Metro: Last Light XBox 360 Review

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Metro: Last Light is certainly not a bad game; it’s also not a great game either. It falls somewhere in the middle of that spectrum right next to the words ‘what could have been’ and ‘not memorable’. It reminds me of a mediocre dinner at a restaurant. The food was good enough that you’re obligated to pay the bill, but your just ready to leave. If I had to equate it to a food it would definitely be a salad and if it were to be compared to a movie then that movie would most likely be Once Upon a Time in Mexico. Both items are great, but both definitely leave a lot to be desired.

In Metro: Last Light you play as a refugee peacekeeper by the name of Artyom who has made a life living inside the dilapidated metro system beneath what was once Moscow. A cataclysmic event devastated it to the point where the air is toxic, plant life is sparse, and the environment is littered with deadly creatures waiting to end your ability to breathe. Events of the story will have you navigating all of the parts of the claustrophobic world that Metro: Last Light has created from murky subway tunnels to icy wastelands. The game is pretty straight and narrow though (linear), and leaves little in the area of exploration because it just kind of shoots you forward no matter what. Which is unfortunate because it would have been great to see what else was out there. I for one really enjoy other’s visions of what the future would be after an apocalypse, but in this instance, I felt I was only given a brief taste.

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The small bite may have been a good thing though considering the graphics are not up to par with current gen standards. They look similar to the first round of Xbox 360 games that were not quite tapping into the potential of the Xbox 360 yet.

Being this is a FPS I feel I need to speak on the guns themselves. I must say that I did like the functionality of the weapons, and the ability to customize them in various ways while also finding different forms of these customized firearms after shootout battles in the world. Customization options range from silencers, to improved gun stocks as well as new scopes and sights. These items are necessary because I feel there are two ways to play Metro: Last Light. The first would be the obvious mindless COD run and gun kill everything mentality. There is another, more enjoyable tactic, which happened to be stealth. Last Light features a lighting and detection system where you can use the darkness to your advantage, and sneak around undetected, or murder in the cover of darkness. The latter is particularly great because the AI is about as smart as this keyboard I am typing this on. You can literally shoot out all the lights around a resting guard and he will acknowledge each incident with a “huh” or “What was that?”, but will return right back to his resting position even after he is left in total darkness. Genius.

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The story pretty much took a back seat and didn’t elaborate on the original. Artyom is once again the Metro’s last hope of survival, and is on a mission to find a surviving “Dark One“. The real threat to the colonies existence is the many warring factions that inhabit Russia’s subway stations. The monsters of Metro: Last Light aren’t nearly as interesting as the first installment, and scripted sequences like the ‘boss battles’ are equally dull.

Like I said in the beginning, Metro: Last Light just leaves so much to be desired upon. It really is a great idea and I really love the survival horror genre. But the subpar graphics, lack of depth, and stupid AI turn me off completely. My advice in this one would be to lower your expectations and you might come out of the other end satisfied. Just don’t order dessert.

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  • I’ll admit, I went to the score first… Then I notice “subpar graphics”. Ha. Hilarious. It’s widely been commented how this is the best graphics in a game since Crysis 3. Credibility of anything else is shot at that point.

    • To be fair, Game Informer mentioned that Last Light suffers from less than impressive visuals, save for a few brief sections. From what I’ve seen it’s no Crysis 3 by any means, but I wouldn’t say it’s an Aliens: Colonial Marines either.