Prey is finally back! After a long hiatus, the reboot/sequel has finally reared its head to the world. This long dormant series, that at one point most if not all of its fans have given up hope for, has a bit of a history for taking its time to appear as the original game for the Xbox 360 had been in development in one form or another since 1995. Now, with the sequel turned reboot on its way, will long time Prey fans be satisfied with the new direction of the series or will its creative inclines separate them?
The latest Prey reboot trailer featuring “gameplay” debuted at Quakecon as the kick-off to the conference and eager fans were treated to a deeper look into the psychological horror game. The Gameplay Trailer shows off our first real look into the game which features main protagonist, Morgan Yu who will seem to be narrating his way through the games story. Yu is tasked with traversing through a space station full of hostile enemies, which the player will encounter, on their journey along with some sweet looking sci-fi monsters. Nevertheless, for a video dubbed as a “gameplay trailer,” there isn’t much gameplay being shown off here.
What we are treated to acts more like a larger crack in the door than what we were shown during E3 2016, which isn’t a bad thing this is a psychological horror game after all, so I imagine if they were to show to much of the game in action we would be entering spoiler territory which after waiting this long for a new Prey game no one really wants. Story-wise the trailer hints at Morgan feeling like he is being watched and as we explore deeper and deeper into the trailer I tend to get a Portal vibe from the game. My only fear is that the “psychological” part of the game turns out to be one big ruse where Yu has been injected with alien powers that cause him to either hallucinate everything or act as a human weapons test by whatever sinister being is holding him on this space station.
Another small issue that longtime Prey fans out there might have with the reboot is the total abandoning of the original story. Spoiler warning for Prey 2006: Domasi “Tommy” Tawodi had defeated the Sphere and the Dark One’s threat to earth with the great loss of his grandfather and girlfriend Jen. Six months later Tommy is hanging out in his bar listing to a radio broadcast of commemorating the anniversary of the “unexplained natural disaster that brought havoc to the world.” The White House is holding all knowledge of the alien attack as sealed knowledge and then at the end of the broadcast, Elhuit returns via portal to inform Tommy that she was rescued by “powerful beings” that have taken great noticed in Tommy. These beings want to meet him and thus Tommy jumps into a portal through space to visit said beings then the music kicks in the title screen goes black and says “Prey will continue,” however, it did not.
Fast-forward ten years later and here we are. Prey 2 has turned into dust in the wind as it underwent development and came across various issues in the process, but all hopes for a sequel have been restored. But how much of the old game will remain in the new rebooted version? According to Bethesda, “Arkane reimagines this franchise from the ground up, with an added psychological twist. In Prey, you are the first human enhanced with alien powers aboard a desolate space station under assault. Improvise and innovate in order to survive as you search for answers.”
Meaning it is unlikely that we will ever get a resolution to Tommy’s journey through the universe and although that might be for the best for not only the franchise, but also the story going forward, I cant help but wonder what might have been. Who were these beings? Why did they want to see Tommy so bad? Why did they wait a whole six months to establish contact? I don’t necessarily think that we need a direct sequel, but if some resolution or a wink and a nod is given through a report or audio log referring to Tommy in Prey’s reboot then I will be satisfied with my unresolved feelings for the original game.