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Deus Ex: Human Revolution Impressions

As one of the all-time greats in gaming, Deus Ex has left gamers in awe for over a decade now. It's been seven years since the second iteration and Eidos hopes that the time is finally right for a brand new game in the franchise to come to fruition. As they say, the future is now.

Human Revolution is a prequel to the original title, in which players take the role of Adam Jensen, a security specialist who recently had his arms blown off. He's fitted with brand new arms and a few cybernetic upgrades and goes straight back to work as if nothing happened.

The first noticeable thing about Human Revolution from our gameplay demo is how gorgeous the world looks. The re-imagined world is darker than ever before, but it has all the glistening and high-textured images for you to drool over. It's not Rage, and it's not Crysis 2, but it's certainly eye-candy nevertheless. Mega-cities, air cars, and enough techno-geek visuals will appease all but the most critical gamers, and even they will come to appreciate the cold, dark new world.

Human Revolution is all about player choice, as the developers told us during our demo of the game. There are four basic strategy groups: combat, stealth, tech, and social. As with prior Deus Ex titles, it's possible to play through the entire campaign without killing a single person or fighting a single boss. Augmentations, another cornerstone of the franchise, supplement the physical abilities of less socially inclined players. Then again, with the augmentations and a large world to interact with, it may be more fun to let the new shiny metallic arms do the talking.

The debut trailer shows Jensen breaking through a wall to kill the person standing behind it. Surprisingly, it is a stealth move, which the developers will need to fine tune, but the augmentation is impressive nonetheless. Other augmentations witnessed included IR vision for spotting enemies, cloaking, and a strength augmentation to jump higher and hit harder. These represent the tip of the iceberg.

Yet, while we only received a brief glimpse into the world of Human Revolution, perhaps the most pertinent bit of information is that it's all using today's latest tech, and looks as incredible as can be. The tools for making an excellent Deus Ex title have been there, but the technology to make it feel real has not, until now.

There is little else we know about the title thus far. It's an FPS that switches to third-person when using cover. The theme revolves around humanity being on the cusp of a huge societal shift towards augmentation. Mega-corporations flaunt their vast wealth and power, and there are undoubtedly several conspiracy theories in the works. What we know for certain is that Deus Ex: Human Revolution is looking great with sharp visuals, immersive environments, and a toy chest of tempting augmentations.

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James Pikover
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