After finishing Orange Box, I was on a FPS high. I played the demo of Timeshift and decided to continue with the full game. My hope was that it would be an FPS with the time shifting similar to Prince of Persia. That was not the case.
The story is entirely forgettable. You are a physicist working for the military and developing a time shifting suit. One of your fellow doctors goes rogue, stealing the Alpha version of the suit, and you, grabbing the Beta version, go after him. So you work you way from location to location arriving at a very unsatisfying boss battle. This game is supposed to be about time and its manipulation, but for some reason, it seems to take a back seat to straightforward action missions. I was hoping the time shifting in question also brought you backwards and forwards through time to complete missions, not just altering the present time. You are given the ability to stop, slow and reverse time; you have a time button (left bumper) to quickly slow down time. When a situation calls for stopping or reversing time, your time button changes to the appropriate solution, leaving you with no option to figure it out yourself. You use reverse maybe four times in the game to get past certain obstacles. You can manually change time by holding down the time button and selecting slow, stop or reverse, but there is really no need for reverse other than the scripted scenarios. Once you get the crossbow weapon, the game gets way too easy. You really need no other weapon for the rest of the game. This is because with all the other weapons, you can empty full clips on enemies and still not be able to bring them down. When using the crossbow however, much like the torque bow in Gears of war, the bolt sticks into an enemy and then explodes killing them in one shot. It also has a sniper scope, so it is the best at close range as well as long range. This makes the standard sniper rifle pointless. But the game then becomes very repetitive. Run into a room, slow down time and plug each enemy with a bolt, change back to real time, and watch everyone explode. It is satisfying at first, but soon becomes monotonous.
Visually, Timeshift is nice. Character designs are a little boring, but they all look good. Environments are impressive, and, for the most part, the game runs at 60 frames per second. There is a monitor refresh option that claims to make the game run smoother if it is off, but I didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t see any difference. Rain effects are very nicely done. It is really cool to watch how the rain splatters off of objects and creates pools of water in spots. This game also does time slowing better than FEAR, it refills fast enough and lasts long enough to get through big firefights. You will need to tweak the sound in the options menu, because the effects are a lot louder than the voices, making it sometimes impossible to hear your objectives from fellow soldiers.
Multiplayer is actually fun with fast-paced action and the use of time grenades is really cool. A nice amount of different multiplayer modes will keep players interested after they finish the campaign.
In conclusion, Timeshift is a decent game worthy of a weekend rental. If you enjoy FPSÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s like FEAR and are not concerned with story, you may enjoy this game. But it is one of those games that you will likely not remember in 6 months.