Graphics:
5.0
Gameplay:
6.0
Sound:
6.0
Control:
6.5
Replay Value:
6.5
Overall Rating:
6.0
Online Gameplay:
Not Rated
Publisher:
Activision
Developer:
Radical Entertainment
Number Of Players:
1 Player
Genre:
Genre


Prototype has had a somewhat complicated history. Originally set to release last year, the game faced numerous delays after Activision got a hold of the game following its acquisition of Vivendi, which owned Sierra. As one of the games that didn't end up getting cut (Ghostbusters, Riddick, and Brutal Legend being the three that did), Activision gave Radical additional time, and I'm sure expense, to make Prototype as polished as it can be. So with all of this time in development, how come they didn't succeed? It's actually simple.

Now, I know a lot of guys have been comparing Prototype to inFamous, and in some points the comparisons are just. But in other points, they really aren't. For starters, yes, both games are open-world sandbox titles with a lead character on the run after a horrendous event has granted him superhuman abilities. Yes, both characters are on the road to revenge and have a companion that they very much care about. Yes, both games allow you to scale massive buildings, jump between them, or just jump down from them without so much as a scratch. There are other similarities, which I don't really need to get into to, because they're a bit too general to bring up and apply to many games. But regardless, the features I did highlight are all good and fun, right?

Well, no. You see, where the distinctions between these two games lie is obvious. In inFamous, a lot of times I found myself spending time just roaming around the environment doing one of many optional tasks, such as eliminating a gang of reapers and regaining control over sections of a city (something I also spent time doing in Red Faction: Guerrilla). That element in inFamous added an extra layer of depth to the game's living and breathing city. Where as, I didn't get that same feeling in Prototype. There are event markers scattered around the city, but these events aren't side-stories, but rather a time-trial/test of sorts where you're awarded a gold, silver, or bronze based on your performance. Let's just put it this way, it's nothing you're going to want to look around for.

And therein lies another problem. The game's depiction of Manhattan is utterly bland, and look at the game map shows that Radical didn't even care enough to at least render some of the more notable landmarks of the city, such as Columbus Circle. The entire game map is nothing but a criss-crossed grid of squares, and while Manhattan may not be the most complicated place in the world, that should only give a developer all the more reason to include its little intricacies – hell, even Times Square is extremely bland. Now, while you may think this should be talked about with the visuals, you should also keep in mind that this city is the core of the game, and running around it is a boring experience. The design here is nothing more than laziness.

The story also doesn't feel special or unique. You are Alex Mercer, and you gained these superhuman abilities thanks to a virus developed by the evil corporation that you once worked for, Gentek. You will, at first, find yourself thrown into the most climactic point of a war between you, Nightwatch, and The Infected, as it spirals out of control, spilling onto the streets of the Big Apple. The game will then flash back to the day Mercer wakes up in a morgue, with his memory largely gone. In the game, the story will unravel when Mercer's genetically mutated self absorbs the lives of various key characters. By doing so, he also absorbs their memories and he can see what they experienced.

As you no doubt know, Mercer is a marked man and is wanted due to his escape from that morgue. As a shapeshifter, Alex Mercer is a hard man to capture, seeing as how he can assume numerous identities, in addition to have his body grow various different weapons, such as Wolverine-esque claws, stone hands, an enormous blade on each hand, and even a whip. All of these weapons have their ups and downs, and will become available to you the more you play the game (those four are not the only ones available). You will be allowed to pick up guns, but the shooting mechanics of the game aren't very strong, so there's nothing to get excited about.

As a whole, the gameplay in Prototype feels like its missing something truly fresh. The upgrade system boasts some cool powers, but the story, presentation, game world, and overall execution of the game simply falls short. Where as I was completely enamored by inFamous, I found myself absolutely bored with Prototype. And that boredom continued on to the visuals…

Like I mentioned earlier, the game's (poor) depiction of Manhattan is stale. But it's stale in not just design, but also variation. Everything looks generic from the buildings, to the cars, to the pedestrians. And when you assume the look of a pedestrian, that also means your character looks every bit as poorly detailed and generic. The game world simply does little visually to impress as it is also rife with less than stellar textures, and lighting that's as bland as the rest of the game is. Just about the game's only redeeming quality to its visuals is the framerate, which manages to stick to 30 most of the time, and the draw-in distance isn't shabby, either. Otherwise, a pretty game this is not. It doesn't even need to be said, but inFamous seriously demolishes the game here.

Lastly, Prototype features a soundtrack that's somewhat reminiscent of a Marvel videogame. But perhaps that type of soundtrack has become almost like the status quo for open-ended superhero games such as Prototype. And while it's not bad, it is, again, generic in every sense. The voice acting does fare better, as the voice actors do a solid job of playing out their respective roles. The rest of the audio is composed largely of an assortment of sound effects you would expect to hear.

If by now you can't tell that my overall tone is very 'bleh', well, then…it is. That is simply the feeling Prototype left with me. Despite all of its time in development, Prototype feels hollow and uninspired. There are a number of great concepts here, such as the shapeshifting and being able to run vertically, but everything else falls apart when you realize how boring many of the missions are, how boring the world is, how boring the game looks, and…well, how boring the game is, overall. Leave this one alone. If you're done with inFamous and looking for something similar, Red Faction: Guerrilla should suit you better.

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LegendaryWolfeh
LegendaryWolfeh
13 years ago

Agreed, do feel you spent a bit of this about comparing inFamous to Prototype and vice-versa, but I completely agree with the whole thing. Prototype has an epic amount of powers and ways to sue them, but nothing other than that, besides…what's the point if there's really nothing to use them on.

ArnoldK PSXE
ArnoldK PSXE
13 years ago

It's really just that one paragraph, everything else is just an off-mention. It's important to cite a game like inFamous in this review, because it gives a good frame of reference.

Exactly like someone else said, I wanted to add a bit at the conclusion stating that, yes, had inFamous not been released, Prototype may have fared a bit better. And, again, Red Faction too made an impact on me.

IonHawk
IonHawk
13 years ago

Actually I felt they're meant for totally different purposes. inFamous is what you play for a good story, great characters, and still have a good time while doing it.
You play prototype because you loved the infamous mode of infamous compared to the hero mode – that is you love the great power but you did not care for the pesky responsibility that usually accompanies it. I def. think prototype would have been rated better had it come out before infamous. I love playing it when I'm drunk – it's great fun! It should def. go on that list of games to play while stoned! 😀
Give it a rent – might change your mind.


Last edited by IonHawk on 6/19/2009 12:35:50 PM

wasim
wasim
13 years ago

agreeed with the review
the game is total trash
Infamous is a lot better than this crap

dillonthebunny
dillonthebunny
13 years ago

the game wasnt total trash, you should look up total trash and find that Prototype is far from that. may not be as polished as Infamous, but it has a different hack and slash ability to its bow.

personally I prefered this to Infamous, because it ticked a lot of my boxes, but Infamous is a game I would go back to ..Prototype isnt, but that doesnt make it trash.

N a S a H
N a S a H
13 years ago

I'm shocked! It's a good review but people aren't going to read it. They're just going to look at the score! 🙁

Well I hope they read it, but chances are most won't.

SubjectiveTruth
SubjectiveTruth
13 years ago

I have to disagree. I bought this and Infamous. I havn't played infamous yet, but I first rented this game because I had low expectations. I just love the game, I love the running from roof to roof, high jumps, air dash + glide combos. I do have some problems with the game but I like how fast paced in is and I would recommend at least a rent. I would have gave it a 7 or 8. Lol even Xplay gave it a 4 and they are hard asses. Not that I'm gonna get mad at you or anything, this is just my opinion.

Swim_Irr
Swim_Irr
13 years ago

go play infamous now and you'll understand…

King James
King James
13 years ago

play infamous

SubjectiveTruth
SubjectiveTruth
13 years ago

I'm gonna play that after I finish prototype. I did play some of the demo though.

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
13 years ago

Xplay are not 'hard-asses'. They are a tad biased, they have certain genre that they fall over themselves to praise, and they hate Xenosaga. But hard-asses they are not

ace_boon_coon
ace_boon_coon
13 years ago

why would you buy infamous and not play it?


Last edited by ace_boon_coon on 6/18/2009 12:26:17 PM

Hexen
Hexen
13 years ago

I know many people are going to be upset with this review but it made absolute seance to me.I think what made this game suffer was the fact that Sucker punch made the move to release inFamous first which was very brilliant of them;Many including myself just thought that Prototype was a small downgrade compare to inFamous.I am sure if this game was release earlier it would have been received pretty well and gotten better reviews.

LegendaryWolfeh
LegendaryWolfeh
13 years ago

Gotta agree with that, but even then, I'm sorry but the graphics of Prototype alone would destroy it nearly. I know I know the graphics shouldn't matter, but when there's games that do the same and have better graphics, then obviously you'll go with the better game. But hey at least the 360 ppl can have a sandbox game with super powers at least =)

Hexen
Hexen
13 years ago

I see what your saying but if it was release earlier it would have been praise more for it's fun gameplay.I did manage play it for two hours before my PS3 stopped reading Blu-ray's:( but it seemed like the game was sorely intended to be pure mindless gory fun which is fine.inFamous was just a better overall experience from graphics to gameplay which in the end hurt prototype.

tes37
tes37
13 years ago

Man that sucks about your ps3.

mastiffchild
mastiffchild
13 years ago

Yuor non disc readin PS3. A 60gig by any chance? I've had the same problem but Sony sorted it out the first time and CP the second but it's getting common among the 60's.

As for P'type, right away-for me inFAMOUS ia a better game in most respects but they aren't THAT similar. Anyway P'type is a bit of a Marmite game and that's what you see in it's up and down reviews/scores.

I think three things have hurt it; inFAMOUS being better and out first, the fact it plays like Hulk UD with new powers and the lack of good execution in gfx/effects. Honestly my biggest issue is the messy screen in combat(and the poor animations in the wall running that make him look very daft inded sometimes!).

It really is more of a balls out rush than inFAMOUS but that quickly palls when you find the missions dull as you're just too badass for most enemies. That said there's planty of fun to be had but compared to the 9.2/3 I'd give inFAMOUS(great game, imo) this one woulkd get a 7/8 out of 10 for me.

That said if you never played Hulk UD it might well be a better game and if you like being the biggest badass on the block you could love it-proper critic divider-which isn't a bad thing really and I understand why Ben isn't in love but, also, why some are.

mastiffchild
mastiffchild
13 years ago

Yuor non disc readin PS3. A 60gig by any chance? I've had the same problem but Sony sorted it out the first time and CP the second but it's getting common among the 60's.

As for P'type, right away-for me inFAMOUS is a better game in most respects but they aren't THAT similar. Anyway P'type is a bit of a Marmite game and that's what you see in it's up and down reviews/scores.

I think three things have hurt it; inFAMOUS being better and out first, the fact it plays like Hulk UD with new powers and the lack of good execution in gfx/effects. Honestly my biggest issue is the messy screen in combat(and the poor animations in the wall running that make him look very daft indeed sometimes!).

It really is more of a balls out rush than inFAMOUS but that quickly palls when you find the missions dull as you're just too badass for most enemies. That said there's planty of fun to be had but compared to the 9.2/3 I'd give inFAMOUS(great game, imo) this one woulkd get a 7/8 out of 10 for me.

That said if you never played Hulk UD it might well be a better game and if you like being the biggest badass on the block you could love it-proper critic divider-which isn't a bad thing really and I understand why Arnold isn't in love but, also, why some are.


Last edited by mastiffchild on 6/23/2009 10:54:33 AM

Scarecrow
Scarecrow
13 years ago

I'm no graphics whore…but if this game's going to look this bad graphically it should at least have great gameplay.

It fails in both areas from what I've seen.

tes37
tes37
13 years ago

Been waiting for this review and I'm convinced to not buy this game.

Oxvial
Oxvial
13 years ago

LOL love how Arnold put that image for a review with a score of 6.

SubjectiveTruth
SubjectiveTruth
13 years ago

I was disappointed to see that you were late on the review at the time I bought it. So I checked out xplay's site and it was a 4/5 so I got it. I'm really glad I saw that before this, because I like it. I would not have bought it if I saw this before hand. I was expecting it to suck.

Anonymous
Anonymous
13 years ago

I don't understand the reviews on this game.

How can so many people love it and recommend it, and so many others hate it?

Who's right? I dunno.

I'm playing both, but first I'm gonna play Infamous next week.

The powers, flying, and wall running abilities look a lot better than Cole's power.

karneli lll
karneli lll
13 years ago

Its simple, the people who are too proud to play infamous will praise it (if i would've played it before infamous i might've enjoyed it) will say it rocks and what not.

I tried it and i felt like i could be doing something better,the game actually exhausted me.

Its funny how the army doesnt notice one of their own running up walls

Gow49ers
Gow49ers
13 years ago

Arnold,

Ty, you just saved me $60.00 , i was on the fence about getting this game, but with no demo available, and after reading your review, i will wait for a price cut, keep up the great work!

Gow49ers

Kowhoho
Kowhoho
13 years ago

I played Prototype at a friends house for a half-hour, and it was pretty fun, I gotta say. I carried innocent civilians to the tops of skyscrapers and hurled them, spiraling like footballs, off the top. I cleaved people in half with a gigantic sword-arm.
It was a great thirty minutes.
The only problem is, I feel like was playing that first thirty minutes over and over again. Aside from the new powers, the gameplay didn't remain very fresh.

BikerSaint
BikerSaint
13 years ago

Damn,and just when I had high hopes for this game too.
All that time & they couldn't polish it? WTF???

Oh well, if it's bad, then hopefully it'll drop in price real quick & I'll still get it, but only when it hits GameStop's bargain sandbox.

@Ben,
BTW just wanted give ya "Props" on how well written your review of Prototype was!
And not like some "foaming-at-the-mouth rabid fanboy", as this guy's inFAMOUS vs Prototype review was written(I laughed so hard at his 8 year old mentality, I almost pissed myself).

And I'm sure you'll be rolling your eyes at this one too…..

How Prototype is blatantly better than inFAMOUS
http://www.destructoid.com/how-prototype-is-blatantly-better-than-infamous-135979.phtml


Last edited by BikerSaint on 6/17/2009 10:56:24 PM

Kowhoho
Kowhoho
13 years ago

…..wow.
What morons.

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
13 years ago

Pretty sure it's Arnold's name at the foot of this Prototype review…not Ben.

😉

Gotta check out that link of yours. Sounds like fun – in a flame-worthy sort of way.


reading…
scanning…

Oh dear god.

For the briefest of moments I wondered if the review at Destructoid was a satirical review, and not serious. At first it sort of seems that is the intent, sort of. However after reading further, I stopped wondering. I began to think this offensive little man was serious. Actually point 6 in this review made me very angry with the author. Anyone, and I mean ANYONE, who thinks the way that Jim Sterling (the author of that pathetic excuse for journalism) apparently does is simply beneath contempt. I don't often read anything at Destructoid, and I'm really quite glad I don't If I read that piece of trash at any reputable site I would not rest until I had managed to ensure that Mr Sterling's material would never be published there again.

Unbelievable. Simply unbelievable.


Last edited by TheHighlander on 6/17/2009 11:40:38 PM

ArnoldK PSXE
ArnoldK PSXE
13 years ago

As is the case with most PS3 and PSP reviews, I wrote this one. 😉

LegendaryWolfeh
LegendaryWolfeh
13 years ago

Wow…that's all I can say..

SaintX
SaintX
13 years ago

I can't believe theres this writer out there whos so bias, so unbelievable, so ridiculous, so ididotic, so ……..
I can't believe this kind of article is allowed to be published. Its just plain bashing. Point #10 is so out of topic, that guy just loves to take a swipe at PS3 fans.

Banky A
Banky A
13 years ago

I never liked Jim Sterling.
It turns out it was supposed to be sarcastic in a way but then… >>>

he also gave inFAMOUS a 6.0/10 which is what Arnold gave Prototype, LOL!!

^_^

The worst part is, pretty much 95% of the commenter's there agree with him without question.
I know we have opinions and they have their own niche but seriously??? Every single one of them..

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
13 years ago

@Banky

I can see why you've never liked Jim Sterling. Someone ought to tell him that it's only funny, when people know you're joking. In this case he doesn't look like he's joking, instead he looks like he's a grade A git.

Anonymous
Anonymous
13 years ago

Dear me, I think some of you guys are seriously wrapped up in your devotion to PlayStation.

I'm a PS3 fan but that was hilarious.

Prototype is better than inFamous because FFXIII is coming out on Xbox?

Prototype is better than inFamous because inFamous is spelt ridiculously?

If we don't agree Prototype is better we are fr*ggin tw*ts who should go die in a swamp?

Anyone who can't see this is written in jest needs their head testing.


Last edited by n/a on 6/18/2009 5:34:43 AM

BlinkBoy
BlinkBoy
13 years ago

That must be the most xbox fan boyish I have seen, not that I search around for it. Try to avoid it.

I wouldn't call that a site or an article, it is more of a fanboy blogging. When he took FFXIII and Square Enix in to the comparison it was just too stupid too take it seriously.

Even though he is serious, I still don't take it seriously.
So it is weird that electricity spread out on iron fence, and it is weird that some electric powered man kryptonite is dirty water, no s**t Sherlock.

It is not like the whole city has 100% clean/distilled water, which don't lead electricity .

King James
King James
13 years ago

Destructiod is usually sardonic in his writing but that one was just crazy.

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
13 years ago

@Sophist

Whatever. As far as I'm concerned my thoughts and feelings on destructoid's article are not informed by my console purchase so much as they are by my humanity.

Oyashiro
Oyashiro
13 years ago

The thing with Jim Sterling is that he is not funny and he just does not know it. The fact that he really sucks at sarcasm really does not help. I'm pretty sure he also said that RE5 was a near perfect game so we can all ignore whatever he says.

Totalz
Totalz
13 years ago

I think this is a joke tbh…

LOL at number 8 & 9!!

dveisalive
dveisalive
13 years ago

Well I havent played prototype yet but were is the demo. Anywyas Red Faction is a blast and very addicting.

slackernz
slackernz
13 years ago

This doesn't surprise me at all.. I have huge faith in developers and with the awesome Sly series under Sucker Punch's belt, Infamous would have been great at the very least. Radical has made some very average games recently, Hulk:UD was just good fun for causing chaos but offered little substance and that's what Prototype always looked like to me

Might give this a rent but a purchase this is not


Last edited by slackernz on 6/18/2009 12:30:54 AM

BikerSaint
BikerSaint
13 years ago

OOPS,
Sorry Arnold, I never looked at the sig,
I should've, but now my edit button's gone.

I should've have just mentioned "all of you as a team", since you all do a great job on all the articles, & such, over here.

My bad! I'll just go & give myself a thumbs down on this post, just for not giving you the cred you were due!


Last edited by BikerSaint on 6/18/2009 1:27:33 AM

LimitedVertigo
LimitedVertigo
13 years ago

I spent about 4hrs playing it so far and I must say it's a fun game. It's really fun to play with other people because the moves you can pull off are spectacular. Infamous is an all around better game but I have to admit I'm having more fun with Prototype. I'm sure as time goes on though it will get old quicker than Infamous.

Tim Speed24
Tim Speed24
13 years ago

I'm also having alot more fun with Prototype. Graphics can only take a game so far (like infamous)….gameplay is what counts and Prototype has it!

LimitedVertigo
LimitedVertigo
13 years ago

Gotta love the thumbs down for simply stating my fun for a game, w00h00!

newchef
newchef
13 years ago

i kinda disagree i feel as tho inFamous was better in the short term but i think ill be playing prototype for alot longer. i like that prototype u can redo missions(love playing as an ally of the military killing hundreds of infected in mere seconds)unlike inFAmous where u do a side mission and ur done

Random_Steve
Random_Steve
13 years ago

my friend recently got a playstation with infamous and prototype. he says prototype is much much better

Banky A
Banky A
13 years ago

Your friend must like a lot of speedy carnage action with gore 😉

Jawknee
Jawknee
13 years ago

Terrible, tons of gore doesnt make a better game. In reading the review, Prototypes story sounds it was ripped off from a bunch of other games. Mostly resident evil. A virus turns people into monsters while one man gets super human abilities from it. Except in Resident Evil the man with the super human gifts is not the hero but the villian. I almost think people who say Prototype is better then inFAMOUS dont believe that themselves and are just rooting for the underdog. my friend whos always rooting for the underdog in just about every scenario tried to convince me that Assasins Creed was better then MGS4. what a joke.