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Review: inFamous - PS3

by Steven Williamson on 21 May 2009, 16:34

Tags: inFamous, Sony Computers Entertainment Europe (NYSE:SNE), PS3, Action/Adventure

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Vertigo-inducing gameplay with an electrifying super-hero

What’s it about?
inFamous is a PS3 exclusive sandbox-style action adventure from developer Sucker Punch. It features Cole, a bike messenger who gets more than he bargains for when a parcel that he's delivering detonates and blows up a large chunk of Empire City. The explosion knocks Cole unconscious and when he awakes he discovers that this hometown is unrecognisable and that he wields a mysterious power which allows him to manipulate electricity. The authorities have moved out of the city and have cordoned it off to contain a plague epidemic that is sweeping across the districts. With no law enforcement in sight, gangs of armed Reapers (faceless hoodies) have taken to the streets to loot buildings and rob innocent residents. As you stroll into town you discover that the authorities are blaming you for the disaster. The city’s residents begin to turn on you and it’s time to make a decision. Do you choose to harness your newly found powers to help the city get back on its feet, or do you go and cause even more carnage on the streets?

Though inFamous has two branching storylines of good or evil, the gameplay is similar in many respects to other open-world mission-based titles, such as Grand Theft Auto and Crackdown. Alongside some platforming elements, that require that you to traverse across rooftops and climb the buildings of Empire City, the gameplay heavily focuses on combat and Cole’s arsenal of powers, which can also be used to interact with objects around the city. inFamous features a character development system that allows you to upgrade Cole's skills as you earn XP from killing reapers and completing missions and side objectives.

Using your acrobatic and combat skills you complete a variety of plot-driven missions that generally involve blowing stuff up and killing reapers. However, you'll also get to enjoy some big boss battles and optional side quests, such as point-to-point time trials and courier quests. At certain points throughout the game you face a moral dilemma where your choice affects the storyline, the mood of the city and your character's appearance.

You're essentially an over-the-top comic book style character with exaggerated powers who gets to choose his own destiny of becoming either a super-hero or super-villain. Sweet!

Click for larger image

Gameplay impressions overleaf...