Currently reading: Metro: Exodus – Another Voiceless Protagonist
Metro: Exodus – Another Voiceless Protagonist
Posted on 19th February, 2019 - By Daniel Hezzlewood
From the release of Pong in 1972, video games have come one hell of a long way. What our modern game engines can cope with is incredible, and yet sometimes, we’re still left disappointed.
Now I know what you’re thinking – “does it really matter if your character doesn’t speak?” or “isn’t there something bigger to take issue with?”
I’d like to agree, but a video game’s purpose is to provide the player with an escape from reality, and it’s usually a lot of fun. However, occasionally we’re left disappointed by something seemingly unimportant – like a voiceless protagonist.
My Introduction To Metro
Although I’ve liked the look of previous Metro games, I never played them. Metro: Exodus is the first game of the series that I’ve played, but I’ve read that the main character “Artyom” is silent throughout the previous games, too. Aside from some short monologues during loading screens.
There’s no excuse for a voiceless character in today’s gaming world. Unless of course it’s pointed out to the player and it’s relevant to that character’s story arc. This isn’t the case in Metro: Exodus, and it feels out of place in a game that interacts so directly with a protagonist. It’s a huge mistake to only have your character talk during loading screens. Loading screens which are quite lengthy.
Metro: Exodus’ protagonist has a group of friends to which he never speaks. It’s one thing not to talk to your friends, but Artyom even ignores his wife, Anna! Any man will tell you that’s never a good idea. Artyom is regularly asked questions by these NPCs, but stands there silently as the game plays out around him, reminding you that you’re playing a game and breaking player immersion.
For instance, you’ll be in a group conversation where ideas are being thrown around, yet Artyom will offer no opinion. Am I the only one that thinks this is lazy writing? Surely not.
Deep Silver have so much potential with the world they’ve created. A post-apocalyptic Russia, mutants, bandits and other groups. Anyone else getting a little bit of a “Fallout” vibe?
Is Metro Worth Buying?
After watching the gameplay for Metro: Exodus, I was pretty happy with the way it played, so I pre-ordered it. But from what I’ve played so far, I don’t think it was worth the £64.99 price tag. The mechanics are a little clunky, the enemy A.I. isn’t great and the protagonist doesn’t bloody speak!
However it’s not all bad, the game does take certain aspects of player immersion seriously.
Like the fact that you have no HUD on screen. Instead, you have various bit of kit to keep you updated on your position, direction and time of day. Your weapons jam if you don’t keep them clean.
Ammo is scarce, which forces the player to consider their options. You’re not always able to run into a situation guns blazing.
Check out the trailer.
The idea behind Metro: Exodus is great, the world is pretty and the seasons bring interesting features. Sandstorms, rain, heavy winds. They all add to the experience.
The few things that set the game back are avoidable, which makes it more disappointing when you play. However, Metro: Exodus has many fun elements in it and is worth some of your time.
As a newcomer to the world of Metro, I’m not exactly blow away by what I’ve played. But I’ll at least finish Exodus and maybe post a complete review of the game in the future.
Thanks for reading!
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