|End of Time|
|Beginning||October 10, 2016 (postponed)|
Unknown Date, 2021
The End of Time is a future event witnessed by Paul Serene and Beth Wilder in the year 2021. The event was brought about by the Fracture in Time, created October 9th, 2016 at 4:15AM, following the failure of the University time machine.
The End of Time is a sort of temporal singularity, created when time itself ceases to exist and past and future overlap in a permanent zero state. According to William Joyce, the End of Time is caused by a collapse of the Meyer-Joyce field, a field that maintains the linear flow of time throughout the entire universe.
Without Chronon radiation, the Meyer-Joyce field cannot remain stable and eventually the radiation begins to deplete over an extended period of time, which results in stutters, moments wherein time ceases to be for brief periods of time, before resuming.
The End of Time is an environment lacking Chronon energy. According to Beth Wilder's account, the End of Time is a frozen universe, "hanging in one moment". Paul Serene's description was the "end of the world", various timelines that are frozen and crashing together.
The billions who inhabited the End of Time and were not Chronon active are frozen, "never living and never dead". While largely depleted of Chronon energy, there exists within the End of Time's landscapes small areas that are stutterproofed and time flows normally.
The End of Time is inhabited by Shifters, unpredictable and hostile individuals who were exposed to Chronon radiation. From the perspective of a Shifter, a stable timeline is a frozen surface, but the End of Time and the stutters that preface them are "holes in the ice". The End of time is often described as a place where Shifters can exist and roam freely without threat of harm.
The End of Time, or rather its effects in a localized area, can theoretically be prevented with the use of a Countermeasure, a device that can house a considerable amount of Chronon energy. When Beth Wilder traveled to the past of February 28, 1999 with Paul Serene, she warned a young William Joyce of what would happen because of his research and told him that he would need to build a "Countermeasure" that would prevent it. As such, William created the Countermeasure to act as type of reset button that would rejuvenate the Meyer-Joyce field, thus preventing, the End of Time.
However, Serene believed that the event could not be stopped, merely endured. Re-purposing the Countermeasure as the Chronon field Regulator, he planned to use the Countermeasure to power a survival bunker to preserve a number of 300 personnel working Monarch Solutions, who would be responsible for coming up with a permanent solution to the End of Time, verses what he believed was a temporary fix.
Events of Quantum Break
Following the creation of the fracture by the time machine built for Project Promenade, Paul Serene was forced to travel through the machine clockwise to escape Monarch Security and the machine itself. Traveling forward in time, Paul was sent the only possible exit point in the year 2021. Because of the Fracture, time had ceased to be and the universe had entered a permanent zero state.
Because he was Chronon active, the Shifters roaming the still world were attracted to and aggravated by his presence, specifically that the viable source of Chronon in an environment without it. Paul spent undetermined weeks in the End of Time avoiding the Shifters, hiding in stutterproof pocket areas before encountering Beth Wilder, who'd been sent to the End of Time on October 10, 2016, by Sofia Amaral.
According to Beth's account, when she met the young Paul, he attempted to convince her to work with him to find a way back to the present. But, when she realized who he was, she tried to kill him. Paul and Beth spent months in the year 2021 fighting each other and hiding from the Shifters. Eventually, Paul and Beth happened across William's time machine. Paul was somehow able to get the machine to work and set the machine back to the earliest possible date: February 1999, the activation of the first time machine.
During events of October 2016, Sofia Amaral deduced the increasing rate of the stutters suggested that the Fracture would not happen in 2021, but sooner than Paul originally predicted.
Paul refused to believe that what he saw was incorrect because of the nature of closed loops. However, following her abduction, Paul may choose to rely on her data and initiate the Lifeboat Protocol early --- or choose to trust Hatch's word that Sofia betrayed him and allow the End of Time occur after the Lifeboat Protocol is initiated without his permission. Before his departure for the Bradbury Swimming Hall, he was informed that the Meyer-Joyce field would collapse in mere hours.
Time stops permanently when Jack and William Joyce return from the past of October 9th, 2016. With the Countermeasure in their possession, Jack and William intended to use it to restore the Meyer-Joyce field. When Paul arrives at the Bradbury Swimming Hall, he either demands its return for the Lifeboat or wants to destroy it.
Paul fails in either endeavor and William is able to reestablish the Meyer-Joyce field's stability, reverting what would've been the End of Time with the help of Jack's Chronon abilities. However, the onset of Jack's Chronon syndrome triggered a precognitive vision that revealed the End of Time would still occur as Paul and Beth saw.
Behind the Scenes
Early on during the development stages of Quantum Break, Remedy Entertainment originally planned a sequence in the the game that would showcase where exactly Paul Serene and Beth Wilder ended up in the End of Time. Sam Lake states that the scene was cut because it was "too ambitious" for the development team to pull off with time frame they had to complete the game.
"It was a situation where we could've done a crappy version of it, or we could use that time to polish the rest of the game". Narratively, Remedy felt that the game had lost a major story beat, because the End of Time was a major turning point in both Beth Wilder and Paul Serene's character arcs, as the two characters were effected by the end of the world in different ways.
- A whiteboard in Paul's office showcases one of Paul's failed attempts to change the future by chronicling the state of time in the year 2022.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Beth's Journal
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 Reflections on the End
- ↑ Paul Serene Diary 4
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 Paul Serene Diary 2
- ↑ Untitled Note
- ↑ Quantum Break (video game): Act 4, Part 3: Swimming Pool 2010
- ↑ Paul Serene Diary 7
- ↑ Jack Joyce Diary 8
- ↑ Quantum Break (video game): Junction 1: Hardline/PR
- ↑ Quantum Break (video game): Act 4, Part 2: Preparing the Time Machine
- ↑ Beth Wilder Diary 5
- ↑ Quantum Break (TV series): "Prisoner"
- ↑ Quantum Break (TV series): "Deception"
- ↑ 14.0 14.1 Quantum Break (video game): Act 5, Part 3: Final Moments
- ↑ 15.0 15.1 15.2 Quantum Break: The Secret History of Time Travel: Unused Materials: "The End of Time", page 235