Much like the post-apocalyptic wasteland of Russia, Metro Exodus is harsh, testing, and often downright brutal, but it’s this ‘learn-fast, play-smart’ approach that makes Metro Exodus a unique and differentiating experience to any other first-person shooters on the market.
Anyone who played or is familiar with the first two Metro games (they’re great too, by the way) knows that the franchise has found a warm place with fans, giving a breathtakingly real and visceral take on Russian author Dmitry Glukhovsky’s mutant-ravaged world which he presented in his Metro novels. Of course, developers 4A Games have had some creative license to run with the universe, with the third game now picking up with series hero Artyom, who flees the Metro in Moscow and sets off on a continent-spanning journey to the far east with some fellow Spartan Rangers.
Thanks to this journey which frames the entire game, players will be spending a fair bit more time in outdoor, above-ground environments, which is a nice change for the series. However, the dark tunnels and derelict buildings are still a mainstay for the gunfights and survival scenarios which you’ll have to navigate through.
Speaking of, the gunplay is as tactical and frantic as ever, where bullets and time aren’t on your side, leaving players to rely on clinical shots and quick-thinking in order survive attacks from giant creatures and other hostile survivors. Stealth in these scenarios is always recommended, with the stealth system and fairness of enemy-detection working excellently this time around; but when things go off, at least there are some new weapons to cause chaos with. Crossbows, pistols, shotguns, and automatic rifles make up the most of your arsenal, but you’ll have to be careful how you use them, as weapon over-heating and jamming is something you’ll want to avoid in a firefight.
Difficulty has also been a concern for newcomers to the Metro franchise, but Exodus makes a great effort to ease players back into the action before throwing them to the wolves, quite literally. Combat is tough but not overbearing, and making your way around the open-ended levels never seems overwhelming or daunting – you always find yourself at where you need to be eventually.
While many expected other big triple-A games to be the shining lights to kick 2019 off, it’s Metro Exodus that is one of the best games of the year so far. It’s slower and more calculated pace isn’t for everyone, but for gamers looking for a refreshing, meticulously-detailed, and intriguing experience, there’s not much that can compete with Metro Exodus.