A/N: There's two very good reasons I haven't updated this story. One, my crazy schedule got even crazier. Somewhere in the middle, I moved a thousand miles away from home. The other reason is because of Prototype 2.
I never anticipated the first game. I became obsessed with it purely by accident. My sister wanted to get it, and did so for Christmas. She started playing it and got frustrated early on, forcing me to help her. I eventually got so involved in the story and the main character that I quickly started my own game. When I heard there was going to be a sequel, like many of you, I was way too excited for my own good. It wasn't long until it became clear that there would be a new character, many questions left unanswered, and that the main character of the first game was going to be the villain. I remained optimistic, met many of the people developing the game, and pre-ordered the 80 dollar version of it. I felt that, even if we had to kill the main character of the first game, at least we'd learn something about him further, right? Perhaps we'd come to understand how the primary conflict (Self VS Identity) had driven him toward the villain's role.
When the game first came out, I couldn't play it. I picked up my copy but was just too busy. I finally beat it, and this is where I stand. No matter how optimistic I was about the story, I hated Heller. I hated the things he said. I felt like I was playing COD and really wanted to mute the speakers so I didn't have to hear his attempts at sick bravado. I couldn't relate with him at all. I don't even know how Blacklight/Zeus got to saying the things he was saying. It was like he consumed one too many Gentek doctors and just... became the people he hated the most. I felt like I picked up the sequel to an amazing book to find I was reading a terrible AU fanfiction version of it. Heller didn't even question the morality of his powers like Zeus did. He wasn't conflicted over having them at all. He was obsessed over getting his daughter back, only expressed restraint toward a commanding officer he felt was like him, and was pretty much an actual ass no matter how the player played him. The surface plotline was no different from the first character's (revenge), except that Heller KNEW what he was doing. He was human, re-written by the virus to have exceptional powers, and still had no remorse. That PTSD man... gotta really fuck you up seeing as he didn't even flinch when he consumed and destroyed other living people for the first time. His overall reaction was... THAT WILL COME IN HANDY (sounds like a psychopath to me). Zeus, on the other hand, who actually IS the virus, confused, without any human memories to fall back on, was /horrified/. I felt that Blacklight's character had been trumped to make Heller look more appealing. Yet, instead of looking to P2's version of Zeus to compare, I kept looking back at the original Zeus of P1 and thinking... damn... Heller's a fucking asshole.
The graphics were beautiful, the animation much smoother, the mechanics absolutely wonderful. The symbolic coloring and the fantastic cutscenes were lovely. I kept thinking... if only the story were better. If only the main character wasn't a jackass. He acted like the people who troll over COD that I just can't stand, and I had to listen to him throughout the whole game with cheesy lines attempting to appeal toward people only playing the game for carnal pleasure. I found myself missing the depth of questions, probing, insecurity, and dynamics of character development that we saw in Zeus. I differentiate between Zeus and Alex Mercer because the human Alex Mercer WAS an asshole. My favorite part in P1, which I had never seen coming, and completely threw me for a loop, was when we all find out that your main character is actually just a virus. He's not infected. He IS the virus. Holy crap! There were no unique plot twists in P2. And every moment Zeus came on the screen and started talking I got a massive eye twitch and cringing issues. This was not the character I played in P1. Yes, I read the comic. I'm not convinced that some random chick caused him to lose his faith in humanity. If Karen Parker couldn't do it, then I doubt anyone else could. I won't even pretend he had any faith in humanity to begin with.
What would have been interesting? A story of how Alex became a villain. And, I COULD see that as plausible. Remember when he said all the leaders were dead... except him? And then smiled? Totally possible for him to accept a villainous role against humanity. Playing him in the sense that carries him there would be a completely unique plotline. Losing Dana, the only tie to humanity he has, and conquering Manhattan as the only means to control the infection he was trying to destroy. A couple stories I've read on here even have great ideas into plots to carry the story with Alex further, to answer all the many questions that arose in the first game. Plot twists and further character development on a character that can actually develop. Heller lacked room for development. He was made to be a "badass motherfucker" and that was that. What made the first game so powerful for me was that the story was actually UNIQUE for a videogame. As well as the main character, who had all the potential to destroy humanity in a lazy weekend, but chose to uncover the truth instead.
My sister and I both can agree that the second game is beautiful for everything except its story and its main character... which is the only reason WE play games. I get attached to characters and their stories. The idea that a virus gains sentience is beyond fascinating to me thanks to P1. Which leaves me at a bittersweet point with my story. I'd love to continue it pretending P2 never happened. Again, I have no problems with Alex becoming a villain. But for the love of game design, I wish he'd had reasons that aligned with the character we left off with at the end of the first game.
On a separate note, my story is so old that there are parts of it I absolutely hate. I'm refraining from rewriting it entirely for the sake of actually getting out new chapters. I'm unsure if I will actually continue it, but if the inspiration strikes you may well see new chapters. I do want all my readers to know that I am very grateful for your support and feedback.