The lights are on
At a PAX East booth that it shared with DoubleFine, developer Capybara Games showed off the upcoming XBLA title Super Time Force. Originally planned as an experimental side project for the studio, Microsoft was impressed with what they saw and signed on as publisher. From my time with the game, it seems to introduce some interesting new wrinkles to the standard Contra-style shooter formula.
Each level needs to be finished in under 60 seconds, and players start with 30 lives (one of many nods to Contra). Several characters are available, and each has a specialty. One soldier wields a spread shot, a female sniper can shoot through walls, a dinosaur with sunglasses can swipe away bullets, and a fat guy has a lightsaber.
Once one of them dies, you're able to rewind time to any previous point in the level and select another character. Their actions will still play back on this new playthrough, similar to the key gameplay feature in P.B. Winterbottom. If you're able to take out the enemy that killed your previous life before they killed you in the timeline, you can save their life and add it back into your tally.
It's an interesting concept, especially when it comes to boss battles. You can have one character lure a boss to one side of the screen as a distraction, then rewind time and blast away at him as a new character. We've seen gameplay like this in Winterbottom and Ratchet & Clank: A Crack in Time, but not in a 2D action title like Super Time Force. No release date has been set for the XBLA title, but the team hopes to have it out by the end of summer