18th Dec2014

‘Metrocide’ Review (PC)

by Paul Metcalf

Metrocide-2

Some games are created to punish the gamer, they often require patience and just a little luck but can still be the most annoying experiences put into game form. These games, such as Dark Souls, are sometimes lauded as some of the best games ever made, but to gamers who don’t have the patience to handle dying every few minutes they tend to not be looked upon by them in the same light. Metrocide is a game that looks to be even more punishing, with death coming instantly and being the main problem with the game – the gamer has little chance to make progress!

This is of course unless they have the patience to put some time into the game, become skilled at it and unlock other levels. Set in a cyber punk world and looking a little like the original Grand Theft Auto, you take the role of T.J. Trench. The city you are placed in is full of vigilantes, which means you must not kill your target in front of anybody because you don’t know when they will shoot. The law enforcement is in full force too, with cameras in operation and drones flying overhead to search for any law breakers. This means that stealth is important, which normally means just sneaking around and not pulling your gun out too soon.

Patience is also a virtue as you shadow your target, which you find thanks to an indicator in the top corner of the screen telling you how close you are to the kill. As you move through the streets you also gain information about the people around you, mainly their name and what threat they may be to you. Once you feel you are safe to kill your target you must then pull out your gun aim it and fire, which will also take a few seconds to warm up. In this time you may have been spotted by a vigilante by law enforcement or by the target themselves who are likely to try and run. This means that there is a certain amount of luck in scoring a hit. Once the target is killed the body can then be hidden or you can run away to escape being identified to the police who will then hunt you down and shoot you on sight.

When death comes there is often no warning, one shot and you are dead (yes, permadeath.. quick and sudden). The game then asks if you want to respawn which results in you restarting the level with nothing, all the money you may have stored up will be gone and any tools or weapons will no longer be in your possession either. There is an unforgiving nature to Metrocide that is very annoying, but in fairness the accomplishment you feel of killing your target is enough to keep you interested in having another go and pushing on. When contracts provide little money though ($150 and $175 early on though bonuses can be added) and you need to have around $2000 to escape the first level being close to that target then losing everything can lead to much frustration.

There are elements of Metrocide that could be improved to give the player more of a chance, but I do get the feeling this is not the point. If the traditional keyboard and mouse controls had an alternative gamepad option for example this may make Metrocide a little more gamer friendly, but the controls are adequate enough as they are and to lessen the challenge is hardly the point of the game.

I admit that I have little patience when it comes to games and tend to stay away from games like this, but if there is a hook in the game that catches me I do come back. Metrocide has this hook in its simplicity and the attitude it has with the gamer, and that is it doesn’t care about fun it just wants to offer a challenge. There may be too much of a challenge in Metrocide but for gamers who don’t mind a very hard challenge then this game may be worth a look.

***½  3.5/5

Metrocide is available on the PC and Mac now.

Review originally posted on PissedOffGeek
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