Metro: Last Light
We Sit Down And Review Metro: Last Light.
The wait is over for the sequel to Metro 2033. Metro: Last Light is upon us and is continuing the saga of humanity’s decimation and Artyom. Let’s get down to brass tacks with how Last Light plays and feels.
The story picks up with Artyom after following the “bad ending” of 2033. That would be allowing the Dark Ones to get blown to hell after they threatened the last safe haven of humanity in Russia. It turns out that one of these “Dark Ones” survived and has been spotted. Due to Artyom’s past experience he is sent out to capture the creature, but this turns into a wild romp to get back home after being captured by the 4th Reich and other militant groups trying to survive. Not to mention there are still horrors abundant trying to eat him along the way.
When I first started seeing video for Last Light it looked as if it was going to focus more on the survival against the Mutated creatures over humans. To me it was definitely more about how screwed up humans are compared to horribly disfigured creatures from a destroyed Earth. This theme is a bit saturated to me as of late and I was hoping for a good mix between the two. Don’t get me wrong, this is by no means a game breaking issue, but I was expecting a bit more on the mutant killing and evading. I mean, their AI seemed to be leaps and bounds more evolved over the human NPCs.
Stealth was a huge option in the game, at least for the section that had humans patrolling. This is the path I took thinking that it would be a bit trickier to pull off, I was wrong though. As I stated above, the mutants could hone in on your location in a heartbeat, but the humans would not even notice you if you were right in front of them in the shadows. You would think that they would be use to low light vision by now or adapted, but it looks like that is not the case. I truly felt that the game was too easier, even on hardcore, during the stealth sections. All it really let me do is progress the game faster without a challenge.
Still on an anti-human kick, I have to say that the character models for the humans felt extremely un-polished. Given the hardware and time that the developers had at their disposal, they just seemed a bit thrown together and generic. Maybe they spent more time on the creatures this time around, even though they felt underutilized. Granted, this isn’t game play breaking, but it adds to the overall immersion and experience.
Even though Last Light isn’t listed as a survival horror game, I was instilled with more “panic” than in any of the latest titles in that genre. It’s not just the claustrophobia inducing levels, but even some of the situations and areas you need to run through to proceed. I swear if I have to run into another “spider” nest again with my ever dimming head lamp again it will be too soon. Hells, even running in wide open spaces or on a moving rail car being swarmed by Watchers or Lurkers had a level anxiety that I have yet to feel since way back during the first Resident Evil days.
Mind you, the horror didn’t end with just the main game missions as well. There is also a cornucopia of “side missions” that you can undertake even though they are not really given the title proper. Each of these mostly lead to wither an achievement, an in-game collectible, or just further down the rabbit hole of the decent of humanity in this post-apocalyptic world. One that comes to mind is during an area where bandits have taken over a section of the tunnels. You can easily travel past it, but that is if you are ok with hearing a woman effectively being raped and killed in a side tunnel. Not required, but it was more of a personal side mission I guess.
Lastly, to wrap it all up, I really thought the control scheme was well done here. I’m not talking about the basic FPS style of things, but all of the extra equipment and how to utilize it. It took time to swap and limited what you could use based on the fact that you have only to hands. Even with that, using the game models to show stuff that is normally in a HUD was a great addition to that. For instance, instead of seeing a batter bar in the corner of the screen to see how long you have until your flashlight dies you have to pull out the hand charger to see a real gauge. I love little additions like this.
I could probably go on and on about pros and cons for M: LL all day. Although I would have to state that there would be way more pros than cons. I enjoyed every minute of the game and if you are tired of the same old FPS titles, this is a great break from the monotony. I would probably have had fewer gripes here if I was expecting a more “human” experience than mutant killing, but I blame that on myself and not 4A Games in the least bit. Hopefully this review will help you before you go head into the Metro.
I completely recommend Metro: Last Light for a purchase. As I write this I want to dive back in and give it a try in Ranger Mode as well as go down a few more tunnels and paths I skipped or missed as I was running for my life. I am sure you will feel the same.
Metro: Last Light was developed by 4A Games and published by Deep Silver on May 14th, 2013 for PS3, Xbox 360, and PC. A copy of the game was provided by the publisher for reviewing purposes.