Hands-on with Quantum League – 1.21 Gigawatts
Quantum League is a truly unique experience. It’s not often that a videogame comes along that you can’t really compare to anything else. Quantum League is one of those games. Yes, it’s a first-person shooter in an arena but that’s where standard mechanics stop.
Time travel and paradoxes are the real name of the game. In an alternate 2020 in which time travel was invented in the 1980s, it became so commonplace that it was as ubiquitous as the internet.
Thus, time travel based sports started to become popular and Quantum League was born.
It’s actually quite difficult to describe Quantum League but here goes…
You play in 1v1 or 2v2 matches in either deathmatch or capture and play across multiple modes that last 10 seconds each. During each 10 second round, you need to attack the enemy, gain good ground and try to survive.
Once the 10 seconds is over, you start the round all over again, except this time, you’re a time clone of yourself. And, you fight alongside your previous version. After three rounds, you’ll be fighting alongside multiple versions of yourself and against multiple versions of the enemy.
Where things start to get really tricky is when you start creating paradoxes. For example, if you die in a round, you continue to move and control your character as though you hadn’t died. Then, in a future round, if you kill the time clone that killed you, that clone will no longer have died and can continue on along the path you recorded.
That means, your clone may be able to take out other clones, capture the point and seal the victory. And when you do manage to pull off an amazing paradox that totally changes the way the round plays out, it’s an incredible feeling.
While Quantum League has a cartoony aesthetic and appears to share some commonality with Overwatch and Fortnite, it has very little in common with either game. For a start, there are no individual heroes with different powers in Quantum League. There are different characters, but essentially, they play the same.
As for weapons, as you go into each round, you choose which weapon you’ll use from a total of; sniper rifle, shotgun, grenade launcher, laser and SMG. You also have a pistol equipped at all times. Whatever you choose, that’s the only weapon you have access to during that loop.
By choosing appropriate weapons for the round, you’ll give yourself the ability to make effective plays. However, you always run the risk of choosing the wrong weapon for each situation, which makes the pistol very handy indeed.
If you can manage to get those last few shots off and take your enemies out, you’ll be in an even better position when the next round comes around.
One other interesting thing to consider when you play Quantum League are the health packs. When you’re shot and taken out of the round, if you manage to wander over to a health pack, you can bring yourself back and rejoin the action.
This gives you all sorts of additional strategies to work with. You can deliberately get yourself killed so you can revive yourself and use that to your advantage later. You could make sure you run over a med-pack when you’re alive and ensure your future clone will keep fighting, even if it’s killed.
It may sound overly complex but it doesn’t take long to get the hang of things. It’s actually quite natural after a round or two and then you start to develop strategies and theories about how you can win. Quantum League is as much a shooter as it is a puzzle game and it’s a wonderful marriage of the two.
Having recently been announced for PS4, Switch and Xbox One and with cross-play in the works, Quantum League has huge potential to draw a large audience and player base and my fingers are crossed that it does.
Nimble Giant Entertainment is onto something very special and I can’t wait to see where it goes.
Nimble Giant Entertainment provided PowerUp! with a digital copy of the closed beta.