Comparing one thing to another is a common theme discussed by critics and fans in an attempt to deconstruct a commodity or idea in order to understand and deconstruct the item. However with video game developers depending on certain formulas to construct games people tend to make spontaneous connections to one another due to similar elements. Prototype and inFamous fell victim to this when both games were released within a month apart in 2009 and were assumed to be similar because both shared similar aspects that included: an open world city to explore and a protagonist with superpowers. However when the sequels were release that compare and contrast discussions never rose. This shows that a simultaneous release and small similarities were the cause for this argument to rise in the first place.
Both sequels were refined versions of the original titles and show that the once comparable elements of these games are more different then similar. One of the most similarities within both titles, which persist in the sequels, is the sandbox-style environment. In Prototype 1 and 2 you are able to transverse a recreated version of New York City and inFamous 1 and 2 places the player in two different fictional locations known as Empire City and New Marais. Although both Prototype and inFamous have an open world they are different environments of the same formula meant to be explored in contrasting ways. Assuming that these games were similar because of the existence of a sandbox environment.
The open world was one of the more notorious comparisons the super powered protagonists Cole MacGrath and Alex Mercer bolstered the argument that these were similar games. Those who have played both titles probably recognized instantly that these characters were entirely different from one another in both personality and powers. In both of the Prototype games you were able to gain new shapeshifting abilities by completing missions and consuming significant targets while in inFamous you collected blast cores to upgrade your electrical and, depending on your choice, fire or ice. Unlike Prototype inFamous allowed you to shift the story and your powers based on the decisions you made as oppose to Prototype you were limited to certain upgrades and the story didn’t have branching paths. Prototype and inFamous plays in different ways showing that the superpower similarities between the two would be like comparing Thor to Spider-Man.
The simultaneous release of Prototype and inFamous show how minor connections can lead to unnecessary comparisons. The connections between the Prototype and infamous when they were first released were merely cosmetic and when the sequels released the coincidental elements between Prototype and inFamous died. Although games share similar aspects they are developed in different ways and should be fully analyzed before assuming that one sandbox game is the same as another.