The original Deus Ex, published by Eidos Interactive, is widely considered one of the best PC games of all time. Deus Ex: Human Revolution is a prequel to the original and has some very large shoes to fill.
The story takes place in a futuristic Detroit set in the year 2027. The main character, Adam Jensen, is an ex-SWAT member who now works as Chief of Security for an augmentations company called Sarif Industries.
The entire plot of Human Revolution revolves around the stigma, fear, and discrimination for people who are “augmented.” Augmented people have bio-mechanical implants or limbs that improve their lives in some way; sometimes improving them to the point that they’re greater than a regular human. For example, a person with augmented legs can run faster than a person with regular legs.
The major theme seems a little too simple at first, but Human Revolution does a great job of throwing moral curveballs at you throughout the story. It excels in the small details here and there that keep the player second guessing where they stand on the debate of augmentations.
Speaking of little details, this game is filled with them and it’s what builds its cyberpunk world so well. From the overheard dialogue of random people on the street to the articles written in the digital newspapers found throughout the world. Human Revolution effectively immerses the player in the story through these details.
The game gives you an option to take out enemies you face using either lethal or non-lethal force. While lethal is easier, it holds moral weight, as they didn’t have to necessarily die, and there are future consequences as a result.
The gameplay was an excellent mix of stealth elements, first-person, and third-person shooting, as well as puzzle solving and exploration. It was fun to sneak into a building, creep past all the guards, and reach my goal undetected. And if I made a mistake and was spotted, I could often hold my own in a shootout.
Exploration often yielded rewards, while the puzzle-solving element was delivered through the use of hacking security terminals and computers.
The music is also worth mentioning. I am a big fan of electronic music, and so I really enjoyed the futuristic music style. I had a fear that the score would eventually become repetitive, but I was pleasantly surprised that it didn’t.
I’m a fairly experienced gamer, so I burned through the storyline pretty quickly. I also made a point of completing as many side objectives as I could find to immerse myself more in the interesting world that Eidos has created. This was actually a very good idea, as the side objectives turned out to add even more depth to Human Revolution.
The credits rolled after about 17 hours of play time, with a satisfying ending that left room for some unanswered questions. While the game does feature multiple different endings, I was happy with the one I received. It left me content while still leaving me wanting more, and I think that shows how “good” a game really is. Do you want to play more when you are finished? If yes, it’s probably a well-made game.
The theme of cyberpunk is often left untouched in high-budget game titles, so I am very glad this turned out so well. I hope that long-time Deus Ex fans enjoyed it as much as I did. Here is hoping the sequel, Deus Ex: Mankind Divided doesn’t disappoint.
Overall, I would rate the game 8.5/10. Deus Ex: Human Revolution was an excellent example of immersive storytelling and world building, with gameplay that was both fun and challenging.
A few improvements could be made with the voice acting of certain characters, and the model animations. Adding a few technical options to the settings menu would also help, specifically the option to play the game in windowed fullscreen mode.
Hopefully I will see all that in the next installment of Adam Jensen’s story.
A 22-year-old college student with a passion for nerdy things, John is currently attending Algonquin College for Professional Writing and dreams of one day being a novelist. He enjoys reading, writing, playing video games, and LARPing. He also occasionally streams his shenanigans on his Twitch channel.