When Remedy Entertainment announced Quantum Break at E3 2013, we were quite excited about its concept. A video game crossing platforms with a live-action television show, both stories playing out concurrently.
There were a lot of questions back then, the most pertinent centred around how the show would manage to play at the same time as the game, and perhaps more importantly, how players would keep track if they began playing weeks, months, or years after launch.
The questions have finally been answered, and the concept we were once excited about is now one that does little more than raise an eyebrow.
The “television show” that follows along with Quantum Break is actually just a set of live-action cutscenes, albeit with Tuesday-night Shonda Rhimes-esque production values.
Sure, the cutscenes are about 22 minutes long, or network television length, minus the commercials, and they may indeed be very well produced (the gallery below seems to show off some well-directed scenes), but calling it a TV show may just be lying to gamers.
A spokesperson for Remedy Entertainment said that the television show will be pre-loaded with the game at launch, and it won’t be something that can be binge-watched a la Netflix. It also stands to reason that the series won’t make much sense without the game, and vice versa.
The way the series branches out is actually interesting. Depending on the decisions you make in the game, different “episodes” will play, presumably increasing replayability for gamers who want to come back to Quantum Break. We like the idea of branching paths and multiple storylines but can’t help but wonder that if there are more than a handful these moments, how many different scenes will need to be crafted to create an experience that doesn’t end up disjointed.
Quantum Break is a concept that we love, and we hope we’re as enthralled by it as the game’s creators are. But let’s stop calling a set of live-action cutscenes a television show, okay? Even if they have Shawn Ashmore.
Quantum Break launches April 5th, 2016 exclusively on Xbox One.