Deux Ex: Human Revolution Director's Cut is Square Enix's answer to the Mass Effect 3 Special Edition. Both are the third entries in their respective, stellar sci-fi series (also, Straight Right, who helped bring the ME3 to the Wii U, also helped Eidos Montreal with this title). They are each deluxe ports brought onto the Wii U which expand upon the core mechanics using the Wii U's technology. But unlike Mass Effect 3, the original version of Deux Ex: Human Revolution has been out for a couple years prior to this new release. Fortunately, we have found that this Director's Cut is not just your average Capcom "Ultimate Edition", with a collection of previous DLC tossed in. Factor in a decreased price, and Deux Ex brings about a much needed revolution (and an eagerly-accepted M rating), to a lukewarm Wii U library.
We are sure that a lot of you are wondering what the makes the Director's Cut of Human Revolution worthwhile, especially for those who already played the original version (which happened to make our list of the 10 Best Square Enix Games). On a technical level, there were much needed changes made to the augmentation system, which feature bio-mechanical enhancements that give Revolution's protagonist, Adam Jensen, superhuman abilities in terms of combat, movement and stealth. The boss fights have been redesigned to incorporate stealth, social interactions and hacking. Adhering to stealth's prominence in this title, you are finally able to get through the boss fights without resorting to guns. While the first Deux Ex title hardly had any stealth, it is quite nice to see that Eidos Montreal has started listening to the fans in terms of what they want from a title that allows you to use stealth as a primary form of progression.
The Director's Cut also includes various documentaries, behind the scenes footage, an in-game strategy guide, and a varying degree of additional setup options. But now that we have gotten the formalities of introducing this new edition out of the way, let us see how well Jensen can hack, sneak and shoot on the Wii U.
First and foremost, hacking on the GamePad offers a much more safe and practical approach to hacking than the original title's format. Nothing beats having Jensen on your television screen, checking if the coast is clear, then looking down onto the touchscreen in order to pull off a successful hack. This back and forth motion tries to replicate what Jensen would actually go through. Toss in a cleaner hacking system, and the Director's Cut seems like it has perfected these mechanics. You also use the GamePad to manage your items, guns and augmentations.
A godsend comes in the form of being able to read any information, text, journal etc. found throughout your open-world journeys and being able to read them on your touchscreen like an e-book. Watching the footage from hacked cameras on the GamePad? Yes, please. And just when you think that the extra features couldn't get any better, you are able to use your stylus and make drawings or notes on the map screen however you would like. For an open-world title, the ability to draw onto the map and write/erase as you please helps us remember and organize the numerous small secrets and details throughout Detroit, Montreal, Shanghai and the various other exotic locales Jensen.visits.
While these features may seem secondary in terms of changing the core mechanics, we would like to remind you that the original version of Human Revolution was a stellar game to begin with, so all of these extra features simply enhance an already amazing build. Unfortunately, we found some issues when using the the Wii U's cumbersome controller. Given that Human Revolution already had a few weird button placements to begin with in terms of its default controls, the large size of the Wii U GamePad exacerbated the button commands every once in a while. Other than random controller issues, there are hardly any other negatives pertaining to Human Revolution. Perhaps the story, vernacular and mythos may seem a bit heavy on the jargon for new players, but once Jensen becomes the bionic man, it hardly matters.
For those new to the series, do not fret that this is your first Deux Ex title. Despite this being the third title in the series, it still acts as a prequel to the stellar original and its letdown of a sequel. You play as Adam Jensen, a new, leading member of the Sarif Industries' security division. In Leon Kennedy-esque fashion, everything goes to hell on your first night of the job. Sarif Industries revolves around researching and creating bio-mechanical weapons. And in Isaac Clarke's footsteps, the head researcher you find there is your ex-girlfriend. But after eating a plethora of bullets and shrapnel from invading mercenaries, Adam is forced to undergo experimental robotic treatments in order to save his life. As a result, Sarif made him better than he was. Better... stronger... faster. And he's also a bionic hacker whose stealth abilities are on par with Big Boss'.
As stated previously, Human Revolution is open-world, as are the ethical choices you will have to do. Do you mow through lines of mercenaries like Rambo 4? Or do you do it all with stealth like in First Blood (but without the forests and bats). With the new updates from the Director's Cut, it is quite possible to proceed throughout the entire game without having to fire a single shot. But again, Human Revolution gives you the privilege of choice. So if you want to save those who deserve to be saved, blow everybody away or be a ghost on the battlefield, it's all up to you.
The Director's Cut improves the graphics to today's standards. The anti-aliasing, lighting and shadows all look great. While it has only been two years, the upgrades made to Human Revolution's aesthetics are definitely noticeable; the Wii U version looks much better than the original 360 version did. Human Revolution's soundtrack reflects its cyberpunk backdrop, and its tunes are appropriately picked to reflect any type of situations that arise.
We recommend Deux Ex: Human Revolution Director's Cut to anyone with a Wii U who is looking for something a bit more oriented to adults than the rest of the Wii U library. If you have already played Human Revolution and cleared its DLC content (which is, of course, included in the Director's Cut), then you might feel that the additional features may not warrant its price tag. But fans of science fiction, stealth espionage and first person shooters that try to break the mold will definitely find something to love. Even better, this may segue new gamers into playing the original Deux Ex title, which undoubtedly deserves a remake of its own.
This review is based on a publisher-provided, digital copy of Deux Ex: Human Revolution Director's Cut for the Wii U. Deux Ex: Human Revolution Director's Cut is also available for the PC, Xbox 360 and PlayStation and features second screen functionality on all formats.