Portal Designer Says There’s No Pressure to Top GLaDOS with Quantum Conundrum
Debuted at least year’s PAX Prime extravaganza in leaden gray Seattle, Quantum Conundrum introduced us to another puzzler by Portal designer Kim Swift. However, one has to ask: is there any of that Portal versus Quantum Conundrum pressure?
Swift denied it, and in an interview with Eurogamer, explained that hanging on to all of your past achievements can be detrimental to game design.
“Y’know, I try not to think about it, mainly because I think my profession is to make fun for people,” said Swift. “I’m supposed to make fun and interesting things for people to play, and I think if you’re getting so hung up on what you did before and trying to top that, it’s a really bad attitude. You’re not going to want to make fun any more as you’re so worried about competing with yourself. I don’t want to think about it that way.”
Quantum Conundrum will be a downloadable title, due out this summer on PC, PSN, and XBLA. Published by Square Enix, this title once again will feature a first-person puzzler mechanic. While gamers will star to make the comparisons, Swift insists that this wasn’t an attempt to tie the games together. Rather, she just likes making first-person puzzlers.
“When I left Valve I had in mind that I wanted to make another game kind of like Portal, just because I really enjoyed making Portal,” said Swift.
“I know how to make those kinds of games and in general I just want to make games that I want to play. I guess it’s kind of selfish on my part.”
Well, if it will help out with the attitude of making something incredibly fun, we’re all down for it. With players switching dimensions to solve the numerous puzzles, some wonder if this was removed from the final Portal product. Swift says that she never had the idea until post-Valve.
“I didn’t really have it until I left Valve,” said Swift. “I knew I wanted to work on more games like Portal but I didn’t have any particular game design in mind. I started working at Airtight on a different prototype but that got cancelled so our team decided to pitch ideas internally and decide what we wanted to work on next.
“I wasn’t the only person to pitch a game forward on my team. I think we had a total of five pitches we were trying to decide between. We all voted and decided on the concept of Quantum Conundrum, just because it was really easy for us to prototype it and see really quickly if it was fun.
The title has a release date to be announced, but Swift says that it currently stands at a solid ten hour play time for average players. She also confirmed that there’s going to be plenty of reason to come back for seconds.
“We have two different types of collectibles and we have a challenge system,” said Swift. “We’re clocking the number of times you shift dimensions as well as your time on each map. We have a leaderboard set up so you can compete to get the best score.”
Excited for Quantum Conundrum? We are. If released this summer, it most likely will be a headliner for Xbox’s annual Summer of Arcade.