• Publisher: 2K Games
  • Release Date: Jul 11, 2006
  • Also On: PC

Generally favorable reviews - based on 80 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 61 out of 80
  2. Negative: 2 out of 80
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  1. Prey is touted as having an adaptive difficulty system -- the better you are, the better it gets -- and it really did seem to get harder as the game went on. As a result, there are just two difficulty settings, Normal and Cherokee, and I'd advise that even vets might want to give Normal a try on the first run out, letting the game's artificial intelligence pick up the pace to a comfortable level.
  2. 95
    The game that "Doom 3" and "Quake 4" wished they could be. It's ruthlessly violent and action-packed, yet consistently subversive and innovative -- not unlike "Duke Nukem 3D," another 3D Realms-produced game. It's also one of the least frustrating games we've ever played.
  3. Game Informer
    Prey is a masterpiece that simply should not be missed. [Aug 2006, p.80]
  4. Prey actually delivers both a compelling solo and an outstanding multiplayer FPS experience that will delight FPS fans looking for a truly unique approach to what was becoming a rather stale and predictable genre.
  5. 90
    The multiplayer modes are sure to have gamers deeply involved over the next several months. The options, technical experience, and the amount and quality of online games are straightforward fun.
  6. A rock-solid game filled with innovation, a compelling story, and gorgeous graphics.
  7. 90
    Those looking for a fast-paced adrenaline rush that happens to be wrapped in some great art direction and a gorgeous graphics engine won’t be disappointed, especially if that love of all-out action translates into a love of old-school online deathmatch.
  8. It manages to do the expected FPS stuff well while adding some new mechanics that spice things up. Good use of the Doom 3 engine makes the presentation superb, as well.
  9. The weapons are balanced and the action is intense.
  10. Official Xbox Magazine
    In a strange way, Prey feels really old-school despite all its innovation, and that feeling is strongest in its simple but excellent multiplayer. [Sept 2006, p.74]
  11. AceGamez
    Absolutely every aspect of the gameplay design and presentation is simply dripping with quality - the look and feel is totally unique, and the altered gravity, portals, alien weapons and spirit walking all combine to create the finest 360 shooter since "Perfect Dark Zero" at the console's launch.
  12. Even if Prey’s story didn’t leave me breathless from the masterful blend of sight and sound, I at least remained damned entertained. Sometimes that’s all you can really ask for.
  13. It doesn’t get boring and keeps supplying new ways of freaking you out while still supplying you with a decent dose of coolness.
  14. Perhaps let down by a short and unbelievably easy single player adventure, Prey’s unique features, fun multiplayer and genuinely interesting story make for a fantastic FPS that puts generic, lazy copycats to shame and should be at least tried.
  15. netjak
    Even if you’re sick of FPSs, check it out anyway, because this is definitely not the time to turn your back on a game like this. Prey is a twisted take on the genre that shouldn't be ignored, that is, if you're not prone to motion sickness.
  16. Spirit walking and weird gravity are fun and fresh, but not having consequences for death takes away some overall suspense.
  17. Prey is without question my favorite Native American versus alien invader game ever.
  18. Overall, Prey is an excellent game, bringing new, innovative ideas to the gaming market. I highly recommend this game to all FPS enthusiasts looking for a twist on the typical shooter.
  19. What starts out as just another "corridor FPS", turned into a game that grows as you play, and sucks you in.
  20. Prey has a great storyline, although it seems basic at first. It’s innovative, looks gorgeous, and is extremely fun to play.
  21. 85
    A visceral shooter with a great story, superb visuals, and twitch online gameplay should certainly keep players occupied through the hot days of summer.
  22. Prey offers impressive visuals, a decent story, and high-octane action to bring players the equivalent of an outstanding summer action flick.
  23. 85
    It features fantastic level design that make a fresh change from the usual FPS fodder. Coupled with a captivating and well told storyline, Prey comes together to be the game of choice if you are looking for an FPS that, if not perfect, actually does something new for the genre.
  24. Players that get motion sick easily will definitely want to stay away from the game as perspective changes rapidly and frequently.
  25. Play Magazine
    It has a solid story, incredible visuals, and a new approach to an age-old formula. [Sept 2006, p.57]
  26. With fabulous graphics and great sound to match, Prey manages to put forth one hell of a gaming experience. However the short game time combined with a laggy and rather limited online features prevents this game from becoming one of the great titles of the year.
  27. The new mechanics that it adds to the first-person shooter genre will be remembered for a long time to come, and they certainly help differentiate it from the rest of the pack; something that isn’t so easy to do these days.
  28. Multipreyer (ugh) utilizes the unique level design, gravity manipulation and portals that you enjoy in singlepreyer and should provide hours of enjoyment, which is a good thing because youll find yourself finishing the game in about eight hours.
  29. Some questionable story elements aside, the game is enjoyable and manages to maintain a fairly consistent pace throughout.
  30. From a perspective outside the nitpicking, it's a really fun game; it's scary, fast, brutal, and very well executed. Despite its shortcomings, it's still definitely worth playing. It's not perfect, but it's damn close at times.
  31. 80
    If only the Native American mysticism had figured in more. If only the spirit "death walk" had developed into something more than a shooting gallery. If only the voice acting and storytelling were a little better. If only there were more than just deathmatch to the multiplayer. All those half steps...but even combined, they don't amount to a stride backward.
  32. It could have been much better if only there were more than two modes (deathmatch and team deathmatch) and a couple of maps small enough to play with less than five players, but Prey is still a major blast for shooter fans with strong stomachs.
  33. 80
    You came here for the dumb summer shooter fun, you stuck around for the wet icky graphics and the "M.C. Eschertime!" Ten hours later -- or longer if you can hold out against multiplayer nausea -- you're going to have gotten just what you expect from a solid well-done shooter.
  34. 80
    Prey is undoubtedly one of the most interesting games to hit the Xbox 360 so far. It introduces some unique gameplay mechanics in the wall walking and portals, and the Death Walk stuff ensures that you'll be able to sit and play the game for hours on end without getting frustrated.
  35. Prey has been a long time coming, and if the game just had a bit more to offer in terms of challenge and a more calculated death/revival system, it could've been a classic to unseat Halo 2. On its own, however, it was definitely worth the wait, with marvelous design ideas, fun gameplay twists, and a presentation that shows some effort.
  36. Despite a flimsy storyline that's riddled with cavernous gaps in logic, Prey's rollercoaster ride of gun-toting action delivers the punch of a blockbuster movie.
  37. games(TM)
    Prey is a masterpiece of design, but there are a few niggles that slightly mar the overall experience rather than the immediate game. It’s likely that you won’t even notice them until you’ve finished playing and are debating its merits with friends. [Aug 2006, p.106]
  38. Undoubtedly a stylish and engrossing variation on the Sci-Fi shooter theme, the novel touches ensure Prey is a worthwhile experience; but, it's probably still not enough if you're tired of the premise and haven't enjoyed id Software' most recent efforts.
  39. What could have been a run-of-the-mill shooter is elevated by an interesting plot, wild environments and shifting gravity that sometimes makes you wonder which way is up. Not for the faint of stomach.
  40. Prey is worth playing for its striking technology and story, and what they bring to the gameplay. It’s too bad that the impressive moments had to be separated by monotony, but that doesn’t make them any less extraordinary when they happen.
  41. On occasion, what no doubt seemed like a crazy-cool idea down the pub just didn't work well in practice (spirit death-defying in particular) and fun has taken the edge off challenge, but you'd have to be an extremist alien sympathiser not to thoroughly enjoy Prey from the moment it sucks you into its viscera to the moment it squeezes you out again.
  42. Prey offers a surreal and entertaining playing experience; however I did feel that it was a one trick pony, albeit a very good trick indeed.
  43. Prey is unique and bizarre, and at the same time familiar. If you enjoy future themed shooters you're going to love the ride the Prey provides.
  44. A solid first-person shooter that tries out a few new ideas and offers a compelling single-player story. But now that the shock and amazement of finally getting to play it has warn off we're left with a game that is a lot of fun ... but probably not worth the decade-long wait.
  45. While good science fiction creates coherent, convincing futuristic technology and explores its ramifications, Prey is simply built around a bunch of neat ideas like wall walking and invisibility. This makes Prey very bad science fiction, but the game works wonderfully as a surreal nightmare.
  46. Definitely one of the X360's most visually impressive titles.
  47. As a first-person shooter, Prey makes up in design for what it lacks in depth. The game moves along swiftly, balancing a strong narrative with solid puzzle-solving and some very tasty eye candy.
  48. Edge Magazine
    While most shooters handle the genre's design tradition like fragile cargo, careful to ensure that its arrangement of pieces doesn't fall into disarray, Prey cranks it like a Rubik's cube, cocking its world delightfully askew. [Sept 2006, p.76]
  49. 80
    It's the breakneck pace afforded by Tommy's spirit world resurrections and the dizzying effects of promiscuous gravitational pull that makes Prey such a fresh gaming experience.
  50. Although the game is lacking a deeper online game, the single player manages to make up for it with a very good story and good solid action.
  51. Even though Prey is far too short, devoid of any challenge and guaranteed to leave you disappointed, it still manages to be one of the finest old school first person shooters out there.
  52. Prey falls short of revolutionary by becoming a victim not only of time, but its own success. By not following through on the promise of a couple of very new and interesting gameplay mechanisms, the developers have delivered only part of the game that was possible.
  53. Prey is something of a paradox, because it’s got a ton of original ideas wrapped up in a package we’ve seen a dozen times before.
  54. It has a great imagination, even if it hasn’t been executed to perfection.
  55. Prey's campaign won't take too long, and it's rarely difficult, which makes it a solid choice if you're looking for an easy weekend romp. But much of the game's potential for unique thrills feels wasted by its straightforward level design, and the multiplayer doesn't add much to the package.
  56. All the zingy features in the world can't disguise the simple clear room, move on level construction that forms the majority of the game, and I can't help but think that Prey was designed by a big committee who were never really quite sure what they wanted to do.
  57. 75
    The plot, which we've intentionally avoided going into so as not to spoil it, is much more interesting than your average FPS too. Its relatively short length, lack of challenge and uninspiring multiplayer mean that it doesn’t quite fall under the ‘must own’ category.
  58. Sadly, the teleportation and wall-walking feel like incidental obstacles: The path through the game is so linear that you never really explore the new experiences, such as staring at the back of your own head through a portal, or stalking up a giant wall while aliens shoot at you from the ceiling.
  59. Prey offers solid FPS action with enough new elements to keep things interesting. As with most FPSs these days, the real action in online and Prey won’t disappoint here either.
  60. Prey has enough setpieces to make it worth checking out, even if it’s not particularly compelling overall.
  61. The spirit-walking and the gravity-changing was a great idea. For a week rental, this one is great but unless you’re the type of gamer that loves death matches, most will play it once, beat it and then let it sit for awhile before wanting to play it again.
  62. Electronic Gaming Monthly
    Spend a couple of hours globe-trotting Prey's extraterrestrial fun house and witness your mind turn to mush as it soaks in all the bizarre gimmicks--portals, walking on walls, immortality--that help the game stand out from other ho-hum shooters. [Sept. 2006, p.94]
  63. A co-op mode would have been wonderful, a more fleshed out story-line, additional levels that didn’t take place in dark corridors that herded you from A to B without fail, more multiplayer options; these are all things that should be expected of games being released on next-generation consoles.
  64. A sequel is definitely coming (it even says so in the game), and the foundation has been set for a strong series, but as a true contender to the FPS crown Prey falls a fair way short.
  65. A game whose good intentions simply don't translate into wide-eyed entertainment. With uninspiring and basic deathmatch multiplayer options failing to rescue the package, it looks like it's going to be another long hot summer for FPS devotees.
  66. 70
    Too many stumbling blocks for a game that was first conceived back before Y2K was even a bother are unacceptable. I guess it's only wine and fine scotch that gets better despite the anticipation.
  67. Lazy level design and the inability to die make the game too easy, leave you questioning why you want to carry on, and may even lead you to just not bother completing the game.
  68. Prey stands out for a number of excellent reaons even if the portal hopping and gravity-swapping can get a bit confusing.
  69. 70
    Despite some room for improvement, a linear nature and disappointing lifespan, Prey has a great deal to offer. It has fluent and dependable gameplay, one of the most fantastic video-game stories of recent times, some nifty innovations, a great atmosphere, along with two of the most emotionally harrowing boss-fights ever seen in a game.
  70. Prey's marriage of scientific and spiritual might not be the best fit, but convincing environments, dynamic gravity, and mastery of genre basics assure its status as a pleasantly solid entry into a very crowded field.
  71. 360 Gamer Magazine UK
    Joins an ever-growing ranks of "could-have-beens" thanks to it being both too short and too easy. [Issue #12]
  72. Like a Michael Bay movie, Prey is about non-stop action with less emphasis placed on plot and more on shooting anything that moves.
  73. While I feel that Prey is a better game than "Quake 4" and "Doom 3," Prey is a next-gen game, which is held to higher standards and it’s a letdown in a few categories, namely the pathetic multiplayer.
  74. A pretty cool first-person shooter, with a forgettable story and characters. The gameplay mechanics in Prey, while very interesting, weren't utilized as much as they could have been, and multiplayer is a little lighter (albeit fun) than we expected.
  75. There's no doubting that Prey looks the part of a modern FPS, but, as always, looks can be deceptive. It's a fun game, but it's no great breakthrough in the science of what is undoubtedly a very crowded genre.
  76. X-ONE Magazine UK
    Gimmicks aside, it's a very short and linear adventure that you'll probably only play through once unless you're an Achievements whore. But then...we had such fun playing it. [Issue 9, p.74]
  77. It presently seems content merely treading ground already covered in "Half-Life 2," "Doom 3" and "Quake 4." Despite its lofty intentions, this brave’s promise of innovation is as empty as the tears of a fake Indian chief.
  78. Because the new elements have very little purpose other than to make your life in the game more difficult, it's hard to support them as a viable, gameplay-enriching feature in their current form. Instead the portals, wall walking, and gravity rooms feel very gimmicky.
  79. We want interesting levels. We want a variety of enemies that challenge us. We want cool guns to kill them with. Instead, the developers did what they wanted. They put doors on ceilings and tables on walls and little switches to hit to pull you where they want you to go. They forgot everything that makes games fun.
User Score

Mixed or average reviews- based on 148 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 80 out of 148
  2. Negative: 17 out of 148
  1. Sep 17, 2015
    Prey was supposed to be a new reference in the FPS world but in facts it wasn't at all. The gameplay is pretty generic, except for thePrey was supposed to be a new reference in the FPS world but in facts it wasn't at all. The gameplay is pretty generic, except for the importance of mini puzzles that use gravity and teleportations, but the shooting is really emotionless and you won't feel any thrill when facing enemies you just shoot at them and wait for them to die, and what if they kill you first ? No worry you can't die in this game when you go out of live there is a minigame that will allow you to regain some life and relive exactly where you were at the moment of your death and that's what ruined the game, no challenge at all !

    Too bad because the guns and the story were originals and I'll regret the cancelled sequel that could have been something great., instead you just go down hallways and shoot at things, there is no major default but you won't remember the game, except for its easiness.
    Full Review »
  2. Feb 16, 2015
    though the online component has long gone the way of the dodo, this is easily the reason why people should forgive 2K. I Sank a good 35 HOursthough the online component has long gone the way of the dodo, this is easily the reason why people should forgive 2K. I Sank a good 35 HOurs in the first playthrough alone,and im not ashamed to say I think portal is the poor-man's prey. Full Review »
  3. Sep 19, 2012
    Prey is an intriguing game with a mind-bending concept, but that's all it really is. You can tell it's been in development for a long timePrey is an intriguing game with a mind-bending concept, but that's all it really is. You can tell it's been in development for a long time because everything feels VERY old-school. However, this isn't a bad thing because it means there are less distractions. It's extremely linear, with no objective but to go through the level. Environments aren't particularly varied either. It's simple and minimalistic, with the story being the only thing that holds it all together; albeit it's not very innovative. Character models and some environments are lacking in detail, and there is a severe frame rate drop at some points. It's a very dark game and environments don't really give the graphics a chance to shine, even though id Tech 4 has so much more to offer. It's not a long game, and the quality is very mediocre. However, even with all that taken into account, Prey is worth playing because there's nothing really like it in this generation of shooters- not on Xbox 360 anyway. Sometimes it's just nice to get away from the standards of modern shooters and play something from the 1990s. Full Review »