What is Deus Ex: Mankind Divided?
The year is 2029, and mechanically augmented humans have now been deemed outcasts, living a life of complete and total segregation from the rest of society.
Now an experienced covert operative, Adam Jensen is forced to operate in a world that has grown to despise his kind. Armed with a new arsenal of state-of-the-art weapons and augmentations, he must choose the right approach, along with who to trust, in order to unravel a vast worldwide conspiracy.
This game takes place 2 years after the previous one (Human Revolution, 2011) and shows us that the world has drastically changed. After the Augs went berserk people changed there attitude of augmentation from the next evolutionary step to a curse on humanity. The game is really focused on segregation and does not even try to hide it, this is a bold move but it makes the game that much more believable. Adam is right in the middle of both of the worlds, but is more an outsider than a bridge.
When you first start the game you are thrown into the action head-first on a mission for Interpol in Dubai to stop a terrorist arms deal. This level is really used so that the player can get to grips with the controls and get a feel for the game. Adam has all of his augments from the last game unlocked so you have access to everything that you need. Progressing further Adam awakens in his apartment in Prague to find his augmentations mal-functioning, this is where the new features are implemented as experimental augmentations.
In Deus Ex: Mankind Divided there is a lot to do. To start lets talk about the main game.
The main story missions are very well put together and after each one I was wanting to find out the next piece of the puzzle, the next piece of information that would shed the light on everything, but sadly this was a bit short lived as there are only 17 story missions. Now don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the story I just wish there was a bit more to it. What I really liked was at the end they have a news report that covers all of the side missions that you did or didn’t do to round off the game. The story missions them selves are not really that complicated as there are lots of ways to complete them, I feel if they had hidden some of the ways you could go it would make a second playthrough more enjoyable and challenging.
The combat and mechanics in Mankind Divided is really fluid and works fantastically well, each augment has multiple uses which cater to everyone’s playstyle. While there were some augments that I personally didn’t use I know someone else who used them and said that they didn’t use the ones that I used as much. What I liked the most about how the team added the new features is that they took the time to add the features as part of the story and not just a, here are some new features to the game go nuts. This to me made the new features feel organic and that in my opinion is what more games need to strive to do.
Quite a lot of the time you feel as if Jensen is ridiculously powerful compared to the enemies that he faces, this is really apparent in the lower difficulties and is still slightly present in the higher difficulties as well.
The customisation of the game is really detailed, not in the sense of being able to customise Adam, but in the sense of being able to customise the way you play the game. The game offers you the choice of 6 different pre-built control schemes and multiple ways of completing each level.
One of the features that I would improve is the gun mechanics, I didn’t really feel as if I knew how each gun would react and they felt off. As a player who sometimes likes to take the “If no-one is alive I wasn’t ever here” approach, I think that this really was the biggest drawback.
Throughout the game there aren’t a lot of moments where you stop and just look at the world and that is because every part of the world is amazing, Prague is a great setting and the art for the game really shines. I especially love the contrast between the main city and the Aug slums, both areas really reflect the society that lives within.
On to Jensen’s Stories.
Jensen’s stories are a bit of a let down. these (so far) are DLC that expand upon the security breach in The Palisade Blades that is meantioned in the breach game mode. As you play the missions you really feel as if these should have been part of the main game, you even get a praxis kit at the end of the first one and that is just weird as you are not able to use it in your main game. I hope that the team either make the stories separate from the main game or somehow tie them in.
Breach is a really fun side game that places you as a Ripper. Now Rippers are hackers that use Virtual Reality as a tool to extract data from whoever they can. You start by communicating with a person called ShadowChild who introduces you to the world of the Rippers. The game is designed to be an arcade approach to Deus Ex, allowing you to compete against the world and your friends across multiple challenges and levels.
The main hub of Breach is “The Darknet”. In the Darknet you can access missions, inventory, the store and lots more. Each “server” is a map of levels with an exit at the end and the beginning, these maps look a lot like the hacking mini game from the main game and that makes understanding what each node is a little easier.
In each level there is a required grab limit to get before the exit unlocks and the system catches on to your presence. If you reach the exit before the virus search time limit runs out you get everything you collected, if not you lose it all.
In the tutorial missions after each level you get a booster pack. Booster packs can be collected after missions or can be bought in the Darknet store. These can contain up to 5 items with a ranging rarity from C (common)to B to A to S (extremely rare), some items like Praxis kits are only available at higher rarities, in this case A.
All the items that you get go to your reserve, this can hold an infinite amount of items but they are all unavailable during a level. In between levels you can go to the loadout screen and choose what you want to take with you, but you need to choose wisely as space is limited.
Augmentations in Breach are very similar to the augs that you are familiar with in the main game with a few differences.
- you can only unlock augs using Praxis kits
- each aug has a download size (GB)
- you have a limited amount of space as to what you have equipped, but this increases with every level
Not only do you get a memory size increase but you also get a Praxis kit when you level up, so you can either play the game a lot to get the augs or you can sink a fair amount of money into the store to buy booster packs and hope you get lucky.
There are also Modifiers that can change how the level works, they can modify everything from you and your enemies weapon damage to health regeneration time decreased. In breach there are two types of modifiers, Cheats and Patches. Cheats give you special bonuses while Patches increase your score by making the level harder.
So to sum up all of this information, Deus Ex: Mankind Divided is a game that not only plays very well but also tells a fantastic story mixed in with moral and social points that enhance the believability of the game. I personally really enjoyed playing it and I cant wait to get back to playing it now.