Quantum Conundrum review: brain-boggler or dot-to-dot?

Quantum Conundrum is a difficult game to review. Not because of any particular quirks with the game itself, it's just that it's very hard not to draw comparisons with Portal 2, which would be unfair (especially given that Portal 2 is a boxed retail release and Quantum Conundrum is a $15 downloadable title). Portal 2 is, by all accounts, a phenomenal game. It holds a 95 critic aggregate on Metacritic and has been awarded endless Game of the Year awards. It's a once in a generation game, featuring great gameplay, visually stunning and imaginative environments, and innovative and captivating storytelling with genuine humour. Most franchises struggle to get even one of these things right; Portal 2 gets the hat trick.

And the trouble is that Quantum Conundrum is inherently a very similar game. It is a first person puzzler, featuring a unique gadget used to solve environment-based puzzles with an emphasis on platforming, and a disembodied guide that provides commentary as you progress through the levels. It's even directed by Kim Swift, one of the team that worked on the original Portal. But ignoring comparisons with the Portal series and focusing solely on Quantum Conundrum, the game has much to be commended. The concept is great; you use an Inter-dimensional Shift Device (or IDS glove) to shift between 4 dimensions (Heavy, Fluffy, Slow Time and Anti-gravity) to solve various puzzles scattered throughout your uncle's manor.

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