Overall I loved the game. It has been a long time since I felt any medium (literary, cinematic, or interactive) made me think about our society, in what direction it is heading, and about our future, like Deus Ex: Human Revolution did. If you have not yet played the game I think you owe it to yourself to find it and play it. The trailer beneath is from E3 2010. If you have not yet seen it, you should watch it and let your jaw drop to the floor in wonder.
Despite some technical issues, mainly that the graphics and textures were a bit uneven in places, and some minor gameplay flaws, such as uneven AI which means the guards sometime see you when they shouldn’t and sometime don’t see you when they should, the rest of the game is of outstanding quality. The aesthetic aspects of the game are superb. The cyberpunk world is imaginative, mesmerising, and wonderful. it is, I would say, on par with Blade Runner. The music, though not as good as that of the first Deus Ex game, is still excellent and sets the dark mood, in a world where you can trust no one, perfectly. The humour, the dialogue, and the powerful script only adds to the great experience and truly draws you into the world of conspiracy and human augmentation.
Some critics, and players, have criticised the bosses a lot. This is mainly because the whole game is built around choice. There are many ways to finish missions, you can sneak by the enemy through countless of different routes, go guns blazing and kill every one, and everything in between. Carrying out conversations is also important. Sometimes fights can be avoided, and you can get information or access to something restricted, if you analyse the character’s face, the tone of the voice, and his choice of words, and then reply accordingly to make the characters of the game fall for your charm. The boss fights, however, doe not give you an option. It’s a fight to the death. Since the game is built around choice this seems strange and a bit out of place. After reading the novel Deus Ex: Icarus Effect, by James Swallow, I know the bosses a lot better since they have important roles in the novel. I know you can’t reason with those mercenaries and I felt, personally, that I wanted to kill all of them even before meeting them in the game simply because I knew how rotten they were and how many horrible crimes they had committed. But for players who have not read the novel I can see that suddenly being pinned against a rather anonymous character in a battle to the death when you usually play as a pacifist is bothering.
Another aspect of the game I really enjoyed was its self awareness. Everytime I heard an old song from the first game on the radio I couldn’t help but stop and listen to it, dwelling in old memories and the legacy this franchise has built up. Then I would caught sight of a poster for Final Fantasy XXVII and other times notice a post-it in an office containing an internet meme. Such small things add up and greatly adds to the overall fun of the gaming experience.
All in all, Deus Ex: Human Revolution, is a great game and I would recommend it to anyone! Even though it carries a lot of heavy and important themes one should not forget to enjoy oneself. Below are some funny clips from the game which should remind you, and me, that it is, after all, only a game and you can do, and take from it, whatever you want.
Also, I am really looking forward to the first DLC “The missing link,” though I am not sure how it will add to the story since you see Jensen physically enter the tube after Tong Si Hung’s son, Tracer, escapes, and then wakes up from it later. It all made sense so I don’t feel there’s a need for additional events inbetween to explain things. But I’m not complaining. More Deus Ex is better for everyone!
I never asked for this
“What a shame” oh, how it reminds me of JC Denton!
– F H Hakansson
Read part 2 – Roots of Deus Ex: Human Revolution and Transhumanism