It's the year 2027 in a galaxy far, far, away--Ok, it's not a galaxy and it's certainly not far...it's Detroit--there is a controversy brewing between 2 groups of people--Those for further augmentation research and those who are against it. As the story progresses, you find yourself neck deep in a conspiracy so big, that turning back isn't an option.
You control a man named Adam Jenson-- ex-SWAT-- who is now head of security at Sarif Industries. Sarif Industries is one of the leading producers in human augmentation. Augment potential is limitless and it gives the user to improve their every day lives. From installing a robotic arm due to losing it in an accident or to give the user better sight, hearing, etc.
Not everyone is keen on this idea as they fear they are playing God and messing with evolution. This inevitably leads to a terrorist attack on Sarif Industries.
Once the attack is over, thousands are dead and Adam Jenson is left for dead but the company saves his life by using their augment technology.
Six months later Jenson is back and looking for clues as to who could have done this.
As the story progresses you learn that there are problems that go much deeper than a silly battle of Pro and Anti Augs and I must say things get sticky....but the good kind of sticky.....no not that sticky (perv)!
It's a very complicated story as you find yourself in the middle of this mass conspiracy, some twists and a dash of betrayal. All the ingredients that make a great story, which this game undoubtedly has. It actually reminds me something out of Metal Gear Solid because of some similarities.
There is also a nice hidden message that makes you think and I can't help but wonder about some of these issues that effect us in the real world.
One of the most unique FPS game I have ever played. It doesn't traditionally play out like a FPS where you blindly go to point A to point B or duck behind cover and blindly shoot....things. It kind of feels like a FPS mixed in with some Mass Effect (1).
You have you basic HUD of information;
Health: There isn't that traditional health regen crap where you get shot and magically heal in 2 seconds.
You have a health bar or 100 HP. When hit your life decreases and slowly regenerates back after while. You can speed it up faster by taking pain killers and get a health boost as well.
Batteries: You Aug uses up batteries to do certain attacks or use special abilities.
It also displays your special abilities you have, weapon type and ammunition and has a Radar that helps you detect nearby enemies.
Deus Ex does a fantastic job of giving the gamer tons of freedom and verity (the spice of life). You COULD be a mindless killing freak, going guns blazing to the objective or you could stealthy maneuver your way around many facilities which have MULTIPLE routes to go. This makes you feel like you're a small fish in a big pond. It's almost amazing on the amount of detail and design that was put into the levels and how it all intertwines.
The freedom doesn't stop there. You have the ability to customize you weapons and your augments the way you see fit.
Throughout your travels you will come across upgrades for your weapons (i.e; Fast reloading, Laser, etc.) and Praxis--which is used for upgrading your Aug; You can increase your batteries, become invisible (which is pretty pointless), etc....
The entire game feels like you have the freedom to do what ever you want, take whichever route and make whatever decision...it's all up to you.
There will be times when you come into contact with people and this will open up the dialog--which is similar to Mass Effect-- Choosing the right questions to ask will lead to more information or talk somebody out of a specific situation.
There is also a hacking mini game. A lot of electronics can be hacked into and they all have a security of 1-5. Upgrading your Augs hacking capabilities will unlock the ability to hack a higher security system. The Mini game however is a little boring and grows stale after a while. It would have been nice if they had more variety.
This is probably the area where Deus Ex take a bit of a hit...but hey! graphics aren't everything.
Don't get me wrong, Environments looks great. You'll travel around 4 different continents and each has a lovely look to it...and by lovely I mean a dirty/grimy look--the future doesn't look too clean.
Character animations and models look a bit off though. Faces and textures have that glossy look to it. The streets look like it just got done raining, character's skin looks like they are sweating profusely, objects that shouldn't have a shine do.
The animations also can be a bit stiff and there are some lip syncing problems which is a pet peeve of mine.
When it cuts to CGI it becomes more noticeable.
Occasionally were also some framerate issues when the game would auto save or if you would go into an area that had a lot going on. This was most noticeable during the riots.
There's also a yellow hue to the game and saturates the surrounding environment with that color. It isn't obnoxious however. It's dark and gloomy which, visually, tells you what kind of game this is going to be. If you hate the color yellow.....well then, it sucks to be you!
There is a part in the game where you are in China. While I was there I thought to myself, "there's no way they'll have them speaking Chinese"...to my surprise they did. Although it wouldn't have been a game breaker, it just shows to you that they wanted to make the city feel authentic.
Some of the voice acting (although most of it was very good) sounded extremely off. Even some of the Chinese citizens who spoke English had an odd Chinese accent. It sounded as if they told someone who spoke English to try and sound Chinese.
This one black lady early in the game sounded like a flamboyant male.
I also have a small issue with Jenson's Voice. It's good and fits him but you also feel that he can be a little robotic at times (no pun intended). Sometimes when the situation calls for it, he doesn't get happy, sad or angry. He sounds the same through out the game no matter the circumstances. A little more emotion would have been better.
Learning about the world is important and listening to the TV and Radio is a good way to get caught up in current events and learn whats going on. Eaves dropping on civilian/enemy conversations is also a good too as they seem to never repeat themselves and always talk about something new.
The soundtrack to the game is very good and might have been influenced by Mass Effect. It isn't too lively and fits the mood just right...perfect for infiltrating an enemy compound, It picks up the pace during fun/challenging boss fights and gets you in the mood to battle it out, Creates suspense when the enemy is alerted of your pressence and the ending theme puts a touching bow on this masterpiece.
When you mention Metal Gear Solid and Mass Effect in a review for a game you know the outcome will be good.
It combines the stealthy-ness (if you choose) of MGS and a Sci Fi/RPG shooter from Mass Effect and meshes it all together perfectly to create a unique and a completely different experience. The amount of freedom in this game is unlike anything I have ever player in recent memory. It feels that I;m in total control over what I'm doing. Every decision in this game has another outcome depending on what you do.
Replay value is high since there are multiple outcomes to side missions and the main plot that might give you the urge to try and do things differently the second time around.
Maybe you want to go guns blazing this time instead of stealth?
Maybe you want to upgrade your Aug differently.....It's all up to you.
It's a scary thought that I was never going to play this game. It was never on my radar but it was on my brothers. Since he bought it, I decided to give it a shot and was instantly hooked. I guess I should give him a hug or something, right!?
Do yourself a favor and pick this game up. It's one of the best games of the year.