It’s been four years since we last traveled the world as Adam Jensen, as he set out on a quest to expose the shadowy cabal behind the Illuminati and unravel their global domination conspiracy in the cyberpunk-themed game Deus Ex: Human Revolution. Now, picking up two years after the events of Human Revolution, the upcoming sequel, Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, puts us in back Jensen’s augmented skin as he works as an anti-terrorist strike force envoy investigating and terminating criminal “Augs”—that is, people with cybernetic implants that intensify their natural abilities.
However, our tech-enhanced hero isn’t one to trust too easily, so in turn, Jensen’s also a double agent intent on sharing the details of his secretive overseers with other syndicates in order to hedge his bets and remain true to his moral compass. While Deus Ex: Mankind Divided‘s premise and subject matter is in the same vein of Human Revolution, the game’s story is brand new, and is just as intricate as its predecessors. Not to mention, Mankind Divided is also a visual marvel complete with fine-tuned controls and mechanics that improve upon the titles before it, as is evidenced in Eidos Montreal‘s E3 2015 gameplay video posted above.
Narrated by Eidos Montreal’s Executive Audio Director, Steve Szczepkowski, the trailer for Deus Ex: Mankind Divided opens during the year 2029 with Jensen traveling by train to a dystopian Prague. When the camera goes into first-person after Jensen arrives and meets up with an associate of his, the game becomes reminiscent to the opening of Half Life 2, as the dingy and sickly-lit station is filled with armored soldiers hassling civilians. In fact, to imbue the mood with extra gloom and paranoia, there are droves of surveillance drones zipping throughout the air, constantly monitoring the area. Although the atmosphere is bleak, Eidos Montreal has obviously refined the palettes of Human Revolution, as the graphics for Mankind Divided are smooth and extremely polished.
During the dialogue-centric intro, terrorists attack the Prague train station with an explosion, which forces Jensen into a mission to find Talos Rucker, the head of Augmented Rights Coalition, as Jensen’s handlers believe the activist leader is responsible for the bombing. After another cinematic, the action for Mankind Divided starts, and Szczepkowski touts the series’ unique gameplay staples, such as combat, stealth, hacking, and social interaction with consequences. As the Executive Audio Director says, “You can play the game any way you want. You can go stealthy, full combat, or a mix of both. You can finish the game without killing anyone if you choose.”
The gameplay demo attempts to focus on Adam taking the stealth tack as he quietly infiltrates an Augmented Rights Coalition compound, taking out cameras with EMP bullets and activating a cloaking device to slink past armed guards. However, it devolves into a gunfight about halfway through the video, as Jensen dons the Titan Shield—a new tech enhancement which makes him impervious to damage—and blasts and hacks his way through enemies.
Also, just like the franchise’s previous entries, there are multiple pathways that can be taken to complete objectives, for the explorable areas of most of the game’s settings are vast. Plus, Eidos Montreal shows off some of Jensen’s fresh augmentations, such as his non-lethal Tesla gun arm that can target up to four enemies at once, and stun them with an electric shock. Plus, the demo features the Icarus Dash enhancement, which is similar to the Blink mechanics found in Dishonored.
Eventually, Adam escapes some battles and makes it to Rucker, so as to investigate his potential role in the Prague station’s bombing. While the exchange between the two is exciting, there are potential story spoilers involved, so thankfully, Eidos Montreal has marked the trailer with timestamps allowing that segment to be skippable.
At any rate, Deus Ex: Mankind Divided looks utterly fantastic. So if anyone considers themselves a fan of the Square Enix-published series, then they’re in for a treat once the game releases next year.
Deus Ex: Mankind Divided is slated for release in 2016 for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.