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Forums > Submission Feedback > Suskie's Deus Ex: Invisible War review

This thread is in response to a review for Deus Ex: Invisible War on the Miscellaneous. You are encouraged to view the review in a new window before reading this thread.

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Author: Lewis
Posted: February 21, 2009 (01:52 AM)
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I still remember Invisible War fondly, but returning to it for my retrospective review last year did leave me slightly disappointed.

Your point about the "quirks" of Deus Ex feeling like "flaws" in IW is interesting, and I'd be inclined to agree. I think it's because the original never took itself that seriously. There's a heavy dose of humour, a knowingly cliché-ridden story, and absolutely mad characters. Invisible War is far more sober, telling a much more grown-up tale. And I love that about it, I really do, but I think the stupid, stupid voices really suffer as a result. It was one of my major turn-offs when I came back to review this. The voice acting isn't silly any more. It's just forced and terrible.

I still think Invisible War is an extremely good game that does things few other titles have even considered doing. How many games are there like this, really? Only three spring to mind, off the top of my head, and while Invisible War is probably the weakest of them, it's a sadly dying genre that I'll always get behind. By being an 'immersive sim', it's almost good by default in my head. I genuinely believe that it suffers primarily because of its heritage. Deus Ex was in a league of its own, and I'd go as far as saying it's still my favourite PC game of all time. Invisible War is 'merely' excellent, but if it were a completely external game, by a different developer, I'm positive this would have been better received.

Either way, this was a fine review, one of my favourite of yours, I think. Well considered, well argued.


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Author: Suskie
Posted: February 21, 2009 (02:11 AM)
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Thanks a lot. I've owned Deus Ex for quite some time but for some reason never actually finished it, so last fall I played it from beginning to end, then over Thanksgiving break, brought IW and finished that, too. So this review has been bouncing around in my head for a little while now. I'm glad I was finally able to type it up, and that it turned out well.

A friend of mine was playing Deus Ex the same time I was, and we both had the same reaction: It's hilariously awful, yet at the same time it's pretty much the greatest thing ever. You put it perfectly: The game never took itself too seriously, and in retrospect seems brilliantly campy in a way. I might review it if I'm ever bored, though I definitely had more to say about IW.

Edit: By the way, is it just me, or does the Heron's Loft sign in those screenshots really look like something out of BioShock?


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Author: Lewis
Posted: February 21, 2009 (07:43 AM)
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Heron's Loft is a 1920s-style building, lots of art-deco stuff inside. Same era Andrew Ryan started designing Rapture.

You see the same lettering around many of the existing early cinemas in the UK.

EDIT: I always surprise myself with how, absent-mindedly, I tend to describe Rapture as if it were a real place.


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Author: bluberry
Posted: July 30, 2009 (02:32 AM)
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"Ion Storm – who are smart when they’re not making games like Daikatana – probably knew exactly what kind of audience they were catering to here, which makes the decision to simplify Deus Ex’s mechanics all the more puzzling."

Ion Storm was actually two different dev teams, the smart one and the Daikatana one. I know way too much about this sort of shit...


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