Square Enix released a sweet live-action trailer for Deus Ex: Mankind Divided (one of our most anticipated games at E3 2016) a couple of weeks ago detailing the events that led to the segregation of augmented humans. It shows how people eagerly replaced missing body parts with cybernetic limbs, and then somehow they all lost control of their bodies and started committing horrific acts of violence.
Millions of people were killed in one night, and non-augmented humans became scared and eventually segregated “augs” into city-camps. This led to a rise in terrorism as augs began to strike back at various corporations for treating them as sub-human. I think this is not only a great way to introduce people to the world of Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, but it also brings an emotional realism to the story because it seems totally plausible.
Players take on the role of Adam Jensen, who is an agent for an Interpol spec-ops group called Task Force 29. His job is to track down and capture augmented terrorists, but he discovers that all is not as it seems and that a secret group may be intentionally starting the war between humans and augs. Still, he's forced to continue hunting terrorist augs if he wants to uncover the truth, so he plays a dangerous game of playing both sides to his advantage. Fortunately, Adam is heavily augmented himself, so he's the perfect man for the job.
After seeing this game at E3 last year and also at a recent Square Enix event, I have to say that it features some of the best visuals I've ever seen. Every level features an immense amount of detail that's polished with impressive lighting, excellent shading, and completely realistic animations. In addition, the combat is a beautiful sight to behold, whether it's fast and furious or slow and stealthy. As if this isn't enough, the weapon and aug effects are cool as hell. My favorite has to be the Tesla gun arm that fires an electric arc that zaps up to four enemies at once from a short distance.
I was able to get some hands-on with Deux Ex: Mankind Divided event, and I couldn't get over the amount of options that were at my fingertips. As a big fan of stealth games, I love the detailed cover system that lets me hide behind objects, move a ghost image of Adam to show where he can move to next, and then sneak to the new location with the press of a button. It's also possible to sneak around corners and even initiate takedowns while still behind cover. Not surprisingly, enemies will become alerted if they see a dead or unconscious comrade, so Adam has the ability to hide bodies to avoid detection. The fact that the view changes from first-person to third-person while in cover comes in really handy as it lets you see Adam and his surroundings at the same time.
Since this isn't a stealth-only game, it's also possible to rush through areas while taking out enemies in a blaze of glory… and bullets. Everything from pistols to shotguns to sniper rifles are at Adam's disposal, and every weapon can be upgraded with a variety of handy customizations. In addition, several types of augs are literally at Adam's fingertips, including the Tesla gun arm and what looks to be a shockwave cannon that knocks enemies off their feet. Additional augs include a Nanoblade that shoots out of Adam's hand and impales enemies to walls and the ability to hack drones and computers.
What's really cool is that stealth and blazing guns can be combined in a wide variety of ways, such as starting out with stealth and then mowing down enemies if Adam is discovered. The reverse can also be achieved as long as Adam evades all nearby enemies line of sight for a short while. They'll still be on alert, but they can be taken out by using stealth takedowns and silent weapons or they can be avoided altogether. On top of that, verticality plays a big part in this game as players can climb up walls, traverse over rooftops, drop down to ledges to sneak in windows, crawl through ducts, and much more.
As you can tell, I'm really excited to play the finished version of Deux Ex: Mankind Divided. It's definitely the type of game that should be played through more than once simply because there are so many options and paths to take. I also love how it isn't possible to obtain every aug and upgrade in one playthrough, so players are forced to make hard choices on what to obtain. In addition, certain choices made during each playthrough, such as whether to kill a certain terrorist or not, will actually change the storyline and the ending. When the recently announced Breach Mode is added to the mix, the result is an incredibly deep game that will have players busy for months and months.