I've played the first half-hour of inFamous 2, and it's good. Very good. But everything I've seen - Cole's tweaked appearance, the new amp weapon, the additions to his electrifying repertoire of abilities - have all been covered several times before. In lieu of what will ultimately be recycled information, I've chosen to address the mission creator instead - the recent revelation that the game will support user generated content. While many open world games include co-op or tacked-on competitive modes, Sucker Punch is happy to admit that this simply doesn't fit with inFamous 2.
"Every triple-A developer worth their salt has talked about multiplayer or co-op, and clearly we had those conversations too," says Brian Fleming, Co-founder of Sucker Punch Productions and Producer on inFamous 2. "Our IP didn't work very well for multiplayer. We couldn't come up with something distinctive and fresh - I mean there's a lot of people who have done great multiplayer, and it's not really clear what we could do to distinguish ourselves from them". And he's right. The addition of co-op or a separate deathmatch mode would just invite comparisons to Crackdown, Grand Theft Auto, or Red Dead Redemption - it's encouraging to see Sucker Punch go against the grain and try something different.
"We were really inspired by what the LittleBigPlanet guys had done," Fleming continued. "We use a tool-set to make a lot of content for our game, and one of the arguments around the office was always: 'Why don't we expose this to our users? Let them do some of what we do'".
The conversations evolved, with several ideas sprouting from the original, and today inFamous 2 is in the midst of a beta that allows players to create their very own mission. When the game launches, Sucker Punch will check through these player missions, and - if they are particularly well put together or unusual - use them as featured missions. This means that as you jaunt about the city of New Marais, other player's levels will appear in your game, just as any other mission would.
At the time of writing, however, players haven't been able to share anything they've created due to the current PSN outage. "We're in the dark about what all the beta guys are doing. So I'm as excited as anyone for that to come back online and to see," says Fleming, who told me that Sony's PSN troubles hadn't affected the project in any fundamental way.