Rating: Mature (Blood, Sexual Themes, Strong Language, Use of Drugs, Violence)
Reviewed on: Xbox 360
Metro 2033 literally flew under the radar of most of the gaming communities when it came out in 2010. It's based on a Russian novel by Dimitry Glukhovsky, and set in a post-apocalyptic Moscow. After playing it, I really wish I'd stumbled upon this game sooner.
|You don't want to cross these guys...|
The current game environment is littered with post-apocalyptic first person shooters. Metro had to really do something to innovate and make it stand out from the crowd. It accomplished this by setting up one of the most immersive atmospheres out of the current FPS generation. Development Studio 4A Games, based in the Ukraine, created havens that are teeming with "life," if you want to call it that. People are scraping to get by. The surface is a wasteland, full of noxious fumes that will kill you in minutes. This, of course, says nothing about the mutant monsters roaming around up top. "Nosalises," "Angels," and "Librarians" will kill you on sight and feed on your body.
What was particularly fascinating, however, was the currency. In the future, gold and money are basically worthless. Soviet AK-47 rounds are rare enough that they're considered a valuable trading commodity. They're also the most powerful rounds in the game. So players have to make a careful decision when they load up a magazine with the stuff. "Is it really worth it to use these 30 rounds on this boss? Would they be better spent buying health packs later?"
|This mask is the difference between life and death on the surface|
As Artyom progresses, he meets new allies and enemies. There's two achievements early on for talking to a young child who offers to lead you to the bar which progresses the storyline in exchange for one bullet. The achievements are called "Generous" and "Realist," depending on how benevolent you are. Situations like these illustrate the decisions that you'll have to make throughout Metro 2033. How you respond affects your "karma." This impacts the ending of the game, all of which are vastly different. Unlike Bioware's recent foray into branching storylines...
|Bourbon, Artyom's early mentor|
If you haven't tried out this gem yet, I highly recommend you do. There's a sequel, Metro: Last Light, due out next year. It would be a very good idea to play through this one before Last Light comes out. At $15 to download it from Amazon's store, you can't go wrong with that. Seriously, any FPS fan cannot let this one slip buy.