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October 31, 2009

Now Playing - Infamous for the PS3

There are just so many games I want to get this year (guess that's why they call it the Christmas Season, even though it's just now Halloween!).  In the run-up to Modern Warfare 2, I've gotten a couple of them out of the way and I'm now playing another one I've been wanting to play since this summer but was busy with other games (because, you know, I can only play one game at a time).

The game's called Infamous, and it's quite a cool game. 

I've barely started and I've still done a lot.  Nowhere near enough to know the history of the plot, but enough to uncover some of the more interesting aspects.  You wake up at the bottom of a massive crater in the middle of Empire City.  Somehow, you were at the epicenter of the explosion and yet you still live.  Not to mention, you can also jump around the city like nobody's business, and you have the ability to shoot electricity from your hands.  The entire center of the city has been quarantined by the government, and chaos runs rampant.  A gang called the Reapers has taken control, and getting around the city can be horrendously difficult.  Thankfully, the electricity you shoot (and you gain more powers as the game goes on) will allow you to deal with them.

An FBI agent tasks you with figuring out what happened and what the ultimate plan is.  You've been blamed for what happened, and it does appear that you brought the bomb into the city when it exploded.  But you have no memory of what happened or why.

As with many games (as I mention here), the game allows you to decide whether you want to be good or evil.   You have a meter that measures your good/bad rating, based on your actions.  I became slightly more evil (though I was still good) when I used my electricity burst to blow away some Reapers without really being concerned with how many civilians were in the way.  Hey, they were shooting at me!  But the major good/evil points are presented to you wrapped up in a bow, which is mildly annoying.  When you reach a karmic choice point, your character's monologue tells you what your two options are and then you choose either the good or bad one.  For instance, right at the beginning, the government has dropped some food packages in the main square.  After defeating the Reapers who are trying to take it, you're given a choice:  You and your friends are hungry too, and this food will last you a while.  You can use your powers to get rid of the civilians and take the food for yourself, or allow the other civilians to take what they need.

There's lots of side missions you can do, and some of them clear out sections of the city so that the Reapers won't come back into that area.  Others unlock certain powers that you can then purchase with your experience points.

Basically, Infamous is an open-world game like Saint's Row and Grand Theft Auto.  The clearing the streets part is straight out of the former and the game format is similar to the latter, except you don't have to go to a specific place to save your game.  You can't save within a mission, though you can abandon the mission itself.  Otherwise, you have to finish the mission before you can save the game and stop playing.  If you don't, then you'll have to replay the mission all over again.  Thankfully, on some of the longer missions, you have checkpoints so that, if you die, you don't have to do the whole thing again.

One other thing I noticed, before I go back to playing rather than writing this, is that the game itself will assess what difficulty you should be playing (though you can override it).  I was playing on default and, after a battle with some Reapers, a message popped up saying that due to the results of my previous battles/missions, the difficulty level was increasing to Hard.  I could have bumped it back down to normal if I wanted, but I'm enjoying it the way it is now so I'll keep it there.

More on the game later, and a full review when I'm done.  But I'm really enjoying Infamous right now.  Hopefully the story won't turn out to be lame.


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