Hunter or the hunted?


HWM (Malaysia) - - GAX - by John Law

Sur­vival hor­ror games are in abun­dance, but hor­ror games that use space as a mo­tif and premise are not all that com­mon. Renowned se­ries like Dead Space Prey and Sys­tem Shock were some of the no­table ones to be set in space. Then, just last month, the stu­dio be­hind the Dis­hon­ored fran­chise, Arkane Stu­dios, launched Prey, the team’s first space sur­vival hor­ror ti­tle.

Out in space

To be clear: the new Prey is not a se­quel to the first game, but rather a reimag­in­ing of an alien in­va­sion, as well as pay­ing spiritual homage to the orig­i­nal Sys­tem Shock (and by ex­ten­sion, the BioShock se­ries). The game takes place in an al­ter­nate time­line where U.S. Pres­i­dent John F. Kennedy sur­vived a failed as­sas­si­na­tion at­tempt, which in turn, drove him to ad­vance the de­vel­op­ment of the Amer­i­can space pro­gram. In the game, you as­sume the role of Mor­gan Yu, a lead­ing sci­en­tist, head re­searcher, and em­ployee of the Transtar Cor­po­ra­tion, who has been placed on­board Ta­los I, the cor­po­ra­tion’s mas­sive space sta­tion hov­er­ing just out­side the Earth’s at­mos­phere.

On board, you are tasked with study­ing the alien en­tity known as the Typhon, and the cre­ation of life-ex­tend­ing neu­ral mod­i­fy­ing de­vices, known aptly as Neu­ro­mods. Alas, dur­ing Mor­gan’s last test­ing pro­ce­dure, some­thing went horribly wrong, and the Typhon had man­aged to es­cape its con­tain­ment. But worse than that? They’re hunt­ing you down.

Hu­man and Typhon

In Prey, you get to choose from mul­ti­ple playstyles, with sev­eral ac­com­pa­ny­ing weapons and skills to aid you in com­plet­ing your ob­jec­tives. The game still re­tains the classic pis­tol and shot­gun for those who like to take the path of the gun­fighter, but it also pro­vides players the op­tion of in­ca­pac­i­tat­ing the en­e­mies with the GLOO Gun and a Dis­rup­tor Gun (ba­si­cally, the game’s ver­sion of a Stun Gun).

But for the more ad­ven­tur­ous players, you can in­tro­duce Typhon-based Neu­ro­mods into your body, giv­ing you the abil­ity to shapeshift into an inan­i­mate ob­ject, oblit­er­at­ing a Typhon with a Ki­netic blast, or just sim­ply mind-con­trol­ling one of them to fight in your stead.

Ex­plo­ration of Ta­los I isn’t just lim­ited to the in­side of the sta­tion ei­ther. A lit­tle fur­ther into the game, players will be able to tra­verse the out­side of the space sta­tion in zero grav­ity sit­u­a­tions, adding yet an­other layer of ex­plo­ration to the game.

Alas, the game is plagued by some ran­dom glitches, both graph­i­cal and code-based. At times, ob­jec­tives do not reg­is­ter as com­pleted, and we were forced to re­peat the same mis­sion, while at other times, just jump­ing in a par­tic­u­lar area launched us out­side of the en­vi­ron­ment’s pa­ram­e­ters.

CON­CLU­SION is one ti­tle that is guar­an­teed to keep you in sus­pense.

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