At the end of 2013 Russia was targeted with atomic bombs witch caused severe radiation across the whole of Moscow forcing the rest of Moscow’s inhabitants to live underground in the metro tunnels and stations to survive against the effects of the radiation left on the surface. The people and animals that did not make it to safety from the radiation turned into monsters or creatures known as the dark ones which were left on the surface for the next 20 years.
The game takes place in the year 2033 in the Russian metro tunnels and stations; you play as a one of the first born in the metro named Artyom who collects postcards with images of city’s and buildings across the world. You learn from one of the rangers named Hunter that protect the inhabitants of certain metro stations that these creatures referred to as only the dark ones where threatening Arytom’s home. Hunter gives you his Dog Tags or token and tells you that if he does not return you must make your way to Polis and tell the rest of the Rangers about the danger to your home so they can help you defeat the dark ones and save your home.
While the game seems like your basic FPS there are also elements of a survival horror and stealth games mixed into them as there are parts where you must travel through the tunnels alone to another station with dark ones jumping out of different locations trying to kill you and there are also a couple parts you will have to use stealth to your advantage to make it past guards and sentries.
The game’s controls are the same as your Standard FPS for the most part with left mouse being fire, right button to zoom or alt attack and scroll wheel or number to change your weapon. The currency used in game are high value military rounds which are used to purchase weapons, ammo and supplies for Artyom or in the most desperate of times you can use them as actual ammo for your gun.
The health system implemented by the games is a regeneration system where your health will regenerate while you do not take any damage but this is a very slow process but can be sped up by using health syringes which you can purchase or pick up during the game; you may need to use these in certain situations.
You are equipped with a gas mask which you must keep in good condition but if your mask takes damage you can replace it with a better conditioned one you find lying around in the metro and even the surface you must also make sure you have filters for your mask which you can buy but you will also find them lying on the ground too. Another item you are given early on is a flash light you are given a universal charger for it that you must make sure you keep charging by equipping it and left clicking, it is recharged using kinetic energy to move a motor which I feel gives a great reason that it is always charged as well as other items.
To find your way to current objectives and remember what these are you are given a map and notepad that you can look at but in some situations you will have to use your lighter to be able to see which is equipped at the same time as the map, the lighter is in the shape of a bullet that I feel gives Artyom some personality. The missions where straight forward mostly just fighting your way through tunnels and stations as well as some more specific objects like finding certain items and doing objectives to defend stations. I would have like to have seen a bigger variation on the missions but having your game take place in a metro the majority of the time does tie your hands.
There was a nice variety of enemies some being a surprise as this game took place in the year 2033. I did not expect to see Nazi’s or communist Russians but it was a nice surprise and I feel they were used in a smart way to did not ruin the story. There were also your average bandits who would kill anyone to get their gear and survive, there were nine different types of dark ones that helped the game and the enemy’s to stay fresh and not get too over run with the same enemy to fight.
There was a range of weapons that included pistols, assault rifles, shotguns, knives, explosives, pump powered guns, grenade launchers and mounted machine guns and flame-throwers. There was not a lot of variation in the range of guns such as there was only one kind of pistol they got around this by making the guns come with different attachments witch would be better or worse than the one you already had but each weapon had their pros and cons in different situations such as silenced weapons for those stealth parts but guns with more damage for fighting hordes of the dark ones and it was down to the player to choose what gun they would use as long as they had enough bullets to buy it. You could find weapons when going through the metro but I did not feel there were enough of them you could find and would like to have seen more overall but it does go with the fact they are stuck in the metro with low resources.
I felt the graphics for the PC version where very nice ranging from the weapons to the characters. Although most of the game was set underground and in a post apocalypse city I felt the done a good job and adding in little bits of colour here and there not to make it look as if it Is out of place and that nothing has changed due to the radiation. The lighting and shadows where nicely detailed too and they used the shadows to put more emphasis on a horror and stealthy type atmosphere at parts which was a great idea and helped the atmosphere.
I have spoken to some people regarding the voice acting in the game and it seems pretty split some people don’t like it and some do; the people that don’t like it find the accents to be bad but after doing some searching online I found the majority of the voice actors in the game or from Russia, Poland and Ukraine itself. I personally liked the voice acting in the game though I felt Artoym himself did not show a lot of emotion in his speech he sounded depressed a lot of the time and sometimes it felt a few of the characters where trying too hard when they were putting on an accent but over all I liked it and the fact they got people from and around Russia was a smart and appreciated move and if you are really picky you could set it to Russian with English subtitles.
The rest of the audio for the game was good there were eerie sounds during the long dark tunnel walks and other times witch set the mode perfectly as well as some fast paced music during those big gun battles. One problem however I had with the audio was when you went to some stations you heard everyone talk at the exact same time witch was a pain to try and pick out what people were saying
Over all I would give this game an 8 out of 10 I personally really enjoyed this and felt it was something different to a lot of the other FPS and apocalyptic games out there, I would recommend this game to anyone who is a fan of FPS and horror games and feel they won’t be let down whether they be a casual or hard-core gamer.