One of the games that people have been talking about with the release of the Xbox 360 was one from 2K Games that was a dark and some eerie FPS that hoped to continue Microsoft’s success of console FPS. The game is actually called Prey, and it is a very interesting and complex first person shooter that tries to show some next generation styles and use them for their advantage in this game. The big question is, does this game have what it takes to be considered worthy of a "next gen" label, like very few games have been able to do. Well read our full review of Prey for the Xbox 360 to find out!
For those who haven’t heard the back-story of Prey, it is actually one of those games that have been talked about for a long, long time now. A perfect example of Prey is what we have been finding with Starcraft Ghost, and that is that there has always been a lot of hype and hope for the game but the idea of it actually coming out has been skeptical at best. So the fact the game is now, is actually a welcome surprise.
In Prey you take the role of Tommy, a Native who wants nothing more than to leave the reservation where he lives. The opening scene of the game is extremely well made, and manages to do a great job of introducing you to a few of the main characters in a very stylized and interesting way. Right after you meet these characters in a local bar, an alien ship grants Tommy his wish and takes him away, with everyone else I might add, and now you go through this somewhat crazy sci-fi adventure. The story is an extremely strong and well thought out asset to the game. It is not always the most interesting, but it keeps you glued to the game.
So let’s talk about Prey a bit now. It runs on the Doom 3 engine, which for some may be good and others may not particularly care for it. To me you, can definitely see the Doom 3 engine right from the get go, as it has just that much too familiar feel from what you got in Doom 3. The game however does try and do some things different in order to better establish itself. First off, Prey is a game that tries to keep the levels pretty original. When I say that, they use a lot of gravity elements in the game to make it possible to be running on the ceiling, and quite possibly even the walls. Although this isn’t a huge feature, it is still a very neat one nonetheless.
Another big feature of Prey is the portals, which are basically what transports you from place to place in the game. These are really cool at first, but as you progress they do manage to lose some of their potency. The portals are neat in that you can shoot through them from one side to the other and they work very easily. Like I said, the idea is there from the beginning but at the same time it loses its excitement factor after a while.
The single player game is not what I would consider overly long; probably a little over ten hours for completion for the average FPS fan. The game introduces some new features along the way (don’t want to give anything away) that do add some depth, but this doesn’t manage to take Prey to the final tier. The single player is one that you will never be bored in, and will always manage to keep you wanting to beat the game. At the same time you still wanted more from the game.
Prey does have some multiplayer, but it sure feels like an afterthought, especially after completing the single player. The online play only has Deathmatch and team Deathmatch, and it is just a big shame the developers didn’t add anymore. In this day and age, it seems almost necessary to add more than just those two modes. The two modes fortunately work well, and although I did find some lag issues, they were enjoyable enough to keep playing after the single player.
Visually you also see a lot of resemblance from Prey and other games using the Doom 3 engine. The lighting effects, which are once again big in this game, are very well done. The lighting effects are used quite frequently and do bring a next gen feel to the game. I should also mention that the character models have a good deal of detail and manage to do pretty well for the game as well. The one thing that I thought kept the game from being great was the lack of variety in the environments, which in the end all started looking and feeling the same.
As much as I love Prey for its single player action, it is just so disappointing to see how little the developers gave us online, as this could have really helped take the game over the top. The single player may not have been all that "new", but it managed to bring together a story and solid gameplay into one package, and that is something I really respected and enjoyed from this game. And when you’re done with the single player you feel empty handed, because there is really not much else you can do besides play a few online modes or replay the single player on a higher difficulty level.
In the end, was Prey worth the wait? And the answer to that is yes, although the game is lacking a deeper online game, the single player manages to make up for it with a very good story and good solid action. For those 360 owners looking for a good solid FPS for their console, I would highly recommend checking out Prey.
The owner and editor-in-chief of Darkstation.com. I've been apart of the website since 2002 and purchased the website in 2010. Owning and running Darkstation is a dream come true. I love video games and I love writing and talking about them even more.