InFamous: Second Son Graphics Impress, Karma Disappoints

InFamous: Second Son is still the hot topic among the gaming community, and it has even crept into mainstream news sites. This is for good reason: The game is awesome. Second Son is the prettiest game currently out for the Playstation 4, and a lot of that has to do with the different powers available to you — neon, especially as introduced at nighttime, is absolutely beautiful.

The game, however, has caught some flack for a perceived change in graphics from what was presented at E3 in 2013 to what was eventually released. Dualshockers posted screenshot comparisons between E3 and retail, which set off a comment war about how Second Son‘s graphics were downgraded, which Sucker Punch denied.

Gearnuke earlier today posted screenshots that show the different times of day in the game. These new screenshots clearly show a difference in shadows and dynamic lighting throughout the day in Second Son‘s Seattle.

Skyline afternoon
Skyline Night
Seattle Skyline Day

The whole fuss of a graphical downgrading for InFamous: Second Son is just noise, according to Cinema Blend.

As much as the Microsoft Defense Force would love to say that the graphics in InFamous: Second Son have been subjected to a Forzaning, sadly it doesn’t quite look like the case, especially if you have to literally question if there is a difference between the elements in the images…. Now this isn’t to say that inFamous: Second Son is some amazing looking graphical beast, but it does manage to say that the retail release keeps very close parity to what was showcased at E3.

Elsewhere on the net, the New York Times’ Chris Suellentrop is in love with the game’s overall look and feel — its fluidity as you “turn yourself into a puff of smoke and waft through fences or shoot through the duct-work in a highrise.”

Suellentrop does have one common complaint among the game’s reviewers. InFamous’ touted karma system is just too black-and-white, and it seems to not-so-subtly push gamers toward acting “good.”

Infamous: Second Son is far from the only game to include a morality system with all the subtlety of an after-school “G.I. Joe” cartoon from the 1980s. But it’s dispiriting that a game that looks this beautiful — at one point I found myself admiring the rebar in the rubble of a fallen bridge — and plays this exuberantly hasn’t made even a smidgen of progress at improving how video games model the complexities of human behavior and ethics.

He ends with commenting that Second Son still provides a “pretty place to blow stuff up.”

Regardless of some quibbles with the story and karma system, InFamous: Second Son has still proven to be a great experience on the PS4. The two karmic extremes create a clear case for playing the game through twice, possibly in pursuit of a platinum trophy. A recent patch for the game also updated its next batch of Paper Trail DLC. That story is an innovative, engaging connection between the game world and real life that I wrote about on Inquisitr previously. Paper Trail will continue to add content for the next six weeks, and will certainly keep me coming back even after I’ve finished the main story.

Are you playing InFamous: Second Son? Have you noticed any issues with graphics, or is all of that talk just smoke?