Deus Ex on mobile seems like and odd combination. Generally speaking, Deus Ex has always been the grown-up shooter/RPG– there’s no running around recklessly circle-strafing the AI to death here. The gameplay is thoughtful. For that reason, the franchise has garnered a fierce following that is understandably skeptical about whether iOS and Android can handle hosting Deus Ex: The Fall.
After sitting through a detailed demonstration explaining why Deus Ex: The Fall exists, I can report that fans of the series should be very excited.
The first thing to know is that Deus Ex: The Fall is a full-on proper entry in the franchise. This was designed from the ground-up as a game suited for touchscreen devices. I noticed many options for control inputs allowing players to find a scheme or combination of schemes that feels comfortable. Using targeting for example, Deus Ex allows for auto-targeting, aim-assist, tap targeting, or complete manual aiming. There’s literally something for everyone.
Moving around and taking out foes feels good, and the care in the UI and moment-to-moment gameplay is smooth. Additionally, the mechanics of dealing with downed enemies and navigating inventory are very streamlined. Instead of picking up and hiding dead guys, they dissolve over time. There are no longer limits to what you can carry in Deus Ex: The Fall either. Picking up items doesn’t require physically pressing a button– instead, you just walk over them. Things like this reinforce the care given to doing things right for touch on mobile.
Deus Ex has traditionally offered a playground that is flexible for both aggressive gunplay and stealth action. While I find it more satisfying to navigate the futuristic landscapes using a stealthier approach, going in guns blazing is doable here. The augmentations the Deus Ex series is known for are in full effect, and all the tools and powers here promise several strategic options to move through the game.
My brief time playing was very satisfying, mostly due to the multiple control options and the sturdy technical engine powering the game. The resolution was high, textures were sharp, special effects were plentiful, and image quality left nothing to be desired.
Deus Ex: The Fall is an interesting case-study to see how a thinking-man’s game translates to mobile. Square Enix is obviously looking to expand the reach of the Deus Ex universe by delivering a game that inspires curiosity in the greater universe and back catalog. The developers say the game’s campaign length is coming in at a meaty six hours, with a new game+ mode in addition.
Expect Deus Ex: The Fall to arrive this summer on iOS for $6.99 followed by an Android release shortly thereafter.