Box art - Metro Exodus

Metro Exodus | Do I need to play the other Metro games first?

You may be wondering whether you need to play the other Metro games first before starting Metro Exodus. And you’d be right to wonder. Both Metro 2033 and Metro Last Light feed into the third game in the trilogy in such a way that, if you’re going in blind, you may struggle to grasp the plot, themes, and location. Still, you don’t have to. Your call, and there’s a lot of variables to ponder. The answer to whether you need to play Metro 2033 and Metro Last Light before Metro Exodus can be found down below.

Do I need to play the other Metro games before Metro Exodus?

Play the other Metro games first

At its most base level, you will need to play the other Metro games before Metro Exodus, at least if you want a firm grip on the story. That’s because Metro Exodus sees you controlling Artyom in the post-apocalyptic Russian wastes for a third time. The game is set in 2036, three years after the original and two years after the sequel, Metro: Last Light.

So, if you want to play them in order before Metro Exodus, it should be as follows:

  • Metro 2033
  • Metro: Last Light

Thankfully, they have been remastered for the current generation as part of Metro Redux, a collection comprising of both of the above games.

Another reason you should be looking to play the other Metro games before playing or buying Metro Exodus is that the world is an acquired taste. Things are grim; the world often lacks color, and it’s an awkward mix between not-quite-a-shooter and not-quite-a-survival-horror. It’s a testament to the world-building of author Dmitry Glukhovsky (more on him in a moment) that the environments feel so inherently lived in, but the baby steps of playing the first two games at your own pace seems like a more comfortable gateway than jumping straight into the third instalment.

Moving on to Glukhovsky: the Metro series not only spans video games, but also books. While not necessary to playing Metro Exodus, the author has four Metro books: Metro 2033, Metro 2034, Metro: Last Light, and Metro 2035. Each will help enrich Artyom’s story and the supporting players just that much more.

Finally, if you aren’t too keen on playing Metro 2033 and Metro: Last Light (even though that’s roughly only 20 hours combined) before Metro Exodus, then there is a fairly compelling reason as to why Metro Exodus can work on its own.

Metro Exodus is unlike any other entry in the series, instead focusing on a more open, expansive world and leaning more heavily on survival elements to get by, at least judging by pre-release material. If that’s the case, you might appreciate the evolution a little more having played the prior two entries but, ultimately, you’d be able to enjoy Metro Exodus on its own merits. After all, it’s shaping up to be an utterly unique, spine-chilling game – just one that so happens to follow a story arc you may not be overtly familiar with, so you should know that going in.

For more on the franchise, be sure to check out everything you need to know about the Metro series.