As a whole, Infamous brings a lot to the table. Dynamic game play coupled with the ability to make your own choices that actually affect the storyline is a great part of what makes this game so amazing. In fact, it's hard to point out any great faults because the many missions available to you and the powers at your disposal will keep any gamer immersed for hours on end. But when all is said and done, you have to really break the game down into a select few categories to best describe its play-value...
STORYLINE As with any great game, there exists a back story - a history behind the protagonist. Infamous is no exception. Naturally the player wants to know how our hero (Cole) can do just what he does. And while at first the game does not disappoint in this regard, I for one found that I just never really connected with the characters. It seemed as though the story was there solely for the progression of the game, and in my opinion that just doesn't cut it. The characters lacked consistency and personality. Although the plot is interesting, it lacks a certain touch that really connects the game to the players.
GAME PLAY Starting out, the player is thrust into our powerful protagonist with newly discovered powers. Early on, they are given the option to make good or bad choices and the decision either way can affect the storyline in some small ways, as well as decide which powers are available to the gamer at later points in the game. The world is alive with enemies and taking them out may require strategy and tactics that you don't see in other games. Some enemies may be susceptible to different attacks and overall you have to keep a steady mind and determine your course of action. It's not simply an action game you can bull-rush and hope to come out alive, but one where the right plan of action can reap the greater rewards. As the game progresses you will be granted new powers that, with the use of experience points, can become even deadlier and more efficient. Simply following the story isn't enough - Infamous thrusts in several other side missions so that you can get the most from your game. These side missions are a great chance to earn extra experience, gain "karma" that makes your reputation as an evil-doer or good guy stand out even more, or simply challenge you with new rivals and puzzles. Simply put, the game play itself will keep you wanting more.
CONTROLS An important aspect for any game, players will love maneuvering in Infamous. The controls are not too stiff but rather very responsive and it seems that there is always something for the player to do. Just running around the city can be fun - demolishing cars or rescuing pedestrians from hordes of reapers and various other enemies. It is also important that even with all the powers at your disposal there aren't a load of button combination's to memorize but everything is quick and convenient... very useful when you find yourself in a situation that requires the use of several powers, or to chuck a grenade while simultaneously sprinting away. Everything is simple and simple is a plus. The downside to the number of attainable powers however, is that often you may find yourself never using some of them.
Certainly after defeating the game and completing all the missions, any player that wishes to free roam the city just for a little bit of sport will encounter so few enemies that they can be taken care of with a blast or two from Cole's hands and anything else would just be overkill. Another drawback to free roaming is that climbing and scaling buildings and other obstacles can become monotonous and boring. To scale a building takes a minute or two of mashing the jump button and once at the top, you are faced with a taller building you may have to jump to and climb as well. While this is not terribly irritating, there is one more aspect of game play that I wish to explore, and that's the fact that Cole gravitates toward everything he can grab. Understandably it makes sense that he would do this to avoid pressing some sort of "grab" button every time you are trying to climb something, but when you want to reach street level and you're only two stories up, it can be frustrating as you watch Cole grab onto everything within sight before you finally touch the ground.
GRAPHICS Not a lot can be said about the graphics in this game. They are remarkably done and you can find even small details in some obscure places. It is obvious that the developers at Sucker Punch Games went through some trouble to design a varied and rich environment for gamers to explore... and destroy.
OVERALL In the end, Infamous is a game that you don't want to miss. There's something for everybody within the confines of the games city, whether you just want to blow things up, or speed across the rooftops using telephone lines. Or maybe just climbing the buildings in order to explore every niche of this detailed environ in an expansive world; You will not be disappointed. But trophy hunters beware! Finding every blast shard in the game can become a chore, but if you enjoyed the game as much I did, then you wont mind running around and having fun.
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