Just like Naughty Dog, Sucker Punch have quite a cult following of Playstation fans; stemming back to the PS2 era with the Sly Cooper franchise. I personally wouldn't put them as quite on par with Naughty Dog - even though I played Sly Cooper to death and likewise with InFamous 1 & 2. Which makes it quite the surprise when SP deliver arguably the first out and out system seller for PS4.
Fast forward a few years from the events of InFamous 2 and conduits are now labelled as bio-terrorists with the Brooke Augustine capturing them off the streets to Curdun Cay. The protoganist is now longer Cole MacGrath but one Delsin Rowe - a graffiti artist and essentially a delinquent of the Akomish tribe. Predictably, after a very nice intro, Delsin gets his first power in Smoke and the story is well and truly underway.
What Sucker Punch does very well this time around is their storytelling, which has improved since the original Infamous and markedly so. The cutscenes are much smoother, the voice acting is top notch and the comic book scenes are well placed. However, there are times when it goes amiss. The story exceeds when its focussing on the dynamic between Delsin and his brother, Reggie, something that Sucker Punch could have delved a lot further into.
With Reggie being a cop and Delsin naturally being more of a rogue, the interplay between them is interesting and should have been touched on further. This is also touched upon with other characters that pop up in the story. Unfortunately, this often takes a back-seat and is replaced with the bigger picture of Delsin going after Brooke Augustine. A little less focus on that side of the story and more of a focus on the interaction between Delsin and his fellow companions would have been of immense benefit, with certain characters seemingly only being important for a few missions at most. Aside from that, the story is well executed.
In terms of graphics, the game is stunning. From the first sequence in the game when you look at the sunset in the horizon to when you're running along a street noticing the real time reflections in puddles, the game impresses. Character expressions in cutscenes are excellent and the particle effects in the game are truly impressive - I found myself draining smoke sometimes purely to look at the movement of the smoke particles. If this game doesn't excite you for the future of PS4 graphics this generation, nothing will!
There are, however, occasional dips in performance. At an unlocked 30FPS, the game can sometimes be buttery smooth. It can also be ugly. Setting off multiple explosions at once can sometimes incur quite a big drop in frame-rate which, in a game that normally runs so nicely, is jarring. These events are infrequent, but by no means rare. To compound this, if you really concentrate, you can notice regular split-second hiccups in the game when you're moving through the open world at full speed. Luckily, I could switch off from this and not notice, but there are people who get very annoyed at it.
Gameplay wise, the mechanics from previous games have been fine-tuned once more. Moving around the city is MUCH faster and easier and the feeling of being a true superhero badass remains. Unfortunately, the variety in the powers is minimal and is somewhere Sucker Punch almost dropped the ball. All of the powers are simply slight variations of one another, something that's extremely puzzling. If SP were going to go to the lengths of creating four different powers, then at least make them completely unique with bigger learning curves. This aspect seem somewhat rushed and the main downside. Additionally, it's baffling how you can't just powers on the fly. As it stands, the power source for that particular power has to be drained for it to be used. Which means you have to search for a power source instead of, say, pressing the right arrow button to change it up. The possibilities in combat with switching between the powers like this was something I was excited about when I picked up the game and is something that disappointed. Understandable if it was a multiplayer game, but in a single-player game were SP really that worried about it making combat too easy?
One way in which Second Son is arguably less accomplished than its predecessors is its morality system. This seemed to take somewhat more of a backseat in this game than the previous ones and is another aspect of the game that is somewhat repetitive apart from a few select choices. Again, something that SP could have perhaps put more thought into. On the plus side, the Good and Evil side of Delsin are much more better supported this time around than in previous games, with Delsin becoming more of an anti-hero than a villain. This character perfectly, and probably would have suited Cole well too.
However, these issues are minor. As a package, Second Son is an incredible game. Sucker Punch have created arguably the best game on PS4 available. Seattle as a city is alive and teeming with activity and having superpowers has never felt so great. Do yourself a favour and pick this game up.