Bethesda and Arkane's Prey is now live and out in the wild. But many still wonder what the cancelled Human Head Studios version (you know, the one with that slick CG trailer and Blade Runner-meets-Star Wars world full of aliens to bounty hunt) would've been like. Eurogamer has dug up more info regarding the cancelled Prey 2 and, honestly, it sounds pretty damn cool.
For those who can't or don't have time to watch the video, here's a few key takeaways:
You would've met Tommy from the original Prey
Prey 2 would've put you in the boots of Killian Samuels, a new character who did not appear in the first game. However, Tommy (the hero from the original Prey) would've appeared at one point, setting you on the path to defeating the true enemies of the Prey storyline, the Keepers. You even needed to rescue him from said bad guys.
Death and respawning were actual, in-game canon
Most of the time, when we die in video games, it "doesn't count." Which is to say our character never really died - we just failed at a certain point and went back in time to an earlier save. But in Prey 2, you'd find out that every time you died and respawned in your apartment, what was actually happening was a clone of Killian was being activated. Player progress would not be stunted, but Killian wouldn't remember himself dying.
A proposed hardcore mode might've meant permadeath
One programmer told Eurogamer there was an idea floating around during development of a super hardcore mode, where players needed to buy clones. Hey, immortality don't come cheap. There would be plenty of ways to make money in the game, but if you died and couldn't afford the resurrection, well… sucked to be you.
There was one hell of a foreboding finale
Prey 2 didn't just have the cloning mechanic as a fun little explanation or wink and nod to players - it was actually pretty integral to making the enemies seem foreboding and powerful. Toward the end of the game, you would find dozens of your clones' corpses, stacked up and rotting outside of the final area. The implication was that not only was this not the first time you'd met up with Tommy as you would've been led to believe, but that Killian had failed in his mission to stop the Keepers many, many times before.
The ending could've sparked an existential crisis
So let's say players manage to beat the Keepers and destroy the doomsday device they've been building. Killian tries to escape the machine's collapse, but gets sucked out into space. In a last-ditch effort to save himself, he attaches a teleportation device (the same one we see an alien criminal get whisked away by in the original trailer) to his own chest and punches in random coordinates. Lucky for him, he ends up back on Earth. As the credits roll, you see Killian put away his bounty hunter gear, get married, have kids, and eventually pass away peacefully of old age. And then… you wake up back in Killian's apartment as another clone.
I think this is either brilliant or horrifying, depending on how you look at it. On the one hand, you have a great, in-lore reason as to why the hero is still running around the world even though the story is done. On the other, is this just Killian's life(s) now, forever? Talk about existential dread.
We quite liked Arkane's Prey, don't get us wrong - but after watching this video, I can't help but long for this version more than ever. But hey, even the original Prey had a long history of problems. Maybe it's for the best.