Prey: Mooncrash multiplayer update will go live next week

The Prey: Mooncrash multiplayer mode that Bethesda said would be out this summer will actually arrive on December 11 in a free update called Typhon Hunter. The asymmetric mode is much like a game of hide-and-seek, in which one player takes on the role of Morgan Yu and up to five others become Mimics capable of changing their appearance to that of mundane objects, enabling them to hide in plain sight. 

The big difference between this and conventional games of hide-and-seek, in case it's not clear, is that when you spot a hidden opponent, they're probably going to try to murder you, and so you need to off them before it happens. Hey, everything is higher-stakes on the moon. 

The tension will come from the hunt, and the uncertainty of whether that garbage can you're staring at is a murderous alien from another dimension, or just a garbage can. As explained on Bethesda.net, Mimics will have a brief period of time to prepare themselves for the match, after which the action begins and they can either try to take Morgan out or stay hidden and hope to wait out the clock. 

Mimics aren't very effective in combat, though, and while Morgan will respawn if he's killed, the Mimics will not. The potential problem I envision is that no matter which way it goes, it's going to be a dull-as-hell experience for Mimics: You either set yourself up as the aforementioned garbage can in an out-of-the-way corner and then go get a sandwich, or you take your shot at Morgan, probably get offed, and then you're out. Teamwork between Mimics could tip the scales, but the likelihood of that happening with any consistency is not something I have much confidence in when it comes to pick-up multiplayer games. 

The mode might be fun to play around with, but I don't see it having much endurance—or, to be frank, adding any real value to the fundamentally singleplayer Prey experience. Never mind my pessimism, though: The update is free so there's no reason not to try it, and maybe it'll be far cooler and more durable than I expect. 

For those equipped with VR headsets, the update also adds a new VR-only "escape room" campaign called TranStar VR, in which you'll "complete objectives and solve intricate puzzles" in Talos 1 locations including Morgan's office, the Sim Labs, and the Yellow Tulip, just ahead of the events of Prey. The mode also features a VR version of the TranStar Museum in the Talos 1 lobby, with an "up-close-and-personal look at some of the most memorable props from the game," and an interactive tour and history of the Talos 1 station.