Prey - Xbox One

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Prey (Xbox One)
Also for: PS4, PC
Viewed: 3D First-person Genre:
Shoot 'Em Up
Media: Blu-Ray Arcade origin:No
Developer: Arkane Soft. Co.: Bethesda
Publishers: Bethesda (GB)
Released: 5 May 2017 (GB)
Ratings: PEGI 18+


With Prey 2 thoroughly mothballed, Bethesda and Dishonored developer Arkane have gone back to the drawing board for this reimagining of Prey. The first-person shooter mechanics and the basic premise that you're being hunted by aliens remain, but in terms of tone, style and structure it's a very different beast.

The game takes place in an alternate future, in which President Kennedy survived his assassination attempt and spent the remainder of his presidency looking to the stars. The ripple effect from that one event spread, and by the time we get to the start of the game aliens have long since been discovered lurking in a human satellite, and the TranStar Corporation has taken on the study of these creatures following a catastrophic containment failure during government experiments. And... well, it wouldn't be much of a shoot-'em-up if things all went to plan, would it?

When things go wrong on the TranStar space station you take on the role (and decide the gender) of Morgan Yu, a test subject in TranStar's experiments. In a metroidvania-style set-up you'll have the run of the station, with only access codes and your hacking abilities limiting access.

You can see the influence of BioShock in a couple of areas of the game. One is the retro-futuristic design of the space station, which is stuffed with art deco features (as well as more sinister technological features). More importantly, though, you'll be able to inject neuromods, which are not entirely dissimilar to BioShock's plasmids, to develop special abilities based on those of the aliens hunting you. You might, for example, copy the Mimic's shapeshifting abilities to turn into a gun turret, or you might copy the Phantom's kinetic blast to repulse enemies. Things get really interesting, though, when you start chaining these abilities to create more interesting and powerful effects.

So, are you going to keep being the prey, or will you step up and become a hunter?