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    dkirschner's Prey (PC)

    [July 6, 2010 10:47:55 AM]
    Years ago, when I was all into Doom 3, I thought Prey was going to be the nest coolest thing in town. I never got around to buying it because, well, it was new and expensive. Last month, finally, its time to prove itself had come. My initial impression was positive. The native American focus in the story is definitely unique, and I hoped it wouldn't be cheesy. You begin the game in the reservation bar where your girlfriend works and your grandfather hangs out for some reason. You're tired of the reservation and want to leave, she wants to stay. Grandfather reminds you of your heritage. Normal conflicts in a unique setting. But then the aliens come and just throw this neat little story into disarray.

    The three of you are beamed up into one of many alien ships. The design of the ships I found to be awesome. They are like cyber-organisms governed by god-like intelligence. The walls look like intestinal tracts, and the ship even has little waste openings where it either vomits or defecates on you as you walk by. Right from the beginning in the alien ship, things get crazy and you realize these are not nice creatures. Human screams and cries of terror, like seriously chilling ones, ring out around you as you come to next to your girlfriend in these transport restraint pods. You are being moved like sedated livestock through the ship for who-knows-what, but judging from the soundscape, it won't be a complimentary massage. No, this place is pain.

    A strange alien of another type sabotages the machinery, freeing you, and you watch helplessly as your girlfriend calls out to you, moving towards her fate (which happens to be something special, just for you). At this point, you realize you have mysterious ally saboteurs on the ship and begin your adventure of sightseeing human suffering at the hands of the ship. It was really like watching torture, if I could imagine that. One spot features an endless line of people's transport pods being locked in place in front of a sinister wall. The wall turns out to be spikes and the people are crushed and impaled like by an iron maiden. Over and over. I watched until the people started repeating lines. It was sick. There are also humans throughout the ship who have gone mad and are pretty much not human anymore. I put some of them out of their misery, but felt bad after a while and stopped killing them. So that's the feel of the ship. As you move through the levels, you leave the impaled humans behind. There are huge areas of space ship mech battles with laser guns and the ability to pick up enemies and toss them 1000 feet to their deaths, big rocks you can dock on and jump around in low gravity, and some other cool places.

    The gimmick of the game is the portals. These resemble to an extent the ones in Portal, which I was already familiar with, so in Prey they weren't too shocking. Prey's portals just send you to another locale in the ship that you can see through the portal. It's essentially like seeing a room that isn't physically adjacent to you. It's somewhere else and you can see your destination. Enemies like to come out of these portals. The one thing I liked that was pretty new was the gravity play. There are pads (targets?) on the ceiling sometimes, or elsewhere. When you shoot them, whatever wall that pad is on becomes the floor, so you can flip gravity. Obstacle? Look above you for a gravity pad, shoot it, walk past the obstacle on what was the ceiling, shoot it again, now you're on the other side of the obstacle. There are also these walkways that run up walls. When you move on a walkway, the walkway is always the floor. You're like suctioned to it. So if the walkway goes up a wall, you'll run up the wall. The game perspective flips to reorient it as if the walkway were the floor. It can be kind of nauseous, but it really neat, especially when you're dealing with enemies, gravity pads, portals, and walkways all at the same time. Disorienting and hectic are also accurate descriptors.

    Levels are totally linear, and that's okay here because you're in a living ship, so it should be claustrophobic. The game shows you plenty of different places in the ship, so again, linear isn't bad for me in this case. I felt like I was exploring an alien world. Now, when you finally catch up with your girlfriend, you will be shocked. I know I was horrified at what was done to her. I was so horrified that I had to rewatch that cutscene over a few times just to think about it. Basically her upper half is surgically grafted onto this creature and she/it try to kill you. She's conscious the whole time, which is very sad, as she is obviously in a lot of pain and pleads for you to kill her. You are taunted along in the game by this supreme intelligence and it's at this point in the game I was really on board with finding it and killing it no matter what it wanted.

    The last topic for this one is death. Since you're a Native American, you have a spirit guide, and you never really die, but only go to this spirit realm to replenish your health and spirit energy. In most games, death stops gameplay. In Prey, death is gameplay. You shoot these flying stingray looking things that restore you to life. On the one hand it's cool that death is fun and doesn't take you out of the game. On the other hand, death has no consequence, unless I suppose you really hate the death minigame. I mean, it doesn't matter if I die because there is no game over. I can try to play the whole game with my wrench if I want to and I'll never see a game over screen. It made me have very little self-preservation. I went in guns blazing everywhere. I'm not totally sure how I feel about this. I like the Prey system and dislike it at the same time. Your spirit companion also gives you overly helpful puzzle hints throughout the game and ensures that you are never lost or stuck. I found the puzzles to be very easily solved. But that's Prey in a nutshell, worth playing. I think it took me 10 or 12 hours.
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    dkirschner's Prey (PC)

    Current Status: Finished playing

    GameLog started on: Monday 7 June, 2010

    GameLog closed on: Saturday 12 June, 2010

    dkirschner's opinion and rating for this game

    Prey was fantastic, a bit easy, but definitely eerie environment, living, pulsing, cyborg spaceship, interwoven with native American storyline, sci-fi, gravity manipulation, unique death.

    Rating (out of 5):starstarstarstarstar

    Related Links

    See dkirschner's page

    See info on Prey

    More GameLogs
    other GameLogs for this Game
    1 : Prey (PC) by TerzMasta (rating: 5)


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