Everybody loves quick time events, those timed button presses utilized in today's high-tech interactive entertainment programs to help the user feel a modicum of control over grand cinematic sequences. the problem with quick time events, however, is that the graphical spectacle going on behind the prompts always threatens to steal attention away from important prompts. In John Burton's QTE: Press X to Not Die there are no annoying cinematics — just 30 seconds of pure, unadulterated button pressing.
Games like God of War and Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm dilute the QTE experience with their towering gods and elaborate ninja skills. How are we supposed to focus on the buttons when the developers are waving colorful pictures in our faces? QTE is just a black screen with a series of buttons — A, B, Y, X, 1-4, Left and Right. Just match the flashing prompts as quickly as you can for 30 seconds and you win.
It's a pure experience, like the initial stirring of puberty or your first taste of a grilled cheese sandwich — two remarkably, almost redundantly similar things. It's a game that makes one realize how far off-track we've gotten in the video game industry. While we're all looking for profound messages, keeping one eye open for potential controversy, we've forgotten that video games are, at their very core, all about pressing buttons to make things happen.
In QTE: Press X to Not Die, you press buttons. Things happen. Not particularly exciting things, but that's not the point.
In summary, this game is stupid, but I like it. If it weren't free I wouldn't buy it, but as a free thing it's lovely.