( this article appeared on my blogsite at IGN.com.)
Mankind Divided opens up two years after the Incident where it was a revolt of sorts. There was bloodshed and unrest all over the planet and now the planet is in peace but synthetics, the augmented are now looked over by distrust. In the middle, there is Adam Jenson, you may know him. I may know him. Former Detroit cop turned augmented federal agent.
Deus Ex: Mankind Divided is a RPG, a fill in the blank one, much like the rest of the series or Human Revolution. As you complete missions, you get XP that levels you up and upgrade Jenson’s abilities.
I haven’t played Human Revolution or much of the series since Invisible War wrapped up so I have alot to catch up on but thanks to Eidos Montreal, this game is part of the Human Revolution saga or the reboot of Deus Ex. The one thing I like about Mankind Divided is that it hinges on societal problems that the world can relate to, especially now in 2016, it’s a game that feels very current although it’s set in the far future. Police shoot at unarmed innocents ( Sounds familiar?) , communities torn apart by segregation ( human and augmented.) , and there is alot of unrest in the world of Mankind Divided. From what I’m played, the game explores these issues with ease and makes a statement about a world ruled by totalitarianism. It’s a dark vision of a oppressed society and a oppressed world, it stands out because of the themes. Mankind Divided is trying to push an idea into your head which works and makes you think of your own world, I never felt a game other then BioShock and BioShock Infinite where it did that to me. Mankind Divided is a political game and it works.
Adam Jenson is off his game, when we meet him again he’s on an assignment in an high rise or a hotel that is currently being built, when you get to play the mission it feels like Deus Ex and it feels good to play that mission. That one mission which is the introduction displays the promise of the gameplay, mixing alot of what Deus Ex is known for and is paced nicely. It’s definitely a good introduction but after that, I felt like the other missions felt out of place or it didn’t hook me like the introduction. But let’s see if the rest of the game ends up being like the introduction or not.
When I played the other two missions, it felt like something was missing and mostly having me track down something or communicate with an object. This is Deus Ex at it’s core but something was missing, my back wasn’t against the wall which is disappointing or I didn’t need to change up styles of gameplay. Outside of the narrative, the world opens up and turns Deus Ex: Mankind Divided around and you can go wherever as long as it’s in the hub world. The hub worlds aren’t large or very big like Fallout or Skyrim but it’s a good enough size, you can go off the path, get side quests. The best part I like about the semi “Open world” is that it feels real and is beautiful. Giving me what a far future distopia (?) ruled by totalitarianism would like, different wealth classes, how the government has impacted the world and how the world has impacted these different wealth classes. Some areas are completely ruled by police and it feels dark.
The world feels fully realized and that’s what I like about Mankind Divided. The game leaves it up to you to explore and navigate the world, through exploration and rewards come great memories and great gameplay. Good fun.
So far, Mankind Divided is great fun and I’m having a blast although I’m having trouble with the story, it’s a game that’s great fun. Make sure to check back for my review.