more complex when you have a total of 5 quantum states running around, and a lot more than just 1 switch that opens 1 door. And then you get a gun. Yes, a frelling gun.

After a couple missions, you switch over to using the Epimetheus Device, which works a lot like the Prometheus device except instead of 5 Quantum States, you only get 3.. but you can control each one multiple times.

When you get to Epimetheus it's a lot like playing a really weird game of Simon. Watch your clock, run through the game the same way each time and remember when and how you did each thing, so that you don't screw one of your other two Quantum States up.

This is all tied together by a bit of a story that, much like Portal you're left to try and piece most of it together as you go.. and at the end it really leaves you hanging and wondering what the heck is going on.

Much like Portal it seems to get slightly easier as you go on, even though technically the puzzles are actually harder, because you start thinking with por- I mean Quantum States.

Now for the games flaws:
First it's short. I mean.. really damn short. If you played Portal and thought it was short, Prometheus is even shorter. But hey, it's a free game. It may not entertain you for a long time, but you'll more than get your money's worth. Depending on how quickly you solve the puzzles, you're looking at between half an hour, and an hour and a half to beat it.

It's got very little replayability. Mostly just trying to get all the achievements or beating levels faster. A slight positive note about the achievements though: it's not like a lot of games where you get an achievement for every bloody action you take! “You shot a gun!” “You walked 5 feet!” “You ate a cheeseburger!” Seriously, WTF? Game companies need to learn that achievements are meaningless when you get them every 2 seconds! Prometheus only has 10 achievements, there's the standards (beating the game, switching to Epimetheus, things like that.) The others are all things you .. don't have to do in the midst of game play anyways.

It's an indie game from '09, based on the Unreal Developers Kit, so honestly.. it's graphics suck a little.

The female protagonist is no where near as cool and well designed as the girl from Portal.

In closing: seriously, it's a free game that has a lot of potential. Go play it.

“Oh god, GlaDOS got a hold of the Prometheus Device! RUN!”


1 comment:

  1. I remember watching Chris play a non-3d game with a similar concept, I think it was time travel instead of clones. But it looked like a lot of fun and this sounds like it would be a nice one to kill an evening or two with.