Review - Prototype 2
Wednesday, 02 May 2012 16:40
Prototype got good reviews when it first released, but chances are a lot of you picked up another game that came out around the same time, dealt with kind of the same issues and also had a huge open world to free roam with super powers, but even though Prototype sold well enough for it to deserve a sequel, and me personally couldn’t have been more thrilled to hear that. But when you take the protagonist from the first one and turn him heel in the description of the game and introduces a new protagonist you need to ask the same old question, does it hold up?
Prototype 2 puts you in the shoes of Sgt. James Heller, a man who has gotten his life demolished with the loss of his wife and daughter by the outbreak that has claimed many life’s inside New York, and the virus has been named “Blacklight virus” but more commonly mentioned as the “Mercer Virus” after a man known to many who played the first Prototype game, Alex Mercer. James Heller has one goal in life, to end the life of the man who ended his family’s, Alex Mercer, but his plans are cut short when on a mission, his helicopter is shut down, killing the entire troop leaving Heller the only survivor. As Heller comes to, he is faced with his nemesis, Alex Mercer who quickly injects Heller with virus and tells Heller that his vision is wrong, that he didn’t kill his family but the government is behind the whole outbreak. The virus gives Heller the ability to mutate into different shapes, and also gives him a variety of super powers. So the question is, did Mercer help Heller with this injections or is the gift a curse? And who is telling the truth, Mercer? Or the government? It is time to once again roam the streets, cause mayhem, run up buildings and rip through enemies with delicious superpowers in Prototype 2.
First thing you will notice is how good the cut scenes look. The scenes are done in form of flashbacks, giving you more and more of the story as you progress through the campaign. You can choose to “eat” important people to get into their heads, revealing dirty secrets or filling more onto the main story, giving you clues and answers as to what is really going on. And it is up to you to try and patch them together to really get to the bottom of the story. It is a nice way to keep the story rolling, and slowly feeding the player more and more as they progress. However, you don’t really get too much information to keep you standing by your decisions as Sgt. Heller, and it might have been better if they built some of his vendetta to keep refreshing your mind as to why you do what you do, it tends to be more about the situation and who’s behind it than the people involved. Might be a personal opinion thing but still.
When Sgt. Heller is injected with the virus it gives him superpowers and the ability to level up as you progress. From the start you already have the ability to jump higher than normal people, run up buildings, take dives off rooftops and take no fall damage. But as you go through and meet different “bosses” you can eat them to get their specialties, and the first one you encounter is the “claws”. The ability to have five different abilities all comes in handy and gives the player the choice for how they would like to play through the game. The ability to dual wield and also when you perform a certain attack it slows down just adds fire to the fuel when it comes to addictive and entertaining combat system that is this game. Also as you preform different attacks you are rewarded with experience points in which you can use to upgrade your current powers or use them to get more health, regenerate health or run faster, jump higher etc. The beauty of all of this is the sense of constantly being rewarded and the sense of growing more and more powerful, yet keeping the balance of being overly powerful. And come one, be honest, who doesn’t want to be a superhero?
The game also gives newcomers two nice things to keep them from feeling like they missed out if they didn’t play the first game, the first thing is the ability to get a recap of what happened in Prototype and the second one is the slow and steady learning curve or tutorial the game introduces from the very start, beginning with how to run, jump, fight etc. It is a nice way to get anyone to pick up and play this game, and also every time you get a new ability it shows on screen how you can use this ability. Also when you take down an enemy you can take its form, and this goes for everyone, even civilians.
However my second complaint is the camera angles, which sometimes makes combat a hassle with the auto aim system. Say you encounter a boss and you need to focus your attacks on it, other enemies may appear and it will automatically focus on the nearest threat which turns the camera away from the boss for just enough time for it to do its special move and knock you to the ground. Because every boss you encounter has that old school mentality where you have to watch for their moves, and when you know they are coming you need to take action at the exact correct timing or you will get hit. But when the camera tilts away from the boss you have no idea what’s coming for you and the bosses rarely miss.
Light scans are a nice feature in Prototype that helps you if you need to find a certain person in this huge landscape, you just press the button and you will send out a orange sonar which will search the city for the person and send signals back to you as to where it is located, and the higher above ground you are the easier it is to find the person you are searching for. It is a nice way to get you to keep focusing on the main screen instead of the map, like a lot of games tend to rely more on. The entire game is also an open world sandbox game. It gives you the ability to power through and focus mainly on the story mission but also the ability to take on side missions or just run around the huge city causing mayhem and basically doing whatever you feel like.
Prototype 2 is an entertaining game, it is not a masterpiece with the best graphics and the most complex story but it is entertaining. The focus to create the best looking game was thrown away for addictive and fun gameplay which I’m all for. The voice acting works good and the cut scenes looks amazing. The open world feels just that, open and free for you to explore and the replay value is there for anyone who loves to just run around and causing mayhem. Prototype 2 is the kind of game that most likely won’t win any awards but it should get one for entertainment because it is packed with it. Some hiccups here and there but the overall experience is that I had fun with this game and if you love open world games this is a great purchase.