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Review

Metro Redux Review

  • First Released
  • Reviewed:
  • PS4
  • XONE
  • PC

Let your light shine before men.

Some games are about people--their struggles, their hopes, their dreams, their powers. Other games are about systems and logic. Blocks fall from above and you maneuver them into place, you twist dials into the correct pattern, or you collect enough currency until you can afford a stronger helmet or a sharper sword. Then there are the games about place. The Chronicles of Riddick, for instance, is less about Richard Riddick and his throaty threats than it is about Butcher Bay, a stifling prison that serves as a parched planet's only bastion of intelligent life. Assassin's Creed features plentiful characters--heroes, lovers, and betrayers among them--but the cities of Damascus and Jerusalem, their temples and mosques, the way the golden spires reflect the sun, are the centerpieces of the historical journey.

And so it is with Metro Redux, a collection of two melancholy games, each of them crushed by the weight of a ruined Earth with little hope to tender. Both adventures allow you time to choke on their dusty, irradiated air, time in which you simply are, time that makes you wonder how the survivors of humankind's nuclear error find the will to carry on. In both Metro: Last Light and in the refashioned Metro 2033, there is more dread in the deafening silence than there is in the retort of a shotgun. In the metro tunnels beneath Moscow, you scavenge for ammo to use as currency as well as munitions, burn away cobwebs with your lighter, and search for gas masks that allow you to breathe the perilous air should you approach the surface. There are pockets of humanity within these depths, and while they provide you some companionship and even an occasional shimmer of joy, even outposts prove perilous. You might weather the factional turbulence that pits brother against brother, but the emotional fog of desperation still proves noxious.

It's possible you may have filled the role of series hero Artyom and trudged through this thick misery before. Returning to such a dismal place may not sound too appealing, but there's something to be learned about the resilience of humankind down there, where mutants and other grotesqueries lurk. Metro 2033 most benefits from this new iteration, practically feeling like a new game given the newly structured storytelling and a visual upgrade that raises it close to the bar Metro: Last Light later set. Given the recency of Last Light, your memories of 2033 may be colored by the more recent game, which featured far better lighting and a more sensible user interface, but a side-by-side comparison of the original and the remastered 2033 is striking.

Consider, for instance, the first moment you emerge into the Russian winter. The original game suggested the frigidity in part by way of crystalline fractals upon your gas mask; in the Redux version, a full snow is underway, and the sense is less of a brisk chill than it is of a piercing bite. When a massive door opens and an explorer returns from his excursion, you now see the passage behind him rather than a murky suggestion of it. Character models are brand-new, replacing the dead-eyed originals with faces and bodies that look somewhat more natural, if still a bit stiff. In some cases, I prefer the original vision to its replacement; I still find vanilla 2033's nosalises more terrifying than their newer models, and hunters that once donned alien-looking gas masks with night-vision goggles attached sometimes wear more mundane masks now. But once was a high-contrast haze now looks more natural, objects casting proper shadows and beams of light no longer washing away the finer details.

You might weather the factional turbulence that pits brother against brother, but the emotional fog of desperation still proves noxious.

You'd be harder pressed to find sweeping visual changes in Redux's version of Metro: Last Light; it is the standard to which 2033 has been raised. The more meaningful difference here is the ability to apply 2033's more stringent supplies of gas masks and ammunition, thus addressing a shift in difficulty that the original's most strident fans bemoaned. Conversely, should you prefer Last Light's original balancing, you can apply it to 2033. In either case, choosing similar levels of challenge between the two games helps smooth their differences, making playing both games in succession a heartrending and rewarding experience that feels less like playing a game and its sequel, and more like playing a single game that has been split into two units.

The differences between Last Light's and 2033's innate levels of difficulty aren't so vast that they evoke different emotions. Instead, the difference is in degrees--degrees of tension, degrees of fright. However you choose to play, the tunnels and the surface above are both fraught with dangers, dangers that feel all the more harrowing when you confront them after long stretches of only seeing signs of them and being warned of their presence. In both games, I remember the first time a winged demon soared in from above, grabbed me with its fearsome talons, and dropped me to the ground. It was terrifying, this sudden loss of control, the sight of the scorched earth beneath me, the demon drilling its screeches into my skull. I knew these moments were coming but I was still left breathless each time. And when the creature dropped me into the poisonous water below, I grimaced as I caught a glimpse of another victim's visage before succumbing to death.

However you choose to play, the tunnels and the surface above are both fraught with dangers, dangers that feel all the more harrowing when you confront them after long stretches of only seeing signs of them and being warned of their presence.

Clearly, Metro Redux owes as much of a debt to survival horror games as it does to shooters, no surprise given how so many members of its development team lent their talents to the S.T.A.L.K.E.R. series. You spend as much time if not more soaking in the darkness as you do firing a weapon, and even when violence is imminent, you can approach many situations as a stealthy hunter. Metro: Last Light's levels are more carefully structured than 2033's, giving AI-controlled Nazis and Communists room to spread out and flank, whereas a few too many of Metro 2033's levels squeeze the action into chokepoints that can give the game a smidgen of a shooting gallery feel. I enjoy the silent lurking, sneaking from one light source to another to plunge the area into darkness and then knifing soldiers one by one. When guns begin to blaze, it is the Valve rifle with reflex sight that I am most drawn to when at medium range, thanks to its powerful blast and the way headshots land with such drama. Up close, each shotgun proves a vital tool of brutality. The weapons and enhancements introduced in Metro: Last Light are available in Redux's version of 2033, again making this package feel like a single cohesive experience.

Whether or not the AI is aware of your presence, it doesn't go out of its way to prove itself resourceful. Once on alert, enemies are aware of potential danger but not of each other, allowing you to pick one off after another as they turn the same corner, or simply bump into each other and walk in place should their respective destinations force them cross paths. Off the battlefield, your fellow humans prove somewhat more capable as conversationalists; they're weary and sometimes wise. I cannot speak to the authenticity of the Russian accents, but I am struck by how so many characters find ways to laugh and sneer at destiny. You are often joined by others, on the battlefield and off, each of them speaking with both regret and a kind of morbid cheer, as if they had just recently drowned their sorrows in a liter of vodka.

Other attempts to bring humanity to the shadows are ultimately more laughable than they are compelling. In Metro 2033, you encounter a little boy who, like so many children in video games, neither looks nor sounds like a boy but instead like a miniature adult doing his best impersonation of a kindergartner. The following sequence, in which your movement is hindered because you must carry the child, would have been tense were it not for the the unrealistic way your ward speaks, acts, and moves. Metro: Last Light, in the meanwhile, raises its supernatural stakes during the final third with a gameplay hook that isn't to everyone's taste. I am still moved by the events that follow, and by the way Artyom acts as a conduit between forces that don't understand each other. Yet I can't help but recognize that many of the game's most poignant moments come by way of the metro's residents and their stubborn refusal to succumb to travesty. The later moments feel more forced and manipulative, less about the needs of those that suffer and more about the needs of the writers to lead the game to its natural and heavily foreshadowed conclusion.

Then again, Metro Redux isn't really about any one of these people--not Artyom, not any so-called Dark One, not Bourbon, and certainly not any of the game's few women, most of whom exist as entertainment for men, whether as can-can dancers or as naked silhouettes. No, this compilation is about a place. It's a place where you can hear the laughter of children long since dead, and the screams of aircraft passengers moments before their incineration. It's a place where you must fear both the hideous mutants that prowl as well as humankind--and yet it's only with humankind that you might find safety. It's that ebb and flow, that movement in and out of danger, and the panic you feel when danger finds you even when you think you should be most at peace, that makes Metro Redux such an excellent tour through the best and worst of a society in ruins.

The Good
Adjustments to visuals and interface make the included games seem like two halves of one whole.
Fantastic atmosphere soothes the dread with droplets of violence and hope
Great pacing allows the chill to seep into you before action erupts
Weapons make you feel just potent enough to have a chance in this dismal world
The Bad
The AI can be heavily exploited
Some silly and distracting narrative events
8
Great
About GameSpot's Reviews

About the Author

Kevin VanOrd's favorite game of 2013 was Metro: Last Light, and returning to both it and Metro 2033 was a pleasure. He revisited the original versions of the games in addition to playing these new iterations, spending about 15 hours in total to complete Redux.

Discussion

307 comments
ignade
ignade

I'm sorry, but the terrible voice acting and the cliched script really killed this for me.

ahmadgabriel
ahmadgabriel

Best shooter I have played, ever. Deserves a 10/10. This is what Destiny wished it was. It is amazingly fun and great unmatched story telling. I bought the first one and then had to buy the second. Everytime a character died I felt the sorrow that only comes with playing this great gem of a title.

simon1812
simon1812

so between this and Wolfestein:NWO? which one has more entertaining value?

Virtual_Erkan
Virtual_Erkan

Last Light was improved a lot over Metro 2033. I got both of the games a year later after their release dates. With the new overhauled editions I want to play Metro 2033 again with the fantastic graphics. 4A Games are working over their limits. They deserve a better publisher.

pan_dudi
pan_dudi

I tried to play this for the last few days and now I have to quit. It's completely unplayable. There's no fun in constant walking into to AI issues, monsters t-posing, monsters walking into walls, allies ignoring enemies etc.! It has great potential, true, but this, buggy version deserves a 4 at most, not 8. Did you even play this game?

dmblum1799
dmblum1799

I don't get how anyone could think the original character models looked better - the difference is huge and the new version actually has what looks like human beings, not mannequiins.

MelodicMizery
MelodicMizery

the original video above looks better then the new version. ive never played 2033 but i platted last light. i dunno about this one. can someone tell me if the ps4 version is worth getting if theyve played the ps3 versions. the graphics seem worse lol

MelodicMizery
MelodicMizery

i gotta say, looking at the comparison video the original game looked better on most shots. ive never played 2033 but i platinumed last light. last light was a itneresting game to play but after platinuming it its hard to do it all over. these remakes just dont look like there worth anymore then the originals. 25 a piece aint that bad though. can someone tell me if its worth getting the ps4 version?

Gencic
Gencic

I just want to add to what chibistevo32 said.

This overrated game with non-existent voice acting, incoherent babble for a storyline ad scripted enemies is NOT an 8. It's a 1 at best!

chibistevo32
chibistevo32

Sorry, but I played the first for about 5 hours, and I can't go any further. Has to be the most boring, unsatisfying FPS I've ever come across. And I'm not in it for the CoD style shoot em up. I wanted this to cater for the survivalist in me. All I see is tedious walking sections, linear style progression with checkpoint scripted firefights that are usually passed because the AI decided to be stupid for one round.


Whatever story is being told is woven annoyingly inbetween sections when SOMETHING (gameplay wise) actually happens. I can hardly believe the rate at which chapters pass, when absolutely nothing of substance has come and gone.

Kickable
Kickable

"The AI can be heavily exploited" was that the case in the original version too?

Dark_Rage
Dark_Rage

Cool, Mr. VanOrd, always with the most detailed reviews. Thanks.

mattress805
mattress805

I just picked this up for the PlayStation for an hour ago I'm ready for some 1080 P goodness two of the most immersive single player campaigns of all time IMO he's game in a dark room with Dolby headphones on for maximum immersion should be played at night

delakpanlaa
delakpanlaa

I have a question: Should I get this for PS4 or 2033 and Last Light for PS3? (I don't have a gaming PC). There seems to be many changes in Redux so I am wondering wich is better. Thanks!

uninspiredcup
uninspiredcup

I tried to get into this but I found far too many scripted "look at this moments". It started to grate pretty fast. 

And it's nothing to do with a short attention span, I recently refinished Planescape Torement which has about 800,000 words to read. That was engaging. within 40 minutes of Metro Last light, with the game, not letting me play the game, I was really quite annoyed lol.



PlatinumPaladin
PlatinumPaladin

"...soothes the dread with droplets of violence...."

Is it bad that that actually makes sense?

I never had a chance to play 2033, and this unifying of the two games makes me glad that I didn't bother with Last Light. Can't say I've ever played a game set in this kind of environment. I'm quite looking forward to getting it.

Zenwork21
Zenwork21

Plaid the originals, love them, So I am going to play Redux , looks great

funkyzoom
funkyzoom

I'll probably buy only Metro 2033, because last Light is too recent and not really worth buying again with very few changes (I already own both).  

rogerthat1945
rogerthat1945

Really looking forward to my Steam Download of this amazing atmospheric game set.

wolv25
wolv25

Great review. Metro lokks like very good game.

IntegralReaper
IntegralReaper

Thank you for the review Kevin, I really appreciated it. You've put a lot of work into it and I really enjoyed reading it and watching it. Thank you so much.

ninboxstation
ninboxstation

Metro Last Light, Shooter of the year 2013 (especially when palyed on hard for the frist playthough, veterans wont have too much trouble on hard..... but Metro 2033 might be a tad to hard when played on hard, even for veterans)

VintAge68
VintAge68

overrated


Also: they erased the comments to the first redux video review

maximo
maximo

the original game was clunky and linear


bollocks

futureops
futureops

Reviewed before release? PIRATE!

Rushaoz
Rushaoz

For anyone wondering about how this will look on console visually,..This is PC footage. My PC is much faster than the PS4 and the original Metro 2033 still makes my PC cry at max settings. There's no way these consoles can achieve that level of detail. Since it's running at 1080p/60 FPS, I'm willing to bet alot of detail was dropped and the PS4 visuals will be equal to a mix of medium/high settings on PC. 

DB2538
DB2538

@pan_dudi I have played both the original and the Redux version without being disrupted by any of these issues you mentioned!

tacohashi
tacohashi

@chibistevo32 Metro 2033 is one of my favorite games, but if you played it for 5 hours you gave it a fair shot.  It's a shame you didn't enjoy it.

Gencic
Gencic

@chibistevo32  Amen brother!

This is the worst game I've ever tried to play. Bought the bundle yesterday. Uninstalled this garbage today!

NTM23
NTM23

@delakpanlaa 


Metro 2033 isn't on the PS3, so if you want to play it, you'd have to get it on 360 (if you have that) or on the PS4 or One in Redux. There are only a few, though somewhat important changes to Redux, and Redux is perfectly fine. It has pluses and minuses compared to the original. I just got done with 2033 and will soon jump into Last Light, but I think Last Light is pretty much the same game as it was before (but way better visuals than the last-gen version).

itay169
itay169

@funkyzoom I don't think you can buy only one, the two games come with the redux package

ninboxstation
ninboxstation

edit: seems as if Metro 2033 has been toned down and not so challenging as the orginal anymore resp. should be played on hard too, like MLL...

Kevin-V
Kevin-V moderator staff

@VintAge68 I don't think we have a way currently of replacing a video and retaining the comments by nature of our new CMS. (We used to be able to except in specific circumstances.) I'll put in a bug request to see if we can devise a way to slide in new videos on top of existing video stories rather than have to create a new video story to attach. 

parabol69
parabol69

@Rushaoz No one gives a flying f about your PC.  Don't you have petition or something to go beg on?

raddys2001
raddys2001

@Rushaoz

Well thats kind of been the issues with consoles for a long time.

jhodgesphotouk
jhodgesphotouk

@Rushaoz I always kind of figured it was more a case of Metro 2033 just being poorly optimised and therefore didn't run very well on the highest settings even for top end computers. Last Light I found ran much smoother and generally was handled better on higher settings.

chippiez
chippiez

@Rushaoz While a PC with dual Titans will smoke a PS4, a PS4/Xbox One will smoke a 1000$ PC, if optimized well, because the O/S doesn't have to spend time scheduling and allocating resources to thousands of other threads from everything ranging from AV to little Nividia service/tool to ASUS utilities to Office helper to Ipod helper and so on and so forth.  A game console has a set amount of resources to work with, but when you know EXACTLY what you're working with, you can aim for 100% utilization instead of spikey and erratic utilization as you get in a PC.  That said, I love my PC for simulators and MMOs, but sports, action adventure, racing, etc.  all do better on console. 

Dark_Rage
Dark_Rage

@Rushaoz Dude i'm having a fast PC as well and a PS4. The thing i noticed is that PS4 is a very powerful console, obviously not as powerful as a PC. The thing with FPS and everything is that PCs have bottlenecking issues when it comes to the combination of the CPU and the GPU. Whereas games on consoles are optimized to a standard FPS, but it's true, visual fidelity rests with PC.

pan_dudi
pan_dudi

@DB2538 Lucky you. For example - when you reach the surface for the first time (excluding prologue) and there's one of demons (bitches) flying, I walked on him while he was t- posing and didn't react to my presence or even shooting him. Then when I reached the gates of ... i don't remember - where you and 3 allies are and they are supposed to provide cover fire in case things go bad. Sometimes none of them shoots, sometimes one of them. And that was just too much for me to take. Too bad cause I really liked this game and I hope they are working on patches.

funkyzoom
funkyzoom

@itay169 

No, the PC versions are available individually for US $25 each. 

VintAge68
VintAge68

@Kevin-V @VintAge68 Thank you, but it's not even a *new* video review: it is still tagged "PlayStation 4" while visibly showing the PC version's E, R, Q, Space keys...

The graphics comparison is impressive, though, and I can now see why I (still) prefer the original version on X360...

HipHopBeats
HipHopBeats

@Kevin-V @VintAge68 Also put in a bug report for Gamespot video players. I get constant video lag on my end and always have to resort to the youtube version. This is the only site in which I have this problem using Firefox,

Rushaoz
Rushaoz

@chippiez @Rushaoz Ehhh I can't agree with that. Ever since I got back into PC gaming 4 years ago I've been playing all multiplatforms on PC and the experience to me has been far better than console. I don't have a $1000 PC lol All I have is an I5 2500k/GTX 660 rig. I own consoles now purely for exclusives and playing certain games with friends. 

Rushaoz
Rushaoz

@Dark_Rage @Rushaoz I also have both. I feel like it's a powerful piece of hardware only when it comes to exclusives. Multiplatform titles always look much worse. Battlefield 4 is a great example. I play it alot with friends and I also have it on PC where I can play it on ultra. Not only does the PS4 versions framerate tank, but the visual quality is nowhere near as good. If I had to describe it I'd the PS4 version of BF4 runs at medium settings. 

jhodgesphotouk
jhodgesphotouk

@Rushaoz @jhodgesphotouk That's very true. I'm excited for it to run much better but not madly keen on these shiny clean graphics, sucks out the atmosphere I think. 

skiggy34
skiggy34

@dani3po @chippiez @Rushaoz Why does everyone compare $500-$600 pcs to PS4 and Xbox One??  That $500-$600 pc you are talking about is said to be "outdated hardware" so why would anyone spend $600 on a pc that already if not almost outdated?  If I'm gonna get into pc gaming, Im going to spend at least $1000 otherwise Im perfectly content with my ps4 or X1.  I mean why buy a pc, miss out on exclusives just to be a little better than ps4/xb1?  

Rushaoz
Rushaoz

@chippiez Hey man there's no room for logic in this place what's wrong with you??! :D but yea you're right. I spent a little over $1200 now that I add it all up. To be fair though I could have skipped out on all the luxuries and built a minimal system with no SSD, high end mobo or fancy fractal Design case and spent about 6-7 hundred. 

Why would I want to skip out on awesomeness though? :)

Duttyhandz
Duttyhandz

@Rushaoz @chippiez  Well, 225$ for your cpu, 250$ for your GPU, you're almost at

500$ already. Add RAM, motherboard, PSU, case, hard drive and you must not be far from a 1000$ here. It goes up fast...

Rushaoz
Rushaoz

@kjb3014 @Dark_Rage @Rushaoz Keep taking those bath salts, bro. It's all up to preference in the end but no console will ever be better than a PC. Which is coincidentally what the PS4 and Xbox One are trying to be. GTFO.

Dark_Rage
Dark_Rage

@Rushaoz @Dark_Rage Interesting point, maybe they've more freedom with exclusives and less with cross platform games. I guess it's best to use PS4 for less graphically intensive games, i would most probably always choose to play a graphically demanding game on PC.

rolla020980
rolla020980

@Rushaoz @dani3po @chippiez 

Let's say you go low end board ($50) entry CPU (AMD or Intel) ($60), 8GB RAM ($80),  Budget power supply ($30), Budget Chassis ($30), Small hard drive ($50), OEM License for Windows ($100), and an R9-270 ($180), and a cheap CPU Cooler ($5). I am assuming you are wired directly to a router, so no wifi card and everything is DL, so no DVD either. So yes, around $600 is perfectly doable. 

Rushaoz
Rushaoz

@Duttyhandz @Rushaoz @chippiez HEY MAN there's no room for logic in this place what's wrong with you??! :D but yea you're right. I spent a little over $1200 to be fair now that I add it all up. But if you want to budget and just go after power and nevermind the luxuries you can spend alot less. 

I could have opted out of the SSD, Coolermaster Evo cooler, Fractal Design case and a few other components and spent 7 or 8 hundred instead.

Rushaoz
Rushaoz

@Dark_Rage @Rushaoz I think it's the whole x86 architecture deal. These consoles are now literally PCs. There isn't much to figure out and optimize hardware wise like there was with the PS3's cell processor. So when multiplatform games are released they use the consoles raw power instead of having a game specifically coded for it. I mean look at Uncharted 4. That game looks astonishing. 

Rushaoz
Rushaoz

@rolla020980 @Rushaoz @dani3po @chippiez Basically. that's what I love about PC gaming. You can go all out or do the minimum and you'll still end up a happy camper. I think the rule of thumb is to pick a target resolution you want to game at. I wanted top game at 1080p so a $200-$300 GPU is the sweet spot. 

skiggy34
skiggy34

@Rushaoz @Dark_Rage Are you talking about the cinematic scene they showed at E3 of Uncharted 4?  You do realize thats not what the actual gameplay looks like right? 

Metro Redux More Info

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  • First Released
    • PC
    • PlayStation 4
    • Xbox One
    Metro Redux is the ultimate double game collection, including the definitive versions of both Metro 2033 and Metro: Last Light, each rebuilt in the latest and greatest iteration of the 4A Engine for next-gen consoles.
    8.2
    Average User RatingOut of 48 User Ratings
    Please Sign In to rate Metro Redux
    Developed by:
    4A Games
    Published by:
    Deep Silver, Spike Chunsoft
    Genres:
    Shooter, 3D, Action, Team-Based, First-Person
    Content is generally suitable for ages 17 and up. May contain intense violence, blood and gore, sexual content and/or strong language.
    Mature
    All Platforms
    Blood, Intense Violence, Nudity, Sexual Content, Strong Language, Use of Drugs and Alcohol