?They changed Cole's hair!!! I'm setting the my PS3 on fire!!!? That's what the Internet said when the first trailer for inFamous 2 showed up.
Never mind the new weapons, the taste of a slick-looking new city under siege, cool new powers. They changed his hair!!! And gave him massive tattoos (which, in fairness, could have been lurking under his jacket all along). It's probably for the best, then, that the first thing Sucker Punch co-founder Bruce Oberg does in his Gamescom presentation about the open-world super-powered action game is address the subject of Cole's appearance.
?We were super-surprised by the amount of feedback we got about the new Cole?, said Oberg. ?We were redesigning a lot of different things for inFamous 2
. We told our designers we really wanted to leave no stone unturned and we did some redesign work on Cole and were super-surprised how passionate people were about the old Cole. So, we're showing today here at Gamescom our new/old redesigned Cole.?
This is, we're told, the "near-final" version of the character. He's back to a shaved head and his tattoos are a bit more understated.
"We're going to be releasing next year, so there's still going to be tweaks, but you can see he looks a lot more like the Cole from inFamous 1
. He does have a scar on his eyes. At the beginning of inFamous 2
he does a battle with a creature called The Beast. He gets defeated by The Beast, and so he actually has some marks from that battle at the beginning of the game.
"You'll also notice Cole is dressed differently from how he was in inFamous 1
,? says Oberg. ?He's in a t-shirt because inFamous 2
takes place in New Marais, a Southern American city. It's our take on New Orleans, it's not exactly
New Orleans. But because of the hot, humid climate Cole is in a t-shirt and lighter clothes because that's going to help him deal with the environment." Cole also still has one of those funny little one-strapped backpacks that went out of fashion six years or so ago. It's probably the same one he used in the first game to carry around nothing at all.
Anyway. The the balance is restored, everyone can stop getting upset about the length of Cole's hair.
?He also has this tool on his back, which is called the Amp. It's his weapon for doing hand-to-hand combat. We really wanted inFamous 2
to have a much better melee system, we wanted you to feel like you were a superhero fighting with people... So, the Amp is one of the tools for doing that."
So that's what his new big stick is. Will there be more weapons? "[The Amp] is a thing which can control electricity and channel it, and we really wanted it to be part of the close-up combat, to make that really really great and feel really really cool. So, the Amp is the first way to do that. I cannot say whether there'll be more things, but probably."
I, for one, am in favour of Cole's new weapon. If you haven't seen it, the thing pretty much looks like a giant two-pronged tuning fork with added mechanical bits (you can see it in the screens). It looks functional. If they'd stuck a sword in Cole's mitt it would have looked ridiculous, but the Amp looks like it's been picked for a purpose. I'll be damned if I know exactly what that purpose is
beyond conducting electricity and being heavy, but then again I'm no electrician. Still, when you use the Amp to clobber one of the Corrupted it feels immensely satisfying. It's helped by the slow motion effect you get as you lay a finishing move on an enemy. It might be a slightly over-used effect, but when it works well it packs a punch.
Once we'd had a peek at Cole, the game was fired up. We were shown a section of the city that hasn't been out in the wild before - a section of swampland on the outskirts of New Marais. Empire City it certainly ain't. Well, for the most part. The trees and the colours and the general vegetation are something different, but the swampland I saw retains some of the feel of the parks in the first inFamous
game - something we can blame on the layout, I think.