Deus Ex: Human Revolution

Deus Ex: Human Revolution Preview for PS3

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9Out of 10
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Deus Ex: Human Revolution screenshot
Deus Ex: Human Revolution screenshot

Okay, so with hindsight I guess I may have spoken a little too soon. At the end of my E3 preview for 2K's XCOM, I stated that I'd be delighted and surprised if anything else made such a successful play for my affections. Needless to say, I was proved wrong the following afternoon. Eidos Montreal's Deus Ex: Human Revolution was one of the last things I saw at this year's Expo, but somehow it managed to eclipse almost everything that came before it.

As I predicted, this rampant success was as surprising as it was delightful. The first presentation of Human Revolution had an awful lot to live up to – and not just as a result of that incredible, instantly memorable trailer. You see, the Deus Ex license is a solid gold property, a name that provokes powerful emotions among older gamers. The first entry in the series, developed by Ion Storm and released at the turn of the millennium, is still regarded by many as one of the best games of all time. Long-term fans have already had to suffer one alright-but-disappointing sequel, 2003's Invisible War; after so many years, the thought of another let-down seemed almost unbearable.

And yet somehow, the development team in Montreal appear to have shrugged off these weighty expectations. Barring a few fresh concepts and design, the new Deus Ex is immediately recognisable as the descendent of its cybernetically-enhanced ancestors. Eidos' E3 demo started off with a comparatively quiet slice of exploratory investigation before moving on to more violent, murderous pastures, but in both cases the game boasted the qualities that veteran fans know and love: rich atmosphere, the freedom of player choice and, above all else, a keen sense of intelligent design.

Set in 2027, almost three decades before the events of the original game, Human Revolution is the story of an unfortunate security officer named Adam Jensen. After the bio-mechanics firm he works for is violently attacked – by perpetrators as-yet unknown – Jensen is left looking like a bloodied shop mannequin; the head of the company steps in and has Jensen operated on, against his will. When he finally wakes up, he discovers that his body now has bionic arms, as well as whole bunch of other neat tricks (iTunes compatibility comes as standard). Our man then sets out to uncover the truth behind the attack, embroiling himself in a web of conspiracy that stretches across the world.

Deus Ex: Human Revolution screenshot

The demo kicked off in spectacular fashion, with a cutscene showcasing Jensen's arrival in the Chinese island metropolis of Heng Sha. Like many dystopian cities, this place has a duel-layer social split going on, with the wealthy locals literally inhabiting a higher plain of the city, far above the slums below. It's a classic sci-fi setup (or a hackneyed cliché, if you're cynical), but as with everything else here, Human Revolution has a strong flavour of its own. It looks amazing too, a riddle of stacked buildings, ridges and overpasses, decked out in a smoggy, sand-coloured palette.

Jensen's objective in the showcase was to track down a hacker he'd been following, but thanks to the Eidos demonstrator, his first act was to threaten an innocent bystander, a young Asian loitering near the docking area for flying vehicles. In first-person perspective, Jensen approaches the man and whips out his gun. The civilian reacted with immediate surprise, and as the demonstrator aimed at his face he began to babble in fearful Chinese. Even after the player turned away, the pedestrian continued to whimper and shake in his boots, arms raised in terrified supplication. I felt quite sorry for the poor chap, but Jensen was in no mood for hanging around.

The demonstrator descended a concrete staircase into the main body of the city – a busy market area full of fluorescent signs and seedy locals. While the area itself wasn't exactly packed with NPCs, it was explained that everyone here was a unique NPC who would engage with Jensen differently; if we hadn't threatened the young man, we could have chatted to him, and he'd have had something to say. Social interactions are one of the four pillars of Deus Ex's gameplay, alongside stealth, hacking and combat. All of these skills have their part to play, but Eidos Montreal state that you'll never be forced to play one way or another. If you so choose, you can even complete the game without killing a single person (although I'd wager that you might have to knock quite a few people out).

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Necros's Avatar

Necros

Deus Ex is still my favourite game, it's really amazing, I can never get tired of playing with it, 10 years later. the sequel was good too, I like it but it just wasn't as good as the first one. I bet this one won't reach that level either but after all the previews and seeing the gameplay for myself, I have high hopes for this game too. :) If they polish what they've shown at E3 and the story will be good, I'll love this game for sure.
Posted 12:23 on 24 June 2010
jase_ace_uk's Avatar

jase_ace_uk

Cant wait for this. Deus Ex was one of the most epic pieces of Video Game story telling ever. It was well ahead of its time IMO and is still today better than anything the next gen consoles have had to offer.
Posted 10:10 on 24 June 2010
rbevanx's Avatar

rbevanx@ Get2DaChoppa

I think I played it on the PS2 mate if you wanna check it out.
Posted 20:24 on 23 June 2010
Get2DaChoppa's Avatar

Get2DaChoppa

Never played a Deus Ex game as i'm not much of a PC gamer, but this has really grabbed my attention for some reason, great insightful preview Neon.
Posted 19:37 on 23 June 2010
rbevanx's Avatar

rbevanx@ Neon-Soldier32

I didn't like the sequel Invisible War (I think I had it on the original Xbox) but the original is well worth checking out, it's a classic game.
And if you don't like the game, the acting in it will keep you entertained.

YouTube Video

I think they should have hired Neon to do the accents lol.
Posted 17:37 on 23 June 2010
SexyJams's Avatar

SexyJams

Never played Deus Ex. For some strange reason I used to pair it with Crysis in my head. I dunno if I'd enjoy it tbh..
Posted 17:34 on 23 June 2010
mydeaddog's Avatar

mydeaddog

To be honest, I didn't spend a huge amount of time with the sequel. The consensus is that it's not nowhere near as good as the original, but for 1.50 it's not a bad shout if you're curious.
Posted 17:19 on 23 June 2010
Neon-Soldier32's Avatar

Neon-Soldier32@ mydeaddog

Would it be better to get the 'Deus Ex collection' seeing as though it's only £3 it has Deus Ex Invisible War and Deus Ex GOTY?
Posted 16:04 on 23 June 2010
mydeaddog's Avatar

mydeaddog

If you fancy brushing up on your history, the original game is just £1.49 on Steam until 3pm Pacific time...by my calculations, that equates to 11pm here.

If you can stomach some out-dated graphics (and the odd bit of questionable voice-acting), I recommend it thoroughly.
Posted 16:02 on 23 June 2010
scaz2244's Avatar

scaz2244

sounds amazing i didnt mind the 2nd one! was good only played a bit of the 1st one but this looks and sounds great
Posted 14:38 on 23 June 2010

Game Stats

Release Date: 26/08/2011
Developer: Eidos Montreal
Publisher: Eidos Interactive
Genre: First Person Shooter
Rating: BBFC 15
Site Rank: 3,269 20
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