Those nuts over at Activision have done it again. They have dropped another golden egg in our laps and that baby is hatching into what could be one of the biggest games of 2009. I was surprised and impressed with their latest masterpiece, so much so that I was willing to buy it the day it hit stores (which was on June 9th in case you’re wondering). If you haven’t unleashed your potential as an undead, virus-plagued, morphing super beast, then you haven’t experienced Prototype.
I saw the commercial for this game while browsing online for stuff to buy on eBay. At first I couldn’t believe it. How awesome the graphics were, how sick the story was. And then I was a little POed. How had I not noticed this before? Game companies put out ads for their games months before the release date. And suddenly I was noticing it everywhere a mere week before it was to be released. It’s even covering the Myspace front page. Okay, Activision, where was my effin’ memo on this one? What matters is I’ve seen it. I bought it. Then I played it. And I was blown away.
In the beginning of the game, you get a preview of what is to become of the city of Manhattan. People have become these zombie-like creatures that are constantly vomiting blood on the sidewalk and grass, victims of the spreading virus that has overtaken the city. Cars, a few on fire, litter the streets. The “residents” of the city wander around awkwardly looking for something to attack. You play Alex Mercer, a victim of the virus that has developed super-human abilities. You are able to consume everyone around you, taking their thoughts and strength with you. As you evolve, you develop better and stranger powers that enable you to complete tougher missions. And for some reason, you kind of resemble a “Hunter” from L4D.
The game is open-world, which is one of the main things that attracts me to a game. If you want to stick to the storyline, you can. Or you can roam the city with only the most distant barriers holding you back and complete the mini-missions that are scattered throughout the city. You can roam side to side, end to end the city of Manhattan, scaling every building and destroying every person and object in sight. Think of it as Grand Theft Auto mixed with L4D with a little X-Men in there. It gets intense really quick when you realize the size of the world you have to explore and mangle.