Three years after it introduced the world to S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl, THQ will unleash another postapocalyptic action/role-playing game hybrid set and developed in the former Soviet Union. The company today announced that Metro 2033 will ship for the Xbox 360 and PC on March 16 in North America, where it is rated M for Mature. In Europe, where it has been rated 18 by PEGI, the game will launch March 19.
Based on Russian author Dmitry Glukhovsky's 2002 novel of the same name, Metro 2033 depicts a near-future Earth where human civilization was obliterated by an apocalyptic tragedy in 2013. With the planet's surface now an inhospitable wasteland, humanity's few survivors have taken shelter in Moscow's labyrinthine underground subway system.
As the title indicates, the game picks up 20 years after the global cataclysm, as players assume the role of the soldier Artyom, who has spent his entire life underground. Though THQ was light on gameplay details, the publisher did say that players will battle mutants and fellow survivors in hostile environments both above- and belowground. Ukrainian developer 4A Games has said that the game includes elements from both the first-person shooter and role-playing genres (a la Borderlands), but with a survival element akin to more horror-centric games.
For more on Metro 2033, check out GameSpot's recent hands-on preview.