Availability: Now Available on Steam and For Free with Xbox Game Pass
10 years have passed between the release of the original Metro 2033 and my completion of Metro Exodus. The series has never been a landmark, and it’s baseline visuals (except on PC) are seemingly dated. It is also not as polished as its western companion series Fallout, but it has plenty of character to spare.
This review is late. Way late, by about a year. I bought this game full price at launch, having unexpectedly liked Metro 2033 despite its rough edges, edges which its sequel, the first game I reviewed on this site: Metro Last Light smoothed out. Never to dwell in a place of comfort, the Ukranian, and now Maltese developer 4A Games has pushed the series into a new sub-genre: the open world. Bottle-necking at certain points, the game has at least two full blown open world levels with a unique flow and pace. Maybe it’s due to my older age but I have a growing impatience with open world design. Many series have pivoted to an open world structure; from Crash Bandicoot to Mirror’s Edge, but the game’s expanded options drag on the game’s pace. It’s tedious to go from one area to the next and they are never populated or interesting enough to traverse. As well, in the world of Exodus, travelling anywhere not on the marker always seems like an unnecessary risk.
I had to lower the difficulty after the first level when I ran out of bullets and encountered a bug that would not let me save and eventually lost me an hour of progress. [In New Game Plus mode I encountered a similar bug in the same level from a different location which froze the game.] From that point it was a constant worry that the bug preventing quick save would come back to bite me again. Even a year after its release these bugs have festered. Granted these bugs are common to the genre, the bigger the map, the more things that can go wrong, but even by open world standards Metro steps in it and sinks below those standards. In the same playthrough, at a later level, the game froze for over two minutes before resuming on a frame by frame basis. It was a steady enough problem I was able to snap a picture, captured below.