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My take on Prey (2017), Full Spoilers

Bragr

Member
Played on normal, 20-hour playthrough. PC. No Typhon neuromods, pure human.

Good
- The scenario in the first 30 minutes or so, when you figure out that you are an experiment, is great.
- The looting and crafting are good throughout the entire game, they pulled off the feeling of need, you always want to find stuff, always want to craft something.
- Gloo gun!
- The game looks good.
- The effect of the station turning around and the sunbeams zooming across the windows are always awesome.
- The spacesuit and no gravity areas are fantastic, it does a lot in the way of changing up the gameplay and creating novelty.
- A ton of solid side-quests, I didn't do all of them, as I got a bit tired of walking through the station back and forth, but most of them were interesting.
- Good replay value with potential different builds, new game plus, and an interesting survival mode.
- Multiple ways to get through areas, I used the Gloo gun several times to climb up to alternate paths, I loved that. Good level design.
- Good OST. "Everything is gonna be OK" is a modern classic.
- Dishonored has great art and Prey is the same, a lot of cool knick-knacks, whether it's some part of the interface, some art piece on the wall, or details on a staircase, it all looks cool and creates a visual identity unique to Arkane.
- The game wants you to become curious about uncovering what is going on, a bit uneasy as you step into new areas, it wants to interest you with an alternate reality where neuromods is on the verge of changing humanity. I think it succeeds with this.
- The Apex Typhon.
- I liked the post-credit ending twist.
- Great movement. Running, jumping and climbing have the same inertia you find in Dishonored. Which is a good thing.


Not Sure What To Think
- I am not sure what I feel about the aliens. For starters, the mimic thing doesn't mean as much as I thought it would, after an hour you get used to it and I stopped caring if they were around. The mimic and phantom types of the Typhon start to feel a bit bland after a while. I like the weaving, that looks cool, but the phantoms are just black human-shaped figures, and the different variations of them just look the same with electricity or fire enveloping them. They could have done more here.
- They made Alex Yu and January feel too shady too early on, I suspected some nonsense was going on because of this and wasn't surprised by much.
- I thought that there was too much traveling between the different divisions, especially if you go after the side missions, I got tired of the back and forth.
- I thought the game should have concluded earlier, when you watch the looking glass video of yourself, you know that there is a lot of bullshit going on, you know everyone is likely lying or have some sort of agenda, maybe even yourself, and it took so long before this was all resolved. I felt the game blew its load a bit too early in the story department.
- If you don't follow the story closely, a lot of it is gonna escape you. Maybe a bit too much.
- The combat is strange. Since the enemies are just black goo, It didn't feel satisfying to shoot them. And you can shoot the 9mm pistol as fast as a machinegun with perfect accuracy, which in my case, made the nightmares and later harder Typhon creatures too easy to deal with. The combat works best when you use the Gloo gun and the wrench in the early game, but fighting the bigger Typhons toward the end was not that interesting. Not once did I hide from the nightmare, I just machine-gunned him down with my 9 mm. The A.I. struggles with following you around, you can just go into a different room and they usually get confused. When you get the other weapons and the slow-motion superpower, most enemies become a push-over. This might also be a product of playing on PC, where you can quick-save non-stop, and aiming is easy. I suspect it's different on consoles. And some might say the combat is better on harder difficulties, but you shouldn't have to play it on harder difficulties for the game to function at its best.

Bad
- After you figure out what is going on in the first hour or two, the story doesn't hit the same strengths until you come to the big conclusions at the end.
- Most of the animations on the humans are virtually non-existent, they just stand straight up and down with minimal and off-sync facial animations.
- Once you get to the mission where you chase down the arming key, the game sends you on tons of wild goose chases for hours until you finally get to the end. It reminds me of that terrible Bioshock mission, where you have to assembly the suit towards the end. It's never fun to get a goal then have run back and forth pressing switches and collecting passwords and missing parts for hours to complete it.
- After the Gloo gun and 9 mm pistol, it took me a long time to find new weapons, too long.
- The stun gun was ok, but I ended up using the 9 mm, Gloo gun, and shotgun for 95% of the game. The q-beam was cool but it uses ammo too quickly. I thought the game could have used a machine gun or something else.
- Some of the voice-acting on the voicemails are absolutely terrible.
- Too many pointless books lying around. Most of them offer very little and just stop-start the game in an annoying way. Let the player live in the game, don't freeze the game for reading purposes.
- Frankly, the voice mail idea in itself is also getting a bit outdated, it always feels unnatural and unrealistic in the games that use it.
- I had no idea what a fuck was going on with the game at the end. When the military shows up, there are military bots and aliens all over. I had no ammo to fight all of these things, so I ended up running when they saw me. This ended up with me pretty much just sprinting through each area for hours until I had done what I needed to do. What a hell was this part of the game supposed to be? I understand they wanted to up the ante in the endgame, but I don't understand what they wanted the player to do here, other than sprint through the entire last part of the game, which is absurd.
 
I love the game but I agree on the ending bit. Tons of games feel the need to pad it out with silly timed fetch quests and throwing random enemies at you towards the end, I guess to make it feel epic, but it just annoys me.

Apart from that it's an absolutely stellar game and a worthy successor to System/Bioshock.
 

Wildebeest

Member
I felt that the hit marker on the pistol was so big that it was clear when it was doing critical damage to the Typhon. One thing I never thought to do myself was to use the nerf gun to push buttons and touch screens. Seemed super obvious that it was meant for that in retrospect.

The game does not have a variety of gnarly slasher movie type monsters, but they would only distract me from the psychological horror theme. I was pretty annoyed with all the manipulation before the end of the game but looking back that seems sort of partly an immersive response than a pure criticism of the game being badly scripted. Deus Ex always had characters who could always trust, but everyone seems shifty in Prey.

I played without Typhon powers myself. One of the good things about Mooncrash is that it has you experiment with all sorts of different builds.
 

SteadyEvo

Member
Could someone sum up the story for me on a few sentences? I’ve tried playing a few times but it did nothing for me.
 

Bragr

Member
Could someone sum up the story for me on a few sentences? I’ve tried playing a few times but it did nothing for me.
This will spoil it completely, beware if you ever wanna play it.

You are Morgan Yu, and you are running Talos 1 with your brother. You have willfully put yourself into an experiment to test the effect of neuromods, but because of that experimentation, you have no memory.

The Typhon (the aliens) take over Talos 1 when you are in one of these experiments, and you have no memory of who you are and you wake up wondering what a fuck is going on, that's when the game starts.

You start to explore the station and find out that you have created a failsafe program in case the Typhon would take over the station when you had no memory. The failsafe problem is a robot (january) that guides you through the station and tells you that you need to blow up the station and wipe out the Typhon. You follow the robot's instructions for most of the game, but Alex Yu, your brother, starts to give you a different story.

It really comes down to if you believe the robot or your brother, and if you wanna help your brother to save the research on the station, or help your robot and blow it all up. The military also comes in at the end and makes it more complicated. There is also, of course, a lot of lore about the aliens and who they are.

Then you make your choice, blow up the station, or save the research and the station. The game ends.

Then a post-credit scene tells you that it was all fake.

In reality, the Typhon has already taken over Earth, and you are actually a captured Typhon with Morgan Yu's memories implanted into your head. You were reliving Morgan Yu's last days on the station in an experiment to see if you would act in humanity's best interest or if you would be in-human and vile. If you do good actions during the game, Alex Yu will ask you to help him stop the Typhon from destroying all of humanity. If you were evil during your playthrough, he will destroy you.
 

Roni

Member
- Once you get to the mission where you chase down the arming key, the game sends you on tons of wild goose chases for hours until you finally get to the end. It reminds me of that terrible Bioshock mission, where you have to assembly the suit towards the end. It's never fun to get a goal then have run back and forth pressing switches and collecting passwords and missing parts for hours to complete it.
Shit, I love classic Survival Horror and that's the main reason why, guess that explains why the genre is no more...
 

Bragr

Member
Shit, I love classic Survival Horror and that's the main reason why, guess that explains why the genre is no more...
Well, I'm not sure if this is the same thing. The last part of the game is like this:

You need an arming key, go here to find it
- You go there
Oh no, the room with the key is sealed, you need to run back to the beginning of the station to find a password
- You run back
Oh no, a door is sealed, go another way
- You go another way
Oh no, the aliens just ate the door, go back another way
- You go another way
Oh no, the military just closed all the doors, you need to go around the station
- You go around the station
Oh no, an alien is using telekineses from OUTSIDE THE FUCKING STATION to hold the door locked (this actually happened)
- You go into space, find the alien, kill it
Oh no, the door you exited out of just closed, go back to the beginning of the station
- You go back
Oh no, the elevators just got fucked, go on the other side of the station to fix it
- You fix the elevators
Oh no, you need a password to enter the elevator, find the military boss
- You find the boss
Oh no, the boss has his spaceship on some tall platform you can't reach
- Run around, find a way to lower it
Oh no, he's not there, go back to the beginning of the station and find some bullshit password for the elevator
- Go back, find the bullshit password
Try the elevator now
Good, now the elevator works, now you can get the arming key.

That's the last 3 hours of the game more or less.
 

Graciaus

Member
I played it for awhile and found it to be boring. The combat didn't have much variety and I spend most of the game just going back and forth. But reading that story summary makes me wish I had finished it.
 
I put about 20 hours into it and loved it. I stepped away from it for too long, forgot everything about the map and controls, and never had the desire to retread all of that progress.
 

Bartski

Gold Member
I'm happy I gave it a shot when the 60fps came to game pass as I hated the demo when it released and never thought I'm gonna like the game this much.
Which I did until the last chapter that kind of ruined it for me tbh. That's when hostile operators become your primary enemy and my build was all about the shotgun + anti-organic abilities... So having nothing to go against tiny flying machines sniping you from across the map it became all about running between points of interest rather than engaging in combat.

Edit: which is something OP mentions happened to him as well. You only fight organics for the whole game with the exception of some turrets, those very easy to deal with using regular offensive powers. The game just makes it seem like investing into anti-machine abilities is a waste of XP, all the way till the very end which is too late to make up for. Failed design choice IMO.
 
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Good thread OP, these threads with their "own opinion warrants a thread" ethos usually suck but yours doesn't.

Good balanced opinion. I love the game and some things didn't really bother me as much or at all, but I can't deny that I identify exactly what you mean in most of what you wrote.
 

FingerBang

Member
The best Bioshock since Bioshock.

I went in not really knowing what to expect and came out an Arkane fan. I think it's superior to both Dishonored and I wish this was their main series.
It's not perfect and I don't really know if a direct sequel makes sense, but it was such a great experience. I wish there were more games like it.
 
- I had no idea what a fuck was going on with the game at the end. When the military shows up, there are military bots and aliens all over. I had no ammo to fight all of these things, so I ended up running when they saw me. This ended up with me pretty much just sprinting through each area for hours until I had done what I needed to do. What a hell was this part of the game supposed to be? I understand they wanted to up the ante in the endgame, but I don't understand what they wanted the player to do here, other than sprint through the entire last part of the game, which is absurd.

Uhm, you do realize, you could just easily destroy them with the stun gun right especially if you upgrade it? You also simply had to hack or disable the thing that spawns them infinitely. Stun gun can also be used to aggressive exploding humans to prevent them from dying, thus pushing you forward towards the good ending. The game has so much stuff that not many ppl discovered.

As for the rest of your complaints, the game is an immersive sim, which means backtracking and having the freedom to do whatever and not be restricted necessarily by cinematic linearity is what makes the game special and better than most stuff out there. Ofc this particular genre is dying cause ppl just are not smart or good enough anymore to bother doing things on their own. The objectives are simple because that's how they were designed to be in accordance to the genre. They are a small guide to push you to the end and how you tackle them it's your choice. A lot of parts of the map can be accessed even before the game tells you to. Kinda of ridiculous to complain about what the game tells you do or guides you to do when every single game is "go do this" lmfao the difference being Prey allows you to do that simple thing however you want.
 
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Wildebeest

Member
The best Bioshock since Bioshock.

I went in not really knowing what to expect and came out an Arkane fan. I think it's superior to both Dishonored and I wish this was their main series.
It's not perfect and I don't really know if a direct sequel makes sense, but it was such a great experience. I wish there were more games like it.
I don't think Dishonored could be called a "main series". It got one sequel because the first sold relatively well. Personally, I didn't find it as engaging as Prey, but it was a good-looking game and a more than decent introduction to Deus Ex type adventures for new players. People who slam it for not being exactly like Thief, or whatever, are just misguided.
 
First 3/4 of the game was excellent. Last 1/4 was so bad that it lowered my opinion of the whole game
 
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Bragr

Member
Uhm, you do realize, you could just easily destroy them with the stun gun right especially if you upgrade it? You also simply had to hack or disable the thing that spawns them infinitely. Stun gun can also be used to aggressive exploding humans to prevent them from dying, thus pushing you forward towards the good ending. The game has so much stuff that not many ppl discovered.

As for the rest of your complaints, the game is an immersive sim, which means backtracking and having the freedom to do whatever and not be restricted necessarily by cinematic linearity is what makes the game special and better than most stuff out there. Ofc this particular genre is dying cause ppl just are not smart or good enough anymore to bother doing things on their own. The objectives are simple because that's how they were designed to be in accordance to the genre. They are a small guide to push you to the end and how you tackle them it's your choice. A lot of parts of the map can be accessed even before the game tells you to. Kinda of ridiculous to complain about what the game tells you do or guides you to do when every single game is "go do this" lmfao the difference being Prey allows you to do that simple thing however you want.
First off, I like the game quite a bit, I think it's great, apart from the last few hours.

Sure, you could use the stun gun if you upgrade it, but since the enemies popped up everywhere, it became too much to fight them in every area. I think the vast majority of players ended up doing what I did and ran past them, because fighting them over and over would become too tedious and too resource-heavy.

It doesn't matter if it's an immersive sim or not, there are good ways to do backtracking and bad ways to do them. Prey does both. It's perfectly fine to ask the player to travel to an old area, but there is a point where it becomes too much, and Prey struggles with that balance.
 

T-Cake

Member
The thing I enjoyed the most was collecting every item I could find and then bunging it in the recycling machine to create Q-Beam ammo and neuromods. I was unstoppable! Grrrrr.
 

SkylineRKR

Member
The endgame with military drones is a bit bad but by then its pretty much all over. I think you're supposed to run, perhaps throw EMP. Its all falling apart and everything has been explored by then.

I had such an OP human build, that Nightmare went down in 4 shotgun blasts while in CF from sneak attack. He couldn't even act. For the sake of a challenge, I advise against combat focus and crafting neuromods. As for the respawning typhon enemies in general, I loved it. Because it meant more loot. I also advise against upgrading health, its not needed beyond 150 really. I found the metabolic upgrade was worth more, well fed generally keeps your health in check. Better than making health packs.

I was planning to start a fresh game with a wrench build. Perhaps with heavy lifting to kill them with furniture.
 

Bragr

Member
I was planning to start a fresh game with a wrench build. Perhaps with heavy lifting to kill them with furniture.
I was contemplating this too, I wonder how much damage throwing stuff at maximum strength does. I really wanted to throw a sofa at that military boss at the end, but I wasn't strong enough.

I like the idea of Morgan Yu, one of the leaders of the space station, killing off the aliens by tossing chairs at them for 20 hours.
 

nemiroff

Gold Member
It's a good and interesting game with untapped potential. It could easily leap up to "amazing" with some trimming and some polish (bigger budget I guess..).
 
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