TECH

Metro Redux Review: It's Time You Got Tunnel Vision

11/09/2014 15:05 BST | Updated 11/09/2014 15:59 BST

Metro Redux is available for Xbox One and PlayStation 4.

Key Features:

  • Includes both Metro: 2033 and Metro: Last Light
  • Both games feature improved visuals
  • Improved audio recordings
  • Exclusive Xbox One and PS4 controller functions

metro redux

Verdict:

4starstechdarkblue

Metro Redux is not a purchase you should approach lightly. It's a giant charging rhino of a game that'll throw you around and trample anyone that has spent too long playing Call of Duty.

Technically, Redux is two games, Metro: 2033 and Metro: Last Light, however it's a credit to 4A Games that despite the fact they were released three years apart, they now both dazzle on Xbox One and PS4.

Set after a horrific nuclear war has laid waste to most of Europe, the Metro games take place in the Moscow underground network where most of the city's population have fled to hide the deadly nuclear winter that's raging above.

Metro Redux then is not an experience that involves seeing the sun very much, aside from through cracked windows, broken buildings and the occasional terrifying moment when you venture up to the surface.

Despite this 'doom and gloom' premise the games are fascinating to play. No matter how run down or destroyed the buildings or landscapes become 4A Games have instilled such a feeling of life into them that you can't help but return.

Which is a good thing, because the rest of the games are not out to take you for a picnic. Metro: 2033 is a difficult game, especially on higher settings. Enemies are relentless and tough to beat, whether it's the mutant creatures which stalk the tunnels or the Nazis and Communists who inhabit their own share of the Metro's labyrinth.

metro redux

Ammo is scarce -- as are weapons -- and there's the constant feeling that despite it having worked so far, your gun is about to fall into a thousand rusty pieces.

This is not a game that's built on making you look pretty. You can customise your weapons certainly, but not in the way that Bioshock managed to turn a shotgun into a steampunk fanatic's wet dream. Instead this all about efficiency. Upgrades and weapons are cripplingly expensive so if you're going to upgrade a weapon you need to think about how useful it'll be and ultimately whether you'll still have that weapon in a few hours time.

This combined with the interface makes the games feel truly immersive. Bring up the objectives menu and Artyom will hold a clipboard with them written on a piece of paper. Need some light? In his left hand there's a bullet that's actually a lighter.

This hunt for realism continues with the rest of the screen. Head outside and your gas mask will start to freeze prompting you to tap 'RB' in order to clear it, Artyom's hand hastily wiping the snow from his face.

metro redux

Playing the game feels like a hybrid between a conventional first person shooter and a story-driven third-person game like The Last of Us. Certainly not in the way that there are beautiful guitars playing over your evening apocalyptic strolls, more in the way that everything is driven by a good old-fashioned linear plot.

The game's story drives you through each of Metro's darkly lit and terrifying arenas. There's no doubt that you'd still want to explore the Metro but the developer's added sense of urgency keeps the whole thing moving.

A word on gameplay. Metro: 2033 may have been redesigned visually but it's important to note that we found the game a little hard to get used to on console. The controls are not particularly smooth and we ended up having to turn up the sensitivity massively to get the crosshairs to move anywhere near quickly enough.

Both games however, look stunning. 2033 in particular has been pulled apart and practically rebuilt from the ground up and the results are impressive.

metro last light

Last Light deserves slightly less applause because, to be honest, it looked amazing to begin with. Some slight tweaks here and there as well as a balancing of the two game's difficulty levels are all that are really noticeable.

Redux will not offer you a Hollywood experience like Call of Duty, it's bleak, tough and at times, staggeringly beautiful. The fact that 4A Games were able to replicate the atmosphere of the first game twice is simply a bonus that you can now enjoy in glorious Full-HD.