Radical’s new Prototype game for PS3, Xbox 360 & PC features shapeshifting in an open world


Sierra Entertainment, a division of Vivendi Games, announced Prototype, said to be a completely new kind of open-world game, featuring a rich story line of conspiracy, deception and deadly shape shifting action. Prototype will be released on the PS3, Xbox 360, and PC in summer 2008.

Developed by Radical Entertainment, a critically acclaimed developer of open-world games, Prototype tells the story of Alex Mercer - a man haunted by his past, fighting a secret war in New York City. As the action spirals out of control, a conspiracy tied to his origins threatens the future of mankind itself. Mercer’s amazing shapeshifting powers allow him to become an exact replica and steal the skills or powers of anyone who crosses his path.

“Radical Entertainment set out to create the most dynamic video game character ever imagined. From free-form movement to over-the-top combat action; Prototype can climb or wall-run across any surface, jump 30 stories high, and destroy anything that crosses his path,” said Kelly Zmak, president of Radical Entertainment. “Our team at Radical has built upon the technology that drove our previous best-selling games and now has the freedom to dream big and imagine a powerful character in a sprawling city like New York, cloaked in a conspiracy and ripped from today’s headlines.”

A preview of the game given to CVG describes the game as very cinematic:

New York City. A hooded figure stands motionless in the centre of Times Square. It’s morning and there are people everywhere. And we’re not talking about the usual video game approximation of a crowd. It’s a kinetic cluster of bodies merging and stirring through sun-bleached streets. The camera swings upwards revealing vast, intricately-rendered skyscrapers reaching towards a cloudless blue sky, turning white as the harsh sunlight hits their sides.

And then fantasy takes over. The hooded figure springs to life, pushing violently through pedestrians, sliding across the tops of cars and sprinting up the sides of buildings. And then we see it - a gargantuan insect-like egg jutting out of the centre of the road, pulsating and oozing. People begin to panic and the crowds scatter like buckshot. And then the attack choppers come buzzing in, followed by trundling squads of squeaking tanks and platoons of soldiers. Something’s about to go down in Times Square.

Your objective here is to destroy the alien egg. And this is where you first discover Mercer’s powers. Using his shapeshifting ability, Alex can morph his body T1000-style. So to protect himself from projectiles the egg’s hurling at him, an organic armadillo-like shell envelopes him. It’s natural body armour. Then he mutates his arm into a strange blade-like appendage - think Resi’s Tyrant - and swings it at the egg. But, because this is a game and as such is designed to make your life hard, the army are after you. Complicated? Well, let’s leave Times Square again.

Time to explore more of Alex’s abilities. A group of soldiers rush at you, firing their M4s and generally being aggressive. You calmly drop to your knees and plunge your hand into the pavement beneath you. Suddenly from directly under the marines dozens of spikes thrust upwards and skewer them, killing an entire troop instantly. But that was nothing - he has tanks and choppers after him now. Luckily you can ‘borrow’ enemy vehicles.

Alex can commandeer vehicles by latching on to them, but he also has to complete Resi 4-style rhythm action sequences. Keep following the prompts and he’ll run up a tank’s barrel, prise open the hatch, jump inside, slice the driver to bits and take the helm. Same for a copter, only he crawls under the side, yanks out both pilots with his mutated arm and enters the cockpit. So no longer do you have to try and destroy the egg with melee attacks; you can batter it with a payload of hellfire missiles or some well-aimed tank shells. In one scene, you run up the side of a skyscraper, flip backwards and steal a chopper all in one move.

Murder someone - an innocent bystander or an enemy - and you’ll see their body turn liquid-like and slide up your leg. This means you now have their data stored and can basically transform into them at any time. This can be used tactically, for instance taking over the body of an army commander and ordering his troops to help you in battle. You can also use it to sneak into enemy bases, blend in with crowds and dozens of other uses, depending on your objectives.

Source: VideoGamesBlogger

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