Don't get my score fool you, its flawed masterpiece.

User Rating: 7.5 | Metro 2033 PC
Metro 2033 is a classic "linear" FPS game based on novel of same name from russian author Dmitry Glukhovsky. It was developed by authors who split during development of first Stalker game. It is not 100% certain if game use originally developed x-ray engine from stalker or if its adapted and heavy modified branch. But one thing is clear, technically it looks very similar to Stalker. Game support both Dx11 and Physx so both people with ATI or NVIDIA will enjoy its features.

Game differ from Stalker in a way it plays just like other shooters, you pass levels from beginning to end, get loading screen and continue. Its not open world and no side-quests. But not everyone like RPG or open-play style so am not complaining at all.

Moscow was nuked and people live in metro undergrounds, stations function like bases and rails are actually levels where you kill mutants etc. You also visit surface - which shows its engine strength at its best I must add. You will need gas mask and filters for surface and toxic areas. People divide into factions and as you travel between stations you encounter various kinds, from normal lawful people through bandits-like to even nazi(! LOL) etc. Then there are mutants that looks quite similar to those from Stalker, although on surface you will see also winged named "Demons".

These mutants are attacking people underground and you must do something about it so you start journey to another part of "city" through many stations to get help. This is all I tell you, its more than that and worth playing for. Many things happen on the way and in the end you feel you had one hell of journey, just like in good film. Ending is pretty good and satisfactory, unlike last Stalker for example. Although still not fully realized and many things unexplained which sucks. Its clear sequel is coming. Game have many elements that makes it feels similar to other games: Stalker, Cryostasis, even HalfLife a bit, you name it. But it never feel like ripoff, its good and unique on its own.

In fact, thanks to its settings and style its very unique(just like Stalker, HalfLife or Cryostasis). Atmosphere is very strong here. Because most of the game is underground, some people may not feel good but it add to it, you see other people surviving - creating "classes" like bosses and "police" to maintain order, weapon "markets", kitchens, private rooms, cattle etc. and it all feel like real. It also show these people as people, many of them with good friendly characters or common folks, not just some "red" enemies like most cheap hollywood films and "USA" games do. In contrast, this game don't mention even once USA as enemy, even when game really could as its clear who would want to nuke them in first place. Bad thing happened in the world, people have its own problems and tears and nobody point finger at "west" even once during my gameplay.

So thats premise, I only add that this game don't feel like console port even though its more linear shooter. Although yes game use checkpoint system and you can't save manually so maybe this one thing. There were many such shooters before on PC too, before consoles came to focus. Also, game feel mature, just like Stalker did. Am sure these are some very strong points for many of you. Oh and sure you can play offline ^_-.


So you wonder why such low score I guess. Well its not that low, if 8 means great and 7 good, 7.5 is very good. But there are flaws. This is 9+ game by its potential drowned by flaws, its not "boring 7" game just for sake of objectivity.

First, as you need mask outside in city, you need filters. If you run out of them, you have problem. You can find some on surface too. Depending on difficulty, its should be ok. I bought all I could in beginning and never ran out. But it gave me feel of "time limit", which is pity since surface levels are most beautiful in the game and I would like to enjoy them more that just quickly pass. If you get attacked while wearing mask, if enemy hits you in head few times chance is that mask break(!). Then you have problem and if you don't find some new one around you are dead. Its realistic, its mature, but it can be annoying. Again, how annoying game can be depends on your skill and game difficulty set. I didn't had so much problem with mask breaking but it did happened to me once or twice.

Currency is... weapon bullets. You can also use them to fire of course. There are 2 versions, pre-war made - good quality ones and "junk" ones. Those good are currency. Again, it goes with story and its natural for such setting but I didn't liked it so much. But good news is that you don't need to buy much in the game. I bought masks in beginning and only new weapons very late in game, you find all you need outside. Because you can pick weapons/bullets from fallen enemies(you don't fight only monsters). By the way this picking stuff from enemies is done great, you literally see enemies wearing magazines around bodies and you see how you take them out. This add to immersion and mature of game.

Hit detection doesn't feel right as well as damage feedback. If you played Stalker games, this is exactly same here. Sometimes monster stop when you shoot him but if he start his "animation" your bullet won't do anything to change his movement. People take feedback but it also don't feel right, sometimes do nothing or show no sign after of "being shoot", continuing as if nothing happened. But both monsters and people share one big problem, they take too much before they fall. You may often empty whole magazine on one enemy, sometimes even thats not enough. This take atmosphere and enjoyment out. Sure people wear protection and head shoot kill them quickly but I still feel its not right to empty so many bullets to other parts of body. Because this is much more linear FPS game, shooting mechanism is that more important ant it fails. Stalker at least is about something else not just shooting, its about exploring and more so it could be overlooked(but it did annoyed me in last one when I saw no change for the 3-rd time). Also, game support Dx11 and Physx and is very taxing on system and want to show so much, yet such basic problem they cannot solve. I would MUCH rather if graphics would be bad and weak but you would feel like shooting real bullets in real life, each with trajectory and weight, breaking stuff and even reflect from some objects - with correct sound following. Even Physx are just for effects here and games like Warmonger showed such potential. Even Red Faction:Guerrilla had great physics and used only Havoc.

I would welcome even more surface levels and with so many underground - looking similar, some people may not bear with it.

While ending is good and satisfactory, almost NOTHING is explained. For monsters, I can at least thing they mutated from radiation but there are certain "beings" and "ghosts" that spice story elements even more and you find nothing about them in whole game(and nazi's??). Am pretty sure there will be a sequel, or at least must have been planned but you know how things are - second time same, game may not be so special and interesting anymore. I personally think Stalker too went too far with sequels and even now still I don't get so many things(wish device). Also look at Bioshock 2. Am simply tired of the fact that every game nowadays must have sequel. It bring lot of good series to halt and instead of having good memories years later of certain game, it will exist also then in another number and then whole series will just feel like screwup. Well at least ending was better than I expected and worth going through.

I have latest drivers currently available but game notify me every time I start it that I need to upgrade drivers. I also had stability problem with Physx although it may be my computer. But I don't like when games need exact specific drivers/libraries to run correctly. Btw because I had latest drivers, I should have automatically latest Physx drivers(or so I believe). Maybe I didn't had correct Visual C++ libraries, that could be it. I didn't wanted to install specific ones given because I fear it could break my other "sensitive" applications I currently use. Otherwise I didn't had stoppers during gameplay.

AI sucks - period. Sometimes they tried few smart moves on me but even then they switched to "retard" mode and didn't finished what they wanted. One wanted to go at me from behind so he went behind crate on my right, then I waited what he will do and... nothing LOL. Another made circles in distance. Some may even turn back on you, others make unnatural and erratic moves. On my difficulty, they didn't noticed my flashlight although they did sounds. For more picky people, AI may be big minus here.

End boss was.. wasn't. - eh, don't know how to explain. There was "something" big like end boss but you DIDN'T fight it........................

Worst voice acting is during level-loading.


So, what now? I think game is worth. Its very unique, unlike anything you played probably. Problems aside, I feel it was worth. It is very story driven game and its doing great job keeping you hooked. Beginning was amazing, then for a short while it stalled maybe, but later got interesting again. There are many good moments(like with hooker LOL), interesting cutscenes, gameplay changes(you do many things here) etc. While levels are linear, they branch in pretty good way and don't feel so restricted.

I say: go for it!