The original game featured player choices, but they were very binary, and a bit mechanical. It's a criticism developers Sucker Punch have recognised, and gone some distance to try and correct with the sequel.
"When we took a look at the Karma system in inFamous we wanted to keep the successful stuff, but also make improvements," said Sucker Punch co-founder Brian Fleming. "As a top line, we knew we wanted to continue to offer players the choice and responsibility that comes along with having powers. This is one of the central themes of many archetype super-hero stories, as well as an interesting exploration of the relationship between power, responsibility and the test of character that powers bring. So, that had to stay.
"But on the flip side, we got feedback from fans that some of the choices felt too mechanical, and they wanted their choices to have more meaning in the narrative and in the world. So, our challenge with inFamous 2 was to make these choices more real, more believable, and yet still keep them visible and clear to the players."
Sucker Punch concluded that the best way to improve the karma system was to implement allies Kuo and Nix, both of which we've been introduced to already.
"When we spent time thinking and designing the improved Karma system, we ultimately concluded that there was a way to make these choices both clearer and much more believable: to make your Karma decisions more about relationships and less about the specific choice at hand," Fleming added. "So instead of a question that really didnt relate to our primary gameplay (e.g. 'should we take this food or give it away?'), in inFamous 2we let the player decide who to ally with on a quest, or choose between Kuos surgical strike or Nixs no-holds barred assault. You arent just choosing a mission, youre choosing an ally and alienating another person. This was both clear for players, and more real."
The results of the redesigned morality system are depicted in the new gameplay footage after the jump. Both scenarios demonstrate different methods of tackling a rescue mission. In one Cole works alongside buddy Zeke to bust out a bunch of cops and free Kuo. Subsequently, everyone ends up happy. The other option teams Cole up with Nix, where the duo choose to use explosives to create a diversion and rescue the captive Kuo that way. Both missions end with the same goal, but the implications are different.
"Sometimes the implications of your choices will be clear and sometimes they will be murky. The choices you make will affect the world itself, the citizens reaction to you, and of course the ending of the game in an important way. What we hope is that you all find them entertaining, occasionally thought provoking, and lots of fun."
In essence the morality system appears to be as straight-forward as its predecessor, but the consequences of the choices seem greater. As opposed to simply changing Cole's characteristics, you'll affect his relationship with NPCs too. And Flemming's quick to stress that "the game should be more balanced for those of you who want to play more 'Neutral' or switch sides".
Ultimately, even if you couldn't care less about the morality system, check out the new footage after the jump anyway. The game looks smoking.