Metro: Last Light Review

 

Metro: Last Light is a first person shooter developed by 4A games, and is the sequel to the game Metro 2033. Having never played Metro 2033, I had no idea what to expect in Metro: Last Light. Several of my friends informed me it was scary and set in post apocalyptic Russia. To my surprise, they were wrong on both counts. Metro: Last Light isn’t just scary; the gameplay can go from quite relaxing to “holy shit keep the lights on and I’m NOT playing this right before I go to bed”. It’s also not just set in post apocalyptic Russia, because there’s no way in hell Russia would look that bad or be that dangerous after the apocalypse.

Overall, Metro: Last Light is a very solid game. The controls for FPS games are usually easy and straightforward, as it was in this case. The graphics quality was good – nothing spectacular like you might see in Crysis 3 or even Far Cry 3 when cranked all the way up, but definitely good enough to ‘enjoy the sights’ as much as one can in a dramatically post apocalyptic environment. I did have some minor issues with the difficulty and the voice acting, but enough with the generalizing and allow me to be more specific.

The landscape is primarily underground, with some increments of ‘surface time’ in an environment that looks exactly like the one pictured below. The underground tunnels tend to look a bit repetitive, and after extended periods of time underground it’s almost delightful to pop up and see the beautifully decimated surface. If the storyline alone isn’t enough to drive you forward, the thought of getting somewhere safe should do the trick!

Unfortunately for our protagonist Artyom, the tunnels don’t really look much nicer.

You’ll find yourself combating not only mutant creatures, but also normal human beings as well, which I found rather odd. In a post apocalyptic world with mutant creatures roaming about, why wouldn’t all humans drop their differences and band together? Do we really need to add yet another potential killer on our list? I pondered these thoughts for a bit, but soon forgot when the game jumped into my favorite mode of gameplay; stealth!

The gameplay is somewhat diverse, and at some points can support multiple styles of play. The most efficient path is stealth wherever possible, simply because it saves the most ammo and it’s easy (at some points too easy) to pick people off one at a time without the other AI noticing. There are times when stealth isn’t possible, especially on the surface, and you are left to trudge forward while you wonder what might come and try to eat you next.

Right from the beginning, you are allowed to arm yourself with three different weapons, and customize them to your liking with various attachments. It didn’t take me long to figure out that my favorite combination was a silenced pistol, an assault rifle, and a shotgun. For those who might need a little more firepower, you could easily ditch the pistol for something else and still maintain stealthy gameplay wherever possible by using throwing knives and close up knife kills.

The difficulty of the game I found to be a bit on the easy side, despite picking ‘hardcore mode’. On top of being able to kill the human AI one a time with ease, I also found myself getting ripped apart at times while spamming the heal and fire keys, wondering how the hell I was still alive. The hardcore mode difficulty warned me about having to be conservative with ammo, but I rarely found that I ran low on ammo. The few times I did, I was able to swap out that gun for a different one just laying on the ground.

The quality and detail of the characters in game isn’t spectacular, but it is adequate and surprisingly consistent. Unlike Far Cry 3, which has some people that look amazing and other less important people that look like they just jumped out of the original Xbox, Metro: Last Light has consistently good looking characters throughout the game. Other than the occasional bad voice acting, I was quite pleased.

Whatever little bit Metro: Last Light might lack in difficulty, it makes up for in enjoyable and diverse gameplay, as well as an interesting storyline. At no point throughout the game did I find myself bored, which happens to me frequently when playing mediocre single player games. This game is worth playing through entirely, and gets a solid 8/10.

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