Some international press outlets had the first chance to go hands on with Metro: Last Light recently, as the game's new publisher has begun ramping up PR since their acquisition of the distribution rights in the THQ bankruptcy auction, and various preview impressions can now be found around the tubes. Here's a few bits:
4A brings the Metro universe to life with absolutely stunning visuals--on a high-end PC, at least. (We didn't see the console versions demoed.) What really sells the experience isn't necessarily the tech, however. You can simply absorb the world by looking around. Pay attention, and you'll notice how everything in the world has been jury-rigged from garbage and scraps to accommodate humanity's new lifestyle. From gates to boats, humanity has come up with rather interesting solutions for living underground.
The transition from THQ to Deep Silver hasn't affected Metro: Last Light, and it remains a thoughtful, atmospheric FPS that explores a convincing post-apocalyptic world. There have been mechanical improvements that help make stealth sections more convincing, and that make the gunplay more satisfying - as well as making it more technically impressive, especially when played on PC.
"It looks fantastic on 360 as well, but [on PC] you have a different potential that you can hit," said Beynon, before revealing there are currently no plans for a next-generation version. "If someone asks me are we doing a next-gen version - well, yes we are. It's the PC. We're one of the few studios out there that have a proven piece of tech that's built for high-end PCs. I firmly believe that the PC version of Metro: Last Light is one of, if not the best looking game you can actually buy, period, at the moment. We're still proud of how we've managed to adapt that for the current generation of consoles."
4A Games has clearly spent time tweaking the gunplay in Metro; the most noticeable change is the feel of weapons which, unlike in the last game, have a satisfying kick to them. The controls conform to the accepted standard of modern shooters, with one quirk added. Players will need to manually wipe off the crap that covers Artyom's mask by tapping a button. It's a small addition that could be used to add more intensity to firefights.
Further, both IGN and Gamespot appear to have exclusive gameplay walkthrough footage, which you can watch embedded below, and hit the screenshot thumbs for the full gallery of new stills.
Metro: Last Light is currently scheduled for a May 17 2013 launch on PC, Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.