Well, now that PAX East 2012 is over, I have to sort through all the information I gathered so that I can pass it on to you. I played plenty of games, and there's the annual cosplay gallery of cute guys in costume to post later on, but I wanted to start with the game that was to me, the surprise of the show.
Coming from Square Enix this summer on Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC as a downloadable game, Quantum Conundrum is a first-person puzzle game. You play as a 10-year-old kid dropped off at his uncle's house, and this uncle is a mad scientist who has gone missing. It's up to you to use your uncle's invention, the IDS device, to manipulate the world around you and solve physics-based puzzles to proceed. You can make things fluffy (light), heavy, slow down time and reverse gravity. And you'll need to cleverly switch between each of these powers in order to figure out how to get out of the room you're in, past doors, switches, glass windows, laser beams, and whatnot.
If this sounds a little bit like Portal, there's a very good reason for this. The creative director of Quantum Conundrum is Kim Swift, who was the lead designer on Portal. So while it has a similar kind of feel to it, moving through a series of rooms and solving puzzles using physics, it's more than different enough. First off, there's no portals anywhere! Seriously, though, the time I played with the demo was super-fun and I loved the lighthearted humor and creativity of the puzzles. Granted, it was only a demo, but when you suddenly figure out what you need to do to proceed, those "ah hah!" moments are always worth it.
Unfortunately, I wasn't actually able to finish the entire demo, because at the very end, there was a lot of jumping, and I was playing the PC version, so I wasn't as good with the keyboard and mouse as I would have been with the PS3 gamepad at the other station. And I was running out of time with my appointment and decided to cut the demo short so I could talk to Swift and find out more about the game for you. See, I'm always thinking of you guys.
Quantum Conundrum should be out this summer on the 360, PS3 and PC, and there's no price point yet, but I should think it would be reasonable since we're talking about an average of 10 hours of gameplay depending on your skill level. I'll keep you updated when we do get a confirmed release date, though! Don't worry!