Bethesda released a free trial of Prey today so I thought I’d share my thoughts on the game. Now unlike the demo, the trial means that anyone who plays can retain their progress along with any Trophies/Achievements earned if/when they actually buy the game.
I will start off by saying that I played this game looking to earn certain trophies. On my first run I took on no alien powers and killed no humans. None at all (you should see a trend in how I play these things as you read my reviews). I am now half way through my second run and I am gobbling up alien powers and killing everyone I see almost on first sight.
You are in an alternate timeline. You are in space. In fact this game can be seen almost as Thief or Dishonored in space, minus the stealth. In fact I was hoping for a lot more stealth. The enemies (shape shifting aliens) are very stealthy but you, not so much. There are plenty of ways for you to sneak around, but you must interact with the aliens and you must make yourself known in many situations, like it or not.
The story is fantastic and deep. You can learn all kinds of things about the people, the place and how it all came to be, but you don’t have to. It is up to you to read emails and listen to recordings to learn these things or you can just ignore it all and blow right through. In fact the “first hour” demo that was released took me three hours from all my poking around, so it’s all what you make it.
Since you are forced to have combat, it is classic first-person RPG. You have an interesting arsenal at your hands (pistol, shotgun, etc.) that grows over time depending on the path you choose. Thing is, this is supposed to be difficult to pick a path as you spend points in your skill trees, but I backtracked early on and with a bit of stealth I was able to craft neuromods (the item that grants you the ability to buy skills) early on and that caused me to be overpowered way too soon. I don’t know if I should blame the game or myself for that. Also, ammo is very scares, like Resident Evil scares, but being stealthy I never really had ammo issues. Plus, if you explore you can find fabrication plans for ammo and make your own instead of scrounging for it.
There is also a lot of running back and forth through the same areas to get those quests done. I found myself running through the same areas quite a bit just to complete a small side quest. There were ways to unlock a bit of a shorter path but they weren’t that much shorter.
Navigating and exploring is fun though. There is plenty to find and lots to see. As you get more powers you can open doors, move objects and hack computers to gain access to areas and see lots more. One of the coolest things for navigation was the dart gun. Useless for combat the foam dart gun allowed for pushing buttons through unreachable areas and gaining access where you might not otherwise be able to get to.
I won’t spoil it for you but the think I liked least was the ending. There are multiple ways to end the game, but they all stem from the same basic disappointing end. Even though the end is not great I would not let that deter you from playing the rest of the game.
On The Plus Side
- Lots to explore if you choose to
- Tons of story to see (if you choose to)
- Lots of cool side quests on top of the main story
- The GLOO gun allows for some interesting path creation
- No way to be completely stealthy
- Zero G areas were a pain to navigate
- Long loading screens (PS4)
- Ending left something to be desired
Overall it was an enjoyable game full of interesting storylines and great characters. The combat was nothing to write home about but I was not looking for combat from this title. If they make a sequel I would play it, I just didn’t like how they completed an otherwise fantastic story.