Metro: Last Light released today

Discussion in 'NMA News and Information' started by WorstUsernameEver, May 17, 2013.

  1. WorstUsernameEver

    WorstUsernameEver But best title ever!

    May 28, 2010
    As you might know, 4A's post-apocalyptic shooter sequel Metro: Last Light, has been released today. You can find it on Steam, GamersGate, GreenManGaming or retail for $49.99/€49.99 tho' it should be noted that the game is still a Steamworks title so, no matter where you get it, you'll have to use Steam to play it.

    Reviews, for what it's worth, are generally good if not enthusiastic or on par with the biggest, most critically acclaimed titles, with an 82 metascore on PC, an 80 on Xbox 360 and an 82 on PS3.

    According to ex-THQ president Jason Rubin (who joined the company as a last ditch attempt to save it but didn't manage to turn the tide fast enough), 4A had to work in pretty terrible conditions:<blockquote>When 4A needed another dev kit, or high-end PC, or whatever, someone from 4A had to fly to the States and sneak it back to the Ukraine in a backpack lest it be "seized" at the border by thieving customs officials. After visiting the team I wanted to buy them Aeron office chairs, considered a fundamental human right in the west. There were no outlets in the Ukraine, and our only option was to pack a truck in Poland and try to find an "expediter" to help bribe its way down to Kiev. We gave up not because this tripled the cost, but because we realized that the wider Aeron chairs would require spreading out people and computers, which would lead to extra desks, and that ultimately would have required bigger offices. Yes, really.

    I truly enjoyed Far Cry 3, which deserved its great reviews. But how many times did Ubisoft Montreal lose power for hours or days during development? Power outages are the norm for 4A. All developers have deadlines, but I know of few that had to bring in construction generators to be able to work the weekend before final submission because an extra day meant missing shelf dates by weeks. Montreal is cold, but when it gets cold in Kiev it's different. That's because the government provides all of the heating through a central coal burning facility that pipes hot water to homes and offices. Unfortunately, it breaks down reliably a few times a year for a week at a time. Then 4A works in their parkas and struggles to keep their fingers warm in temperatures well below freezing. That is unless it snows and they get stuck home for a few days at a time because snow clearing isn't up to Western standards.

    The only thing for which 4A is getting more credit than I think they deserve is the creativity behind the ever frightening, dark, post apocalyptic environment of the game. I've been in Kiev to visit the team, so I know they just stepped outside for reference. </blockquote>There's also a comment from the game's creative director in the article's comments section, which I'm going to quote:<blockquote>Hello everyone,

    We've worked with THQ for 10 years (as we are the guys who made Stalker, too), and Jason is the only THQ President who visited us in Ukraine. And he did this on his second week in THQ. Keep in mind that he only had few months to somehow fix the situation. Alas, that didn't work out.

    It is a fact that our work conditions are worse than those of other developers outside Ukraine. I don't think anyone can doubt that - yes, it's true that American and most of European developers operate in a country far more comfortable than Ukraine. And yes, the publishers pay them more. This is clear: the more "reasonable" the country the less the rrisks. And we don't want to be all dramatic about that - after all, better conditions are earned, and we strive to do this as soon as possible :)...

    And we are thankful to Jason for his article.

    Jason, please don't blame Deep Silver for not having our logo on the game site... just like us, they ended up in a harsh situation and had to do a lot of things in two months, which was definitely a very hard task. I don't blame them for letting the logo thing slip. They are trying hard.

    After all, it's our game that matters and not our logo.

    Also. We did want to make a multiplayer. Though if it was excluded from the start, a lot of precious time wouldn't be wasted and we'd make an even better single.

    What else& We deserve the ratings we get. After all, the final consumer doesn't care about our conditions. And this is RIGHT. We need no indulgence.

    PROF and all Ukrainian bobsled team:)</blockquote>Finally, for those of you who have a beefy PC or have to choose between the 2 console versions, Eurogamer has one of their Digital Foundry face-offs. I'm not going to take a quote as the newspost is already long as it is, but in layman's terms the game looks stunning on PC and not half-bad on consoles (who both run 30 fps with dips during chaotic scenes, with a small lead on PS3).

    Edit: As dONALD42 reminds us, it should be noted that Ranger Mode isn't available in the game vanilla, but only as DLC (which was included with some pre-orders). Some people consider it the right way to play the game so, yeah, it's very unfortunate that Deep Silver decided to go this way.
  2. Sub-Human

    Sub-Human -

    May 31, 2011
    Oh, those custom officials. Annoying as hell.
  3. dONALD42

    dONALD42 First time out of the vault

    Jan 9, 2013
    The "publisher punishing the not pre-ordering people with making them pay for a mode that supposed to be in the game" part is missing.
  4. Bewitched

    Bewitched aka Vault_13

    Jun 13, 2006
    Are we living in the same Kiev?
  5. Ares

    Ares First time out of the vault

    Dec 2, 2011
    Well I see Ukraine still lives up to its names direct translation "borderland". Seriously though I am really looking forward to the new Metro title. 2033 IMO is a good example of a railshooter done right. Oh and that atmosphere... there is something in the post-soviet setting that really resonates well with a dystopian/post-apocalypse theme. STALKER is another good example of that.
  6. Crni Vuk

    Crni Vuk M4A3 Oldfag oTO Orderite

    Nov 25, 2008
    yes, it was an awesome shooter, for some reason Metro was NEVER scary for me. Still, pretty awesome, but not scary. Not even slightly. No clue why. Maybe because there was so much shooting.

    The other part I really hated was this:

    Human. Hit to the head. Dead.

    Monsters. 12 Shootgun blasts DIRECTLY between its eyes. You are dead.

    A few monsters are nothing more but a sponge full of health. Thats rather anticlimatic in my eyes.

    But it is still a great game and I am looking forward to the new Metro game.
  7. Ares

    Ares First time out of the vault

    Dec 2, 2011
    Hmm dont remember the enemies being too bullet spongy. Although I do remember a annoying bug that reset all my filters at the start of a new level. Never got past the library level on ranger difficulty because I suffocated before I got a new filter.

    But yet again that atmosphere. Especially the section with the shadow specters. It was not scary for me either. I too think that giving the player weapons diminishes the fear factor significantly- something that for example Amnesia understood very well. Still horror was probably not the main focus of the game but rather a tool to enhance the atmosphere.
  8. Tagaziel

    Tagaziel Panzerkatze Staff Member Admin Orderite

    Dec 10, 2003
    You also had weapons while infiltrating the Cradle in Deadly Shadows. It's all in the execution.
  9. Crni Vuk

    Crni Vuk M4A3 Oldfag oTO Orderite

    Nov 25, 2008
    and it still didn't felt scary. There was not even one moment where I could say that it was even remotely scary.

    Though, that is not what I love about the game anyway. Its the post apocalyptic atmosphere. I think they nailed that pretty well, creating a believable world and structure, even if its just a rather simple shooter. But it was still done very well.

    The Problem, in my eyes, why Metro isn't scary, is because the world is too populated. You interact a lot with NPCs and you see civilians. You don't spend enough time alone in the metro or outside. Many of the missions have people that follow or guide you. This creates a very dense feeling and gives you really somewhat a realistic feeling, because honestly. Who would go out alone in such a world? I know I wouldn't. But this makes the game less scary in many situations. A good example would be Doom as far as shooters goes, which I think was a bit more frightening, because you spend a large part of the game alone. But its not only that you are alone, you know that the whole place, the whole planet has no more human life, you're basically the only person around. Same for FEAR. Almost no NPC interaction.
  10. Alphadrop

    Alphadrop A right proper chap.

    Aug 21, 2008
    Found the ghost bits a tad scary, well more unsettling and eery than scary but that section had a great feel to it. Shame it felt so compartmentalised with hardly any other ghosts in the game.

    Would of picked this up but the 35 quid price tag is a tad harsh.
  11. Paul_cz

    Paul_cz Mildly Dipped

    Jun 11, 2008
    I loved the first Metro, I wanted to buy Last Light when it hits 35 dollars, but after reading Rubin's article I went and preordered it on GMG for 40 bucks (used a voucher I found online for 10 bucks off). Do not regret it at all, fantastic shooter, impeccable atmosphere.
    I really wish they would get better working conditions, larger budget, and mandate to create third Metro as an open world fps/rpg hybrid.
  12. Ares

    Ares First time out of the vault

    Dec 2, 2011
    True but if I remember correctly you could kill the patients with flashes in the Cradle. Other weapons disabled them temporarily (as long as you didn't get too close to the "corpses"). Another example would be the Silent hill series where you are also carrying a arsenal around, although you are significantly clunky at using them- deliberately so. But as I said I am not arguing about the importance of execution but rather remarking that giving the player means to kill the monsters freely in a horror setting has a significant effect on the dread factor. For good or bad? Well that yet again is subjective but could easily have a negative impact if not properly balanced out.

    So in conclusion I think that horror is a very subtle art that is easy to brake. And as I said before IMO the horror elements in Metro are a tool to enchance the atmosphere not a end goal in itself.
  13. Tagaziel

    Tagaziel Panzerkatze Staff Member Admin Orderite

    Dec 10, 2003
    If you are gamey, then sure, you can get them out. Problems start when you get immersed in the game to the point you are literally terrified to proceed. Me and my brother had to break the Cradle into two stages, a day's apart. Even though I was just sitting next to him, the terror was unbearable.

    (Cue tough guys proclaiming "IT'S NOT THAT SCARY, YOU WIMP")
  14. Eternal

    Eternal Where'd That 6th Toe Come From?

    Nov 4, 2008
    only time I ever have been actually scared playing a game was when I was playing Doom 3 for the first time when it was brand new and I hadn't slept for over 35hours due to a bout of insomnia so I decided to play D3 after trying for 4hours to fall asleep.

    Jump scares like what doom 3 is so fond of work really well when your brain is all befuddled from lack of sleep.

    Also I still distinctly remember a part of the game where I followed bloody footprints as they appeared and then a women's voice starts ranting about 'my baby' then everything flashes white and the lights are on and there is nothing wrong. One of the more memorable moments of that game IMO, cliche now that I think about it, but well done enough to be memorable.

    Also those guys at 4A got a great attitude.


    Are admirable.
  15. Tagaziel

    Tagaziel Panzerkatze Staff Member Admin Orderite

    Dec 10, 2003
    As far as horror games go, I really liked Cryostasis. It had exactly two (2) monster closets in the game, which worked really well specifically because the developers limited it to two instances.
  16. Lexx

    Lexx Testament to the ghoul lifespan
    Moderator Modder

    Apr 24, 2005
    It took me a long time to play through that cryp location in Return to Castle Wolfenstein.

    Funny how games can do that to you, even though you know that if something bad happens, you could simply reload and try again.
  17. Ares

    Ares First time out of the vault

    Dec 2, 2011
    So this is what it is all about eh? :lol: No dont get me wrong, I love the sense of dread and adrenaline that starts flowing when I am immersed and facing unknown hostiles in a horror setting. I just am wondering about the actual reasons why I feel threatened in the first place and how they relate to the actual gameplay. For example here is a list of horror games that really have gotten under my skin:

    Silent Hill 1-3. Why? You do have a arsenal but are significantly clunky at using them. Deliberately so because after all, you play as the following characters in order: a everyday guy, a forever alone and a teenage schoolgirl. Can't expect them to be walking ex-SEAL's. Oh and the ammo is also pretty scarce, forcing you into melee half of the time.

    Cry of Fear: ammo is somewhat scarce and a large chunk of the monsters are extremly fast and deadly, tending to close the distance instantly if swarming.

    Thief series supernatural level (cathedral, Cradle etc): since the gameplay is actually based around stealth, fighting is a mere secondary option rather than the way to go. Also Garrett is not a swashbuckler so dont expect to be able to handle groups of enemies.

    Amnesia, Penumbra: Black Plague: you dont carry any weapons so hiding is your only real option.

    Fatal Frame series: your only weapon is a camera, also the "ammo" (film) is rather limited and it takes several shots to handle a single target. Not to mention yet again clunky controls.

    As before, what do most of these have in common in terms of gameplay? The option to kill monsters relatively freely is balanced out with noticeable constraints: mostly scarce ammo and deliberately clunky combat which usually forces you to either face one enemy at the time and avoid groups. Couple this with other elements such as disturbing monsters, appropriate audio, dread installing settings and some specific gameplay elements (amnesias/penumbras no weapons, fatal frames let-the-ghosts-very-close to inflict serious damage, general trend of limited controllable light) and I start to see the reasons why these work so well in evoking fear in me. Or as you said, execution.

    EDIT: So now when I compare these elements to Metro what do I get? Ammo can be scarce but not so if you are conservative with it and pick you shots. The gameplay itself is based around traditional FPS-ing and straight horror sections are few and relatively small: like the ghost tunnel in 2033. This leads me to say that the horror elements are there to enchance the mood rather than a endgoal in itself (as in they are not ment to be there just for some scares). Which is perfectly fine in my book because it serves that purpose well.
  18. Alphadrop

    Alphadrop A right proper chap.

    Aug 21, 2008
    That scared me for the same reason certain maps in Quake scared me, zombies that don't die except to certain weapons you don't have much ammo for.
  19. Crni Vuk

    Crni Vuk M4A3 Oldfag oTO Orderite

    Nov 25, 2008
    it is interesting though, how some games can make you literally jump, while others not.

    Resident Evil? That never was scary for me. Fun, yeah. But neither RE1 nor RE2 (the only ones I played).

    Doom 3? Scary as hell, most of the time.

    Metro? Not really.

    Fear 1? Yeah. Here again. Fear 2 was less of a shocker. But sometimes at least.
  20. Paul_cz

    Paul_cz Mildly Dipped

    Jun 11, 2008
    The only game that ever managed to really evoke something approaching "being scared" in me was Amnesia.
    Silent Hills, Resident Evils, Dooms, Dead Spaces, Metros, Stalkers, Fears, AvPs...nothing (good games though).

    Cryostasis was fantastic too though, almost on the level of Amnesia. But presence of weapons inherently lowers the scare level for me.