Prejudice is taking a very different path from its predecessor; instead of being a full-priced retail game Prejudice is a much cheaper $15 arcade game. Fortunately, a cheaper price and download exclusivity didn't mean the amount of content would be slimmed down. In fact, Prejudice has far more to offer in both its single-player and multiplayer modes than the original. On top of the extra content, TimeGate Studios has kept an ear close to its fan base, meaning many of the issues we had with the first game have been addressed in its sequel.
For the most part, Prejudice is largely a multiplayer affair. Its short story likely won't be enough to satiate any lone gunmen seeking a deep campaign to keep them entertained for many hours. As opposed to the first game's campaign, which was essentially an introduction to the multiplayer with a shallow story tacked on, Prejudice has an interesting (albeit fairly generic) story. It won't take long to beat, approximately 4-6 hours depending on the player, but it's way more than a tutorial for the multiplayer this time around.
Playing through the story will teach you the basics of controlling your soldier, combat, and will even give you a taste of the style of missions that can be found in the multiplayer. It's all bogged down by sub-par voice acting and the all-too-familiar manly space marines ordering you, the war hero without a voice, to save the world from imminent doom, but it does the job well. In fact, after playing halfway through it I found myself nostalgic for the good ole' days, before high polygon counts and high resolution textures became things to brag about in a game. Prejudice knows what it is and it embraces it's 90's action shooter cliches.
The multiplayer plays much like the original game's did but with more finely tuned combat (meaning enemies aren't the bullet sponges they were previously) and more modes to experience. You can customize your soldier with custom loadouts and modules. The former includes everything you use ranging from your modules to your weapons, and the latter can be implemented to increase your damage, movement speed, etc. If you like to run in guns blazing there are several modules to increase your damage and help you do just that, but if you're more the silent but deadly type there are speed and stealth modules to help you bring out your inner ninja.
Probably the most exciting thing about the battles is when you spawn, because every time you do so you descend from a dropship thousands of feet above the battlefield. After that your sole mission is to quickly decide the best place to land as you plummet towards the planet incredibly fast. If you're really talented there's even a reward for landing on, and killing, an enemy by landing on them when you spawn. I could never manage it but I did find myself on the other end of that scenario on more than one occasion.
Every weapon in the game has seen a significant upgrade in both its damage and how substantial it feels as a gun (plus this time there are different ammo types to increase damage depending on what you fight). Before the weapons didn't feel real, they felt less like guns and more like toys with loud sound effects. This time around each of them, and especially the rocket launcher that I could actually get kills with, have been refined so they have more of a kick and are far more deadly. Unfortunately, the weapon selection is very limited so I would've liked more than the paltry arsenal of weapons Prejudice currently offers.
As for the modes, there are three ways to play this game: the competitive Conquest, cooperative Swarm, and fights against the AI. I wish more shooters included bots so those of us looking for a little practice don't necessarily have to jump online to get our shooter fix, but Prejudice offers it so you can play alone or casually with a few friends. The Conquest mode is a massive 32-player fight for domination of the map's four control points. With 32 players spawning everywhere at once and the ability to use the cash you receive from fights to purchase defense turrets and vehicles, these battles can get a little chaotic.
The final mode, Swarm, is very similar to Gears of War's Horde, Halo's Firefight or Left 4 Dead's Survival modes where you and some allies attempt to defend a control point from progressively more powerful waves of enemies trying to destroy it. There's a bit of a difficulty curve to get around even on the easier difficulties but it's still quite a bit of fun.
Overall, Prejudice is a vast improvement over the original with new modes to experience, polished controls and an even deeper customization system. If you're looking for a fun time alone or to share with some friends, for $15 you really can't go wrong here.