Deus Ex: Human Revolution - News Roundup
Another handful of non-review items for Deus Ex:HR.
Rock, Paper, Shotgun discusses Lethal vs Non-Lethal Approaches (mild spoilers):
It seems reasonable to argue that the finest achievement of the Deus Ex games is to offer some choice about how you handle combat situations. They are combat games, really, but since they are based around infiltration, rather than direct confrontation, there’s considerable scope for activities other than shooting men to death. Getting them to lie down and have a nap, via a range of persuasive implements, also becomes an option. The role-playing ramifications of that are pretty profound, especially when set against the backdrop of most of the games we play. You get to be the guy who doesn’t murder hapless goons (thus neatly sidestepping the “think of the Goon’s family” guilt-joke from Austin Powers) and instead drags their unconscious forms into airducts, traumatising them forever. We like that. It’s ethically okay and it’s gameologically refreshing. It’s also an interestingly different challenge.
DXHR pulls it off so well that John almost exploded when the non-murderous approach was forcible over-written by the bosses. Only the quick thinking of a nearby PC games journalist with a fire-extinguisher stopped the indignant Mr Walker from detonating into a crater where his desk should have been, and instead he was able to walk away, calm down, and vent his frustrations by attacking exploitative game distribution practices. I digress. The point is that DXHR, from the outset, is keen to offer a choice. You can take the tools of non-violent man-defeating into the game pretty much from the outset, and that remains mostly consistent throughout what is a huge, sprawling game.
Edge chats with Lead game designer Frank Lapikas about "making tough choices and getting players to stick to them":
How do you prevent players from wanting to restart when they make an error, or get spotted when playing stealthily? Did you encourage players to live with their decisions?
Well, the whole game was designed so that you had multiple choices at any one time. Even if you decide to go combat, through your choice of weapons and augs, there’s always a way for you to get out of dodge. You are never truly cornered without any means to get through the obstacle in front of you. That’s true for hacking, that’s true for stealth and social too. I’m not aware that we designed any system per se that would prevent players getting blocked - it’s built into the basic mechanics. The only exception would be the social boss-fights - if you lose one of those, it’s essentially over for you; you won’t be able to get what the character was offering.
IGN has 5 Easter Eggs you don't want to miss.
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