The Let's Play Archive

Zero Time Dilemma


Part 2: Payoff

Part 2: Payoff

Previously, on Zero Time Dilemma...

A psycho in a plague mask has apparently taken a group of unknown people captive. He'll let them go, if we can guess a coin flip correctly....

There's a fast-forward icon on the lower-right because we can skip scenes that we've already seen. That'll probably come in handy later.

I have a good feeling about blue! You guys wouldn't steer me wrong, right?

You'll see this graphic a lot, too. Choices have consequences here.

Music: Divulgation 2nd Mix

Well, at least he sounds confident. Let's see.

It's blue!

Group reaction shot this time! I would've expected more smiles.

If you had picked red and were correct, the last two lines of dialogue would change to:


See? Didn't I say it'd be red?

Yeah yeah. Whatever.

Nothing else in the rest of this update changes. Back to reality!

Ok, settle down, it was just calling a coin toss. Happens roughly half the time I think.

It was just luck.

It's not too hard to get it right.

See, Carlos is with me.

Hey, hold on a sec!

Who cares, we got it right, let's get outta here.

Everything worked out fine.

Fear not.

I promised to release you, and I shall.

Well that was a weird way to start the game. I wonder what happens when we get out?

Sure, standard kidnapping tactic. Don't want us figuring out where you were holding us.

Please stop just repeating what he says with a question mark at the end.

A memory wipe, too? Oh wait now I"m doing it.

Back on team this-guy, that's what I should have asked.

Hmm, I wonder...?

No point in him answering us if we're just going to forget, I guess.

The camera points at the ceiling while the game plays the sound of bodies hitting the floor.

And then shows said bodies on the floor. Because falling animations are expensive, you know.

Well, everyone's out.


Almost everyone.

Another body drops. Carlos was already mostly on the ground so not sure it would've made that big a sound, but whatever. Having different sound effects is expensive, too, I guess.

Carlos is down, and we get a fade to static before an abrupt change to a black screen. Another common transition between game scenes.

Music: Transient Tranquility

Another shot of Dcom. But this time you can see a tiny crowd of people at the bottom.

It's 12:05 on the same day. Time is probably important in this game.

I have no clue.

Didn't we all have something attached to our left wrists...?

Guess the memory wipe wasn't 100% effective. In fact...


Carlos seems to have a flash of memory himself. But not enough.

Akane just shakes her head.

This all making sense to anyone yet?

Hey, uh, could I ask all of you something?

And now we get to spend the rest of the game trying to figure out what just happened.

Music: Interminable Dilemma

Just kidding. Fade to black, and then the credits roll. No seriously, we just won the game.

Five minutes later...

We've reached ending CQD-END:1. Otherwise known as the Sun End. We've won the game, though we haven't really beaten it.

Hitting the back button brings us to a save screen. Why not? Maybe we'll get a New Game Plus option.

Saving reveals the sun icon on our save file. Careful counters will notice the possibility of six other endings. Let's hit the back button again.

Unlike 999 and VLR, where you follow around a single protagonist and mingle with the different characters throughout the game, ZTD separates the characters into three teams, which you play as one at a time.

There are three teams shown, corresponding to the three cells we saw in the last update. C Team, led by Carlos. Q Team, led by...Q? And D Team, led by Diana.

Each team has a number of fragments that can be played, in any order (once they're unlocked).

The only one currently unlocked for each team is the same coin flip one we just played.

The same fragment is in a different location for each team. Just to add to the confusion.

Selecting a fragment shows a mini flowchart of the major points in it. You can jump in to replay at any point that's lit up. Currently highlighted, the scales show where a decision was made. The sun icon returns on the lower right, representing the ending we unlocked. The question marks on the left side show a path not yet taken.

Like in VLR, you can see a global flowchart of how all the scenes fit together. Also like VLR, looking at this flowchart is a good way to spoil yourself once more stuff is unlocked. So I probably won't be showing it much, at least at first.

A more detailed version of the flowchart show's each fragment's flowchart connected together, including ones we haven't seen yet. Lots more decisions in our future.

With nothing else available, we go back to the coin flip decision.

The same scene plays out, and we are once again faced with a decison. Red or blue?