[Beyond PlayStation] The Ambassador: Fractured Timelines Review
The Ambassador: Fractured Timelines from tinyDino Games and The Quantum Astrophysicists Guild is a twin-stick fantasy shooter with a time manipulation twist. Learn more in our The Ambassador: Fractured Timelines review!
In The Ambassador: Fractured Timelines from indie tinyDino Games and publisher The Quantum Astrophysicists Guild, you will take on a twin-stick fantasy shooter in which time will be your greatest ally since you’ll be granted the ability to stop time as you fight against the evil forces that have attacked and destroyed the capital city! You’re a recently recruited member of the Eternal Fellowship, acting as an Ambassador of Time. Before you lies a journey that will take you over five unique environments and two timelines, spread over 55 levels.
The Ambassador: Fractured Timelines offers two difficulty settings that you can select before starting this new adventure. You can go with the Standard option, which, as the name suggests, is how the game is meant to be played. If you feel that you could use a bit of extra help, you could play in Assisted mode, which makes it so that your level progress is not reset after death, so that you can carry on after being defeated by the monsters you will battle. After this, Cait, Eldermage of the Eternal Fellowship, will bestow upon you the position of Ambassador of Time, and of you’ll go.
As I mentioned before, since this is a twin-stick fantasy shooter type of game, that means we’re going to get a twin-stick fantasy shooter type of control mechanics. You will move your character with the left analog stick, aiming around with the right one. To shoot, you must press the ZR button. The whole “stop time to make the most of your other abilities” twist is introduced by pressing the ZL button. When you press the ZL button, everything around you will come to a complete stop, but you won’t be able to sustain this forever, since every second you spend in this time freeze will use up a chunk of your energy bar.
Stopping time will allow you to avoid some of the hazards you will find in your path, but it will also be useful for destroying temporal stasis objects. Temporal stasis objects, which will shine to let you know what they are, must be shot while time is stopped since they’re actually suspended in time. You can interact with things with the A button and can eat any food you’ve found by pressing the Y button. You can swap weapons with the L and R buttons and can change your loadout by checking out your inventory by pressing the X button. If you want to, there’s the option of activating an aim assist mode.
The game will then kindly send you into a short mandatory tutorial section so that you can put to practice everything I’ve mentioned before. You will learn that some of the weapons you will get to use are of a magical nature, which means they will use up your mana, which means that, while they’re more powerful, you won’t be able to use them non-stop, since you’ll then run out of mana and be left wide open for a ton of hurt. The good news is that mana regenerates over time, so as long as you switch between your weapons, you should be good.
You will start with three items in your inventory. You will have a simple spear which can the thrown over a short distance, an adept’s wand which is given to mages who are deemed adequately skilled as to continue learning more complex magic, and traveler’s clothes which are the average, standard clothes of an adventurer. You will get to find many more regular weapons –a little bit more than a handful of magical weapons -, as well as some extra pieces of equipment, which will be a must if you are to survive this quest.
Some of the enemies you will fight are a bit more powerful than the regular opponents you will battle, which is why they will require you to change things up a bit since you won’t be able to damage them in the usual way. The game will let you know when you’re battling an opponent that is invincible by placing a white shield on top of it. These types of foes must be made vulnerable before you can damage them. If you pay attention to their attacks, you will find a weakness that will allow you to make them vulnerable, which will be shown when an enemy has a red sword appear near them. You could, for example, find an enemy with a shield that helps it defend from any attacks. While its shield will certainly be powerful, if it wants to deal some damage to you, it’s going to have to attack, which will make it move its shield around, leaving you with an opening to strike.
While you explore each of the over 50 stages you will visit, you should keep your eyes out for any food that you can scavenge. For this, I recommend that you use your magical weapons to break any boxes or barrels you find since they’ll usually hide some food – same goes for any temporal stasis objects you run into! For every two pieces of food you eat by pressing the Y button, you will get to recover one of your hearts that make up your health bar. The food you’re carrying is displayed below your health bar and above your mana bar. Another way to recover all of your health – and any missing mana that has not regenerated – is by clearing a level of all opponents, which will open up the portal that will take you to the next stage, completely healing you as you cross it.
Along with having to do whatever you can to stay alive, you can also search around for the 20 hidden journals that will give you some valuable insight into the history of this realm. The Ambassador: Fractured Timelines also features an in-game achievements system with 24 achievements to unlock. The objectives to complete include defeating an elite enemy, defeating each of the game’s bosses, killing 20 enemies in 20 seconds, destroying every single barrel in the game, and for something as casual as completing every single level in the game without taking any damage, to name some examples.
The Ambassador: Fractured Timelines is a fun one on Nintendo Switch. I liked the game’s gameplay mechanics, overall difficulty curve, old-school pixel-infused graphics, and fantasy-themed music, which fit the overall theme of this adventure. You’ll be able to know how you’ve played each of the game’s levels by checking if you have the no damage taken, no food eaten, all barrels broken, collectible found, and time trial complete badges, so if you want to 100% this one, you’re going to be spending some extra hours on top of your regular run. The Ambassador: Fractured Timelines is out on Nintendo Switch with a $14.99 asking price.
This The Ambassador: Fractured Timelines review is based on a Nintendo Switch copy provided by The Quantum Astrophysicists Guild.