Prototype 2 gets a lot of slack for not being as fun or even remotely close to as good as Prototype 1. The two games can be played separately since you have two different main characters with completely different goals. The question for today: is Prototype 1 really better than Prototype 2?
This is my opinion, but Prototype 2 has a more enriched story because the main character has a reason to live. That is the strongest trait in our new main character since he doesn’t have a selfish motive for power. His daughter was the reason for his search for power and while revenge is a good reason, it doesn’t trump your last remaining family member, especially when it is your daughter. Now, motive doesn’t exactly mean better story since the reason most people loved 1 was the carnage. You received powers that fit well with the type of character James Heller is and that is what is important. You have to understand his character before you really feel powerful.
Powers in Prototype 2 seem a tad lazy since majority of them are kind of lesser skills from 1, but there are some really interesting skills for Heller exclusively. Without spoiling much, like 1, you learn your skills from the people or things you consume. Also, like the first game, you have freedom to play the game with any ability you want without feeling like one is too underpowered. The big difference between the games is that you get stat upgrades for offense and defense, which can give you a leg up on enemies. These upgrades are an optional part of the game, but doing these missions are a nice way to learn the game and how to fully harness your new abilities. This feature was only added for this game since you can not grind for skills.
I briefly talked about the motive of the two games, but you will truly understand the beauty of two if you play them back to back. 1 was carnage-filled and beautiful, while 2 made you realize that you are a trying to keep your humanity while transforming into a monster. You learn more about Alex Mercer in this game, than you did in a game where he was the main focus.
2 was able to show us who Heller and Mercer was without getting rid of what we loved in one. The biggest hit to the players morality was how many people you killed a mission. Now the numbers definitely were exaggerated, but it made the player see that Heller was becoming less of a human with every mission. Heller’s decisions were warped every time he went through a new evolution.
The main reason people didn’t like 2 was because Mercer was the villain of the story, someone that you began to love throughout one for his recklessness. Having to hate a character like that is hard because you are made to play as a character that was the complete opposite of Mercer. Mercer was introduced as the hero, but in a way had the worst story in 1, because it is hard to toss a character you worked so hard on into the fire. Mercer was a badly written character that was reduced to two words. If Mercer was written better, then the game as a whole would have been able to shine, but because Mercer was the star of one, it mad it hard to put him in a harsh light. It was easy for Heller to label him a villain because Mercer caused events that hurt his family. The story was utterly predictable in every way, but it was a fun train wreck.
The final battle was one of the worst end boss battles since all it did was teach you how to use all your abilities. The message that Heller needed to be trained to be the best, he needed to be the new ruler, but why? Why make Heller go through all this trouble just to vet him as your successor? Mercer made sure to make Heller hate him even during the end of the game, but that was never explained.
There are a lot of unexplained plot points in the game, but no one ever calls either game perfect. You go into these games seeking to vent out your frustration at your unjust situations and that is what occurs. It is sad you don’t get the full story on why everything had to occur, but it was still something to be enjoyed.