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My Top 7 Demands for Prototype 2
by Andrew Whipple III

So the sequel to Prototype is on the way, and I couldn’t help but feel this was the most opportune moment to make my demands clear for the second installment.

Namely, killing. Make it more fun.

There, I said it.

In all seriousness though, Prototype 2 has immense potential behind it. However, some things weren't quite right in the first, and I’ve created a list declaring what needs to be done and why in order to make Radical’s murder-simulator even more enticing.

1: Ditch the story for greater action

The issue: Clause number one of the gaming handbook declares that a game like Prototype must focus on what makes it fun. Clue: it isn't the story. Prototype was, at first, fine: it used the story to show who and what Alex Mercer had become. However, as the game progressed the plot became more and more convoluted and preposterous. By the end of things I wished I hadn’t been exposed to the nonsensical storyline which Radical fed me.

The solution: Exactly what the title suggests. The story needs to take a back seat here. Prototype is all about cleaning the mean streets with buckets of gore, and not about emotional reunions with loved ones. I don’t need to be wowed by some crazy plot twist, either. What I need is to be enamoured with the ways I decapitate and dismember the fools who impede my path.

2: Get your controls in order

The issue: I loved how Prototype functioned. Running up and down skyscrapers, leaping from building to building, gliding through the myriad amounts of civilians; it was all seamlessly awesome. However, with the plethora of moves at your disposal it became somewhat of a nuisance to perform some of them. Why in the world would anyone think the X and B buttons, or Square + Circle combo would be a good idea for the cannonball? I mean, it’s great that I can propel myself into the chassis of an unaware helicopter at Mach-58, but if I have to make my damned hand look like a makeshift spider to do it... I’ll pass.

The solution: Evolve Alex’s moves into something more intuitive. I loved having hundreds of moves at my disposal but if they’d function better with fewer options, I’d rather that was the case. Simplification people; make it work, make it fun, and make it easy to utilise and you’ll have a winner here.

3: Get the gameplay in order

The issue: There’s plenty to work on here. Prototype was a game that quickly became repetitious through having samey tasks coupled with repetitive locations. If every single army base I go into is the same, how much fun will it be to take one down after just a few? None at all, and that’s the motif of the original game. I hated how Radical reused objectives. It just wasn’t fun to continue mauling dudes in the same manner again and again. There has to be some form of augmentation to keep it all fresh and interesting otherwise boredom takes precedence.

The solution: The way you deal with this is not how Radical did in the first game. You do not scale enemies to be the heinous bastards they were because it takes all the fun out of being a complete badass (more on this). Make the tasks and story missions fun and interesting. How about having Alex sink a giant cruiser because it contains a weapon that could harm him? What about throwing a missile at a rival infected angry dude and having it destroy a large portion of the city? I’m not the designer, but with how unbelievably badass Alex is there’s infinite space to build here.

4: Don’t be cliché or stupid with your enemies

The issue: This was a serious problem in Prototype. As you escalated on the predatory scale, Alex became outfitted with all manner of weapons and ridiculously cool moves. Running about the streets whilst people bounced off your shield was unadulterated pleasure in digital form, but as the game progressed this and other impulsive behaviour became rarer. You see, the military becomes more present the further you complete the game and they come equipped with more destructive weapons. All of a sudden, instead of free-running and murdering dudes with ease, you’re being shot with pin-point accuracy by friggin’ tanks across the way. Sometimes it gets so bad that you can’t even move without being thrown back to the ground. It gets even worse when the stupid super soldiers show up with some of your powers.

The solution: Be a little more logical. That’s right, logic in a game about a dude who can turn into various weapons of death. Make tanks miss on occasion, since they’re slow anyway. There isn't anything worse than playing a game with a super anti-hero that doesn’t feel effective. Oh, and please get rid of the super soldiers. I understand that it's just something else that helps make combat harder, but tanks bring nothing else to the table except filler and I hate them. It makes more sense if you’ve played the game and experienced their presence. Trust me.

5: Boss fights need to be fun

The issue: I don’t think that I enjoyed a single boss fight in my entire Prototype playthrough. Granted, there were only a few real ones, but when they came they were usually super-cheap and especially aggravating.

The solution: Just like the missions and tasks that need an overhaul, the same should be done here. Just... make the fights more interesting than "slam button until dead, dodge, kill more." Be creative with your craft instead of choosing being cheap as the way to go. I don’t even want to think about the last fight in the original game again...

6: Bring me some co-op

The issue: Prototype was originally designed with co-op in mind, but it was dropped at the last minute because Radical wanted to make me angry. It worked.

The solution: I’d love to see some form of co-op featured in the sequel. Hell, if Crackdown can do it - and Prototype is twice the game Crackdown is, for the record - I think that Radical can do something great here. I don’t want a separate co-op campaign à la Splinter Cell, though. Just throw it all together in the story in some fancy way for maximum replay value. I always hate it when you can only do a few missions with a buddy and then you’ve completed all the content.

7: Web of Intrigue should be better

The issue: The Web of Intrigue was a really neat addition to the first game and should definitely come back for the second. However sometimes, when I’d smash a targets face in, I’d get trivial information that would make me question continuing my progression.

The solution: Get rid of this superfluous information and the Web could be even more intriguing. Sorry.

Suggest and discuss your demands for Prototype 2 in the comments box below, or feel free to tweet us - our Twitter can be found @ggtl.

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- Andrew Whipple III

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