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“Deus Ex: Human Revolution” hits shelves today to much acclaim

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The title might be “Deus Ex: Human Revolution,” but the name of this role-playing video game is in-game user options and augmentation, and critics are raving as it hits store shelves today for PC, Xbox 360 and Playstation 3.

First, a little summary: set in the year 2027, you play Adam Jenson, an ex-SWAT specialist who works as the main defensive security officer of an experimental biotechnology firm that specializes in human augmentation.  When the lab is broken into and you are badly wounded, you yourself become mechanically augmented and set out on a journey to uncover who is responsible and why.

From that point, how you go about completing that task is completely up to the user as the options are seemingly endless.

“Deus Ex: Human Revolution” is the third installment of the Deus Ex series and is a prequel to the original “Deus Ex,” released back in 2000; a game that many, including PC Gamer Magazine, consider one of the best PC games of all time.

Keeping the style of the original “Deus Ex,” Human Revolution allows players multiple options for how to get through the game using each of Jenson’s augmentations.  You can hack into systems, use social interaction, sneak by enemies undetected in stealth mode, or go through the front door with a plethora of cool guns blazing, but you can’t do it all at once, and that’s what keeps the game interesting.

A large amount of side missions that give you further background into who Adam Jenson is also provide an extra amount of fun.

Everything you do in the game gives you experience points, and once you reach the level of 5,000, you can upgrade your augmentations and then start again from scratch. You are never told how to complete a mission; instead you’re simply told of a goal and then set loose to explore the environment and accomplish it.

You can’t upgrade to new augmentations without closing off other augmentation paths, much like the other Deus Ex games.  Therefore, depending on which augmentations you decide to use, each path you go down leads to a different set of conclusions, making completion of the game new and exciting each time you play it with a different augmentation style.

As reviewer Ben Kuchera at Ars Technica put it: “This game doesn’t reward multiple playthroughs, it all but demands them.  This is the Deus Ex game we’ve been waiting for.”

Other reviewers are quick to offer similar praise.

“The longer you play, the more the story grabs you and the more you appreciate the customizability of the game,” writes GameSpot’s Kevin VanOrd.

“Human Revolution’s strong points come from the gameplay, and are the basis for why you should play the game,” adds Tom Price of GamePro.  “The consistent mental challenge of tackling each mission is what makes it so captivating, relying on strategy over spectacle.”

On the popular review site Metacritic, “Deus Ex: Human Revolution” received a score of 89 out of 100 with only one mixed review, good enough for “universal acclaim” status.

Although it is best, and is most popularly played on a PC, much is not lost in the transfer of the game over to the Xbox and Playstation systems.  Each of those system’s games are going for $59 while the PC version hits online and in-store shelves with a price tag of $49.

photos courtesy of Undertow851 via flickr

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