The player controls a retired test pilot Colonel Michael Swift, who accepts a mission from US Government. He is equipped with a time control device called "Quantum Suit" and a time machine called "Chronomicon". His mission is to plant a probe after sent back in time. After an unsuccessful return to his time, he is surrounded by hostiles and is forced to fight.
The game features new time control system, which allows the player to slow, stop and reverse the time in order to help advancing. The game which is visually held up by a new Saber3D engine, has a collection of weapons, operable gun turrets and vehicles. TimeShift has a multiplayer mode, in which up to 16 players are able to use time control against other human opponents.