One of our favourite games of recent years was Portal. It had a simple, focused premise: use your ability to create wormholes to get from one end of a test lab to the other.
However, this was cleverly combined with some brain-melting physics-based puzzles and a very funny script too.
Last year’s sequel was just as good, if not better. Quantum Conundrum is a new puzzle game that feels very similar to Portal.
The game was designed by one of Portal’s original creators and you can feel the former game’s influence right from the start. Like Portal, Quantum Conundrum is played from a first-person point of view.
You play as the young nephew of mad scientist Professor Fitz Quadwrangle, who arrives at his uncle’s mansion only to discover that a disastrous experiment has left the scientist stranded in some kind of alternate universe.
The Professor’s disembodied voice guides you to an Interdimensional Shift Device; a glove that allows you to switch between dimensions at will.
Armed with this, your job is to power up a number of generators around the maze-like mansion, using the Shift Device to help you navigate through some puzzling obstacles along the way.
How to Shift Between Dimensions in the Game?
You start off with the ability to shift between the ‘normal’ dimension and the ‘fluffy’ dimension, where items are rendered light as a feather.
Thus, an impossibly heavy safe, for example, suddenly becomes light enough to carry over to a pressure plate, whereupon returning it to its normal non-fluffy weight will trigger the switch and allow you to proceed.
That’s a very simple example.
Quantum Conundrum’s puzzles become increasingly fiendish and over the course of the game further dimensions are introduced, including heavy, slow and reverse-gravity environments, each of which add a further layer of challenge to the proceedings.
The cartoon-like art style is a bit bland and the jokes are mostly weak but, as a budget-priced downloadable puzzler, Quantum Conundrum is good fun.
Just try not to draw too many comparisons with the game’s spiritual predecessor. Ultimately, Quantum Conundrum is blessed with neither Portal’s inspired design nor its razor-sharp wit.