First Light is a stand-alone expansion pack for the marquee PlayStation 4 open-world action game Infamous: Second Son. It simultaneously expands on the original game - by delving deeper into the story - but doesn’t require Second Son to run. If you do have Second Son, however, you can access exclusive extra content in First Light.
First Light, which takes four to five hours to play through, centres around the character Fetch. If you’ve played Second Son, you’ll recognise her as the person that game’s lead earns the “Neon” special powers from. If you haven’t, don’t worry, the narrative precedes to Second Son’s, so you don’t need to have played that game first.
What does follow on, however, is an assumption from the developer that you’re at least pretty familiar with the world of Infamous. Sucker Punch drops in words like “conduit” and grants access to powers without any contextual setup. If this is your first experience with the world of Infamous, chances are it will be - initially, at least - a little bewildering. For experienced fans, however, it’s nice to be able to just get started without being re-fed the basics.
Unlike Second Son’s Delsin, who can absorb special abilities and then switch between them almost at will, Fetch, the hero of First Light, is restricted to the Neon superpower set. That lets her charge around at high speed, fire bolts of light, and generally wreak brightly-lit havoc. Extra abilities become available as you earn points from doing challenges, and other activities, and there’s even a whole extra set that are only unlocked once you’ve finished the campaign.
First Light also introduces a series of challenge levels, where you can complete certain tasks and take on other players around the world, working your way up leaderboards. Spending time in this area is a good way to unlock extra points, although - outside of key story missions - it’s not required.
Seattle looks even better than it did in Second Son, where it was spectacular to behold. The environments are a visual extravaganza, thanks - at least in part - to Fetch’s high-fidelity attacks and the way every bolt is reflected in the various puddles of water and panes of glass.
Fetch herself is lots of fun to play as, with a new high-speed running capability that means she can traverse the city faster than Delsin ever could. Even at a bajillion miles an hour, the game engine never skips a beat, hurtling along at a blistering frame rate without ever seeming to glitch.
Fetch is also much more interesting that Delsin, with motivations that extend way beyond the paper-thin "I wanna be the hero" or I wanna be the bad guy" dichotomy that pushed the original along. Here, Fetch has had a rough time and she’s made some poor choices; this slice of life tale isn’t all about redemption, either. It’s tough, interesting, and thought-provoking.
Ultimately, though, you’ll still spend the bulk of your time traversing open-world Seattle, obliterating bad guys in a stream of bright lights in various combinations. The bad guys get badder (while lacking somewhat in variety), your powers get bigger, and the escalation in both their complexity and your skillset is nicely accented by increasingly extravagant special effects.
It’s fun to play, visually exciting, and well worth the price of entry - just don’t expect the level of complexity and quantity of content you get in the original, and you’ll be more than happy with your purchase.