Timelapse (video game)

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Developer(s) GTE Interactive Media
Platform(s) PC, Macintosh
Release September 30, 1996
Genre(s) Graphic adventure, puzzle

Timelapse is a computer game released by GTE Entertainment on September 30, 1996 in the United States, and was shortly followed by a European release.[citation needed]


Timelapse is a first-person graphic adventure patterned after games such as Myst. Gameplay consists of the exploration of various ancient temples and cities, and the solving of complex and difficult puzzles. The game is made up of five areas: Easter Island, Egypt, Maya, Anasazi and Atlantis.[citation needed]


Professor Alexander Nichols, a friend of the unnamed and silent player character, has called the player to Easter Island, where he believes he has found a link to the legendary city of Atlantis. The player arrives at the island, picking up the Professor's Camera and Journal, only to realize the Professor is already gone. The Player then explores the island, finding the Professor's camp abandoned, and eventually stumbles upon a cave which contains a Timegate, with the Professor trapped inside. The player then uses this time gate to go to one of three time periods; Ancient Egypt, the Maya civilization, and the Anasazi civilisation. Each civilisation is deserted or almost deserted, with the people having recently left in mass exoduses. The player may visit the three civilisations in any order, but the Professor's journal claims that he visited them in the order listed; this is also the order of the game's four CD-ROMs. The player encounters a robot which appears to be constructed out of energy in each civilisation; this robot is not named in the game, but is referred to as "The Guardian" in official materials. The player's main goal in each civilisation is to collect a device known as a Gene Pod, which contains DNA from the culture, and install it into the Timegate.

Once the Genepods of the Egyptians, Mayans, and Anasazi are collected, the player is able to access Atlantis. The player traps the Guardian inside a stasis tube and discovers the Atlantis timegate, with Professor Nichols still trapped inside. The Professor failed to complete the timegate connections with the genepods before attempting to access Atlantis, so he remains trapped until the player character can free him. However, when the Professor is released back to Easter Island, the Timegate is destroyed, and a two-minute countdown begins, at the end of which Atlantis will launch into space.

If the player waits for the countdown to run out, the game plays a cutscene of Atlantis launching into space with the player aboard, then warping to the Atlantean homeworld. The player then sees a Message sent by the Guardian to the homeworld stating that he has with him crew members and 1 Terran (the player), who have been placed in Stasis for the remainder of the journey, and states that he was damaged, and that being in stasis repaired him. Instead of letting the countdown run out, however, the player can choose to escape from Atlantis. At this point the game shows a cutscene of Atlantis blasting off from the point of view of the player in an escape pod. The game ends with a series of newspaper headlines indicating that the Atlantean finds make the player rich and famous.[citation needed]


The game was fairly well received by critics,[1][2] earning a grade of 7.4/10 from GameSpot.[3]


  1. ^ "Review: Timelapse". Retrieved May 20, 2009. 
  2. ^ "TIMELAPSE: Ancient Civilizations ... The Link To Atlantis". Retrieved May 20, 2009. 
  3. ^ Anderson, Rebecca (November 16, 1996). "Timelapse Review". Gamespot.com. Retrieved May 20, 2009. 

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