Review: Metro 2033

THQ and 4H Games destroy the world in a nuclear explosion with the recent release of Metro 2033.

IGN called these graphics "PS1 era."

Metro allows the player to enter the shoes of Artyom, a young man living in the Moscow subway system, also known as the Metro system, after a nuclear war causes humankind to almost become extinct.  After Artyom’s “city” is attacked he must travel the dangerous subway system and surface world to find help, all while fighting off fanatical Communist “Reds”, Nazis, and mutated creatures.  The player fends off these creatures using various makeshift weapons, such as revolvers with scopes, silenced sub-machine guns, shotguns, and pneumatic weapons that the player must actually pump to do more damage.  Upgrades to these weapons are purchased using pre-war “clean” ammo found scattered around the world, which can actually be used as ammo with increased damage as a last resort.

The most interesting part of this game is how little HUD is used throughout the game.  There is no health bar, map, or even objectives displayed on screen.  The only thing the player will see is the ammo count for the current weapon he or she is using.  The map aspect to this is very interesting as the player must hit a certain button to bring up a compass showing the direction to the next objective.  This leaves the player vulnerable to attack, which can come from any direction in the darkened subway system.  Another interesting part of the game is the use of the gas mask and night vision goggles.  As the air above the subway system is full of toxins, the player must put on Artyom’s gas mask to safely traverse the destroyed cities, which can hinder the player’s view depending on how damaged the mask is from attacks.  Should the player get attacked enough with the mask on, it can actually crack open and leave the player vulnerable to the toxic air.  The same goes for the night vision goggles, which will impair the player’s peripheral eyesight due to the casing around the lenses.

The only negative part is how little replay value the game has.  As the game is strictly a linear experience, there is not really a reason to go back and replay the game other than in an attempt to gain more achievements on the 360. This is unfortunately added to even more with the fact that the game is not very long, average at best.

The device on Artyom's wrist monitors both how hidden in shadows the player is and how much time the gas mask's air filter has left.

Overall Metro 2033 is an excellent first person shooter.  The story is very engaging and the unique game play aspects make it stand out from the crowd.  While the game is a bit short and linear, it is still a lot of fun to play.  For anyone looking for a good FPS on the 360 or PC, this is a great choice.

2 comments on “Review: Metro 2033”

  1. PS1 graphics? That’s just sillyness. Digital Foundry seemed well enough impressed with its graphics, obviously IGN have equal an opportunity hiring policy for the mentally handicapped.

  2. What kinda PS1 did they have?

    I like the idea of one’s ammo and currency being the same thing. hell of a way to encourage proper resource management.

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