Developers rarely show the human side of angry anti-heroes. It's as if "he's an a-hole" is a good enough personality trait to make someone care about a character. Alex Mercer was a top tier knob with few, if any, redeeming qualities. The limp attempts to humanize Prototype's protagonist only highlighted how unlikable the reckless sociopath truly was. By positioning Mercer as the villain he truly is in Prototype 2, developer Radical displays an honest understanding of the first game's flaws. In turn, Prototype 2 represents a retry of sorts – not because the original was a failure, but because its excellent vision fell a bit short.
Prototype 2 gives players a clearer view of Radical's original intentions through the eyes of James Heller, an emotionally ravaged veteran with nothing left to live for. He's a cliche in concept, but Prototype 2 goes through a lot of effort to prove he's human, and it does so in an interesting way.
It makes you wait for what you want by giving you something you don't expect.
Daddy's Coming Home
Before you get to start running up walls, dismembering mercenaries, and gliding over New York City again, Prototype 2 makes you sit down, observe, and understand. It dedicates a full 30 minutes to cinematics and brief chunks of slow, linear gameplay. The unexpected, decidedly un-Prototype change of pace sets the story stage, of course, while building anticipation. By the time the introduction ended I was aching to unleash havoc on NYC.
When Prototype 2 finally lets Heller loose, it unfolds much like the first game; consume life-forms to heal, morph into enemy officers to disguise, eviscerate dudes with gigantic razor-claws. It stays this way for the better part of an hour, so yeah, it's the same Prototype, but it brings along important fundamental differences.
The art direction in Prototype 2 does much more than simply build upon its (unattractive, even at the time) predecessor. The visual improvements extend beyond the character models and environment textures you'd expect to see in a sequel three years later. Prototype 2 replaces the washed-out, dry aesthetic of the original with vibrant colors, stark contrasts, and some sunshine. Forget the familiar morose palette; this is what the world would look like if an infection actually broke out. The sun would still rise, the sky would still be clear, and New York would still have beautiful parks. People live their lives, miserable though they may be in quarantine, and they exist in an overwhelming state of fear. Walking through camps (where people live in improvised tents, stand around burning barrels, and wear masks to hopefully prevent infection), I got the impression the entire city was on the brink of panic.
Believability is clutch in Prototype 2, and it's a far more realistic realization of the fiction because of this focus.
Human flight will always be awesome.
Until now, Activision led me to believe the driving force pushing Prototype 2 forward was a feud: Heller, angry at ol' Alex for murdering his wife and daughter, was on a relentless hunt for Mercer's blood. Prototype 2 isn't quite this cut and dry. The first hour establishes a complex relationship with an uncertain future. Mercer mutated Heller, thus giving him the super powers we know and love, for unknown purposes. He reassures him he didn't kill the Heller family. Mercer even has a mutual friend in Heller's priest, who trusts Mercer's unclear motives implicitly. I didn't see anything but an allegiance in my demo, but if a war breaks out between the boys it'll happen for understandable reasons. The air stinks of inevitable betrayal.
I also got to see a more capable, late-game Heller in action. His abilities remain largely familiar, but the effects seemed more devastating than Mercer's previously felt. The organic tendrils, Earth-shaking smashes, and body mutations – claws, blade arms, huge arms, etc. – do a serious number on enemies. Groups of guys become larger groups of body parts as Heller carves through swaths of men. If you don't feel the need to instantly destroy a tank or chopper, you can weaponize it to wield temporary artillery. Because he's a soldier, Heller also takes great advantage of found guns.
I feel bad for Alex Mercer if he decides to turn on Heller.
Playing a pre-mutated Heller helps you learn who he is.
Where Prototype 2's gameplay aims to set itself apart is in its RADNET content, which all early adopters earn access to. RADNET collects a series of events and mini-games separate from the rest of Prototype 2 , and they're far better than the term "mini-game" often implies. I fell in love with racing, a stereotypical mission type I try to avoid, because each race covers such huge distances. The navigation and traversal in Prototype is versatile in a way that makes running, jumping, and soaring fun on its own. It's super-powered parkour with a timer and a leaderboard – Prototype, you've got me hooked on knocking friends' scores off the leaderboard like you're Joe Danger or Hot Pursuit. The other mode I saw worked like human bowling – I leapt off a roof, smashed into the ground, and launched as many men as possible for points.
This is all a bit of dumb-fun, a stark contrast to the glum start of the story. Radical is rolling out 55 of these events, which are, to my surprise, the reason I'm most excited to play more Prototype 2.
This is in addition to its most impressive step forward: its deeply human themes, motivated hero, and believable world. Prototype 2 brings new strengths to the merciless murder we already enjoyed. It appears Radical's formula tweaks could elevate Prototype 2 to heights its predecessor couldn't even hope to hit.
For more on Prototype 2, check out IGN's interview with Radical's Matt Armstrong on Up At Noon.
The content of this thread is from the following:
WE ARE YOUNG.....BUT WE HAVE HEART.....BORN IN THIS WORLD AS IT ALL FALLS APART......
Closed. Use the other thread.
By Badhon in forum Sand Box
Last Post: November 8th, 2012, 05:05
By Rakin7 in forum Member Central
Last Post: July 14th, 2011, 21:24
By sadi_warhead in forum Sand Box
Last Post: May 24th, 2010, 18:11
By rakibmukitur in forum Action-Adventure
Last Post: July 28th, 2009, 19:53
By sa_rocky in forum Miscellaneous Topics
Last Post: July 3rd, 2009, 18:10
Tags for this Thread
Page generated in 0.17967 seconds with 14 queries.