Infamous First Light
Infamous First Light (stylized as inFAMOUS First Light) is a standalone downloadable content action-adventure video game developed by Sucker Punch Productions and published by Sony Computer Entertainment for PlayStation 4. The game was announced at the 2014 Electronic Entertainment Expo and was released in August 2014.
Played in a third-person perspective, the player takes control of Abigail "Fetch" Walker (introduced as a supporting character in Infamous Second Son) a young woman classed by the Department of Unified Protection as a "conduit" who possesses superhuman powers. In custody of the D.U.P., Fetch is ordered to tell the story of the events leading up to her capture. The player can use their Neon powers to defeat enemies and traverse the environment while completing the game's levels. The game primarily takes place in the streets of a fictionalized version of Seattle and in and around the prison, Curdun Cay.
Infamous First Light received overall favorable reviews from critics. Most reviewers praised protagonist Fetch, with some thinking she was a better character compared to Second Son's protagonist, Delsin. Critics also complimented the game's visuals, controls, fast gameplay, and challenge arenas. Negative comments were made concerning the game's simple story and easy combat.
Infamous First Light is an action-adventure game set in an open world environment and played from a third-person perspective, similar to Infamous Second Son; players complete levels, defeat enemies and finish side missions. The player takes control of Abigail 'Fetch' Walker, a young "conduit" who possesses superhero-like 'Neon' powers. With a few exceptions, Abigail's powers play identically to Delsin Rowe's Neon powers, but First Light introduces several new features. In Neon races, Fetch can chase down floating balls of Neon gas and Conduit energy called "Lumens" that reward her with skill points to increase her powers. The graffiti mini game from Second Son is present; it has been aesthetically altered to match Fetch's Neon style. In Arena Challenges, both Fetch and Delsin can fight against hordes of holographic enemies. Completing challenges rewards the player with skill points that they can use to upgrade their abilities. Exclusive to the arena is a new enemy faction: Demons, with their own unique powers and abilities.
Abigail 'Fetch' Walker, a young conduit in the D.U.P.'s custody in their prison Curdun Cay, is ordered to give a demonstration of her powers to one Brooke Augustine by battling holographic foes created by fellow Conduit Eugene. Once that is done, Abigail is told to tell the events that led up to her arrest.
Seven years earlier, Abigail was one of the first of the new Conduits who emerge following The Beast's rampage across the countryside. Although her parents tried to cope at first, they were left with few options after Abigail injured one of her classmates by mistake. Abigail's older brother, Brent Walker, immediately grabbed Abigail and ran away with her; the pair turned to drug use to cope but Brent eventually got clean, even going as far as to hide Abigail's stash to help her get clean as well. Brent also made Abigail keep the use of her powers to a minimum to avoid suspicion. For years Brent worked for gangs to acquire enough funds to buy a boat and sneak across the border from Seattle to Canada where the D.U.P.'s authority does not extend. Unfortunately, two years ago at the point where the plot was supposed to be completed, the gang of Russian mobsters known as the Akurans destroyed the boat, took Brent hostage, and almost killed Abigail with a bomb. Using her powers, Abigail survives and begins looking for Brent. Abigail soon meets Shane: one of Brent's old contacts and a small-time drug lord also looking for Brent. Shane takes advantage of Abigail's naivete to use her to win a gang war with the Akurans almost single-handedly. When they do finally find Brent, Shane takes him hostage and forces Abigail to help him cement his hold on Seattle's drug trade. Back in the present, Augustine theorizes that the new powers Abigail develops may be a reaction to extreme trauma to help her cope. On the condition that she show her all of her powers, Augustine allows Abigail to fight holograms of her "D.U.P. Troops". Once the latest challenges are completed Abigail continues her story.
Another employee of Shane's working for the city's tech support department, named Jenny, offers to help look for Brent. Jenny has narrowed down where Shane is keeping Brent to four shipping crates dotted around the city. Finding the crates not only does Abigail discover that Brent is not in any of them but Shane, already on to them, hunts down and kills Jennifer. Shane has Abigail help him force the police's favor by having Abigail slaughter the police force while he has a sit-down with the chief. The chief agrees to Shane's terms, on the condition that Abigail leaves Seattle and does not come back.
With this, Shane sends Abigail to pick up her brother. Unfortunately it turns out to be a trap where Shane attempts to kill Abigail with a homemade gas chamber; Abigail however is able to pull through and escape. Back in the present, realizing that Abigail is still holding out on her, Augustine decides to send her to yet another new arena. Taking inspiration from Eugene's love of the Heaven's Hellfire game, Augustine has Abigail fight her now literal Demons. Once the third arena is completed, Augustine has Abigail finish the story. The still alive Abigail "negotiates" a new deal with Shane, he hands over Brent, alive and intact, and she stops tearing apart his gang and operation. Shane has Abigail meet him at the Crocodile where he sticks her with a drug filled needle. In the resulting drug filled haze, Abigail accidentally kills Brent, leaving her emotionally distraught and defenseless as the D.U.P. closes in on her.
Back in the present Augustine reveals that she knew Abigail's story all along, she has been making her work up the nerve for murder, revealing that she has Shane in custody and offers Abigail the chance to kill him. Gladly accepting Augustine's offer Abigail's "enthusiasm" leads her to blow a hole in the wall of the prison into the outside world. Though Shane miraculously survives, battered and bruised, he escapes by hijacking an APC with the D.U.P. and the also now freed Abigail in hot pursuit. With the D.U.P.'s unwilling assistance, Abigail catches up to Shane and violently kills him, avenging her brother. Augustine, after she hears that Shane had been executed, states that Abigail is 'ready'.
Alongside Eugene and another Conduit named Hank Daughtry, Abigail is released into the Military's custody. During the drive, Hank reveals he has smuggled in a bent paper clip to use it to pick their restraints, hijacking the truck, and crashes it at Salmon Bay. The game ends with Abigail, Eugene, and the other conduits escaping (except Hank who is still in the burning truck), while Delsin Rowe approaches the fire, leading into the events of Second Son.
Development of Infamous First Light began shortly after the release of Infamous Second Son. The game's director Nate Fox said it was an "easy" decision to make First Light; Fox said protagonist Fetch's "conflicted history and overall attitude made her the perfect fit for a standalone game." Fox also said that making the game was "really fun", and that "everyone already knows how to do everything development-related and the tools are all already in place, so you can go directly to making content." Sucker Punch felt that Fetch's powers were different enough from Second Son's Delsin's powers to warrant a separate game.
Even though Fetch's different powers alone provided gameplay variety, during development, Sucker Punch ensured that they felt "fluid" and "very different". Another focus for Sucker Punch was to make the overall tone darker than Second Son. Sucker Punch put Fetch in plenty of harsh situations where she is forced to be herself and fight her way out.
During development, Sucker Punch placed a heavy emphasis on the characterization of protagonist Abigail 'Fetch' Walker. Sucker Punch worked extensively with Fetch's voice actress Laura Bailey throughout the development of the game, often asking for her input in specific situations. The game's director Nate Fox stated: "When it came time to put in dialogue or talk about motivations, we called Laura Bailey or texted her. She would tell me what would be Fetch's view so it was accurate to the character, but also accurate to a woman's experience." After the release of Second Son, Sucker Punch felt "compelled" to make a game about Fetch; Fox stated: "We made a game about Fetch because we liked Fetch."
Announced at E3 2014, Infamous First Light was first released worldwide digitally via the PlayStation Store on August 27, 2014; then, it was released at retail only in Australian and European regions on September 10, 2014. Players who pre-ordered the game received a bonus costume for protagonist Fetch called "D.U.P. Fetch".
Destructoid's Chris Carter gave the game a positive review. He scored an 8.5 out of 10 and stated: "Full stop, inFamous First Light is more Second Son, which is a good thing. Although I wasn't nearly as invested in Fetch as I was with Delsin's story, this is a great way for fans to return to the super-powered world of Seattle, and an even better way for newcomers to get a taste of the series."
Eurogamer's Dan Whitehead gave the game a mixed score of 6/10 saying: "First Light's weird, limbo nature makes it a hard one to pin down. Considered as a DLC add-on, it's pretty generous and fans of Second Son will certainly appreciate the extra backstory and another chance to romp around Seattle. As a standalone game, it earns points for trimming the fat from the open-world template, but is also as generic as they come. First Light is an adequate diversion for fans but unlikely to dazzle anybody else."
Andrew Reiner of Game Informer gave the game a positive score of 8/10 in his review. He summed up his review by saying: "InFamous First Light lacks some of the punch of Second Son in its campaign battles and familiar narrative marks, but is still a welcome addition to the series. Fetch is a fantastically written character, and the conclusion to her origin story is worth seeing in its entirety – even if you already know what happens. Sucker Punch did a phenomenal job with the finale."
Kevin VanOrd of GameSpot gave the game a 6/10 in his review. He called protagonist Fetch an "engaging heroine", said the "Silky-smooth combat and locomotion make it a pleasure to move around Seattle", and said "blasting Department of Unified Protection guards and digital demons, is an absolute blast". He did however criticize the game for being to easy, saying: "Once you max out your homing missiles you can sleepwalk your way through challenge arenas." He also called the mission design "uninspired" and disliked the characterization and dialogue.
VideoGamer.com's Jamie Trinca scored the game a 7 out of 10, writing: "First Light is Second Son with most of the fat trimmed, making it ideal for newcomers." Trinca had positive comments about protagonist Fetch; he mostly praised the character for not being a generic male who is tasked with saving the world, writing: "I like Fetch. She's infinitely more interesting than Delsin Rowe — she's a flawed anti-hero, who has come to be defined by some extraordinarily bad decisions." Trinca also thought the visuals were among the best on PlayStation 4, and complimented the cheap price, but felt the game lacked variety and featured repetitive gameplay.
Dan Stapleton of IGN gave the game a 7.5 out of 10, praising the challenge maps, the story, the protagonist, Fetch, and the new powers. He summed up his review by saying: "InFamous First Light is a decent story around a better character than Second Son, but its battles don't have the same scale or superpower variety that Second Son's do. After the short campaign, its challenge maps put a new spin on combat by taking away your ability to escape danger on a whim, making it much tougher."
Polygon's Philip Kollar gave Infamous First Light an 8 out of 10 in his review. He said: "Despite how nicely their stories slot into one another, the ideal scenario for playing InFamous First Light is to have never touched Second Son. This works best as an introductory package for newcomers to the Infamous series, a tightly-wound, dramatic story with solid action and very little in the way of excess. It's not different enough from the Infamous game that released earlier this year to totally stand out, but it doesn't suffer much for that similarity."
Daniel Bischoff of Game Revolution gave the game a glowing review. "That inFamous First Light echoes the main game's themes of siblings and what it means to lose family struck me deeply," Bischoff said, "especially as brotherhood has taken on different meanings for me over the years. With it written into the character's backstory, fans might know what to expect; still, I can't help but feel for Fetch above all else. Her imprisonment and Sucker Punch's use of a familiar location at the crux of this story breathe new life into neon-powered gameplay loops that had already proven themselves one of the best open-world mechanics yet." Bischoff scored the game a 4.5 out of 5.
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