We had a discussion about the Original Prey in the Respawning group the other day and whilst certain people were chucking around statements like “Did ANYONE even like the Original Prey?” “That game Sucked, who even asked for this?” it pretty quickly transpired that out of all 12 of us… Only I asked for this and loved the original.
Alas, that is not why we are here… as we are all gutted by the cancellation of the alien bounty-hunting sequel of Prey 2 – does the reboot fill a certain sci fi action horror void?
Story & Overview
In Prey, you start the game by waking up and going through a series of test designed to take a look into the mentality of Morgan (You) and assess his mental stability, this is all standard fare for an RPG… Then you wake up and the cycle repeats – only this time you are contacted by a mysterious person calling himself January who tells you to smash through your apartment window and show that you have actually been in a simulation this whole time. SHOCK HORROR!
The rest of the story is kind of just bleh really – I don’t want to spoil it for anyone but over my next 18 hours (I did most of the side quests, a lot of them are just a bit too complicated and have you believe they will open and then don’t and the game is finished) I spent most of my time roaming around Talos-1 trying to find survivors or finding out exactly what happened to all of the people there, its one of those stories that you experience within the nothingness and the subtle clues so no matter how much I explain it, I wont do it justice here.
Prey does make a point of giving players a bunch of choices to make along the way (using alien powers, saving or killing certain people, the ending) but ultimately the choices felt pointless and didn’t really add anything to the overall experience.
Prey is a game about making the player feel lonely and isolated, a game about identity & worry where even the smallest inanimate object could be there to kill you. Everytime you see a phantom Mimic with the name of another person on the space station it makes you feel even more lonely, even more isolated on this space station. This is one of the things that Prey really excels at – “Preying” on your trust of your surroundings and then turning them into aliens who want nothing more than to see you dead. This is where the game really excels.
Over my 18 hour campaign I found a lot of fun to be had with Prey, everything from the aforementioned feeling of loneliness and isolation right up to the varying gun types.
Prey is not an incredibly easy game – you won’t be able to just walk through the game in a breeze. Saying this you never feel completely underpowered, with the awesome guns you always have something in your arsenal to craft to take down the ALIEN SCUM. Then theres the recycler grenades – probably the most important item in the whole of my playthrough. Basically these grenades suck everything around them into a vortex and turns it into matter that you can recycle into weapons or ammo, not only is this insane for taking down groups of enemies but you can also use it to take down heavy objects blocking your way before you can spend the Neuromods to be able to lift them up.
Alien Powers – I don’t know what I can say about this bit, I used my choices to do a human playthrough so I didn’t get a chance to check these out. I WILL be having another playthrough shortly where I will test this out so keep an eye on our social media profiles for the updates! However, I barely had enough Neuromods to purchase all the exploration, health and damage skills anyway so I am quite excited to have a look at how I will balance this on my alien playthrough.
Exploration of Talos 1 was awesome, after a brief linear section you are just left to roam around as you see fit, you can even leave the space station and float around in space (though these sections are insanely boring). This does get a bit overwhelming though as there is nothing really bringing you back onto the beaten path.
The Music and sounds in Prey are really minimalistic when you are alone which really helps the feeling of loneliness and isolation, though when a fight breaks out the noises of the various weapons (even the wrench) are so satisfying that Prey strikes up a really nice balance in sound and music.
Then theres the mimic sounds, they make a weird shriek like noise which helps to create a real terror everytime you see one.
I really had a lot of fun with Prey, there were a lot of moments that felt tacked on and unfortunately the feeling of isolation ended up making the game just feel a bit empty. I do recommend it though for any RPG or Sci-Fi Horror fan