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Danette Dacey Group

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Wesley Gray
Wesley Gray

Quantum Conundrum Complete

Puzzles are completed by moving around objects, which are mostly just boxes. Heavy weights are used to trigger pressure plates, boxes can be stacked to climb on, and there are a whole bunch of other unique solutions that are pleasing to discover.

Quantum Conundrum Complete

Campaigns have a duration, and when expired can no longer be played. They are divided into runs, with each run containing a set of encounters that the player must complete within a certain time limit. If the player fails to do so, the encounters will reset and the player will have to restart the run again.

Now, let's talk about the quantum element. It's full of brains and beans in that regard, escalating from humble light-state or heavy-state inducing puzzles to elaborate chains of hopping across sofas tumbling into the abyss in super-slow motion while trying to catch a thingy that's plummeting upwards in anti-gravity then hurl it into a receptacle on the other side of the room without tumbling to a messy end in a lake of unspecific sciency-fluid. The flow is at times magnificent, all these strange but physics-dictated elements working in balanced tandem to create something only a videogame can do, but one that so few try to. It bites off more than it can chew - or, at least, more than any players not drenched in patience can chew - a little too often, but it's steeped in ingenuity and artfully-planned butterfly effect challenges. Having a quad-set of powers means it could be said to have more variety than The Game Whose Name I Shall Not Mention Again, though the aforementioned visual sameiness sees it shoot itself in the foot in the sustained novelty regard.

QUANTUM CONUNDRUM, designed by one of the co-creators of the award-winning Portal puzzle games, puts players in the shoes of a kid exploring a vast mansion/laboratory, accompanied only by the disembodied voice of his uncle, who offers a mixture of light jibes and helpful advice. Kids encounter scores of physics-based puzzles as they progress through the house that can only be solved by shifting dimensions. The "fluffy" dimension, for example, transforms objects into light, pillow-y versions of themselves and makes them easy to toss around, while the "heavy" dimension turns things into metal -- which can comes in handy should you need to weigh down a pressure switch or block an energy beam. As the game progresses players will need to quickly switch between dimensions while applying their common sense understanding of real world physics. By asking themselves questions (such as: What will wind do to a lighter object? What sort of item would break a glass window?), kids should be able to noodle out solutions to conundrums that become ever more multifaceted.

I'm not... offended [laughs] or shocked, it's just like yeah, that's about right! And if you look at it from a high level, sure, they're similar games. They're both in the genre. But at the same time it's a completely different game style. We're definitely going a little more quirky and cartoony, in as far as art style goes. Our story is way different, and the gameplay is different as well. It's not just about making holes in walls, this is about manipulating the entire world around you and changing physics, and the look and feel of the game, with every button switch.

KS: Exactly! But as the genre evolves, and there are more and more games, it's like, yeah, they all have a particular core that they have in common with each other, but they're completely different games. Like, I wouldn't compare Halo and Half-Life.

Presented in a first-person perspective, Quantum Conundrum tells the story of a kid who explores a vast mansion filled with strange puzzles. The disembodied voice of his slightly deranged uncle -- who provides help and cracks the occasional joke -- is his only company. As he makes his way through the giant house, he learns how to switch between dimensions that alter the properties of objects in the physical world, making them lighter or heavier than they might otherwise be, slowing down time, and even reversing gravity. This ability is key in solving the many conundrums he encounters, which typically require players to manipulate the environment in strange ways in order to make their way to each room's exit.

Much discussion of the unification of quantum and classic mechanics exists within the scientific literature, yet many of these ideas are incompatible with each other and, in some cases, outright contradictory. Morgan believes the AlgKoopman concept can alleviate this situation.

We portray the structure of quantum gravity emerging from recent progress in understanding the quantum mechanics of an evaporating black hole. Quantum gravity admits two different descriptions, based on Euclidean gravitational path integral and a unitarily evolving holographic quantum system, which appear to present vastly different pictures under the existence of a black hole. Nevertheless, these two descriptions are physically equivalent. Various issues of black hole physics-including the existence of the interior, unitarity of the evolution, the puzzle of too large interior volume, and the ensemble nature seen in certain calculations-are addressed very differently in the two descriptions, still leading to the same physical conclusions. The perspective of quantum gravity developed here is expected to have broader implications beyond black hole physics, especially for the cosmology of the eternally inflating multiverse.

The holographic principle grew out one of the biggest scientific problems of the twentieth century: the fact that the two fundamental theories of physics, general relativity and quantum mechanics, don't get along with each other.

While general relativity describes the world of planets and galaxies, quantum mechanics looks at the sub-atomic scale, the realm of the fundamental particles that make up matter. At these small scales, there's little mass and gravity is negligible. Quantum field theory, a quantum mechanical description of particle physics, holds that the fundamental forces work through messengerparticles called gauge bosons: one fundamental particle exerts a force on another by sending over a few these gauge bosons.

In the course of the twentieth century, the messenger particles of three of the four fundamental forces, the electromagnetic force, the weak nuclear force and the strong nuclear force, have all been observed in experiments. To make things consistent, Einstein's theory of gravity should also be re-written in terms of similar messenger particles. Physicists have dubbed gravity's hypotheticalmessenger particle the graviton, but so far no-one has found a trace of it. What's worse, attempts to describe the graviton in terms of the mathematics of quantum field theory lead to non-sensical answers. "A naive quantisation of gravity doesn't work and leads to mathematical inconsistencies," says Maldacena. "We need something new."

The conflict between general relativity and quantum mechanics poses no problem for most practical purposes, as physicists usually look at either the large-scale world, where quantum effects do not come into play, or at the small-scale world, where particles are light and gravity has little effect. But there is one situation in which the clash of the two theories is tangible: black holes areformed when a large amount of mass is concentrated in a tiny region of space. The resulting gravitational pull is so strong that nothing can escape from a black hole, not even light, so there's no way you can ignore gravity when thinking about black holes. The small scale means that quantum effects also come into play. To describe what's going on in a black hole, you really do need a unifiedtheory of quantum gravity.

The second law says that entropy never decreases. In a thermodynamic situation this means that thesystem strives for an equilibrium where energy has dissipated completely. In an information context, this means that things don't become simpler of their own accord. In classical terms, a black hole, not being a thermal object and being extremely simple to describe, should have no entropy. When you fall in, your positive entropy is replaced by the zero entropy of the black hole. The second law ofthermodynamics is violated.

Maldacena's universe is not like the one we actually live in: it's a model, a toy universe, which comes complete with its own physics. It's a hologram because all the physical goings-on inside it can be described by a physical theory that's only defined on the boundary. What's more, it's a universe in which the gravity/quantum conundrum has been resolved completely: the boundary theory ispurely quantum, it contains no gravity, but a being living in the interior will still experience gravity. Gravity in this universe is part of the holographic illusion.

The important point from a quantum gravity angle is that the boundary theory is a well-understood quantum theory of particle physics, very similar to the one we use to describe sub-atomic processes in nature. Referring only to small scales, it doesn't bother with gravity. Yet it is able to describe the esoteric quantum gravity theory which governs the interior. It's the first ever completedescription of a quantum spacetime.

As it stands, Maldacena's model is just that, a model. We do not yet know if the universe we live in is a hologram, and we still don't have a consistent quantum description of gravity that applies to our world. The negative curvature assumption in Maldacena's model is crucial, and our universe, as we know from observations, comes with a very slight positive curvature. "We don't know of asimilar description for a situation with positive curvature," concedes Maldacena. "People have various ideas and they are being explored, but we don't have a complete answer yet."

But what about Maldacena himself? Does he really believe that the holographic principle is true? "Well, I view this idea as a model, but it's a model that gives a mathematical description of quantum spacetime. So we should take it seriously until someone refutes it, or comes up with something better." 350c69d7ab


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