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Планета Deus Ex

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"Deus Ex—One of the catch phrases I kept hearing at E3 this year was "thinking man’s"—as in "this is a thinking man’s shooter" or "this is a thinking man’s space combat game." Of course, nobody’s going to market a title as "a really stupid guy’s strategy game," but it was still edifying to hear designers talking about games that emphasized critical thinking as much as quick trigger fingers. This is particularly nice to hear in relation to first person action games, which are almost universally known as shooters. (Except in that paragon of journalistic responsibility, Time Magazine, which refers to them as "splatter games.") Last year the first-person genre broke out of its "shoot ‘em all and let God sort ‘em out" mentality with two great titles—Half-Life, which had a fine narrative and some interaction with NPC’s--and, I think more importantly, Thief—a game that was about stealth more than strength, problem-solving more than puzzle-solving. Deus Ex, the latest game from Warren Spector, will attempt to follow up on the cerebral Thief’s success—in fact, everyone I talked from the design team insisted that the game was not a "shooter," but rather a "first-person role-playing game." The game’s premise is sort of "X-filish"; you’re a secret agent who uncovers a global conspiracy; unfortunately, only a few other outcasts credit your story. Cracking the conspiracy takes you around the world; and it’s a very atmospheric one—the graphics are rendered using a modified Unreal engine, and looked excellent. But what really impressed me about Deus Ex was its emphasis on dynamic interaction with NPC’s—depending upon how you choose to treat them, they’ll respond differently—as well as the game’s non-linear narrative. You’ll be forced to make decisions in the game that will lock you out of certain game paths, but open up others. Since the game is "winnable" in different ways, this adds to replayability. But more importantly, it teaches that decisions have certain consequences—a valuable lesson, and one not likely to be picked up from Quake III. If this is the future of first-person gaming, count me in. When people think Ion Storm now, they think John Romero and Daikatana; I predict that in a year they’ll be thinking Warren Spector and Deus Ex. "

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