Quiet Times

For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven. — Ecclesiastes 3:1

This happens from time to time. I haven’t been playing too much in the way of MMORPGs lately. I seem to have periods when I pull back from certain games, and do other things. Sometimes not even related to gaming. At the moment my life seems to entail much work as I finally start to pick up new clients. This is one of those times.

Rift has fallen on the backburner, and I’m considering cancelling my sub. This isn’t because I’m unhappy with the game. I reckon Rift is one of the better MMORPGs to have been released for some time. Even so I haven’t dropped the genre entirely. I am getting my very occassional fix from Age of Conan.

But single player is the winner at the moment. I picked up Deus Ex Human Revolution at the store last Sunday, deciding on a physical product rather than a digital download. I’m having a blast, and very consciously keeping myself from playing when I should be working!

The game does have a couple of frustrations though, like not being able to complete a mission in the Hive because I didn’t choose enough hacking upgrades and didn’t have the required software. The first boss was also very frustrating, I couldn’t kill him directly so I hid behind a box like a frightened mouse and let him spam grenades on himself. Once he’d dropped three on himself twice in a row I chucked my last frag at him and he went down.

This isn’t a review, but this is I feel a poor design choice. Players shouldn’t be able to fail or not complete missions or quests because they made choices the game allowed, in a game where the player is encouraged to not make standard choices. If I am allowed to choose combat upgrades over hacking, then hacking upgrades shouldn’t be mandatory to complete quests.

Other than that, Deus Ex HR feels very much like the first two games. As someone who is into technology, and who enjoys Posthuman SciFi, I love the story. Because DEHR is a prequell set at the dawn of the cybernetic age, it has the luxury of exploring the bioethical concerns that don’t exist in the first two games where augmentations are taken for granted. I recognise some of the debate that has taken place in recent years regarding Transhumanism and Bioethics.

I’m hoping Deus Ex will have a rewarding conclusion.

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