I’ve killed a lot of aliens in my day. Short ones, fat ones, creepy ones and obnoxious ones, but I’ve reached a point where they all look the same. What I haven’t gotten over yet is that no matter how advanced an invading race may be, they never seem to evolve past humanoid forms of weaponry and architecture. Sure the little buggers can bend the space-time continuum and travel faster than the speed of light, but they still have to wander endless fluorescent-lit hallways and wait for pneumatic doors to open. Video game aliens are interesting, but there’s seldom anything alien about them.
Not the case for Prey. As an escaped abductee in an alien environment, you have to relearn almost everything about, you know, hallways, doors, and killing people. The first hour of your escape feels senseless and arbitrary, but isn’t that how it should feel? You’ve been abducted by aliens, for Christ’s sake! Questions arise like how did this inter-dimensional portal get in the air duct? Why am I walking upside down on the ceiling? When did I become so tiny, and start orbiting a tiny planet encased in glass? Who makes a shotgun that fires acid? And is that fleshy blastopore a door, or a corrosive-expelling anus?
Unfortunately, the second hour brings more familiar questions like will I ever not get ambushed after taking four steps on an upside-down sticky wall walk? What do you call an in-game puzzle after being asked to solve it for the tenth time? Why must all immortal game heroes have the same awful stringy black hairdo? If I can’t die why are you offering me different difficulty levels? Why even give me health at all? And what was this game about, again?
Something tells me we won’t have answers to these questions until humanity has evolved enough to go abducting some of their own off-world species.