- Time powers are fun to mess around with, shotgun blast to a frozen enemy's face FTW!
- Weak storyline, brain-dead AI, copycatted gameplay elements feel tired
All in all, TimeShift is an enjoyable first-person shooter but it probably won't make you forget about the titles that it so liberally borrows from.
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TimeShift is like a luckless stage magician who goes on stage only to find that the magicians who performed before him have already done all of his tricks.
The game features an anonymous hero running around in a neato suit of armour that features a constantly recharging shield, a dystopian world ruled by an oppressive regime that you have to help bring down and awesome time bending powers that give you the leg up on your enemies.
If those elements sound familiar, it's because we've seen them all before in Halo 3, Half-Life 2 and FEAR. There's nothing wrong with imitating other games that have come before you -- heck, some companies have turned that concept into a science -- but TimeShift's extreme case of me-too-itis ends up hurting it in the long run.
Maybe if the game had actually met its original development schedule, its gameplay mechanics could have come across as innovative, but at this point in time, TimeShift comes across as derivative and a little tired.
On the clock
That doesn't mean the game isn't good. It definitely has its moments, especially once the time bending powers become unlocked. There's something definitely satisfying about freezing time, chucking a grenade into a pack of soldiers and watching as the hilarity ensues. But as we were playing the game, we just couldn't shake the feeling that we have done it all before.
It doesn't help that the game has some glaring faults. The time travel themed story is ineffectively told and the enemy AI is rather brain-dead. You'll also face overwhelming numbers during most battles but the good thing is that your time powers provide a nice edge. The time reversal power is also put to limited use in environmental puzzles but they're rather easy and come along far too infrequently.
Out of time
All in all, TimeShift is an enjoyable first-person shooter but it probably won't make you forget about the titles that it so liberally borrows from. The one potential high point lies in the multiplayer component; although we didn't have a chance to play it at press time, if it's done right, the time powers could provide an interesting wrinkle to the online shooting experience. But we'll just have to wait and see about that, won't we?
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