Curmudgeon Gamer
Curmudgeoning all games equally.
25 April 2006
Prey (1997) vs. Prey (2006) with fun screenshots
So the game Prey is still in development, which kind of shocked me when I happened across a preview of it from September 1997. It's kind of amusing to see what has changed since then, as well as what hasn't. Be sure to check out the screenshots and a quaint Daikatana quote at the end. All 1997 material is taken from Next Generation magazine, Issue 33, pp. 70-72.

September 1997:
Although currently set for a mid-1998 release, when asked when [Prey] will be completed project leader Paul Shuytema [says]: "When it's finished."
April 2005:
"Each game will ship when it's ready." (George Broussard, source)
September 1997:
Prey uses a new 3D engine, called Portal.
May 2005:
3D Realms has teamed up with Human Head to deliver a resurrected Prey that uses the dazzling Doom 3 graphics engine. (source)
September 1997:
The one thing that's cool with our approach [to portals] is that it allows us to say 'to hell with Euclidean geometry' I mean, now we can play with things there's no possible way you could do in real life -- unless you had heinous amounts of drugs, and then you probably couldn't remember it afterwards.
May 2005:
Then there's the mind-blowing, messing-with-the-laws-of physics way of using [portals] to create environments that just can't exist in our world. (source)
September 1997:
The player's character is Talon Brave, a Native American who is taken aboard Trocara, a huge, ring-like artificial world larger than Earth.
April 2006:
Tommy is a Cherokee garage mechanic, refuting his heritage and undecided about his next step in life. [...] Abducted with his people to a menacing mothership orbiting Earth, he sets out to save himself, his girlfriend, and eventually the entire planet. (Source: Official Prey site.)
(I guess Halo wasn't first with that whole ringworld thing, eh? I wonder where the idea started.)

September 1997:
Prey is one of the first games Next Generation has learned of that will require a 3D accelerator card (others include Ultima IX, Redline, Out of the Void, and Microsoft's Baseball). This enables the designers to work with 16-bit textures and lighting and also takes some of the "grunt work" of rendering off the CPU and frees it for other uses.
April 2006:
Doom 3 requires: 3D Hardware Accelerator Card Required - 100% DirectX 9.0b compatible 64MB Hardware Accelerated video card and the lateset drivers (source)
September 1997:
3Dfx Voodoo is every gamer's dream card.
April 2006:
3dfx doesn't exist.
September 1997:
Fastest Intel CPU: Pentium II 450MHz
April 2006:
Fastest Intel CPU: Pentium Extreme Edition 965 3.73GHz
September 1997:

(Is it just me or does that look like they put a discreet black box over some exposed anatomy above? Is that a guy or a girl?)

April 2006:

And, as promised, an amusing Daikatana quote:
"As for us [developers] as gameplayers, we're excited too. I can't wait to play Unreal, Quake II looks gorgeous, I want to see where Daikatana is going -- I mean, those are going to be fun, fun games." -- Paul Shuytema, project leader of Prey in 1997
--Matt Matthews at 00:22
Comment [ 8 ]

Comments on this post:

This is the best CG post in months.

By Anonymous zachary, at 25 April, 2006 03:36  

As I've said before, CG exists to serve you only. Glad it lived up to your expectations at last.

By Blogger jvm, at 25 April, 2006 11:03  

FYI, Halo the game was indeed not the first with the ringworld, it was halo the book, which I believe dates back to pre-1997

By Anonymous Alex, at 25 April, 2006 11:12  

Someone on IRC mentioned that it was Niven's Ringworld. Is that the same as the Halo book?

According to my friend on IRC, Halo was influenced by Ringworld. I guess I'm wondering if the same is true of (the original) Prey.

By Blogger jvm, at 25 April, 2006 11:14  

Everything since 1970 has been influenced by Ringworld.

Is that the same as the Halo book?


By Blogger Bob, at 25 April, 2006 12:49  

Origins of "ring worlds":

By Blogger n0wak, at 25 April, 2006 21:32  

It's nice years later, and I still can't work up any enthusiasm for this game.

By Blogger JohnH, at 26 April, 2006 03:58  

Well the game is out and I think it was great. Really fun.

And the multiplayer is great as well. Running around on the ceiling and blasting someone from above...

Spirit Walking is cool also. :)

By Anonymous GoodBoy, at 25 July, 2006 16:58  

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