Let's get one thing straight at this point of time, I scare easy. I mean really easy, so for me playing a game like metro 2033 is out of my norm. That being said, I enjoyed being scared in this game. From spotting a Nosalis from a distance, to turning around and suddenly seeing a lurker lung at you. This game is an adrenaline rush from start to finish.
This isn't the type of game that somebody would spot me playing, from creepy noises to sudden silhouettes; it is a dark game. You start out metro 2033 with an awesome gun, plenty of health packs and a sense of adventure. This changes quickly, as you and your squad mates get ambushed. Now you go from a type of comfort zone, to a feeling of having no idea what to do or how to survive. You are quickly over run and knocked out, only to be sent back to begin the game at the start of the plot, eight days prior to these events. You have nothing, no fancy gun and no good armor. This is the beginning of a grand adventure to save your own home metro station.
Now the only reason I began to play this game, was because my friend told about its realistic graphics. Only since my recent hardware upgrade, could I actually understand what he meant about realistic. This game is one of the most hardware dependant games out there, so be prepared for lower graphical setting and low fps with older GPU's. For me though, I had a great FPS rate, with all setting maxed out. This lets me speak truthfully about graphics, as I have seen how good they are. Metro use's the 4A Engine, this engine was made by a few Ukraine fellows who split from the production team of S.T.A.L.K.E.R just before its launch. All in all, this engine was designed for metro 2033 and it does a great job. You get small amounts of object destructibility, as well as double PhysX among other things. This lets metro 2033 have an unbelievable amount of detail in its textures and environment.
The game play itself is simple and fluent like many first person shooters out today, Therefore its control's are not overly difficult to learn. To make this game 'feel' real we are given some necessities to survive. You carry a journal, you don't really need to use it often; but it is there to point you in the right direction. In order to use the journal/compass, you need to put down your current weapon and equip the journal and a lighter (to see the map in the dark). This leaves you vulnerable and sometimes you don't feel safe pulling it out, just in case in a brief moment you get attacked.
You are given many varieties of guns to play with, from the always reliable shotgun; to an air fired sniper rifle. All the guns feel right, and they fitted in well with this post apocalyptic game. Now, instead of money we use ammunition as a currency. This (if you think about it) makes sense. Nothing in this game is more important than your ammo, so if you want to purchase a gun; you will need to fork out some ammunition that you find along your journey. Your other life saving item is your flashlight. Your flashlight never runs out of battery, but it will drain power from it. To refill the power of the torch, all you need to do pull out your portable handheld generator. You then begin to use the generator to refill the power in the torch. These kinds of actions, is what gives metro its realistic feel. I can remember running around shooting monsters and suddenly my torch runs out of power, and I have to put my gun down and start pumping the generator to give me some light.
This game has a great atmosphere to it, and even the hardest gamers may jump during some fights due to being scared. The voices are great (especially Khan) and you never feel really disappointed with how the outcome of your fight goes. From the start of this game, till the finish. You are left with beautiful graphics, realistic sounds and a great sense of believability. So if your pc can't handle this game, and can't play it with at least medium graphics; you are missing out on the beautiful environments. But even if you can't handle this game with great graphics, you will still be overly happy with the story and the overall atmosphere.