We have many types of ‘end of the world’ stories in videogames, zombies, aliens, war, robots, fungus… the list goes on. It’s a great setting to tell a story. But where Fallout has a catchy fifties swing to it, and The Walking Dead is about people, Metro manages to capture that desperation, fear, and thin line between life and death that would no doubt be the order of the day at the end of the world. Following a young man who grew up in the underground of Moscow’s train system, find out what it takes to survive at the ragged edge, in the Metro.
Release Date: Aug 26, 2014
Based on a series of books by Russian author Dmitry Glukhovsky, the Metro series was so popular that it crossed borders of language, geography, and platform. An installment of the uniquely Russian ‘Horrorcaust’ apocalypse scenarios. Along with its compatriot, S.T.A.L.K.E.R., let’s just say our Russian friends have a fairly bleak take on the end of the world. Filled with radiation, and dark, scary things that go bump in the night, these are Fallout with a healthy dose of horror, and a lot of bleak human scrabbling to survive in a hostile place. Though it made the ‘mainstream’, Metro 2033 and its sequel Metro: Last Light, gained a cult-ish following (not unlike Dark Souls early days) and has sold ok, but has been one of those games many people never quite got around to playing. If that applies to you, or if you just needed a good excuse to replay it (or perhaps you are just learning about it now) then, PC, Xbox One and PS4 owners, Metro: Redux might just be the excuse you were looking for (or didn’t know you wanted).
The story goes like this. Mankind went out with a bang – Nuclear Holocaust. The only people who survived where those underground when it happened. Now, mankind ekes a sort of living underground in the Moscow metro tunnels, resources are dear and everything is precious. Bullets particularly so, and pre-war ammo acts as currency. Above ground is a bleak, radiation blasted ruin, completely inhospitable and lethal without a mask. Light and breathable air are commodities that people must cultivate and ration. Like any good irradiated wasteland, there be monsters, and not all of them are above ground. Mutants, sure, dark things in the shadows making off with people, yup, but then there’s the real nasties… other human beings. Politics, factions, hungry monsters and yawning darkness abound… sound like fun? Not really. Tense, challenging, and compelling? Most certainly.
Metro: Redux is a classic example of a rerelease, in the spirit of say, Halo Combat Evolved: Anniversary. It’s a trend I support. There are a lot of games that, for various reasons, may not have gotten a fair shake, or, were standout games that have now passed into graphical obscurity but deserve a revisiting. Metro: Redux is more of the former. Combining both Metro 2033 and Metro: Last Light, Redux is more than two games in one box. As with all good repackaging, Metro: Redux includes all DLC and a graphical… ahem…’redux’, for the greater hardware power of the Xbox One and PS4. It’s no lame half-effort either, the improvement is significant, making the world of Metro: Redux the very best kind of horrible wasteland.
A standout for those of us who love the post apocalyptic thing, the Metro series is not without flaws, but ‘stands out’ for a reason. With the added graphical improvements, and an improved interface (imported from Last Light) this is a title that legitimately belongs on the new hardware, and on your games list. Provided you like tense gameplay where you’re moments away from one horrible death or another at any given time, that is…