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Super T.I.M.E. Force puts a fresh emphasis on the process of encountering an obstacle, dying and then returning with the knowledge to overcome that hazard. The game's central mechanic lets you rewind the scene and start again, playing alongside the ghost of your past self.

When your previous existence is affecting the game environment at the same time that you are, the typical process of progression changes fundamentally. You may finish a boss fight in 10 seconds, because you've spent the last ten minutes positioning your other bodies in the right locations to bring the guy down.

The time mechanic is hinged upon several different character classes in Super T.I.M.E. Force. There's Shield Dude, Machine Gun Dude, Sniper Girl and Bazooka Guy -- they all have proper names but, like most of the story and things surrounding the shooting and time travel, it's best discovered for yourself. Capy also has a fifth class, Acrobatic Guy, they're not showing here at PAX East. I'm told he has more agility and mobility options than his cohorts and, like everyone else, he'll present interesting strategic options outside of "shoot everything."

You could start a level as Shield Guy, carving out a path through the mire bullets and projectiles clogging the screen, and deliberately die at a certain point. Next, you could spawn as Machine Gun Guy and follow in Shield Dude's wake as he provides ample cover to shoot from. That's just one example of the depth of strategy here in Super T.I.M.E. Force, which appears to be a simple chunky-pixel platformer at first glance.


Another layer of complexity is added when you save fallen comrades. So, in the example above, when you stumble upon Shield Guy's grave, you can revive him as a sort of living checkpoint. If you die in your current guise, you can pick up from where you saved him. Repeat the path-carving process again, if you'd like, or employ a completely different strategy.

It's a good thing you have those checkpoints-- Super T.I.M.E. Force can be difficult at times, though that difficulty is scaled down considerably the more you manipulate time. I tried to treat Super TIME Force like every other run-and-gun platformer at first, but I quickly discovered Super TIME Force is anything but.

Capybara wouldn't tell me when Super T.I.M.E. Force coming out (it's not guaranteed for this year), or how many Earth dollars it'll cost. If only there was a trick for going forward in time ...

This article was originally published on Joystiq.

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