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Cole McGrath Goes Dark In inFamous 2: Festival Of Blood

inFamous 2: Festival Of BloodWhile most downloadable expansions require one to own the original base game, Sony and Sucker Punch are taking things in a different direction with the upcoming addition to this year's inFamous 2 for the Sony PlayStation 3.  The new Festival of Blood DLC sends protagonist Cole McGrath into the world of the undead in an adventure set around the Halloween season, but doesn't require the actual inFamous 2 disc to play.  Casting shadows of last year's Undead Nightmare zombie expansion for Rockstar's Red Dead Redemption, inFamous is joining the vampire cult next week at a price of $15 on the PlayStation Store.  Here's Kotaku's take on the matter:

Festival of Blood actually focuses on Zeke, Cole's chubby, Elvis-obsessed sidekick, as he spins a tall tale while trying to pick up a woman in a bar. Zeke spins a yarn that has Cole being kidnapped by a tribe of vampires, who are led by new villain Bloody Mary. Cole's electromagnetic powers prove no match for the vampires' numbers and mystical abilities and he gets turned into a bloodsucker. Bloody Mary's disembodied voice taunts Cole throughout the missions, challenging him to find her and kill her before sun-up comes and he becomes a vampire permanently.

The biggest change in FOB might be the elimination of the Karma Meter, which has measured how much of an altruistic hero or a selfish vigilante you're making Cole become as the game progresses. Different powers become available depending on how good or bad you are, but Festival of Blood will have only one new set of skills-along with Cole's electrical powers—for players to unlock. One of them fundamentally changes how you get around New Marais. Shadow Swarm lets Cole fly, changing him into a swarm of bats. It works well with the new Move support that's also coming to the game. The new abilities get governed by a Corruption Meter, a beating heart which gets filled by the blood you consume from NPCs. Cole's new powers also include a Punch Blast, a wave of force that pushes enemies back and a stake kill.

Removing the Karma Meter seems to change the nature of the inFamous experience at first glance, watering it down to appeal to a wider audience.  What I find most interesting about Festival of Blood is that it's exactly the kind of product that Sucker Punch's developer colleagues at Naughty Dog have expressly dismissed for Uncharted 3. After all, what else is this vampire add-on if not a single-player expansion (despite not requiring the original game)?  I thoroughly enjoyed inFamous 2 when I played through it earlier this year, but despite my interest, I don't know that I need Festival of Blood right now.  As I've said elsewhere, the rest of 2011 is completely packed with new games that will demand plenty of time & money and carry me well into next year, so I don't know that I can or even want to squeeze in another one.  Still, I like the idea of more inFamous and will get around to it eventually.