Previews

Prototype 2: The ultimate power trip?

New York Zero - Maximum waste, no sugar...

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NYZ is a pretty strong gameworld. Radical had previously identified Prototype's samey, washed-out approximation of New York as one of that game's primary weaknesses, and by segregating the city into areas of distress, they've been able to give each corner of the map its own distinct flavour while simultaneously furthering the storyline.

No matter which zone you're in, however, there's an unmistakeable tinge of corruption in the air in the city. The military force given the task of controlling the spread of the virus, Blackwatch, has a perma-cloud of suspicion hanging over it and this only grows as Heller gathers more and more intelligence and the story progresses.

You begin to see some of Blackwatch's more oppressive tactics in a new light; do they really need an army of mobile surveillance cameras? And what's with those "We're here to help!" posters, featuring soldiers and children standing hand-in-hand? It's a bit close to Bioshock's Rapture for our liking...

VIRAL DEMARCATING
There will be few changes to the actual nuts and bolts of the game, but Radical are looking to tighten up the combat sequences so you feel more in control, more like a superhero - and for inspiration, they're looking towards the master of doing exactly that, Batman: Arkham Asylum.

Zoom

One of the key things they've drafted over from Rocksteady's magnum opus is the concept of 'tells' - if you pay attention to your opponent's body language during fights, you can learn to predict their next move, which in turn will allow you to identify who poses the most immediate threat during multi-man beatdowns, allowing you to turn the tide with style.

Our main beef with the first iteration of Prototype was that the on screen chaos often left us feeling bewildered and helpless - hardly an 'ultimate power fantasy'. But Radical has listened diligently to criticism of the first game, and when Heller finally takes Mercer down, perhaps it'll be symbolic of Radical burying the mistakes of their past.

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