Metro Exodus Xbox One Review

February 26, 2019 by  
Filed under Xbox One, Reviews & Features, Xbox

Publisher: Deep Silver  Developer: 4A Games  Genre: FPS/Stealth  Players: 1 

Age Rating: 18+  Other console/handheld formats: PS4

The Metro series has become renowned for its visual design and atmosphere, and with Metro Exodus, the newest game in the series, we have the strongest case for both of these things yet.

As the title suggests, this time around protagonist Artyom and friends are actually forced to leave the eponymous Metro, which is all good for us as we get to see a lot more of the game’s fascinating world above ground. The narrative is enhanced by its humanity and rich lore, as a train becomes a haven for all the travelers as they struggle to find a place to call home. You’ll be able to interact with and listen in on these characters conversions, which may very well give you more of a connection to them.

Starting out in the Metro you only truly get to see what the series has become after the characters are forced to flee. You’ll then get a taste of the world above; a wasteland that is both hauntingly beautiful and larger than any environments seen in the series so far, and there’s also more variation than what you might expect. Even though some of the levels are a lot larger in scale, you do still get to return to the claustrophobic corridor-like levels of old, so this is still unmistakably Metro, albeit a bigger and better entry in the series. Perhaps even a version of the series that many of us have been waiting for.

Exodus is often a stunning looking game, with some terrific weather effects being a talking point.

You may get an open world vibe with Metro Exodus’ more spacious environments, but it’s actually more linear than it first appears. As I said, you do get some more open environments this time around, which allows for more varied approaches to your tasks and exploring it also yields you rewards, but then you find yourself in a much more linear area, which certainly makes for a rich 20+ hour playing experience.

Metro Exodus is also a tense experience in the way that you are never able to carry much ammo for each of your weapons. You’ll find it on your travels of course and can even craft basic ammo, first aid, and even enhance your weapons with various attachments (found in the environments or broken down from other weapons) thanks to a handy backpack, although coming across a workbench is always welcome. These rather rare Workbenches allow you to craft more ammo, clean weapons, and fix up your gas mask if it happens to get damaged in a fight.

There’s an array of enemies that you’ll find yourself going up against, ranging from human to mutant. In a fight you can quickly find yourself being overwhelmed, but there’s some very capable weapons here, even if some of them can be a little tricky to tame, particularly if they statistically aren’t very stable in their current set-up. The game definitely has some very satisfying shooting mechanics, although in a very different way from something like, say, Halo. As opposed to being a super soldier being gifted with perfect weaponry, this is more of a struggle, and that’s the way it should be in a Metro game.

Metro Exodus isn’t just a run of the mill FPS though, as it also encourages stealth in the way that Artyom doesn’t take much in a gunfight. It’s not the easiest variety of stealth either, particularly as you are often in the dark and can’t rely on your torch too much to light your way. It’s all very tense, capturing what the Metro games have always been about, and if you manage to find the night vision upgrade, you’ll surely be very appreciative of it.

Yes, it’s not all snowy environments.

Sadly though, the AI on display here is rather lacklustre. Whenever I was spotted, I found that enemy AI could easily track me down in the way that their vision seemed overly sharp as soon as I stepped back into the light, and this even accounts for an enemy in the distance. It makes things tougher than they should be and, at least for me, resulted in many of my intended covert operations turning into gunfights.

It’s also all very much a shame that Exodus has some seriously bad load times, but even worse are the crash bugs, which are currently happening way too often at this point in time. It’s lucky that the game regularly auto saves and can also be saved at any point, let me tell you that.

Despite its current technical shortcomings, Metro Exodus does have a lot going for it, but there’s also a lot that could be improved. It’s a bigger and better sequel but also one that remembers what makes a Metro game. There’s much beauty in the game’s ruined world and its larger environments, and there’s also plenty to love contained within them as well, including the more linear areas of old. I just hope that a patch will be delivered to sort out the game’s issues soon, as if given the chance this could be something truly special indeed.