The Missing Link’ (TML henceforth) is the first, and as of yet only announced DLC for the hit Deus Ex Human Revolution. TML is neither a prequel, nor a sequel, but takes place during the main campaign of the game. Confused? Let me elaborate.
To avoid spoiling the original game, I’m going to be vague here. Remember the part with the bomb? Followed shortly by a ship? Then when you get off the ship, three days have passed? Well, TML is set during the missing three days.
As with the original game, you are playing as super cyborg Adam Jensen. The DLC plot runs parallel to the main campaign, intertwining occasionally. When you awake from the stasis pod on the ship, you find yourself locked in the brig being questioned by two mysterious figures. You don’t know who they are, but on the bright side, they don’t know who you are, or why you are on their ship. The only information that can be garnered is that the figures work for Belltower. That’s right, they’re back. Once your left to rot in the prison, your sprang from your trap by a mysterious hacker who then gives you instructions on how to proceed. While Jensen aims to get back on track, he will uncover a conspiracy involving not only Belltower where lives are at stake, and the consequences dire.
Remember the part with the bomb? Followed shortly by a ship? Then when you get off the ship, three days have passed? Well, TML is set during the missing three days.
The DLC does have a decent plot that runs off on a brand new tangent but also interlocks with the main campaign enough to make it feel plausible and not just ‘tacked’ on. The original games main objective is always the priority even in the DLC and we are constantly reminded of Jensen’s original plight. We are introduced to some new characters who flesh out existing organisations well, adding more background and colour to Belltower and another (that I won’t mention as to not spoil). The game does feature some moral choices as well that puts you on the spot with tough decisions, with no right or wrong answer and both paths eventually leading to the same place.
A nice twist with the DLC is that you start with no augmentations. The chair you are being held in at the start is an electromagnet pulse chair, which has disabled all of your augmentations. This gives you the chance to play as a totally different character to the one you may have used in your campaign playthrough. So if you fancy going all guns blazing instead of the sneaky silent type, this is your chance without replaying content you’ve already played.
The games mission system works the same as Human Revolution with The Missing Link offering up both primary and secondary objectives. The side objectives however in the DLC are nowhere near as fleshed out as the original game, with the objectives only taking a few minutes each to accomplish.
A nice twist with the DLC is that you start with no augmentations. The chair you are being held in at the start is an electromagnet pulse chair, which has disabled them all.
Deus Ex fans will be pleased to note that the guys at Eidos Montreal have been listening, as The Missing Link contains none of the boss fights that the original game was criticised for. The main protagonist is featured but in more of a free flow environment as opposed to a scripted setup.
The Missing Link clocks in at approximately four to six hours playtime in completely new locales. The majority of the game is set in two places, starting off on the container ship before moving onto a secret Belltower facility. The two locations provide a nice contrast to fight through, with the container ship being full of thin corridors with no room to manoeuvre versus the large sprawling Warehouses of Belltowers yard.
Unfortunately, the DLC adds no new augmentations or weapons to play around with. I had no problems with this, but maybe an additional augmentation or two would have been a great way to bring something fresh to a game you’ve probably already put thirty hours into.
The DLC is launched from the main menu, although I’m currently unsure as to whether it will auto insert into the main campaign so you can play it chronologically (I’ve contacted Square about this). I will presume it doesn’t though, as it would act as an augmentation reset but if so, then the original game would play far better with this DLC included rather than started separately. It would make much more sense in the games time line, and would offer more of a continuous story rather than having to revisit it after the game.
The Missing Link clocks in at approximately four to six hours playtime in completely new locales.
The graphics, audio and gameplay for the DLC are all identical to Human Revolution with no noticeable changes. The same core features including cover, speech and gun play are all worked the same way. The new characters that feature prominently in The Missing Link all look and sound fantastic, with a personal favourite being Quinn.
The achievements in The Missing Link are all fairly easy posing no real problem in getting the full 250g. Unfortunately, there is an achievement that restricts playstyle with ‘Factory Zero’ being awarded for a playthrough using no weapons, praxis kits or grenades.
Overall, The Missing Link fits into Deus Ex Human Revolution well, with a fairly strong plot and new solid characters. The length is admirable for DLC of this kind with you completing it before it ever gets stale. The DLC adds nothing new to the Deus Ex experience but it will sustain the game for its fans. The only downside is the price and at 1200MSP it’s a pretty steep one. The game can be bought in stores now for around £25 brand new, so paying £10 just for the DLC is a real eye opener. However, for fans of the game, it is highly recommended.