Gamescom 2011: Prototype 2 Updated Impressions Preview

James Heller, protagonist of Prototype 2, has a few new tricks for quickly annihilating multiple enemy types at once, and we've got all the gory details.

New York City fell upon hard times during the third-person, open-world action game Prototype. And in Prototype 2, it's not getting any better. The city has been renamed New York Zero and is divided into three zones: green, yellow, and red. All of these zones are miserable to varying degrees, with citizens suffering from either the viral outbreak or the oppressive military group Blackwatch that monitors the zones.

On the other hand, the Gamescom 2011 convention in Cologne, Germany, is classified as a fun zone, with more video games and sausage-based cuisines than imaginable. During the show, we caught up with Ken Rossman, studio head at developer Radical Entertainment, for a quick, hands-off demonstration of this destructive game.

We'll go ahead and spoil the ending of the demo now: The main character, Sergeant James Heller, uppercuts a helicopter so hard it explodes. With that in mind, let's review the events leading up to this character-defining moment. The demo took place in the yellow zone--the "petri dish" of the Blackwatch forces. It's a refuge (prison) for those affected by the outbreak. The lucky ones die a quick death. The unlucky ones get carted off by Blackwatch for experimentation, never to be seen again.

One of the early features Rossman showed was the improvement to your character's hunting ability. When activated, the ability releases a pulse that blankets everything in a shade of red. Normal color then radiates out from your target's location until its covers the screen again. It was a simple visual trick that quickly and clearly communicated where the target was located.

"We want the player to have a lot more choice this time around," Rossman said. This philosophy applies to simple matters, such being able to pick up a person and set him down again without killing him--something Alex Mercer struggled with. It also extends to the combat. "We found that in the original Prototype, players didn't have a lot of incentive to switch powers," said Rossman. Therefore, it led to a lot of players just picking one power and sticking with it. With Prototype 2, the team wanted to give players more of a reason to paint with the full palette of destruction.

One way is by giving Heller's powers new attributes, such as bonus damage against certain enemy types. For example, his claws are great for carving up squishy humans, while his hammer fists excel at punching tanks. Players can also equip two powers at the same time, which lets them switch from one to the other on the fly within combat and without having to pause the action.

Our hero used these abilities to great effect while busting up a Blackwatch covert operation. The op was to safely transport a captured monster back to Blackwatch HQ for research. Heller's operation was to kill it and as many Blackwatch troops as possible. After consuming and shape-shifting into a enemy scientist, he was able to waltz up to the storage container holding the beast and pop the electronic lock with a flash of his badge.

The monster then burst from its cage, and everyone flipped out.

Things spiraled out of control pretty quickly afterward. One moment, Heller was chasing the escaped beast down a city street; the next, he was tearing the turret of a Blackwatch tank. After that, it was back to the beast for a few rounds using the giant claws. Then the helicopters showed up, which Heller promptly jumped onto and hijacked in midair. From moment to moment, our character was doing something to sow more mayhem across the battlefield. And having the ability to swap between the two powers kept the action moving at a constant and destructive pace.

You can smack around heavy machinery for yourself when Prototype 2 is released next year.

Written By

Want the latest news about Prototype 2?

Prototype 2

Prototype 2

Follow

Discussion

15 comments
Rouguezz
Rouguezz

we gonna beat alex's ass this time but damn, mercer faces was just the same as ezio auditore

Blokblok
Blokblok

I hope the second one has a better targeting system as well as some scenery around the map. First game there were not really any scenery. Imagine using the GTA 4 map on this game (although you might need a few more taller buildings)

Hellavation
Hellavation

@Gelugon_baat Lmao yeah but still this is going to be a great game I cannot wait!

varunvikram1
varunvikram1

as long as it isnt repetitive and story telling improves i m in

Smokey2003
Smokey2003

This looks amazing, but so did the first one - and it turned out not so great. I found myself really bored the first time around and didn't even finish the game. I hope they have made a better game, but will wait and see how it turns out.

wexorian
wexorian

if i will sayu that i'm exicted about this game like i was for 1st one i will lie because 1st game was SoSo after 30% walkthrough, soo i'm gonna keep eye on this :)

Gothic_symphony
Gothic_symphony

OOOOOOKKKKKKKK. I'm in. looks like I gotta keep an eye on this one.

dah_master
dah_master

Actually the Prototype 2 seems to be going in the right direction. The only problem i have are the explosions which to be honest...looks 2D and kind of crappy...but everything else is going great

mikebateman
mikebateman

Prototype was really enjoyable, I wasn't expecting it to be but I thought it was quite bloody good! Really looking forward to giving this a go. As long as it doesn't have a stupidly hard boss 3/4 of the way through like the last one, that seriously gave me the rage!

newbie4lyfe
newbie4lyfe

i always thought this would be a great carnage (villian from spier man series) game...

NV916
NV916

Prototype wasn't the best, but I did have alot of fun with it. Hopefully if they get the graphics looking better or improve visually in a big way, this could easily have alot of potential to be a serious franchise. Besides that though I am also looking forward to this sequel of a cult classic :).

AC2TheTruth
AC2TheTruth

for me PERSONALLY. prototype didnt have much to give. after 2 hours you could really tell what was going to happen next. and when you played enough......it is just an empty action game. so i really hope prototype 2 will give a better story.(which WE ALL can hang up with)and not so much repetive missions........

burgeg
burgeg

Prototype 1 was great. This game just looks awesome. Definitely looking forward to this.

Nergil
Nergil

maybe...but still not convinced...doesn't look bad just so much stuff looks better