Impressions: Deus Ex: Human Revolution

I’ve never played any of the Deus Ex games before.  I picked up the first one on Steam while it was on sale, but so far it’s been sitting around waiting for me to play.  I only got drawn into Human Revolution last weekend when I finally sat down and watched the trailers.  After that, I was sold.  Having sat down and actually started playing it though I’m finding it to be a challenging experience (in a good way.)  You don’t really have any choice aside from carefully evaluating each situation you find yourself in.  Blindly running-and-gunning is a dangerous gamble, but taking a stealthy approach is no walk in the park either, especially early on in the game when you have few augmentations active and at your disposal.  It all takes some time to adjust to and requires patience on the player’s part.  Every indication makes it seem that it’s a worthwhile investment though.  There’s a great deal of exploration to do, in both a geographic sense, as well as in terms the game play system.

What has been primarily interesting to me is how Human Revolution not only facilitates different ways to play the game, but also challenges the player’s choices.  It may still be too early for me to say that.  I’ve tried to adopt a non-lethal philosophy, which isn’t easy when tranquilizer darts aren’t as plentiful as bullets  (as most other characters don’t share my philosophy) so I have to test the limits of my patience to sneak around undetected.  If the game weren’t designed as well as it is then this would be frustrating.  However, I know that if I were better with my resources and sneaking skills then it could be done.  It’s unsettling though to come to the conclusion that it’s probably just easier to kill your targets.  It makes me wonder if I would reach the same conclusion in reality as well.  It’s in this sense that Human Revolution is “challenging.”

I have often found myself conflicted during the interactive conversations, many of which involve Adam trying to persuade other characters to cooperate with him.  Responding based on your own reactions and convincing a character to do what you want almost conflicts by design.  There’s no clearly drawn line between right and wrong (or maybe it’s more accurate to say that each character’s idea of right and wrong is different) and each potential response offers an interesting way to navigate through the discussion.  As awkward as it is to see Adam standing there without saying a word it’s fun to wait and weigh out the options.  Without playing the other games in the series, or of the same genre, it’s hard for me to say how much of this is innovative.  That being said though, I feel confident in saying Human Revolution is an excellently crafted game that’s worth checking out.


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