Friday, January 15, 2010

Prototype first impressions

Not that good to be honest. A bit like the beginning of InFamous you're constrained by scenarios rather than being able to dive right into the open-world structure as you start; however Prototype takes the annoying position of flashbacks.
So the tutorial begins with Alex at full strength and power; and to limit this you don't have the ability to change powers that's done for you. So beat up bad guys with Square and Triangle, sprint with R2 towards the marker. Target with L2. So you beat up some tanks then you're tasked with taking out the Hunters with no explanation as to exactly why. Then you stand on top of the building and start to recount how you got there. Oo flashback time.

Loading screen, not too long though, and you're in a hospital morgue about to be cut up. You wake up scare the doctors away and stagger to the door. Load screen. Now you stagger out the hospital (nice security) to see a bunch of armed goons shoot the doctors, spot you, and then shoot you. You get up and jump over a high fence to get away. Load screen. Now you finally get control and are told to jump X over another fence to get away. You land in a busy street area and walk off only to get a helicopter chasing you. You're told to run R2 up buildings which is pretty neat and far easier and quicker than the InFamous method.

So you run along and over things chasing the marker on the map, reach it and you get hit by a missile. You stupidly stop and stick your hands over your head. At this point the tutorial goes mad and everything slows down "Target using L2" it tells me oh so that's why everything's slowed down, yeah did that before but okay I'll do it again "Use R to flick between enemies" that's new okay I flick between the helicopter and the enemies rappelling down from it. Tutorial continues to tell me to use R until I flick back to the helicopter. "Use Circle to throw" um okay, but you do realise there's nothing in my hands. Nevertheless I hit circle and Alex makes a throwing motion which unsurprisingly does nothing.

Wait it has had an affect the world's sped back up again. Great time to beat up the bad-guys. I release L2 and the world drops back into slow-motion my hands go up above my head and I'm told to use L2 to target. Yeah did that. So I repeat it and this time don't release L2 I flick to the bad-guys and can now beat them up. I slip and release L2 and back to slow-mo and tutorial. This stays like this until they've whittled away my health until finally the game gets back on track. Guys I've done your bloody little tutorial now let me go.

Okay them down and I'm taught how to consume people. Do so and you get health back and can use their image as a disguise by morphing into it. I'm told that I can pick a disguise using the d-pad. Okay again people the d-pad is dark so if you show the cardinal points all lit up except one dark one I'm going to assume that N,E and S are the ones that do something because they're highlighted that's the way everyone else does it ya got that.

Okay two more on rail missions and I'm finally into the open world. I've got one story quest icon and two side-quests. Yeah I go for the side-quests first. The first is a checkpoint race much like AC2 and InFamous. Run up the building through the checkpoints as fast as you can. Okay that works, but oh thanks put the last checkpoint at the bottom of the building meaning you have to jump off and vaguely aim to land on it.

Over to the next one and wow originality it's another checkpoint race, but this time over the rooftops. So you sprint and jump and discover the joys of momentum as you overshoot and fail miserably.

However on the way there I spot someone from the "Web of Intrigue" dum dum durrrr! Basically grab and consume them to unlock memories of the conspiracy. So down I go and he moves off I hit circle to grab him and can't I move towards him and he stops dead meaning I barge into him. He falls down and dies. No really up pops a message chiding me for killing him. I just bumped the guy are they all this fragile? So does that mean I can't access his memories now? Who was he, can I check? Um no. So has that one random accident screwed up my achievement ability? I quit and restart, head back and find a WoI guy, but is the same one as before? IDK. [Seems I'm not the only one unsure judging by the questions found. Seems the answer is leave and return and the dead dude resurrects - hallelujah]

Anyway back to the race and two silver medals there and some XP and I'm told I can buy abilities. I pick up a sprint boost, a jump boost, some more health, and the ability to glide whoo hoo just like InFamous well no. See in IF you jump with X then just press and hold X to glide easy, in Prototype, you jump with X then hit R2 then hold X the reason for the R2 bit in between is that you can "charge" your jumps by holding down X while in mid-air so that when you land if you release it at just the right time (and I mean exactly the right time) you can boost off again. So it needs to know the difference between I want to glide and I want to jump, but what a pain I mean just don't have the boost jump, or only allow it when you're on 'ground' - meh.

So first impressions - carnage is fun more visceral then InFamous, but just finicky controls.


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