Review :: Deus Ex

My wife has been telling me that I don’t post nearly enough here considering I post more frequently at my Cardinals blog and on my Tumblr account. My life is usually pretty boring without a job and playing house husband, but life has been busy lately. However, the other day I had a little bit of time between dealing with setting up my internship and interviewing for a job. So I rented a copy of Deus Ex Human Revolution from the Redbox at the local Harris Teeter.

This was a game that I’d been a little interested in since I heard some good stuff about it. I got to play about 5 hours into the game over 4 days before I decided that I needed to give it back to the Redbox and focus on some other things.

I think the storyline definitely has potential. In fact, it’s really the one thing about the game that has me wanting to keep playing it. I ended up ordering it off of Amazon.com for $35 on Monday (it should arrive shortly on my doorstep thanks to the UPS guy). I’ll get on to more of that later.

I liked the way that the game presented you with the difficulty options. You had “Tell me a story” mode which was the easiest mode. You also had “Give me Deus Ex” which is the toughest mode. Then you had a medium level mode whose name currently escapes me.

There are a lot of things to like about Deus Ex Human Revolution. The story line, the free flowing environment, etc. I really liked how markers for the next stages in your quests are designated on your screen without having to manipulate menus to get to the maps. That’s something I wish a game like Mass Effect would implement to speed things along and limit the amount of reading I have to do. I’m not a huge fan of having to do a bunch of reading to figure out what I need to do. Tell me or mark it for me. I’m playing a video game. If I wanted to read a book, I’d read a book.

Somethings I didn’t like is that it was difficult to learn the method for accessing things. The game primarily uses the “X” button as it’s primary advancement button instead of the typical Xbox layout of “A” being the primary button and “B” being the button you use when you want to go backwards. In addition, you had to be extremely accurate with the reticle in the center of your screen in order to access options for objects laying in the environment. How many times I had the reticle within a quarter of an inch of an object and wouldn’t activate the ability to pick it up or search it. That was frustrating.

The #1 thing I didn’t like was the heavy loading times. Every time you changed a point you were looking at a 45-60 second loading time. Play for an hour and you were probably spending about 5 minutes of that staring at a loading screen. I want to play a game, not stare at a loading screen. All long loading times do is that while I play late at night they let me reflect on how I’m tired and really ought to go to bed. Franchises like Halo and Mass Effect have really worked on that and gotten it to a tolerable level.

Overall, I’d give the game a B-. It’s got a lot of the things I like about games, but there are some major things that I think drag the experience of playing the game down. That pretty much means that I would buy it on the cheap, but wouldn’t pay full price for it. That’s why $35 was so much more attractive than $60 for me. I’ll pay $35 for a game I like but don’t love, but I won’t pay $60 for it.

  • I’m not admitting that I read this blog.

    ” In addition, you had to be extremely accurate with the reticle in the center of your screen in order to access options for objects laying in the environment. How many times I had the reticle within a quarter of an inch of an object and wouldn’t activate the ability to pick it up or search it. That was frustrating.”

    http://www.whompcomic.com/2011/03/11/get-it-while-the-getting-is-goop/

    • Jon

      That’s hilarious and pretty accurate. Don’t worry Matt, I won’t tell anyone you read this blog.

      • Matt. . .Clooney.

        Curses, WordPress IP lookup! Anyway, glad you liked the game. If you ever get the chance, you should try it for PC. Control frustrations are eliminated, loading times are much more reasonable (I don’t think I’ve ever seen one longer than 10 seconds), etc. I’m most of the way through the PC version at the moment and it’s been awesome.