TimeSplitters is 20 years old today.
Free Radical Design’s first-person shooter came out on 26th October 2000 in the US as a launch title for the PlayStation 2 (it came out in Europe on 24th November 2000 alongside the PS2’s later launch on these shores), and won plaudits for its comic-book visuals and slick gameplay.
Free Radical Design was founded by key members of Rare’s GoldenEye team (for more on why they left, check out our in-depth Oral history of Perfect Dark feature), and TimeSplitters shared much in spirit with the seminal N64 shooter.
Eurogamer is old enough to have reviewed TimeSplitters on PS2. Former editor Tom Bramwell awarded it 9/10, calling TimeSplitters “the best action game available on the PS2, and although occasionally quite cheesy and certainly not a patch on the likes of Half-Life in terms of storyline and whatnot, it’s a damned fine romp. Well worth your time”.
TimeSplitters did well enough to spawn a number of sequels. TimeSplitters 2 came out two years later, in October 2002, then TimeSplitters: Future Perfect came out in March 2005.
TimeSplitters 4 was knocking about, but it fell by the wayside alongside Free Radical Design’s demise. THQ Nordic now holds the rights to the franchise, with series co-creator Steve Ellis on-board at Dambuster Studios to work on a new game in the series.
Meanwhile, a group of fans are working on TimeSplitters Rewind, a recreation of TimeSplitters 1, 2 and 3.