To Manipulate Time

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This is a proposed entry.
This entry is currently being proposed as a permanent part of the ontology. It should be considered a draft and not really part of the "official" ontology.


Use of time as a manipulable element by players for gameplay reasons

The player can control or alter the passage of time in the gameworld. In this sense, time itself can be considered as an entity that can be individually manipulated by the player for gameplay reasons. To Manipulate time is different from travelling in or through time. Many games feature, as part of their narrative fiction, time-travel, however, in these cases, temporal manipulation is not an aspect of gameplay which the player can manipulate.


Strong Examples

Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask

In the Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask the player must control time withing the game. You are allowed to flow back and forth through a period of three days. You are able to control the time of day as well as control what day you are on. Link is given a three day period of time in which he must save the world from a comet that is about to destroy the town. He must finish all of his quests before the third day and to do so the player must control the speed of the day, whether or not its day or night, and is able to travel back days in time.

Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time

In Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time, the player can reverse, slow, or stop time to allow him to improve or retry his actions.

Viewtiful Joe

In the game, Joe is capable of slowing time in a "bullet time" style, enabling him to move much more quickly than his opponents, thus making it vastly easier to defeat the never-ending waves of enemies, particularly near end-game in which the enemies, the final bosses included, are geared toward a necessary kick into the slowed-down time if the player is to defeat him.

Weak Examples

Chrono Cross

Chrono Cross (Squaresoft, 2000) Once the player has cleared the game once, they gain a special item that allows them to speed up and slow down time in the game by holding the left or right sholder buttons. This is a weak example because it is merely a tool so that it would be easier for players to reach multiple endings during their subsequent playthroughs. Also, it has nothing to do with the game's narrative.

Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time

The player is allowed to pull a sword from the temple of time which allows him to traverse between his young self and adult self, however, this is just a way to transfer between two versions of the level. True, one affects the other as in the adult world actions you take as a child show up, but you are not really controlling the time change, you simply decide which of Links worlds you want to play in or need to be in to complete a goal. You "time warp" but do not really go anywhere, time is not sped up or slowed down, it is simply reversed or forwarded to specific points and the rest of the game play does not involve shifting time, it is only done once at a specific place.

Game Ontology Relations