The End of the Line–Metro Last Light’s Developer and Chronicles Packs

With October come and gone, it’s time to take a quick look back at the remaining DLC packs for Metro: Last Light. While everything 4A produces lives up to the high audio-visual standard Metro: Last Light set, some of Metro’s earlier DLC packs felt shallow and incomplete. The previous entries tended to break Metro down into its component bits, often placing a strong emphasis on combat–which is not really where Metro excels. How do the final DLC packages hold up?

The third of Last Light’s four DLCs is kind of a love letter to Metro. Essentially, it has two “levels.” The first of these is a kind of museum for you to wander. One wing serves as a free-form shooting range. Here you’ll be able to try any variant of any weapon, which is about as exciting as it sounds. I suppose you could visit the “A.I. Arena”–which is every bit as lame as it sounds–but your time is better spent visiting a kind of “wax museum” where you’ll be able to wander between the different mutant and human models used in Last Light.. It sounds boring, but it’s actually pretty neat to get a good look at the monsters the Metro throws at you–especially because you get to see a giant zombie-bear up close.

The second bit of the Developer Pack was kind of a mystery. Largely ignored by any of the marketing, the “Lair of the Spiders” is actually one of the best bits of Metro I can remember. Remember those horrifying photo-phobic spiders from Metro: Last Light? They finally make a return, and you’ll have little but your a lighter and a knife to keep you safe. Well, you eventually get a huge freakin’ flamethrower–but I don’t want to spoil that bit, now do I? This whole bit was a blast–easily the best bit of Metro DLC since the incredible Kshatriya mission in the Faction Pack.

[singlepic id=17043 w=620 h=350 float=left]The Chronicles Pack takes a different approach. Each of its three missions focuses on a character from Artyom’s journey in Last Light. The weakest of the bunch is easily Anna’s level, which merely recreates a simple escort mission from Last Light, while adding nothing to the overall narrative. The relationship between Anna and Artyom really needed fleshing out, so it’s a shame to see to little new material being brought to the table.

Fortunately, the second mission does a bit better, fleshing out one of my favorite Metro characters: Khan. I’ve always loved the master/student relationship shared by Khan and Artyom–one of my favorite parts of Metro 2033 involves wandering through abandoned tunnels as Khan explains some of the Metro’s mysteries. We get more of that here, including some authentically horrifying moments when ghosts attack. Unfortunately, the player is forced into the role of Uhlman, and Khan’s wizened ramblings don’t mix with Uhlman’s snide sarcasm. I spent most of the time wishing Uhlman would just *shut up* so I could give Khan the respect he deserves.

Falling back on Metro’s stealth mechanics, Pavel’s mission is easily the most authentic piece of Metro DLC in the Chronicles Pack. Our glorious Red hero doesn’t have much firepower, so the player has to be clever to sneak through an occupied station. There’s a real challenge to be had here, and so you’ll derive some authentic satisfaction from watching baddies fall into your traps.

That brings us to the conclusion of Metro:Last Light’s DLC, and looking back I’m sad to say it isn’t all sunshine and roses. The Tower Pack is hardly worth mentioning, and each of the other three packs come stuffed with more filler than the latest Metallica album. If you need more Metro in your life, get the Faction Pack–the Kshatriya mission is easily the best content to come out of 4A since Last Light. The other packs are for mega-fans only.[singlepic id=17045 w=620 h=350 float=]

Addie grew up near Detroit. After studying Cell Biology at the University of Michigan and spending a year looking into microscopes, Addie decided to volunteer--playing video games. hobbies run from gaming to music (voice, bass, guitar) to rugby. Addie is a strong supporter of indie and low-cost gaming, an area she thinks is underserved by the media.

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