Metro Exodus Enhanced Edition is now out on PS5 and Xbox Series X/S. There’s also a PC version. All three of these so-called Enhanced Edition releases boast an incredible new render pipeline that sees the game’s visuals move into raytracing territory. It also means that the console ports now render at 4K 60FPS and everything feels so much better. When I reviewed the original Metro Exodus PS4 version back in 2019, it was one of my favourite horror shooters of the year. It still holds up today as one of the best shooters around.
Metro Exodus is simply a masterpiece when it comes to its world and its excellent ambience. It takes players to new locations, implements some fantastic new gameplay mechanics all while looking gorgeous at the same time. The PS4 Pro version already managed to deliver visuals that looked out of this world and the PS5 version, believe it or not, brings out the best of the game. While most PS5 ports up to now boast improved frame rate and resolutions, Metro Exodus looks like a whole new game. In addition, its raytracing pipeline brings the world to life thanks to some incredible lighting solutions.
Indoor environments now present themselves with accurate lighting. This means that rooms are pitch black and incoming light now bounces on objects and walls as it would in a real-life scenario. This elevates the horror aspect of the game as creeping through corridors and even walking about the game at night is now more intense than ever. It also creates a more accurate world as the gameplay relies on fires, lighting candles and your torch to get around during these dark scenes.
HDR is also used to bring this lighting pipeline to life thanks to its bright neon mushrooms scattered throughout the game and the incredible day/night cycle that is forever changing the world around you. The world and its locations have never looked better and more realistic.
We also have the 60FPS at 4K on the PS5 that is a dream to experience. It is hard to believe a game that looks this good can run at this frame rate and resolution too. It makes the experience even better as gun fights feel smoother and the moment to moment gameplay runs great. Metro Exodus features a rather stiff movement system. This makes it feel lifelike as the character slowly moves left and right and has a certain weight to it. Sort of as if you would turn around. It all just gels together perfectly now.
As for the DualSense features in this Enhanced Edition, they are great too. Guns feature adaptive trigger support that saw me press the trigger down like a real firearm trigger. Then there’s the pumping action for certain gear. The air rifle requires compressed air every now and then. The pressure from the triggers let me feel as if I was pushing air into the compressor.
My only issue with this Enhanced Edition was the lack of DLC. I have finished the first game already but never experienced the two expansions. It would have been the perfect package if the PS5 code I got came with the DLC too. But it seems like 4A Games is providing the same selection of purchase options for the Enhanced Edition as they did the PS4. I will play the expansions one day..
Other than these above change, Metro Exodus is the same as the original game. I reviewed it back in February 2019 and have included the original review text down below. It is definitely the best way to experience the shooter and if you have played it already, you should go back and see how fantastic the game looks now.
Metro Exodus is more than just your average post-apocalyptic game. Following the story of Metro 2033 and Metro: Last Light, Metro Exodus is a substantial step forward in the series and has evolved on almost everything that made the series so great and everything new it tries, it has perfected.
To get you up to speed, Metro Exodus is set after the events of the first two games on a post-apocalyptic Earth devastated by a nuclear war. You take the role of the long-running protagonist, Artyom, as he flees Moscow after making a discovery that changes everything he has ever known about the war and the Metro.
In short, the Spartan Rangers, a familiar group of people from the previous games go with him as they take a locomotive known as the Aurora east in search of new life and hope. It is a very different pace from previous games that were quite one-dimensional. Metro Exodus opens you up to giant open world-like hubs and tests your wits as it throws heavy survival challenges at you, horror aspects and a harsh nuclear winter setting all for you to digest at once.
Metro Exodus delivers one of the most captivating worlds I have ever explored in a video game and the change from mission-based chapters, to an open-world hub is the much-needed break the series has been craving. After a brief intro, the game introduced the Volga River, I ventured through a giant nuclear bunker, explore a piping hot desert wasteland and more. The locations, their gorgeous yet eerie settings, and the ability to bring them all to life in so many unique ways give Metro Exodus one of the best takes on the whole “end of the world” scenario I have seen in a long time.
The world manages to deliver this anxious, uncomfortable feeling throughout the game. The wind howling, massive thunderstorms crackling in the distance or the shocking find of a head in a fridge just made me even more engrossed in the setting around me. This then all compliments the fantastic narrative that the Metro series has been known for. The Spartan Rangers, Artyom, his wife Anna, and the great cast of characters you meet along the way have layers of depth and detail.
Just standing next to them and you want to listen to everything they say as they open up on their past, personal experiences and how they landed up where they are today. The series has led us to believe that the world was empty beyond the Metro so these people all have interesting tales to tell that add details to not only the current situation but also what has been going on while we have been stuck in Moscow.
Volga has been under the control of a crazy cult that believes that technology led to the end of the world. They live without it and shun anyone who even uses a flashlight. They also praise a fish and are a little crazy. Meeting them in the world, I had to approach them with my gun holstered and my torch off else they would get upset and it would prevent me from learning what they had to say. There is so much to hear from everyone and even sneaking into an enemy’s compound and listening to the background chatter, would reveal something unique about them and the land. There is so much to take in that the experience becomes so much more than just your average shooter. This is just one example of the depth of story in this game.
The world of Metro Exodus could be one of the greatest post-apocalyptic settings I have ventured through in a long time. From the moment you arrive in every location, the game visually blows you away. The weather effects, lighting, small details on your gun, the way the Demons nest in specific areas and the sheer scale of everything put together, delivers a captivating experience like nothing else. I just wanted to walk everywhere slowly, take in the beauty of the dying world and approach every small little hut with the utmost care as to not be seen by the dangers that await.
The way the world has been delivered is the game’s biggest strength and it adds a tremendous amount of emotion into the overall narrative that drives the experience. One memorable adventure through a dilapidated terminal tested my will as a giant catfish threatened my step and crazed zombie-like mutants wanted me dead. This would have been a different experience if the terminal lacked its fantastic level design, lighting and overall amount of details.
Not to mention that the game makes use of some of the best HDR implementation I have ever seen this generation. Dark corridors deliver a terrifying trip with bright green mushrooms lighting up the path ahead. Everything simply looks magnificent but still makes one feel alone and anxious.
Metro Exodus is a survival game at its core. Artyom needs to gather materials and solvent to craft ammo, medical supplies, and repair and clean his gear. A dirty gun performs badly with it jamming, preventing you from shooting and just being unreliable. The gas mask which keeps the random waves of radiation at bay can crack, or simply get dirty needing to be cleaned too.
Ammo is scarce and so are the materials so you need to take things slowly and not spray and pray into a flying Demon in the distance. I played on the middle difficulty and still struggled a bit and the game does not hold your hand all the time. This is in major contrast to the like of Far Cry New Dawn that simply could not get this survival and crafting system right.
Weapons in the game can be modified with various attachments to suit your playstyle. You can salvage attachments off of other weapons either dropped in the world or taken off dead enemies and use the workbench to equip and alter them as you go. Artyom also has a backpack that acts as a workbench to a certain extent. You can clean your weapons and craft throwables and ammo but anything major such as equipping a new and improved gas mask needs to be done at one of the various safehouse workbenches or back on the Aurora.
There are also various gear upgrades to find at either infiltrating a gang hideout or doing a sidequest across each hub you explore, putting a great emphasis on exploration. It makes for a great way to see each of these hubs, meet new people, listen to their tales and get new loot and salvage.
The first hour or so of Metro Exodus was rather intimidating but soon after, things slowly made sense. The survival mechanics in place work and taking on enemies be it silently or loud is a challenge that you need to prepare for and the game just works flawlessly. Just when I thought I was a pro, I faced a lightning Demon that shocked me to death in one shot or a bandit that shot me in the face with a shotgun because I did not put out the candle next to me and he saw me in the light. The game constantly throws these challenges at you and it stays refreshing and rewarding throughout.
Metro Exodus proved to me that you can have a great post-apocalyptic shooter driven by a deep story, fantastic characters, great survival mechanics and a gorgeous world to explore all in one visually captivating package. It makes Fallout 76 look like a nursery school drawing and puts a lot of games to shame. It is one of the best horror games I have played in a really long time and deserves everyone’s attention.