Remember those interviews we promised a while back? Yea? Well, we finally got one lined up for you and it’s a good one. Dave Fracchia, Studio VP of Radical Entertainment took the time to answer some questions we sent in a little while back. As you’d expect we asked questions that were directly related to games single player experience. We will be splitting the interview up into two parts, one being released tonight and the second part being released later this week. He definitely took the time to answer these questions to the best of his ability and we would really appreciate if you (the reader) left some feedback for Radical Entertainment. We hope you enjoy our first of many exclusive interviews to come!

ONLY SP:  When looking over feedback on the original PROTOTYPE, what in particular stood out to you as something that needed to be fixed?

DF:  There were three areas that stood out quite strongly: story, graphics, and mission structure.  Many of our fans and press felt the story was confusing and Alex Mercer was too at odds with his powers, that the world was too homogeneous and drab, and there wasn’t enough variety in the missions or that too many required the player to do the same thing.  These issues, as well as those things gamers loved (the over-the-top visceral combat, etc.), were critical components in the design of PROTOTYPE 2.

ONLY SP:  Any inFamous nods planned?

DF:  Nah, there’s been so much comparison made between our games – even though they are actually quite different experiences – that any sort of nod would probably be misconstrued as either conciliatory or spiteful.

ONLY SP:  What did you want to improve the most in PROTOTYPE 2?  The story, character development, etc?

DF:  In general we wanted to make PROTOTYPE 2 a better, bigger, and badder (more badass, not worse J) experience than the first game.  “Better” came from addressing the issues around story, graphics and mission structure; “bigger” refers to the scale of the enemies, world, and events; and “badder” the revisioning of old and addition of new powers, such as hunting and the vicious Tendrils.  The latter also refers to the f’ing badassness of the game…if that’s not a real word, it should be.  Badassness!

ONLY SP:  Did you take any influence from the movie I Am Legend involving the death of Heller’s family?  In the movie the events were spaced out periodically in flashbacks until finally presenting the final moments.

DF:  We didn’t draw analogies to I Am Legend specifically.  The idea of a protagonist being propelled to extreme actions by the death of their loved ones is a theme that goes back to the origins of storytelling.  The reasons are obvious as losing a loved one is a life-altering experience to say the least.  Heller is certainly haunted by it.

ONLY SP:  Was the project always going to have a new protagonist or did you entertain the idea of continuing Alex Mercer’s story?

DF:  When PROTOTYPE 2 was first envisioned, the idea was to continue with Alex’s story.  As we started to draft the story we outlined the several tenets that we wanted to hold true, such as: the star of the game is the Blacklight virus and it’s impact on the protagonist; the world is grounded in reality with the edition of one fantastical element (the virus); and we wanted to continue the story from the first game – which meant we knew Alex would play an important role.  We looked at both storylines that continued with Alex as the protagonist and others with new protagonists.  The problem of continuing Alex’s story is that he had already evolved god-like powers and had taken down his enemies.  Using that as a starting point meant taking the story into more fantastical directions than we’d wanted.   We could have stripped Alex of his powers, but this has not only been done many times before, it seemed a disservice to Alex.  A new protagonist not only allowed us to look at the story of the Blacklight virus from another perspective, but by casting Alex as the “villain” and having him “make” Heller the next PROTOTYPE, we were able to craft an epic and exciting story which pitted prototype against prototype.

ONLY SP:  Will fights with the gigantic building-sized Infected be scripted or can we attack them freestyle?

DF:  Fighting a Goliath is not scripted per se.  You’ll get to use whatever powers you have at your ready – the key is to attack and look for openings to the weak points…and stay the hell out of the way of her powerful attacks!  And yeah…it’s a girl, and she is pissed off!!!


ONLY SP:
 Will the side quests still focus mainly on graded ability challenges?

DF:  No, the open-world missions have changed since the first game.  In PROTOTYPE 2 such missions may involve different combinations of Heller’s powers, but each fills in the backstory of New York Zero.  For example, the player can find and hack into Blackwatch communication vehicles in order to shut down various military operations in NYZ.  There are also collectibles, which provide even more information about the goings-on in the zones.  BUT if you really enjoyed the event-style quests from the first game, the RADNET Edition of PROTOTYPE 2 has plenty of them!

ONLY SP:  What are your favorite new abilities for Heller?

DF:  Hands down, the hunting ability and the Tendrils.  Hunting makes me feel like a predator stalking his prey while Tendrils are just so viscerally and visually gratifying!  In real life, I’m a very nice person.  Honestly!

ONLY SP:  Has your Titanium Engine been tweaked for this project and if so how so?

DF:  Yes, in both major and minor ways.  For example, in order to improve the quality of our graphics and art direction while ensuring we had a lot of enemies, props and explosions our team rewrote the entire rendering engine.  To bring the world more to life, we also created a smart-node system so that the AI of the game interacted with each other as well as the player – take a break from eviscerating enemies and just walk through the world and you’ll see.  There were many more improvements in the streaming system, front-end, cinematics pipeline, etc.  We have a very talented and experienced tech team!

ONLY SP:  How destructible will the environments be?

DF:  Although we’ve added to the number and types of props and building accoutrements (that came up as the word of the day I had to use, so…done) that can be destroyed, we’ve stayed away from generic building destruction.   Our characters ability to parkour up the tallest skyscraper would certainly be impacted if we allowed it.  However, you can now dismember all fleshy enemies and cause more local damage to military vehicles!

Thank you Mr. Fracchia for taking the time to answer our questions! We hope you enjoyed the interview and make sure to follow us on Twitter and Facebook for all the latest single player updates. The next part of the interview will be released sometime next week, so make sure to check back soon!

Nick Calandra
OnlySP founder and former site owner.

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6 Comments

  1. Fantastic. I'm willing to give the guess a decent chance. Great interview.

  2. Ugh, I don't wanna wait for this game!  I want it now!  Also, great interview!

  3. Nice. I'll admit, I wasn't as excited for Prototype 2 at first, but after reading this interview, I'm probably gonna check it out =p

    Great job! And thanks Mr. Fracchia!

  4. No matter what I hear or see about this game I just don't feel it being very impressive. The first one was ok and just leaves a sour taste in my mouth. 

    1. I liked Prototype for the time I had it, kinda miss it since I traded it in a while back. Really was fun just running around being a total badass. This one looks even more fun than the last.

      1. It would be nice if it came out really good. I did enjoy Hulk: Ultimate Destruction.

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