Watch: Six time travel adventures that could have ended in disaster

I’ve written about this on the site so I shan’t go on about it, but there’s a really cool bit in Titanfall 2 that involves time travel.

As well as being a genuinely welcome surprise, this portion of Titanfall 2’s campaign got me thinking about video game time travel, insomuch as it always seems to go swimmingly. Indeed the more I thought about it, the more video games seemed to be dancing on a knife edge – always seeming to get away clear while playing around with stuff that’s pretty heavy duty (doc).

In recognition of the ease with which video game characters travel through time, Ian and I compiled the above list of six time travel adventures that could have very easily ended in disaster. Be warned, the video contains some heavy spoilers for Titanfall 2, The Legend of Zelda Majora’s Mask, Bioshock Infinite, Life is Strange, Singularity, Chrono Trigger and Super Time Force. And there I go spoiling the games on the list. If you have any suggestions of your own, however, please do add them in the comments below.

Video games remade in cardboard

In the 80s, popular video games such as Asteroids, Pac-Man and Centipede all found themselves recreated in cardboard at a time when board games still ruled the roost back at home. But then their popularity began to fade. What kid in their right mind would ask for Monopoly for Christmas when they could be wishing for a Nintendo 64 and four-player GoldenEye instead?

Board games have recently undergone a renaissance. Blockbuster German titles such as The Settlers of Catan (1995) and Carcassone (2000) began to inspire American game designers, who began to incorporate clever mechanics in their own games. Some credit these games with sparking . Since then, board games have been getting better and better at the same time as rapidly shooting up in popularity (and sales).

And so we find ourselves back where we started in the early 1980s, as more and more video games are being recreated in cardboard. Earlier this year, the proposed Dark Souls board game smashed its Kickstarter goal of $70,000 to smithereens by raising an astonishing $5 million, and in July a fantastic-looking board game version of the new Doom game was announced. Over the past few years, we’ve seen board game versions of Gears of War, Bioshock Infinite, Assassin’s Creed, Resident Evil and Portal, to name a few.

Three years on, how does Bioshock Infinite hold up?

It’s a peculiar sensation, looking back at another version of yourself and thinking “really?”. BioShock Infinite was one of the very first games I covered professionally. I recall enjoying it at the time, but haven’t thought about it much since that initial playthrough due to the tsunami of games that have demanded my attention since. Yet as I am about to take an extended break from both gaming and writing in anticipation of the birth of my daughter, I felt a strong urge to revisit this particular landmark in my life, as a form of taking stock, I guess.

After playing Infinite through a second time, I dug out my original review of the game (written for Custom PC Magazine) and was surprised to find myself describe it as “the pinnacle of what the mainstream FPS can offer.” Three years down the line, I couldn’t feel further from that assertion.

I can understand where I was coming from. In terms of its ambition, BioShock Infinite is a shooter that’s second to none. How many other FPS’ do you know that attempt to tackle themes ranging from religion to the physics of spacetime, that addresses topics such as racism and the oppression of the working classes? I also still believe that, as an FPS, it’s a fun one. When it all comes together, the skyrails, Vigors and tears all make for some colourful and dynamic combat.

Watch: Aoife and Johnny return to Rapture for a Bioshock Let’s Play

Yeah alright, cards on the table. We couldn’t find anyone in the office who hadn’t played the original Bioshock. Which is hardly surprising when you’re talking about a group of games journalists (incidentally, what would the collective noun for that be? A thinkpiece? A scribble? An ornery of games journos? Anyway.) The problem with that is it kind of scuppered my plans for recording a spectacularly well-timed episode of Late to the Party, to celebrate the shocking-but-not-really announcement that Bioshock: The Collection, a remastered edition of Bioshock, Bioshock 2 and Bioshock: Infinite, is heading to Xbox One, PC and PS4.

So I’m sorry, we went and did it anyway. Let’s just call it Back to the Party and be done with it, alright? I swear it won’t happen again. Probably.