Pin It
Favorite

inFamous 2 

The sequel to inFamous has no respect for the skills you acquired in the first game.

click to enlarge art16714.jpg

The hardest part of being a successful videogame hero is the sequel. Just when I’m getting the hang of things — gliding through the air or lobbing great gobs of electricity at my foes — the sequel comes along and takes everything away. Gone are all the expensive superpowers that I purchased with the experience points I painstakingly earned. The good deeds I did and the citizens I saved are conveniently forgotten. By the time the sequel comes around, it’s as though I never played through the first game.

At least inFamous 2 acknowledges my past by showing me a cartoon cutscene that tells the story of how I got my powers in inFamous.

And it gives me a chance to pretend that I’m the same big powerful guy by starting the game with a battle between me and a giant monster called the Beast. But then the Beast beats me and saps most of my powers, my friends decide to haul me off to another city, and it’s back to the basics again.

It’s annoying that, after climbing the ladder of powers in the first game, I’m forced to do it all over again. I restart my life with a tuning fork-shaped electrical sword instead of being limited to the melee punches and kicks of the first game. My electrical powers eventually gain inexplicably — fire and ice elements. And I can also launch some super-powered hurricane-like storms along my path. But for the most part, in inFamous 2, if I want to pick up a car and hurl it at my foes, I’m going to have to relearn the skills to do so.

The action has moved from the first game’s New York City substitute to a New Orleans stand-in named New Marais. But aside from more street performers and strip clubs, the change isn’t necessarily an improvement. The streets still throng with idle citizens. And while the lower-to-the-ground New Marais eliminates some of the skyscraper scaling that could make the first game tedious, it also takes away some of the vertiginous drops and skyglides that often made it epic.

It’s often a good thing when a sequel is able to capture some of the original game’s mojo. I just wished they would have let me hang onto a little bit more of my own.

THE GOOD: New Marais feels like a legitimate city. Aside from the persistent crowds everywhere — and really, who wanders around an unlit graveyard at night? — the citizens react to my heroics with appropriately dorky or surprised comments. The architecture lacks that repetitive “clicked-in” look of most videogame cities. Even my foes run and maneuver like living, thinking … uh, things.

THE BAD: Games that let me run up, down, over and around everything have the problem of never really knowing where I want to go. Did I want to run past that lamppost, or did I want to stick to it and start climbing it? When I clamber up a wall and arrive on a rooftop loaded with monsters, am I fighting or climbing? I don’t want to go anywhere — I want to go where I want. There’s a big difference.

THE BOTTOM LINE: inFamous 2 is a little less than famous.

Tags: ,

  • Pin It

Latest in Film

  • Closing the Book
  • Closing the Book

    Peter Jackson bids farewell to his hobbits with one last, great movie
    • Dec 17, 2014
  • The One Who Knocks
  • The One Who Knocks

    Why an Australian indie called The Babadook became one of 2014's creepiest films
    • Dec 17, 2014
  • Let My People Go Big
  • Let My People Go Big

    Exodus: Gods and Kings fails when it tries to humanize its spectacle
    • Dec 10, 2014
  • More »

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Today | Fri | Sat | Sun | Mon | Tue | Wed
MicroCinema Event

MicroCinema Event @ Spokane INK Art Space

Thu., Dec. 18

All of today's events | Staff Picks

or

More by Marty Demarest

  • The Cowboy's Cowboy
  • The Cowboy's Cowboy

    A Canadian sings about the life —  not just the lifestyle — of the new West
    • May 15, 2013
  • Completing the Trilogy
  • Completing the Trilogy

    Mass Effect has finally arrived
    • May 23, 2012
  • Minecraft
  • Minecraft

    Adventure and survival too often give way to mindless crafts in this building-block simulator.
    • Feb 8, 2012
  • More »

Most Commented On

  • Fresh Spin

    A local record shop is reincarnated under a new owner, giving this generation a taste of vinyl
    • Nov 25, 2014
  • Hairy Matters

    L.A. glam-metal pioneers Mötley Crüe are calling it quits, and that's not necessarily a good thing.
    • Nov 19, 2014
  • More »

Top Tags in
Music & Film

Film


Review


© 2014 Inlander
Website powered by Foundation