By WallacetheGreat 6 Comments
I'm a bit torn at the moment.
Last night I beat Sucker Punch's newest game, InFamous, and I enjoyed it. But the games that have these "morality meters" have always bugged me in the past, and sadly, InFamous is no different. With most games of this type, I play as either a "good" or an "evil" character. I play as one, and then I play as the other. Doing so lets me see what kind of difference my actions have on the game world. Also, I'm able to see the difference in powers, or character relationships, and other aspects that may depend on your moral standing.
Now here's the problem I have with InFamous. When I played as a "good" character, I ran around saving innocents, taking down bad guys and generally being a nice dude. *SPOILER (But not really.)* Then at a point near the end of the game you have to make a very tough decision, or at least what the developer wants you to think is a tough decision. The thing is, I felt no emotion when deciding since the person to whom the decision affected had never had a large role in the story in my opinion. *SPOILER (You can open your eyes now.)* It was only after I attempted to play through as "evil" Cole that I realized your Karma had no affect on the main plot. And, to tell the truth, I never finished playing as naughty Cole. About three missions in on the evil playthrough I had reached the rank of Thug, and all of Cole's powers, the HUD, and even part of the pause screen turned a vibrant red. "Cool," is what I said initially, but as play continued and some powers were given a few upgrades, I found the game to feel almost exactly the same as when I played as the Hero. Yes, your powers caused more damage to the environment than they would if you were "goodie-two-shoes" blue, but what affect did that have on the game really? Any good/bad decision you are given is so clear cut that I could tell what it would be even before I was given the actual choice, even before Cole spells it out for you like you couldn't grasp the situation already.
So, instead of soldiering through and seeing the evil ending on my own television, I took the lazy man's approach and looked up the ending on the internet. Much to my dismay, I then found out there is only one true ending to the game, which means that "tough decision" you made earlier, or in fact any decision you made through the game, had no impact on the outcome. *SPOILER (Really)* While I do appreciate the meaning behind the ending, being that Cole's story was already planned by Kessler and nothing Cole could have done would change it, it really trivializes the Karma system.*SPOILER (end)* Your Karma only affects the short aftermath summation after the credits, where you have either saved Empire City or further turned it into a decimated wasteland. So my question is, why have this system in place at all if it does not have any real impact on the story?