One cold afternoon, tucked away inside my non-insulated flat, I found myself playing Immortals Fenyx Rising. Unfortunately, I am not terribly fond of Immortals Fenyx Rising and was therefore not enjoying myself. It reeks of unoriginality and borrowed concepts and is just not fun to play. So, as I glided from statue to statue, I wondered what had happened to all the original concepts. Does the seven basic plot theory apply to video games too? Is it truly the case that video games are running out of ideas? I put down the controller, exhausted by the herculean task that is playing Immortals Fenyx Rising, and browsed Steam for my next gaming fix. Fortunately, to my pleasant surprise, I stumbled across Quantum League. While not always consistently fun, Quantum League offers up enough unique ideas and an extremely fun gameplay loop, that I found myself immediately enamoured.
“Quantum League’s core mechanic opens up a whole wormhole of possibilities and can take matches into unpredictable territory.”
Quantum League’s main selling point is in its unique clone mechanic. While this over-worked and under-slept reviewer will attempt to explain the core concepts behind it, it’s worth noting that this is truly something to behold in person. Each game starts with an initial round in which both teams must do their best to complete the primary objective. The round will last upwards of thirty seconds, and players may even fail to complete said objective. Once the round has ended, time will rewind, and the player will be tasked with completing the objective once more. However, this time around, their playthrough from the first round will be re-enacted by a clone of sorts. This core mechanic opens up a whole wormhole of possibilities and can take matches into unpredictable territory.
For example, one of the most creative uses of this mechanic is in the de-synchronisation of players. Essentially, if you die during a round, you can still continue to shoot and move. Your actions won’t affect anything in that round, but should you kill the version that killed you in the previous round before they manage to kill your clone, then the actions you performed once killed will be played out for real. It is almost impossible to explain the complexity of this mechanic in a matter of words. However, I assure you, it is far less complex in practice.
“Fortunately, if the mechanic does get too overwhelming, it is still an incredibly satisfying first-person shooter.”
Quantum League’s central mechanic is surprisingly easy to wrap your head around, especially after a round or two. When it all starts to piece together, rounds can be intensely fun. Strategising to best complete the objective may seem awfully complicated, but it can be a fairly comprehensible affair. Fortunately, if the mechanic does get too overwhelming, Quantum League is still an incredibly satisfying first-person shooter. You’re not necessarily required to perform these complex strategies, although doing so will significantly boost your chances of success.
Unfortunately, the complexity and options afforded by it can be detrimental to the game. Issues began to arise for me when I started to encounter more and more draws. Should you and your opponent both fail to complete the objective, the game doesn’t end in a tie. Instead, you are forced to replay. As games are often won by winning two out of three rounds, replaying a round can cause each game to get tediously long. Quantum League affords the player many possibilities for redemption when playing. Therefore there were far more draws than I was expecting. Ultimately, this led to several games lasting far too long and thus resulting in repetitive gameplay.
“I find Quantum League to be an exceptionally brilliant title.”
Another issue that plagues Quantum League is its lack of community. At the time of writing this review, it would often take several minutes to get into a game. Reading through the game’s Steam reviews, it would seem that a lack of players has been an issue for quite some time. Unfortunately, Quantum League doesn’t include a bot mode either. This means that unless you’ve got a friend to play with, you might spend a decent amount of time in the lobbies waiting to find other people to play with. If Quantum League had a bot mode, then this would alleviate this problem significantly. But as it stands, its lack of community may put some people off.
Aside from this, however, I find it extremely difficult to fault Quantum League. Whether it’s my overly-bubbly attitude at this point in time or my penchant for originality, I find Quantum League to be an exceptionally brilliant title. It is visually stunning and includes a large number of maps, characters and modes. Its minute-to-minute gameplay is enticingly engaging, and I rarely found myself to be bored.
After giving it a little rest to play other titles, I’ve constantly found myself wanting to jump back in and play another round. It certainly helps that the game is ludicrously cheap, especially for the amount of content you get. If you have a friend or two to play with, then I highly recommend Quantum League. It is an enjoyable title with a brilliantly unique premise and one I will be jumping into time and time again.