There are two ways to approach Deus EX 3. Let’s look at them, shall we?
So the first way to look at Deus EX 3 is to point out the bugs it came out with – from the unplayable Directx11 issue to the occasional random FPS drops and the exquisite graphical bugs. Deus EX 3 isn’t visually impressive – one might even ask why it requires a powerful rig, since for example, games that require less powerful systems, such as F.E.A.R. 3 or Dead Space II are more detailed, or at least feature a better presentation and don’t use as many resources. It doesn’t bring anything new – RPG elements are augment based – big deal, popular and good games like Dead Space I & II have used them before. You can change how the story goes – yeah, pretty much every modern FPS features that now. The combat system plays like any FPS out there and so does the stealth mode, so it’s more the same. This concludes the first way to address Deus EX 3. Without further hesitation, please keep reading.
Putting aside the technical issues, which let’s face it – every game has its own problems and glitches and as long as they don’t affect game-play or standout too much, no one really cares about them, comes the second way to look at Deus EX 3. Although it contains elements we’ve all seen before, the way they are deeply developed and all put together they create one of the best games I have played in years. I haven’t gone too far because I enjoy playing the stealth way and doing everything there is to do but I can tell you this, it’s brilliant and I am really having a wonderful time.
Anyway, back to the review, you play as Adam Jensen. Human technology is very advanced and Adam has mechanical parts inside of him, which give him special abilities, like a radar or health regeneration and many many more. You can enhance these abilities through augmentation but to do so, you need praxis which are gained by leveling up (which requires XP) or can be found on certain levels. It’s very similar to the Dead Space series on that aspect but goes deeper – the XP part gives it an amazing RPG taste. You can earn XP through endless ways, from killing enemies, to completing objectives, to finding hidden paths and reading countless feeds, to not killing enemies at all and by completing objectives without being detected. Side-quests are also available and completing them is a must for XP harvesting and to make things easier. You can approach levels in two different ways: you can complete them the bloodshed way or you can sneak out and knockout enemies/guards instead of killing them. One might always choose the bloodshed path and therefore use the praxis on combat augments or choose the stealth, hacking path and spend the praxis on other useful augments but at some point hacking is necessary or having combat boosts come in handy, which is a bit unfair since Deus EX 3 gives you a lot of freedom at the beginning but takes it all away on some parts, so a balanced character is recommended – not too warrior nor too geeky – just right.
The story is brilliant and not boring at all. Revealing any details will spoil it, so I’ll keep my keyboard «shut» but I’ll tell you one thing – the way you can change it is another one of those features that is deeply developed. It’s amazing how your answers affect the outcome and this also leads to amazing replay value.
The combat system is probably the only thing that isn’t deeply developed or that at least doesn’t escape the modern FPS/stealth based games cliché. You can perform stealth kills which feature some killing cut-scenes but require energy. Adam comes with 2 energy bars (upgradable) and each time you perform a melee stealth kill, you spend one. The energy bars refill over time and there are items you can consume to replenish them but it’s disappointing and doesn’t really make much sense or at least it doesn’t add, how should I say, content to how stuff plays. Fortunately, stealth weapons like a dart rifle and a dart gun are available or else the stealth road would have been too hard and not worth the troubles. Oh and those who prefer the bloodshed way might have a hard time, even on the easiest setting. Adam’s health, though upgradable, is lacking and even with augments, I found myself stuck and cornered by heavy enemy fire and no idea how to stop it.
Graphically Deus EX 3 isn’t impressive and it doesn’t offer much to choose from. I tried changing all the options (which aren’t many) and didn’t notice any major differences (except with everything disabled), both in performance and visual appearance, which is a little weird, considering most games nowadays offer rich visual customization. If you take a look at my rig, you’ll see I have a great CPU and an average GPU and yet the game ran fine on Medium settings and with AA turned on, meaning less powerful systems still have a good shot at Deus EX 3 and better systems will handle it like a charm. Though visually unimpressive, its presentation is very modern and realistic and works well for those who really like to feel they are inside the game and not just looking at a screen. Add to that the rich story, the RPG twists and the side-quests and you will find yourself addicted. Levels are also very huge and there’s tons of stuff to explore and tons of XP to harvest.
There’s a lot more to talk about Deus EX 3 but I think I have said enough to convince both newcomers and fans that Deus EX 3 is a worthy sequel or prequel (depending on how you look at it) and a great opportunity that should not be missed.
With amazing replay value, addicting game play, rich and compelling story, great sound effects and adequate visuals, I consider Deus EX 3 to be…Very Good.