Kontroller – Deus Ex: Human Revolution

by: Kabir Kaler

Hello gamers. Today we will be meeting with the multimillion dollar man (literally), Adam Jensen, in the newly released game Deus Ex: Human Revolution.

Deus Ex: Human Revolution is a prequel to the critically acclaimed game, Deus Ex for PC, released in 2000. It was called the best PC game of all time in PC Gamers’ Top 100 PC games.
You are Adam Jensen, head of security for one of the biggest corporations, Sarif Industries, in the year 2027. This is the year where private corporations now overshadow the government and everyone has a dirty little secret. The game starts with you taking a stroll in your building when it appears you are under attack from a group of terrorists. You go to intercept them and stop them but fail horribly, for they leave you at death’s doorstep. In order to save you, your boss orders you to be augmented to be “something above human.” Now you are a cybernetic man, with abilities that leave little to the imagination, hell bent on finding the people who did this.

The art design is a futuristic style with authentic North American and Chinese architectures.  Everything in this game screams future from the guns, the furniture (including the skinniest computers you’ve ever seen), to the appearance of the people with their new prosthetics. This game has two open areas, and lots of unique mission based environments. One example is near the beginning when you return from sick leave and you must enter an occupied factory. This factory has offices, cardboard boxes, etc., everything an actual factory does have. Another mission is happening in a harbor with boats, crates, water (obviously), etc.

Even though each level is unique, there is still that realism that makes it believable that this could be our future we are looking at. There is also a dark overtone surrounding the visuals that makes it clear that though this is a futuristic world, it is a dark one, filled with mystery, conspiracies, and lies – lots and lots of lies. The weapons are on par with the environment – futuristic, yet dark. Some weapons expand when you equip them and it shows on screen, and vice versa. The detail on the guns is well done and different for each. The last aspects are the people presiding in these areas. They stay in place and their body language screams busy and seem to have a glimmer of life in them when they talk to you or doing other activities. They don’t seriously add to the environment and they don’t do anything but talk and die if you so choose to shoot them.

The game play in this game is one with many layers (like an onion but it doesn’t make you cry).  They are stealth, augmentation, gun play, speech and hacking. Each level, be it mission or open world, has a lot of debris to help you stay unnoticed. This helps you get the jump on your enemies; whether they are light infantry or heavy. But like many things in this game, stealth is a choice but staying unnoticed does have its rewards. Augmentation is the big incentive game play wise. You get praxis kits to choose which augment you want. Each is different and helps you depending on how you want to play the game. For example, I like to be stealthy so I chose to upgrade to a cloak to go invisible. Special skills like this cost more due to their overall advantage but help more in the long run.  You get praxis kits from level ups or you can buy them. You use an energy bar when you use most of your special skills. Your energy bar is important because it allows you to do certain activities, each one draining it and with this restriction it makes you think and conserve, instead of wasting it.

Gun play is the next layer in the game and it is as important as augmentations.  Here are a handful of guns that you can use and none of them the same. Each handles differently and is suited for different situation. You have an inventory system which limits how many items you can carry. You also have the ability to upgrade your guns with kits found both in the environment and in stores. This makes you choose your type of gun and forget the others. You can shoot from the hip which is what is mainly used and you can look down on the sight of the gun to be more accurate. But unlike other shooters you have to press the button again to get out of it instead of coming out of it automatically.

The talking is deep and provides a nonviolent way to get to your objective. When you start a conversation there will be an intro that will give you some back story to help you choose the options: a couple will be given to you. There is no need to win these conversations since there are multiple ways to get to your objective but winning them feels satisfying and finishing a quest becomes easier.

Since this is the future, security is now electronic and password protected. In order to bypass the security you need to hack them, unless you have found the pass code. Hacking is a little mini game in which you got to go to point A to B in the time frame given. Failing alerts any guards you haven’t dispatched and a cooling off period will appear, making you wait until you can try again.

The presentation of the game is that of mystery and the unknown. This idea is woven into the core of the game. The sounds made from both the environment and the people match the situation; from being alarmed at your presence, to having normal conversations. The animations have no glitches, nor does the environment. This game is rated M (mature) and with good reason. You periodically kill people; showing blood, offensive language, and the sexual themes are there.

This game is overall well made; having a deep game play set, good visuals and voice acting. The game does give off a possible futuristic style with the environment and the people; though sometimes the open world does seem to be too close together and the regular people in the street seem like filler. The one thing I really like about this game is it has good replay value due to your choice as to how you want to play the game; not to mention the trophies. There is also some dlc called the missing link but unless you enjoy this game a lot I don’t recommend buying it at the price it is now. As good as this game is its still missing that one key factor to make it perfect.   Regardless it is still a good game and I give this 8.5 augments out of 10.

Just an interesting fact, Deus Ex: Human Revolution was made in Eidos, Montreal. This is actually the first Canadian game I have reviewed and while playing and reviewing this gave me a certain pride.  You can see the hard work that they put in this game and I thank them for it.

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