Preview: Deus Ex: Human Revolution Director's Cut on Wii U is GamePad-tastic!
Having never played Deus Ex: Human Revolution, I was really looking forward to my hands-on time at PAX East with Deus Ex: Human Revolution Director's Cut on the Wii U. What I wasn't looking forward to doing was playing it in front of the coworkers of mine that have already played the game. Needless to say, they each critiqued me and told me to play in the way they thought best. The situation was very telling of the mechanics in the game -- they each would've played the demo differently.
The Director's Cut brings Deus Ex: Human Revolution to the Wii U -- a console that, despite me loving it, could sorely use games like this. While it is the same game that you could have played on PS3, Xbox 360 or PC, it is far more than just another port to Nintendo's newest console. The team at Eidos-Montreal has completely overhauled boss fights -- something players have been asking for -- improved the visuals, worked on the combat mechanics and added a ton of Wii U GamePad-exclusive functionality. It's not just throw-ins; instead, it's the game fans have been asking for.
If you're entirely new to the game, Deus Ex: Human Revolution takes placed during the year 2027. You play as Adam Jensen, a man that's cybernetically augmented his body. He holds the key to a mysterious, global plot.
I'll start with the Wii U GamePad features because I thought they were well-implemented. The first is that all hacking can be done from the touchscreen. Having the hacking take place on the touchscreen allows your TV screen to remain in game and see approaching threats. The map has also shifted from the TV to the GamePad screen, which will also show enemies' locations and their line-of-sight eventually. Looting enemies is a breeze, as you can do it all from the GamePad. Basically, a lot of clutter is removed from the HUD on the TV and sent to the GamePad for use.
You can now navigate your menus entirely from the GamePad's touchscreen, like leveling up and choosing your neural hub enhancements. Also, you can flick back grenades at enemies with a swipe of the touchscreen. Of course, another Wii U-specific gem is the ability to play the entire game from the GamePad screen, freeing up the TV for other uses.
However, the best feature might be a new vision augmentation that was added specifically for the Wii U Director's Cut. What this new augmentation does is it lets you use the GamePad as an enhanced AR vision mode. With this, you get more information about the enemies -- such as their health, armor and what items they are carrying on them. Did I mention the fact that you can aim and shoot by moving the GamePad around?
Outside of all of these GamePad features, the biggest change to the game is that all of the boss fights have been redone. While you'll still have to kill each boss to progress through the game, you now have different approaches to defeating them. With previous versions of the game, if you went full-stealth or hacking, you'd be screwed in boss fights because they solely relied on gun fights. Now, you can approach a boss using stealth or hacking. It allows you to defeat them in the manner that you chose to play the rest of the game, and it is most certainly welcome.
Taking advantage of Miiverse and using a system not unlike that in Dark Souls, there is an interactive strategy guide integrated into the game. You use the GamePad to capture a screenshot and add notes that leave AR tags in your friends' games.
Deus Ex: Human Revolution Director's Cut on the Wii U is very impressive from what I've seen. I'm happy I actually haven't played it on other consoles yet, because the Wii U version looks like it's the best. There's no release date set, but Amazon.com has the game releasing on the Wii U on May 7.