Okay, before we go any further, lets just be honest with ourselves to get any disappointment out of the way. inFamous is an Assassin's Creed clone. Period. Just as Unreal cloned Quake, just as Titan Quest cloned Diablo II, inFamous is a clone...plain and simple. As the above examples highlighted, though, clone doesn't always mean bad. In fact, while never capturing the charm of the original, clones often improve upon the areas fans of the original were most frustrated with since the developers are usually fans themselves. Once we let go of the gripe that it isn't genuinely innovative, we can get on having fun.
While the overall feel of the game is by and large an Assassin's Creed play-alike, upon closer inspection it reflects the auras of many titles. The gritty urban environment and mission-based sandbox may call to many as Grand Theft Auto incarnate, while the well blended but starkly disparate over-the-top sci-fi elements, in addition to building up your bio-electric super powers may spark a fond memory of Deus Ex in others. Above it all, though, inFamous manages to capture a feel that rises above the montage of inspirational origins and becomes, overall, something very unique, and something we haven't quite seen before.
The game takes place in Empire City; Think of a slightly less oppressive Gotham City of Batman fame. A cataclysmic explosion has ripped through the city, now quarantined and cut off from the rest of the world, leaving a post-apocalyptic ruin. I would say a shadow of the once shining city, but, from all indications, Empire City was pretty dismal and run-down before the blast, so it's hard to determine at times whether life in the big dungeon was much better beforehand anyway. You, the hero with one of the least heroic-sounding names in video game history: Cole, wake up at the center of the blast.
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