Another week and another video game developer received a critical blow. Activision all but shut the doors of Radical Entertainment last week, leaving the future of Prototype franchise in question.
Significantly reducing the staff of the Vancouver based studio to that of a skeleton crew, Activision said: “Some employees will remain working for Radical Entertainment supporting other existing Activision Publishing projects, but the studio will cease development of its own games going forward.”
The dominant publisher, with a controversial history of making “significant reductions to staff” at many popular game studios it has acquired, cited Prototype 2’s poor sales as the final nail in the coffin, claiming that the IP “did not find a broad commercial audience.” Is this down to poor marketing on Activision’s end, or could it be that another superhero from the world of video games already has the market sewn up? With a metacritic rating of 74, compared to inFamous 2’s 83, the reading may suggest that this is the case.
The two games are strikingly similar, the premise of each game being the most obvious resemblance; an original ‘superhero’ in a sandbox city. As a sequel, Prototype 2 is what you can expect from a game franchise these days; criticisms from the first game have been addressed, and the more exciting gameplay mechanics have been built on and expanded. However, that just wasn’t enough to push more than 390,000 units out the door, which is pitiful compared to the 1,200,000 copies inFamous 2 sold.
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