With all the hype surrounding the PS3 exclusive Infamous, it would be very easy to overlook Activision’s upcoming Prototype, that my friends would be a BIG mistake. Prototype has been a long time in the making and if early indications are correct it might just change open world sandbox style gaming forever. We think that it could be as good or better than inFamous. In reviewing our coverage of Prototype, we noticed that even we weren’t giving it it’s just do so we are seeking to correct that here.
There going to really wish he was dead in a second.
Prototype centers on a large conspiracy regarding an unnamed mutagenic virus currently infecting New York City. At first you would think that these events are isolated, but you will find out very quickly that this has happened before and that the people in power will do whatever it takes to keep you from discovering the REAL truth. In response to the initial outbreak, the government responds by trying to keep people calm and control the situation, but as things get worse all out martial law is implemented and that is when things start to get really bad.
You wake up with heavy amnesia in a morgue under the scalpels of two HAZMAT-suited scientists and you flee as you are understandably shaken up by what you awoke to. You then begin to come to terms with your powers including the ability to absorb memories – which will be crucial to piecing together your own. As you consume more and more memories, you will expand the “Web of Intrigue”, which you will ultimately use to piece this very complex series of events together. As you might guess, someone that possesses as many powers as you do is definitely what law enforcement would call a threat to national security. They will send people to stop you, none more dangerous than “The Specialist”, leader of the Blackwatch special forces branch of the US military. Let’s just say you two will have some epic battles.
Now he is just really ugly.
The game features non-linear sandbox play, where you are able to explore at your own pace and the decisions that you make will ultimately determine the entire city’s fate. A major component of Prototype is the ‘disguise and destroy’ concept. You will have the ability to not only destroy your enemies, you can even become some of them and for some missions you will have to. You will be able to consume the bodies of those you have beaten and killed, giving you access to their memories, their experiences, their biomass and their physical forms. These abilities now add a level of stealth to Prototype, as there are multiple ways to complete objectives, whether you absorb a high ranking general and shapeshift into him to get into a highly restricted area or you just go all out and bash your way in, the choice is yours.
Your primary power is that of shapeshifting: you can control your own mass, transforming yourself into an arsenal of deadly weapons, such as turning your arm into a large blade. You can also manifest other mutations such as huge, clawed hands, a long, sharp tentacle called the “Whipfist”, or transform your fists into huge hardened masses called “Hammer Fist,” capable of smashing through tank armor. The fuel for these transformations is the biomass of fallen enemies that you absorb in quick, graphic cutscenes. After killing an enemy, the distinctive red-black tentacle mass that accompanies all of Alex’s powers will burst from your body and drag the victim’s form into his, consuming their memories and skills, and appearance. After consuming them you can shapeshift into them allowing you to take on their identity. Your powers also allow you to see other infected people or use “Thermal Vision” to see through obscuring smoke and other debris but by doing this you lose some range of vision.
This just isn’t even fair, couldn’t they have given these poor guys a tank or something?
In addition to being able to shapeshift, you are extraordinarily fast, agile, and strong. You are capable of running at over 100 miles per hour, running up and across the sides of buildings, gliding and jumping hundreds of meters. The virus makes you strong enough to easily grab and throw a car or even a tank as a projectile. You yourself are pretty durable, weighing in we would guess at a few thousand pounds due to the fact that when jumping to the ground from distance you will actually crush the concrete beneath you. We said you were durable, but not indestructible and while basic gunfire will not do that much harm to you, rockets and tank shells can cause serious damage.
By now you know why we say that it would be a mistake to overlook Prototype and that it could and should be a blockbuster in its own right. We expect the demo to hit the PSN sometime in the next week or two but that’s just a guess. Prototype is schedule to hit stores June 9, 2009. Once you start your quest to find out what happened, don’t let anyone get in your way, You are Alex Mercer, You are… THE PROTOTYPE.