Metro Last Light
Metro: Last Light is the follow up to the
gritty Metro: 2033. This first person Horror/ sci-fi survival shooter is
a symphony of story elements joining together to make a big splash in
this game series. While it’s not a pre requisite to play the latest
game…players will get an even deeper understanding and enjoyable
experience if they have played the first game in the series. That being
said, Metro: Last Light does a good job of filling in the back story so
that new players won’t be totally lost as to what is going on.
We are once again tasked to survive the
horrific dangers of the post-apocalyptic world. Players take on the role
of a Ranger by the name of Artyom who is still haunted by the events
from the first game. Did he in fact make a mistake by launching nuclear
missiles at the strange Telekinetic creatures in the first adventure?
That is one of the questions that will be answered in this adventure.
The events take us to new areas as well as some familiar surroundings.
From the tunnels of the Metro where people have now had to migrate too
after the devastation on the surface has made it unlivable. So beneath
the ruins, deep down in the Metro tubes and stations human kind lives.
We soon find out it’s not all Champaign and roses though. Other stations
and factions within factions are paranoiac in what has been achieved by
Artyom and his people. A power struggle is even taking place within the
Rife with adult content the story and the
action play out surprisingly without being gratuitous or without the
token female breast shot. There are adult situation where there is
partial nudity, highly suggestive sexual situations, violence, human
kinds inhumanity towards his fellow human kind but it all plays out in
the story without feeling forced. It all combines with the visual and
sound to create an impressive atmospheric game that grabs you by the
short and curlies without mercy. Telling you this is our world and it’s
not always a pretty world, it’s brutal and survival is harsh.
Combat in the game is intense, be it human enemy who lay down the hurt
with guns and explosives, or mutated animals that have adapted to the
new harsh world with defensive and offensive abilities to match the
brutal world. It’s a highly predatory world and thankfully the AI shows
this more than once, or I rather am inclined to say the scripted scene
plays out without breaking away from the in game action. It is
masterfully done to the point of the player not realizing at first it is
a scripted event playing out in front of you IN game.
Regarding the games AI, it may need some
tweaks, but it does do a fair job of offering some challenging battles
when the enemy is aware you’re in the area. If they have explosives or
fire pipe bombs they use them to some effect against the player. The AI
does have its questionable moments from time to time, and this may at
times be due to some minor AI clipping into the graphics and getting
stuck. After the latest patch I went back playing several of the levels
again to see what the effect would be and things had improved a bit. The
AI does stumble often enough to make you cringe, though when there are
more than two enemies the numbers make up for the inconsistent AI. That
is a sad statement to an otherwise spectacularly executed game.
The game is sprinkled with quick time events, where several taps of the
right key in time will keep our hero alive. In a really good immersive
game it is the little things that add up to make it a thrill ride.
Such things as having to occasionally wipe gore or water from your gas
mask in order to see is a solid touch in game play. A watch on Artyom’s
wrist displays how much time the filter is good for. Being out in the
toxic irradiated air uses up a filter fast, keeping stocked will keep
the character alive. During combat the glass on the gas mask can become
damaged and cracked. If the gasmask takes enough damage it becomes
useless and the character rips it off, gasping all the while as his air
starved lungs instinctively suck wind looking for that life giving
oxygen free of the death dealing impurities.
If the player character is lucky enough
they will on occasion come across a hapless victim of the hostile world
and be able to relieve them of an undamaged, or slightly less damaged
gas mask and filters.
When at a station or a location where there are traders the player would
do well to make purchases including filters for the gas mask. These
places visited in the game all feel lived in and alive with everyday
life in the Metro Stations. Along with life in the Metro, there is also
the ugly side, the game has very adult situations, the game never claims
to be kid friendly. It is an adult story with themes that show how
horrific things can be in this dark world. From exterminations on
massive scales using kill squads to the release on masses with a
weaponized modified Ebola virus. The quarantine areas with dead and
dying people during one level was so well done; the stark horror of such
an awful weapon released on people and its effects was a kick to the gut
during this interactive sci-fi horror story.
Once again, as per what has been established in the first game,
ammunition is the method of currency. So using it to purchase upgrades
and weapons and even more ammunition trades makes it rather interesting.
Military grade ammo is more valuable than the standard ammunition of the
day. So having military grade ammunition to trade is a must. Though in
this dangerous world it often comes down to, well gee do I save the ammo
for trading or use it when I am down to nothing but a shot gun?
Players have access early in the game to
most of the weapons that are in the game. Each one has decent though
limited customization options. For less noise there are sound
suppression for guns and extended magazines to hold more ammo. Weapons
are all satisfying providing good bang for their buck. They sound
powerful and the bullets impacting objects and targets have that heavy
hitting sound that lets you know the rounds mean business.
The PS3 graphics are nothing less than stunning at times, dark and
foreboding when they need to be in the appropriate areas. These are
those areas where you hope your flashlight does not run out of juice.
Players do have a portable hand held generate that can charge the
batteries of the flash light with a few pumps of the handle. Gamers
would be wise not to let the flashlight wane. If it does, there is the
backup. A lighter and it serves more than one purpose. Not only does it
provide some lighting, it also can be used to burn away cobwebs in a web
Continuing on with the graphics, the world as noted is highly immersive.
Weather effects and the surrounding areas from deep sub terrain areas,
onward to the stark devastated cities now choked by nature altered to
the new hostile land all looks breathtaking beautiful.
The visuals paired with a well-designed and executed sound scape make
the game the pulse pounding sci-fi horror thrill ride that it is. The
sound designers join forces with the visual team to tug at our inner
primordial fears. Deep dark inky black places the drips of water and
something moving, scuttling about or breathing or screeching….make our
imaginations and our dread run wild.
Most of the sound channels on my sound system got a healthy work out.
Subtle world sounds made me feel like I was there. The crack of the ice
as I desperately made my way across of semi frozen over body of water
while fighting off creatures had me cringing every time I heard the
crunch and crack of breaking ice. Weapons and explosions sounded big and
bold, blasting the sub-woofer with power dancing and basking in the low
end rumble sweeteners of sound. Even the soft sounds of the world played
out so naturally giving me an I am there feeling. When you hear an
environment and you almost don’t notice it because it’s part of your
world…that’s genius at work in the sound engineering and mixing
Metro: Last Light is a bold symphony to the senses. Deep Silver is the
new bringer of AAA titles, now they have a lot to live up to. As the
saying goes, you are only as good as your last game release. Deep Silver
is now the one to watch.
Have fun, play games
Edwin Millheim Impulse Gamer