Metro 2033 Review :
The Strongest Survive
Civilization is all but wiped out by the destruction of man, and hell itself has been cracked open. Embark on a horrific journey under the once great city of Moscow. To save your family, your village, the world as you know it..
As I started playing this game it struck me right away how cinematic it is. The way the cut-scenes blend seamlessly with the gameplay, how the articulate force of persuasion drives you straight into the face of every horror that awaits. Alas, you are in for a scary ride. The dark, murky tunnels of the Moscow Metro will never feel safe.. until you've walked the surface. The game environment has a very authentic feel to it. From the voice accents to the posters and signs that litter the rubble; I could not envision a more convincing Russian wasteland. The realism is only a part of the terror value to be found here. I personally found the scariest parts of the game were the unknowns.. the things that lurked in the shadows, but I couldn't name them. Implications of horrors far above the tangible; the "Darker Ones". That doesn't mean to say the lesser creatures that now roam the world are any less terrifying, as they aren't. Nothing is slow in the Metro, not as slow as humans anyway, don't expect to feel like the top dog in the game. Since the game is so inversive I found myself never wanting to be alone, and the game delivered.. half the time. The AI characters are very well done; they have personality, they are strong and take their share of kills, most of the time they were acting as my guide and shown me where to go, and most importantly they kept my spirits up and watched my back. On the other hand, when it came time to part ways it was a sinking feeling in my stomach; and that's not just because it's more scary. At a few points while solo I became very confused as to where I needed to go, even with the help of the journal compass. Some of the sections were a bit poorly designed. I think this caused the poor compass to have a fit of confusion, as I often followed it to nowhere when I myself was confused. Another complaint could be the shortage of ammo(or rather, the modest supply of ammo was often not enough to keep my guns operating). This is no deduction for the game though, but a matter of player discipline. Still, for a player like me whom is often driven into a panic and sprays bullets everywhere it becomes tedious pushing through the last half of every mission with only a knife, and drooling over any precious scavenged ammo that will be lucky to last a minute. There's an array of equipment you have to keep an eye on with this game, but it's never over-imposing and fits in very well. Just keep your gas-mask in good condition and your night-vision goggles charged. The weapons are also excellent. The selection has enough variation to keep anyone happy throughout the game, and the guns look quite impressive and concise with the authenticity of post-apocalyptical Russia. Having military-grade bullets as the currency was also an intelligent and clever idea; there are so many details to appreciate in this game. Back on an an overview, this game excelled at making me feel tense; just teasing with me.. like it could do more to me if it wanted, but was choosing not to. This is defiantly the scariest game I've played, as a stranger to most horror titles and an avid sufferer of zombie-fobia. Still, this game stood out to me after I played it; not just as a horror experience, but also as a great story all over. The ending is spectacular as all the psychological plagues that had been hounding me through the game came together and I defeated them. It was a feeling of triumph, and also hope. The plight of the humans that lived in the Metro was terrible and dark, but after the end I found myself wondering what they would do next. Not many games I particularly wish a sequel to made for, but this is one of them. Brilliant job, THQ.
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