10 Enhancements Needed for Deus Ex: Human Defiance


10 Enhancements Needed for Deus Ex: Human Defiance

Yesterday, February 26th, trademark attorneys Williams Powell submitted for ‘Deus Ex: Human Defiance’ on behalf of Square Enix.

And that is, quite literally, the whole story.

For now, at least.Expect to be drip fed developmental titbits over the next few quarters.
But in the interest of reminiscing fondly on Edios Montreal’s Superb 2011 Cyberpunk fantasy,
we are just straight up assuming it’s a sequel!

Exciting prospect as Deus Ex: Human Revolution is one of the very greatest games I have ever played.
It’s not without its flaws (and we’ll get to those) but the memory lingers affectionately.
The swell of that haunting Icarus theme.
The soft glare of its perfect Black/Gold colour palette.
The tired rumble in Jensen’s growl as he’s met with betrayal from every side.

Aye, the Hacking, Target-Tracking-Rounds, C.A.S.I.E. pheromone implant, Smart Vision, Glass Shield Cloaking System, Dermal Armour and array of brutal takedowns made DX:HR an excellent title.

But the artistic milieu, empowering tenor and crushing premise of a disaffected transhuman renaissance augmented it into an unforgettable one.

Bearing this in mind, Deus Ex: Human Defiance...

Aspects to Repair

10. Boss Fights

To begin, I thought I might blind you with the obvious: Eidos Montreal let themselves down by outsourcing to GRIP entertainment. These weren’t inherently poor, squaring up against a similarly augmented individual. However it negated the series defining gameplay options, unjustly stacking odds against non-confrontational players.

Eidos rectified this somewhat with their impressive Missing Link DLC. Still, for Human Defiance, the option to evade, manipulate, takedown or set robots upon mightier foes is a necessity. Alternatively the option to talk it out would be, *ahem* Boss!

9. True Open Worlds

As lived-in and realised as the hubs of Detroit and Hengsha felt, there wasn’t an abundance of activities on offer beyond opening cabinets and nicking the occasional Praxis Kit from a cracked safe. Hopefully Human Defiance rectifies this by offering some degree of conversational exchange with each NPC or enable the protagonist (Hopefully still Jensen) to interface with terminals, registers, street lamps, etc. With the PS4 on the horizon, this aint a huge ask...

8. Third Person Perspective

Mimicking Rainbow Six: Vegas, DX:HR opted for the best of both worlds approach to armed combat, melding first person shooting with third person cover. And it worked superbly, impeccably shifting from Jensen’s POV to a full body shot of Sarif’s cyborg.
But personally, I spent 90% of combat clued to cover, sneaking through, aligning shots or generally marvelling at the impressive character build.

I’ve been championing the Third Person Perspective for some time. It triggers superior immersion, establishes concrete protagonists, and, especially in a Body-Shock such as DX:HR encourages players to marvel at the meta-human prosthetics!

7. Improved AI

Sadly, for such an intelligent, thoughtful game, the enemies were well thick! Crucially, they were never particularly inclined to react to ruckus, bunch up or generally lose their shit when Jensen whipped out his goddamn arm blades.

This severely limited opportunities to play with crowd control like the Typhoon Explosive System or those phenomenally vicious Double Takedowns!

And I wanted to play with them. Lots.

6. Hack the World

While hacking in DX:HRwas restricted to terminals and locks, Human Defiance has the opportunity to significantly expand this conceit.The way I see it, most people enjoy some degree of augmentation, be it mechanical, physiopharmaceutical or nanotechnological. Why not develop a system which exploits this?

Caught by security guards? Turn off their eyes!
Searching for a contact? Get a Spy Satellite to do the heavy lifting!
Locked out of a computer? Force its user to recite key information verbatim!
Surrounded by marauders? Remotely overload their pain receptors!!!

Aspects to Augment
5. Side Missions

DX:HR boasted sideys of such detail and polish, most forget they weren’t intertwined with the campaign proper! Varied gameplay, social challenges, cutscenes, recurring characters and plot-twists; these quests weren’t BloatWare, they were miniature campaigns that enriched the world of 2027.

The sole issue is one of rarity.
Sideys were few and far between in DX:HR.
Human Defiance
needn’t tamper with the quality here, just focus on the quantity!

4. Diplomatic Options

Some folk say the best defence is a good offence. Smarter folk insist the best defence is never getting into a scrap!

Deus Ex is lauded for gifting the player options. Notable among them are non-lethal and non-combatant. DX:HR catered for this by making Hacking, Stealth, Exploration and Sociability as integral to its core experience as blowing shit up! Jensen could talk his way out of many difficult situations. And when his words failed, active camouflage and cranial augmentations sufficed.

Hopefully Human Defiance can expand on this, offering myriad Ghost, Ninja, Coder or Clean Hands routes. Perhaps Jensen will complete entire lines of enquiry remotely, contorting cyberspace to his whim, negating the need to so much as rouse from his whiskey stained smoking chair.

3. CQC (Close Quarters Cyborg)

Jensen kicked every type of ass.
Wielding an assault rifle, arm-blades or a clenched fist, the man was a Typhoon of warfare!
Whether punching through a wall to snap a neck, silently impaling a sleeping guard on his stool or launching a flurry of chain punches into an unsuspecting ‘Ogre’, DX:HR’s canned takedowns were a constant delight, amplifying the games cinematic impact while affording a refreshing pace change from the occasional monotony of first person traipsing.

The only conceivable way Human Defiance could improve on such melee is through variety– Lethal takedown or merciful takedown? Loud takedown or silent takedown? Disarm or dismantle? Chokehold or Wristlock? Environmental? Weaponize? Chained? Triple? Quadruple?

The option to clear Human Defiance relying solely on CQC would go a long way to securing it my eternal love and affection.

2. Aesthetics

Aurally. Visually. Literally.Deus Ex: Human Revolution is breath-taking.

The BAFTA nominated score, composed by Michael McCann, swells and dips, ebbs and shrieks, complimenting sharp angles, bold imagery, baroque motifs and perpetual shades of bullion ebony.

Graphically mediocre, DX:HR is the standard bearer for Artistic Design this console generation. Human Defiance may want to tweak the presentation, bolster the frame rate. But the sheer sensory experience is dynamite.

And the last thing you want to do with dynamite is go messing about with it!

1. Adam Jensen

This decade’s unsung gaming hero: Adam Jensen.
Infinitely more than a Robocop clone or prototypical hardass.

Jensen is a fully realised personality, with a jaded worldview, short temper, emotional depth, moral qualms and a sharp, probing intelligence which sees him through more scrapes than the assault rifle of any Bald Space Marine.

Presumably, Human Defiance will feature interpersonal, professional, ethical and social choices via dialogue tree (unless they discover a sexynew way to present binary choices) but the core, the soul of the Deus Ex tale is now a tortured, disillusioned and stubbornly righteous ex-cop by the name ofAdam Jensen.

Silent heroes no longer cut it.
Invisible protagonists spoil the illusion.
Regardless of the finale’s ambiguity, Adam Jensen is a living breathing, beeping, whirring champion of video-gaming.
To omit him from a sequel would be the single biggest misstep Human Defiance could make!

Well, that or be by and large kinda crap...

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