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February 13, 2018 2 min read
My greatest professional regret came in the springtime of last year. Days before New Prey released, I wanted to run a review of Old Prey. See, the headline format for reviews around here is just "Review: Prey," and I was very much into the idea of tricking people into clicking a link expecting to read about a 2017 game but instead finding words about a 2006 game.
But I didn't do it for reasons I don't remember, but those reasons almost certainly amount to "you got too lazy, dude." Here's the takeaway that review would've had and that I want you to leave this article with: Old Prey ruled hard.
Prey had so many fun quirks that added up to a solidly memorable game. Cherokee dude and his girlfriend get sucked up onto a weird alien spaceship. There are all sorts of unique extraterrestrial weapons laying around. You go into a spirit realm to solve puzzles. When you die, you shoot a bow and arrow at some eagles until you come back to life right where you died in the first place. It did portals before that other game did portals.
All of those sound like non-sequiturs, like there's no way they could all be competently interwoven with each other. They are though! It works great and adds up to this distinct experience that still holds up. I know; I just played through Old Prey in the summer of '16.
Xbox just made it a lot easier to play through Prey again. It was added to the list of Xbox One backward compatible games today, along with 2010's Mafia II. The two couldn't be any more different. Mafia II can be a slow burn, as it spends a lot of its time reveling in mundane low-level gangster tasks (if my memory from eight years ago serves). Prey, on the other hand, is anything but mundane. It's a wild ride and it's worth playing 12 years later.
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