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Deus Ex

deus_a-01.jpg (2562 bytes)
Due December for PS2.

deus_c-01.jpg (2717 bytes)To better understand the depth and scope of Deus Ex, as well as its role in creating the future of the gaming industry, I suggest you check out Shawn’s excellent review of the PC version of on our site. For the sake of this PS2 preview, let me just say that it is one complex and important game, and it is about time console owners were able to play it.

deus_b-01.jpg (2920 bytes)Deus Ex is first and foremost a story-driven single player experience. There are no multiplayer games or mindless fragfests, but don’t make any snap judgments about this game. Players assume the identity of JC Denton, a nanoaugmented soldier embroiled in conspiracy and the fight against terrorism. The larger conspiracies at work in the game may be a little cliché, but the war against terrorists in New York theme has become eerily familiar in light of recent events (remember, this game was originally released almost a year and a half ago).

deus_d-01.jpg (2420 bytes)The real innovation of Deus Ex lies is in its combination of gaming genres. Its primary game play is that of a FPS, but underneath are elements of an RPG, an adventure game, and free-style gaming. Interaction with non-player characters not only provides interesting asides and mini-games, it actually has an effect on later conversations and events in the game. Players are able to choose the weapons they think they will need on their missions, and further augment Denton’s nanotechnology throughout the game to gain new abilities. Beyond this, the world of Deus Ex appears to be a living world, with animals and passers-by, all of which seem to be living their lives, and react accordingly to the situations around them. And let’s not forget the action. There are plenty of enemies, and the weapons range from pistols to flamethrowers and rocket launchers.

deus_e-01.jpg (2556 bytes)The game is being ported to the PS2 with improved graphics and a streamlined control system. The real concern here, of course, is with the control. But from what I can gather, Eidos and Ion Storm are not taking this issue lightly. The plethora of keyboard hot keys has been incorporated onto the both the Dual Shock and on-screen icons, which allow you to easily access your skills, inventory, objectives and notes. Deus Ex will also support a USB keyboard and mouse.

deus_f-01.jpg (2627 bytes)Deus Ex is the only FPS that I believe will not suffer from its lack of multiplayer support. This is a game that cannot be played the same way twice. Your actions, interactions, and style of game play are too much a factor. Add in a healthy blend of gaming genres, an environment that seems to exist apart from you, and a compelling story line, and you have a game that distinctly marks a new era of FPS gaming.

Jeremy Kauffman