Generally favorable reviews - based on 83 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 62 out of 83
  2. Negative: 0 out of 83
Buy On
  1. One of the best games to release this generation and is definitely the best game to drop in 2009 (so far). Outside of the lackluster stealth and disguising mechanic, the brutal combat, huge open-world, varied challenges, and utterly satisfying gameplay makes this a must-have title for any serious gamer's collection. Get ready to put your life on hold!
  2. The insane amount of strength, skills and powers you get in the game is amazing and the game does a great job of making you feel like you’re really in control of a truly powerful being.
  3. The best way I could describe Prototype is a mix of GTA meets Wolverine with a dash of Spider-Man thrown in. I haven’t had this much visceral fun and carnal bloodletting since Wolverine, and Prototype is on an entirely different level when it comes to scale, scope of story, and total originality.
  4. Some of the finishing moves are downright disgusting but had us calling over all our friends to take part in the bloody fun.
  5. Grittier and more gratuitously violent than InFamous, Prototype is a mature, science-fiction superhero fantasy that somehow makes players feel simultaneously powerful and vulnerable.
  6. 90
    I can't wait to go play some more. I suspect that some people will find their enthusiasm drained more than mine by the shallow enemy gene pool, but even they're bound to get swept away by the myriad pleasures of tearing up town as a ghoulish and preternaturally fleet-footed shape-shifter.
  7. Although it’s beset by blandish graphics and wickedly uneven difficulty, Prototype delivers a fast-paced, relentlessly amoral and wonderfully brutal sandbox adventure in a detailed city filled with cool things to see and do.
  8. 90
    You'll never feel more like a badass and you'll never have a bigger smile on your face.
  9. Prototype is the very definition of an action game. Getting through the arduous campaign requires quick reflexes, laser-like concentration, constant movement, nimble fingers, and a little memorization, but the game makes sure to make the player always feel like the baddest man on the block.
  10. Prototype had had to come to terms with some technical limitations in order to favour its open world environment and sandbox structure, but it did keep up the pace with and actually proved even better than some of the most spectacular productions, thanks to its Titanium Engine, which guarantees a solid frame rate throughout the game in spite of its unpredictable, hectic and fun-to-play gaming experience.
  11. Prototype is one of those games that starts out with some horribly boring gaming and seems to take too long (1-1.5 hrs) to get anywhere. But once the game opens up and you can free roam, do missions and the like you begin to see how wonderfully brilliant the destructive gameplay is and as you build up your powers to amazing heights allowing you to do more destruction the game is amazing and satisfying. This is a must buy for action fans.
  12. AceGamez
    Prototype is a frantic, fast paced, brutal and uncompromising open world adventure.
  13. Games Master UK
    There's no room for subtlety or moral quandaries here, just over-the-top action and gore. [Aug 2009, p.70]
  14. If you're even remotely interested in games where people shoot things, punch things, walk, run, or drive around - is that just about everything yet? - then you owe it to yourself to check out Prototype.
  15. Whilst the game does have a few minor flaws, none of these take away from the overall experience which can easily keep you entertained for countless hours.
  16. Pelit (Finland)
    GTA on steroids. Huge city, very brutal combat, cool super powers and an interesting plot ensures that Prototype is one of this summer's hit games. There's a lot of gore, so this game has 18+ written all over it. [July 2009]
  17. Prototype featuring the shift-shifting menace Alex Mercer is the new Hulk! Bigger, stronger, and faster; Prototype offers up an action packed dose of straight-up entertainment.
  18. The controls are tight, though a little complex, but that’s only because there’s so much to dig into. It’s a little ragged around the edges, but if you’re looking for a great way to unwind after a long day, boot up Prototype for some serious therapy.
  19. 86
    Prototype emerges as the raucous illegitimate spawn of Crackdown, Hulk: Ultimate Destruction and The Darkness - making no excuses for portraying Manhattan as a throwaway playground to be leapt, swooped and flown over with ease while gleefully blowing shit up, ignoring the body count, and rushing headlong through an incessant flood of gory but breathtaking action.
  20. 85
    Infamous is more elegant and refined in design, with more of a focus on ranged combat, while Prototype is – truth be told - more frenetic and fun. Prototype is more of a spectacle and puts more power and choice in the hands of the player.
  21. Prototype easily stomps over numerous boring movie-based action games we've seen lately and effectively covers all the necessary themes to engulf gamers in a relatively interesting horror/sci-fi story.
  22. This open-world action game set in Manhattan is proof that even viral outbreaks can be incredibly fun if they're done right.
  23. Prototype is a carefully constructed action title with one of the best stories we've seen this year. Despite a couple of minor faults, the gameplay is fast and fluid, and the characters presented are compelling enough to make you care.
  24. Prototype offers an engaging tale, and it lets us stomp baddies in endlessly engaging ways. For action and superhero fans, that’s an irresistible mix.
  25. If you're after a game which isn't overly complex, smothered in excessive violence, has a tangible yet far fetched and uncomplicated storyline, then Alex and his powers should be right up your street, alley, road or city, whatever suits.
  26. It doesn't have a lot of replayability in the traditional sense, but Prototype is worth a purchase because at the end of the day, when you've finished the main mission and you unlock New Game + there is nothing more satisfying than coming home, switching it on and punching a dozen people in half.
  27. The mechanics are sound, but not rock-solid, the graphics are decent, though not great, and the carnage is excellent, though sometimes disorienting, especially with the less-than-stellar camera.
  28. 85
    Once you can accept the fact that Prototype isn't inFAMOUS, it truly does feel like a visceral experience not found in its sandbox competitors.
  29. Prototype revealed itself to be an extremely solid game, capable of satisfying whoever's looking looking for massive doses of superhuman violence. The only letdown is its dull visuals, but if you aren't specifically looking for a graphical masterwork, you'll find it very entertaining.
  30. 83
    It's true it becomes repetitive, and it doesn't stand out for its story, but despite that this is one of the most frantic and fun titles we can currently find on the shelves.
  31. A great addition to anyone's collection, especially for sandbox fans. Without being a direct superhero game, it takes the best parts of X-Men Origins: Wolverine and Hulk: Ultimate Destruction, throws them in a blender with a unique story and out comes a game that goes down smooth.
  32. Like this month's "Red Faction," it is an experience proud of its inherently silly gamey-ness; doing for human limbs what Guerrilla does for architecture. Short on frustration, big on satisfaction.
  33. Prototype feels like the dimwitted and ugly yet oddly entertaining cousin of Infamous. Wreaking havoc with the truly massive superpowers bestowed upon the main protagonist Alex Mercer is as entertaining as it is cool. Major flaws, such as ugly design, a corny story and somewhat repetitive enemies, aren't enough to dampen the overall sense of entertainment offered in this package.
  34. Prototype is really all about player empowerment, ramping up the number and intensity of larger-than-life superhero abilities consistently as you go. If you've ever harbored fantasies about soaring over skyscrapers and going on destructive urban rampages involving wantonly thrown automobiles--and who among us hasn't, really--odds are you'll find a lot to like about this game.
  35. As far as we know there’s no other game on the market that allows you to swallow a human for health, while being chased by a mutant twice your size, hurl a car at a helicopter, hijack a tank, cleave a soldier in twain with an enormous biological blade, transform into an invulnerable steel behemoth, tear apart vehicles with your bare hands, stealth consume and mimic any NPC in the city, and run up the walls of any building in Manhattan. Surely that’s got to count for something, right?
  36. Prototype is the story of a very good videogame that asks for a little more polish in every aspect to transcend and become something special. There is no reason to avoid it, it's a great action flick, but as a project it had enough potential to achieve the classic range with a more inspiration and charm in its development.
  37. Prototype has great potential, but unfortunately, it does not deliver everything we expected it to. Great fun, lot of possible evolutions and powers, action and a lot of blood; everything well mixed in a game that should have been a little more polished in order to improve its presentation.
  38. Although far from perfect, Prototype offers an action-filled experience that few games can match, and the array of attacks on offer is almost unparalleled in both its variety and its easy accessibility. The pure adrenaline-boosting entertainment value of the finished product is enough to push most visual and gameplay niggles far enough into the background so as to eradicate them as concerns in all but the most snobbish of gamers.
  39. 80
    We can't ignore the fact that the gloss is entirely absent. There's a fun game underneath the garish surface and there's plenty of it, too. Can you handle the fact that the graphics look like they didn't go any further than the Prototype stage? If you can and you like the sound of incredibly high-energy action where you get to chuck cars at helicopters, snap it up.
  40. It doesn't have the sense of a bustling metropolis like inFamous or GTA4 do, but then again, inFamous and GTA4 don't have shape-shifting, 50-story elbow drops or five-foot blades that grow out your arm. Prototype is a simple pleasure.
  41. If you enjoyed Spiderman 2 or Crackdown’s gameplay (especially for the free roaming) then Prototype is a must; if you want to simply destroy anything in your path and feel absurdly powerful, then get ready for some of the most frantic and gratifying combat you’ll experience without having to worry about all those moral choices.
  42. Despite the medium graphics quality Prototype offers a deep, funny and complete game experience. The storyline is solid, mature and involving and the narration presents original techniques that keeps the player always involved. Radical Entertainment production is a clear step over the average.
  43. Motivating until the very end thanks to Alex' many skills. However there could be more detail in the graphics, the side missions are repetitive, and the AI could be much better. All in all a fun game, though.
  44. Prototype is a great example of a charismatic and enjoyable game, with good gameplay and durability at high levels. Unfortunately the little flaws in the implementation of certain aspects of the technical compartment will weigh more than the many merits for the less attentive user. The title has no multiplayer mode, but the single player experience won't make you miss it. We suggest the fan of free-roaming action to buy this game, the high level of adrenalin and violence won't let you down.
  45. Prototype is not only a deep and challenging action game, it is also one of the best superhero games out there. Moving through Manhattan with supernatural parkour skills is one of this years most satisfying experiences.
  46. It is absolutely the best game for wasting away those hot summer days. If you’re a fan of superhero games or just love gratuitous violence, you can’t go wrong with Prototype.
  47. Prototype is about mucking around in a sandbox filled with viscera and it certainly excels at it.
  48. Although it lacks much of the polish we've come to expect from sandbox style titles such as GTA IV and inFAMOUS, navigating Prototype's world—while leaving a chunky bloodbath in your wake—as the remorseless Mercer packs more than its fair share of guilty-pleasure thrills.
  49. 80
    A fine game for those with psychopathic tendencies, Prototype's relentless sadism may prove too much for some. Still, unleashing a superhero without worrying about consequences is an insane amount of fun. With the greatest powers comes no responsibilities!
  50. Edge Magazine
    Prototype does what it does, and does it with distinction. [Aug 2009, p.90]
  51. Prototype is a blast to play. It's fun, rewarding, and stands as one of the better constructed open-world titles I have played in a very long time.
  52. Prototype is a fun game which is helped along by the unique powers of the main character Alex, however it can become repetitive after a while.
  53. A schizophrenic experience for me. I really liked the story evolution, though on occasion it did drag a bit, but I was severely put off by how the developers chose to challenge players and, I guess, keep then engaged (meaning not finishing the game as quickly).
  54. Prototype has a ton of potential, which some solid mechanics and a big world to explore. Unfortunately, that world is ultimately gimped by weak missions and rough combat.
  55. 78
    PROTOTYPE became a good game, but unfortunately can't completely satisfy it's high expectations. The graphics aren't that good, luckily there is enough action and a nice gameplay to cover up the shortcomings. In the end, everyone must have played this game at least once.
  56. 75
    To say the graphics and game engine need work is a massive understatement and many of the missions are cookie cutter in design without any real focus or attention to detail. Thankfully, Alex Mercer's absorbing and shape shifting powers manage to overcome many of the shortcomings of Prototype.
  57. Expectations were high for Prototype. Based on what we saw before the release this was logical. In the end, the game turned out to be pretty good, but nowhere near what we expected. The developer did a good thing with respect to the awesome action, the superb superpowers and the chaos in New York, but failed to deliver a decent story. Also, we’re disappointed with the amount of variation in the game.
  58. Prototype is a sequel to Hulk: Ultimate Destruction, despite missing the big green guy. Almost all of the gameplay mechanics can be mapped onto Ultimate Destruction, and the few that can't feel the most tacked-on or poorly implemented.
  59. Prototype has problems. Lots of problems. Luckily, it's also one of the most fun and thrilling games to have come out in a while. Its flaws stop the game from being considered superb, but it's such a blast and there is so much to play with that it remains a great title.
  60. It's a lot of fun when you're actually playing, but when it comes the story related material, it falls flat. If you enjoy open world sandbox style games, PROTOTYPE has a lot going for it, and there's certainly a lot of ground to cover through the entire city, and a lot of random stuff to find and toy around with.
  61. The bottom line here is that Prototype just doesn’t come together into a cohesive and successful form of interactive entertainment.
  62. Your personal affinity to the game will largely depend on whether you prefer to be led through an engaging and tailored adventure or to just be given a set of powers and make your own fun.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 382 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 50 out of 382
  1. JoshM
    Jun 22, 2009
    This game is fantastic. However, definitely for the hardcore gamer. There is so much to do control wise, chaining everything together, that This game is fantastic. However, definitely for the hardcore gamer. There is so much to do control wise, chaining everything together, that when you really have it down and the combat, just amazing. So Much Fun. But, if you are not "good at gaming" you will likely become frustrated. Full Review »
  2. Oct 20, 2010
    Im always very wary about giving a game 10 out of 10 because sometimes it can seem like a knee jerk reaction,something new and exciting comesIm always very wary about giving a game 10 out of 10 because sometimes it can seem like a knee jerk reaction,something new and exciting comes along and blows you away and for that brief moment its the best thing since the last best thing which blew you away and has now become a 7 out of 10 and ready for trade in.I bought prototype on its initial release and i loved it,the freedom,the violence,the graphics,sound and story all came together beautifully and crafted an amazing game with so many new features and extras it was sometimes hard to keep up.After finishing the game i did the inevitable and traded it in,i always had good memorys about prototype and that feeling i got when falling from buildings(you know the one).Having seen the game for a good price i re-bought it and i am loving it. Its suprising how the way you approach and play games changes over a couple of years, and i can now say i am enjoying this game more then the first time i had it-the graphics may have aged slightly but the gameplay remains as sharp as anything on the market.Its definatley a game that rewards exploration and doing that little bit extra ends up giving so much more.This gets the heart pumping and still has that wow factor.A definate classic and maybe a genre defining one....until prototype 2. Full Review »
  3. TomB
    Sep 6, 2009
    Prototype is undoubtably one of the worst games I have played in a long, long time. I simply can't understand the critic reviews. 78% Prototype is undoubtably one of the worst games I have played in a long, long time. I simply can't understand the critic reviews. 78% average good reviews? Clearly not. Were we playing different games? Everything in Prototype is badly designed, badly executed, and offensive to play. The 'parkour' button sees Mercer spazzily animate over cars and glitch up the side of building with no visual or audio feedback. This is still about as much fun as it is possible to have in the game. Combat is a mess, dragging every button on the pad into play in a desperate bid to add some variety, dragged down further by a terrible lock on system (the autolock will give an enemy tank and a parked car the same priority, and is slo-mo really necessary EVERY time I manual lock?) and clunky animations. Combat boils down to charging everywhere hammering your murder button of choice and hoping that noone hits you with a missile, because if they do, you are stuck in an endless knockdown-loop until you die. Mission structure is similarly terrible, boiling down to running across the city and punching things to win. Punch some tanks. Now punch some helicopters. Now punch some mutants. This seems to be all the game has to offer, aside from some horribly misjudged stealth sections, which simply don't work, and have to be passed with a stroke of luck and falling back on the games stupidly buggy mission/respawn system. I could go on for a long time about how bad Prototype is. Conceptually, it's a 14-year-old's wet dream, but in execution it is simply awful. I cannot understand the critics giving this mess a free ride. One of the best games to release this generation, Cheat Code Central? 98%? Honestly? Full Review »