As we’ve learned over the last couple years, hype is a real double-edged sword in the gaming industry (*cough* No Man’s Sky *cough*). You can sometimes be so excited for a game and have such high expectations, that it can’t do anything but fail in your eyes when you actually get to play it. I had very high hopes with Deus Ex: Mankind Divided. To this day, Human Revolution remains one of my favorite games, having finished it multiple times. So after a long, almost agonizing wait, I jumped into the newest offering.
Sneak, Sneak, Sneak
Deus Ex is Deus Ex; there’s really no other way to say it. The game still offers the “choice” of playing it how you want to play it, be it through stealth, or running and gunning your way to the ending. Having playing the first game stealthily (even getting the “No Kill” achievement after finishing it), I decided to go about MD the same way. One thing that I noticed right away was that the levels have a lot of height to them. By that I mean that there’s often more than 1, 2 or even 3 ways to get to where you want to go. There’s this big sense of verticality in MD that simply wasn’t present in HR, which felt a lot more “corridory”. This lets you play the game the way you want to play it, allowing you to use a different approach each time you replay a level. So for people looking for a more open-ended approach to the game, you’ll be happy to know it’s present.
Another one of the main improvements made is in the actual combat. Combat mechanics in the previous game felt wonky at best. Guns weren’t satisfying, killing enemies wasn’t “fun” and it really felt like it was designed to be played as a stealth game. However, now guns have this sense of weight to them, effectively making them much more interesting and fun to run and gun with (even though I would never do it. NEVAH!). But I did try it, especially for the first level of the game, which is really kind of a tutorial that explains you the mechanics. So I definitely had a good time shooting stuff there.
Previously, on Deus Ex…
As far as the story goes, it’s a continuation of Human Revolution, and just as convoluted as ever. The story is interesting and I’d probably really enjoy reading it in novel form, but the way it’s presented in the game, it’s too “complicated” for it’s own good. In a game where you can pretty much ignore the main quest for hours and hours, making the story as complicated and with as many sub-plots as it has, I often found myself going back to the main quest with little to no memory of what the hell they were talking about.
I’ll be very honest, I had a hard time even starting to write this article. There are some very interesting new talents, mechanics and story points in the game that will make me want to come back for more, that’s for sure. But for some reason, I just couldn’t get myself into the game. Maybe because I was expecting something that would absolutely blow my mind, but it didn’t. Don’t get me wrong, the game is fantastic, but for someone who has played the first game over and over, I was really expecting something more. If you’ve played the first game, you will enjoy Mankind Divided. And if you’ve never played a Deus Ex game, you will enjoy it as well. So really, all I’m saying is, take my opinion with a grain of salt and go play the game for yourself. I’m convinced you will enjoy it!
DISCLAIMER: Deus Ex: Mankind Divided review copy provided by Eidos Montreal. The opinions expressed in the article above have not be affected by, dictated or edited in any way by the provider. For more information please see Girls on Games’ Code of Journalistic Ethics.