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Friday, September 9, 2011

Deus Ex: Human Revolution

Deus Ex. Deus Ex is a game that many gamers, myself included herald as one of the best games ever made. It came out in the year 2000 and was so far ahead of its time, the rest of the industry spent so many years trying to match what that game did and really no one was able to do so, until now.

The third (second) game in the series (screw Invisible War) Deus Ex: Human Revolution was released at the end of August. Developed by the good people at Eidos Montreal there was a lot of hype for this one and a little fear too. Would we finally get a good sequel to the godly Deus Ex? Or would this be a steaming pile of crap and so another great injustice to the name? I finished up Deus Ex: Human Revolution (DEHR) last week and I'm here to share my thoughts on it.

DEHR takes place before the events of the original Deus Ex. Mankind is at the beginning of it's augmented age. You play as Adam Jenson the head of security for Sarif Industries. After an attack on the Sarif building Adam ends up augmented and out to find the people responsible for the attack. As I like to do that's about as far into the story I will go.

DEHR is a first person, I'll say action stealth game with third person mechanics. You move and explore for the most part in the first person, when you get into cover the game goes to a third person view. You explore a kind of open world, each area has a main hub you're confined to and you can go anywhere in said hub until it's time to move on. Then the hub is locked and you cannot go back, just like the first game.

Even though this game wasn't made by Warren Spector and Ion Storm, Eidos Montreal really nailed the whole Deus Ex thing. You can tell right from the start it's Deus Ex and it's in such a good way. The world, the atmosphere, the characters it's like they stepped out of the original masterpiece. Eidos did make some changes and some of them are for the better. The gun play is all player skill based now, you don't have to pump XP into getting better with a gun to be lethal with it. You point the crosshair or iron sites at something and you'll hit it. Hacking has been changed too, now it's a mini game as you work your way from the start of the system to the exit to complete the hack. It's fun but by the end of the game after hacking so many things I was wishing for the originals hacking, just a timer that goes down and you have that time to read all the stuff you need to before the alarm goes off. With all the upgrading to hacking you can do I'm shocked this wasn't an upgrade choice.

Movement and the combat is great, it's feels so right. If you chose to go stealth the stealth in this game actually works and if you chose to go in hot and smoke dudes you'll be able to with a vengeance. Graphically the game is outstanding and looks really sharp even with the green/yellow tint to everything.

So basically the game is amazing, you must play it. Above I just touched on some basic mechanics but what I really want to do is talk about some of the things I didn't like about DEHR.

One of the most shown features was the item highlighting, where items and things you can interact with are highlighted in the environment. I personally don't like that but you can thankfully turn it off. I'm not a fan of overdone huds and even though this is a game where the hud is explained (You don't get a hub until your augmented) I still like a minimalist hud. You can have way points on screen too and with all that crap on the screen it gets in the way of fighting and exploring. I don't know if the hud is in Adam's eyes or in his aug sunglasses but if it's in the glasses I would of loved to see the option to make them retract and go completely hudless. You can get close to this in the options but I wanted an in game option, would of been cool.

The next thing may be funny to some but I didn't really like the augs. What? I didn't like the augs in a Deus Ex game? It's not that they weren't neat they just didn't seem that useful. First thing I did was get most of the hacking aug upgrades because you need those to survive. After those were upgraded I didn't know where to put my points. I was going combat but most of the combat augs depend on you having a crosshair which I didn't as I was playing on "Give Me Deus Ex" difficulty, so those were useless. I ended up going to strength and just working my way around the list. By the end of the game I was just putting points into whatever and I ended up almost maxed out.

Just like everyone else I didn't like the boss fights, they weren't needed and just threw off the balance of the game. They're not as hard as everyone has been making them out to be, you just have to "game" the system. I would of liked the choice of not killing them though. No matter how you take them down they die in the after battle cinematic. They're never really explained it's just a few people that want you dead for some reason. But at least is had boss fights, so many games nowadays don't have them and I like to have that challenge at the end of a level. These bosses though aren't really different from other enemies you've been fighting, they just take more bullets. I do think the way Barret's arm spins apart to reveal the Gatling Gun is really cool.

The last thing I didn't care for was the way the ending(s) were done. They don't really wrap up anything but that's hard to do when it's a prequel, we already know what happens in the future.

I can't really think of anywhere else to put this part so it goes here. Difficulty wise this game isn't that hard. I was on the hardest setting with almost all the "help me" stuff turned off and I breezed through it. The boss fights were the only places that I was hung up on. You die in a few shots but from what I've seen it's like that on normal too so I don't know. If you're looking for a brutal challenge it's not here.

With that said DEHR is an amazing game. I played it like a fiend for 35 hours. It was nice to play a modern game that was actually long and not over in 6-8 hours. The entire time I was playing I was having a lot of fun with it. With the exception of the stuff above everything else about this game is godly, it's so good. If you like game you need to play this one right now! I can't imagine a better game than this coming out this year.

Deus Ex: Human Revolution - 9 out of 10

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