Darkness. It’s about the only thing you see as you play through Metro 2033. Nearly every aspect of this game is covered in bleak darkness.
The setting, gunplay and even some of the enemies embody the theme. Only by surviving in this post-apocalyptic world can you face the fears and trials in Metro 2033.
Originally released March 16, 2010, this post-apocalyptic bonanza is by far one of the creepiest and scariest games I’ve played in quite some time.
Based off the book by the same name, Metro 2033 brings together FPS tactics along with some intense survival horror elements. You play as Artyom, a survivor living within the subway tunnels along with the rest of humanity, who heads out on a search for an old friend.
Mutants and natural hazards plague both the metro tunnels and the surface. Surviving is all that’s left to do. And a new threat, known only as the Dark Ones, has begun to leave entire squads dying of what seems like fear.
Each Metro station acts as its own town, which the game executes beautifully. Though each area is small 4A games has managed to make each station town incredibly lively.
Post Apocalyptic Trade
Markets are abuzz with people selling pigs and hawking weapon improvements that will come in handy down the road. New items and ammo can be purchased with, that’s right: more ammo.
Military grade ammunition functions as your currency in the game world, so scavenging while you’re out in the tunnels becomes your top priority.
The tunnels and other environments outside the stations are creepy and dark bringing the grim atmosphere to life. Tunnels are rundown and strange creaks and groans can be heard as you walk down them.
Mutants roam them searching for their next meal and the occasional bandit will just try to shoot you.
Combat is terrifying and intense as aggressive mutants and human enemies attempt to kill you. Mutants crawl from the wood work and total darkness without notice making you hastily pull the trigger in fear.
You have a nice arsenal of weapons, such as a shotgun and a pneumatic gun you can use against the twisted creatures. But like many survival horror games you have to hold on to as much ammo as you can if you want to make it out alive.
Human encounters aren’t quite as frightening as their AI isn’t the brightest in the bunch. They will hide behind cover, but they’ll often stay behind the same spot until you pop them in the head.
Stealth is also a little off. In one instance where I had to sneak around a group of bandits, using my throwing to stab an enemy made more noise than a simple throw. While on the other extreme I walked right into an enemies line of sight and still managed not to get noticed.
Other matters of survival like dealing with the toxic air can be controlled through the use of a gas mask. Whether you’re dealing with stints of poisonous gas in the tunnels or the perpetual lack of air on the surface using the mask is crucial for survival.
Surface areas are the most intense as you need to use (or find) oxygen filters or leftover gas masks often found next to the corpses of those who attempted the same surface trek as you
The only drawback I could find were some of the broken game mechanics. The controls in combat can become a bit confusing at times forcing you to look down at your controller to make sure you’re doing the right thing. You’ll eventually find yourself getting used to them, just don’t expect stream-lined Call Of Duty controls here.
Overall, Metro 2033 is an intense and terrifying FPS. With its additional heavy layer of survival horror the game brings you into its dark, dangerous world. After this game I’m sure I’ll never want to be a part of the sewage treatment industry ever. Good luck out in the tunnels my friends.