Quantum Break is a science fiction action-adventure third-person shooter video game developed by Remedy Entertainment and published by Microsoft Studios. The game was released worldwide for Microsoft Windows and Xbox One in April 2016. The game centers on Jack Joyce, granted time manipulation powers after a failed time-machine experiment, as he comes into conflict with former friend Paul Serene over how to deal with an apocalyptic “End of Time”. In addition, the game includes platform game elements in less action-oriented segments. There are also “junction points” that affect the game’s outcome. The game features episodes of an integrated live-action television show, featuring the actors of the characters. The characters interact with the player’s choices, displaying the results of the decisions made.
The game originally was envisioned as a sequel to Remedy’s previous game, Alan Wake. The game’s focus was shifted to time travel, as Microsoft wanted a new intellectual property with interactive storytelling. The team consulted scientists while creating the fictional science in this game. While the video game portion was developed internally by Remedy and directed by studio veteran Sam Lake, the TV side of the game was developed by Lifeboat Productions and directed by Ben Ketai. Shawn Ashmore, Aidan Gillen, and Lance Reddick portrayed important roles in the game. The game uses a new engine developed by Remedy, the Northlight engine, and a technology called Digital Molecular Matter.
The game was announced in mid-2013 and was set to release in 2015, but its release was delayed to avoid competition with other Xbox One exclusives. It received a positive reception, with critics praising the game’s graphics, gameplay, presentation, and story. Critics had mixed opinions regarding the platforming elements, the convergence of video game and television, and the overall quality of the TV show. The Windows 10 version was criticized for its technical issues. Quantum Break was the best-selling new intellectual property published by Microsoft since the launch of Xbox One, though the record was broken two years later by Sea of Thieves.