Human Revolution Further Thoughts And Missing Link Review

So, I just finished a second play through of Deus Ex: Human Revolution. It really is a lot more enjoyable on the second round- and given how good it was the first time that is saying a lot. With a firmer idea of the game's mechanics and what you can and can't do it's much more enjoyable. Strangely enough I also found myself mixing up my play style a little more as I was wasting less augs on things I knew I didn't want, and so could try playing with other ideas. The end result was less stealthy and non lethal and a little closer to how Splinter Cell: Conviction is played, I.E stealth backed up with tactical combat. The Boss fights are also less of a grind as you can actually prepare for them, I visited Barret with a rocket launcher handy and the others got a dose of fully levelled up Typhoon. The ending set up still sucks, but hey, it's just a small nasty barb on the end of a fantastic game.

I also grabbed the DLC package ‘The Missing Link’. It was meh. Reasonably well executed, but it falls into the same mechanical traps as a lot of DLC (I.E stripping you of your kit and skills to balance to the game, as opposed to just... balancing the game). It certainly isn’t bad, but it’s just so unnecessary. It doesn’t square up with the rest of the plot- which is fine in basic principle (Fallout 3 and New Vegas used DLC to tell their own self contained stories)- but given that the DLC is billed as filling in a gap in the story it does a pretty crap of job it. This is especially true when you consider the gap was left in (or more accurately alluded to) specifically for the DLC. All in all, at £8.99 I don’t think it’s worth it.

Removing your augs is also a bit of a shitter. Deus Ex: Human Revolution really comes into its own once you’ve found the play style you like and the augments to make it work. Taking away the augments and your gear is just a lazy way to make you improvise. I get the idea; I really do- force the player out of their comfort zone and create a new challenge in doing so. My complaint is that we’ve already faced these challenges before- at the start of the game when we were finding our feet. Wouldn’t some new enemies, or new obstacles (no, those spinning lasers don’t count) be a much better way to create a challenge? It would be fresh and new as opposed to just treading over the same ground again.

But again the level design remains complex with multiple routes and ways to play, the acting is still pretty good and the artistic direction (while very reminiscent of Doom III), is quite imposing. It’s good, it just feels a little lazy and could’ve been as good as the main game.

The Missing Link is about four hours of extra gameplay, nothing more and nothing less. If you’re willing to pay the better part of a tenner for that then you’ll have a blast. If you wanted something a little more though, you will be disappointed.

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