Have you been on the fence on whether or not you should buy Prototype 2? Was a little bit disappointed with the first game? Well let me put your fears to rest; Prototype 2 is 100 times better than its predecessor. Activision and Radical Entertainment truly have one of this year’s gaming gems.
Back when I played the first game, I loved the premise so much, but for some reason the gameplay and storyline just threw me off. Almost to the point where I just wanted to give up on the game and say the hell with it. But it seems that the developer has listened to all the feedback from the first game, good and bad, and has incorporated that into this sequel.
A lot of time has passed since the first game, 14 months to be exact. During that time the virus that came from our lovely friends over at Gentek, has spread rapidly throughout the city. The government is putting full blame of this on Alex Mercer, our protagonist from the first game. So much so, that they are now calling it the “Mercer Virus.” I won’t ruin what happened in the first game, in case any of you want to go check it out, but let’s just say the government has a good reason to put blame on Mercer.
In Prototype 2 we have a new protagonist of the series, Sgt. James Heller. This is one pissed off guy right about now. His wife and daughter were killed, due to the Mercer virus. Because of this, Heller is more than ready to get his chance to kill Mercer. New York City is now simply known as NYZ, aka New York Zero. No one knows where Mercer is, he is somewhat a ghost of the city, lurking in the shadows causing havoc.
When the game starts, we get a brief back story on Heller and what he has been through. While riding with his fellow soldiers, here comes Mercer with a group of infected attacking the convoy. Heller is the lone survivor, and notices Mercer... the man who killed his family. Mercer toys with him a little, and then decides to use him in his plan to take down Gentek. Thus making him the new…. Prototype.
The story in this sequel is by far much better than the first game. When playing the first game, the various cut scenes and dialogue often left the user confused as to what was going on. In Prototype 2 that is totally different. Each cut scene links together, telling the full story. Plus the graphics and editing done to make these scenes is top notch, almost movie like. Speaking of movies, on the storyline alone, what Radical Entertainment has done with this new storyline could work great for a full out movie. We have heard rumblings of Halo, Gears of War, and even BioShock movies for quite some time. Now we should add Prototype to that list.
It's not just about how they present the story this time, but the story itself. Which I won't go fully into, because I don't want to spoil it for you. Just know that it's a well put together story, that has many twists and turns (part of the reason why I said it could be a movie). On top of that, you will simply love the ending.
You will never be bored with this game. There are so main side missions and challenges to do, that you will just find yourself exploring New York City looking for new things to destroy, and of course more people to consume. None of the various missions seem repetitive at all. There are many “lairs” for you to destroy around the city and collect new abilities. On top of that, you have various “Black Boxes” spread throughout the city which unlock new parts of the story (with full cinematics), as well as new abilities.
You have complete control over how you upgrade Sgt. Heller, so you can truly make him to be the prototype YOU want him to me. Throw in the fact that if you purchased the RadNet edition of the game, there are tons of extra content that will be released over time. Already schedule to July of this year! Although that’s the farthest date I saw, I truly hope they continue to release DLC for the game.
I should also add that if Radical Entertainment was smart, they probably would have put in some sort of Multiplayer experience in the game. Yes, I know, many games are just throwing that in these days. It just seems that Prototype would just be ripe for that. Just think, a 16 player deathmatch of sorts, with a bunch of deadly prototypes running around destroying each other in the city. I’d pay for that now!
How you control your character is far better this time around, than in the previous game. In the previous game, you had SO many different ways you could change your character into a deadly machine. Although that sounds good, in a very hectic and chaotic gameplay environment, that can be difficult to control and use when you want to effectively. Radical has changed this, they seem to have stripped away a few of the abilities from the previous game, but still allow you to upgrade those remaining abilities. You can assign two abilities on the fly to your attack buttons, and if you need to change which of those are assaigned its amazing easy to do so with the top bumper button. This comes in handy if you are fighting an enemy and decide that those claws are just not working out, and you need to change to your big rock fists.
The visuals are great, but not 100% excellent. During the cut scenes, you are watching this highly produced clips in a somewhat noir like fashion, which I love. But as for the actual gameplay, there were some times where you saw some jaggedness to edges. Do not worry, it’s not bad enough to really take away from the game, but it just could have used a little (very little) more polishing. In this big open world environment type of game, I suppose I have become used to what Crytek has done with its Crysis games.
Overall (4.5 out of 5)
Should you go out and buy this game? HELL YEA! This is the open world game you have been looking for. After seeing a demo of The Amazing Spider-Man game due out soon, as well as playing Prototype, I am starting to think that Activision has hit a stride with these sandbox types of games. Prototype 2 has definitely fixed all of the issues I had with the first game, and will be one of the very few games that I ever do a second playthough of.
With endless ways to customize your character, action packed gameplay and a great story, what else could you ask for? Go run to the store right now and pick up this game.