Is It Too Early to Preorder Deus Ex: Mankind Divided?

This trailer is visually stunning but there’s a catch.

With the release of the Deus Ex: Mankinded Divided trailer, it is to be expected that fans are excited. There is much to celebrate. First off, a highly anticipated addition to the popular Deus Ex saga has just been confirmed. In light of this news, longtime fans of the series, as well as newcomers intrigued by the hype, have reason to rejoice.

There’s also a special treat for those fans who particularly enjoyed Deus Ex: Human Revolution: venerated protagonist Adam Jensen will be making a return in Deus Ex: Mankind Divided. Not to mention, the trailer itself is a beautifully put-together, intriguing montage of CGI action, mayhem, gadgets, and explosions.

The narration quickly draws us in to a dynamic plot, centering around conspiracies, shadow power structures, rebellion, segregation, manipulation, struggle, and deceit. Our hero boldly asserts, “So much pain, so many lies. Their darkness must end!” as he charges directly into the fray. But, is he on the right side of this conflict? We are left to wonder as the man attempting to murder him shouts, “This should be your fight as well brother. The promise of a golden age is over!”

Yes, all of this is totally awesome and reason to be excited, but let’s not lose focus. The trailer is spectacular, but despite how awesome we can infer the in-game cutscenes will be, we still haven’t seen footage of the actual gameplay. Naturally, the trailer’s purpose is to build hype, draw attention, and generally make the game appear worthwhile. A lot of time, thought, and effort goes into stunning first looks like these. Why? So players will take an interest in the title and, partially, to get them to click “confirm” on that pre-order.

By far, there’s nothing wrong with Deus Ex: Mankind Divided as it stands. But unfortunately, hasty pre-orders can result in upset consumers. Sometimes, the game fails to live up to expectations, either by not meeting the hopes of hyped fans, or by failing to offer the gameplay experience that was presumed of them.  Most memorably, these were common complaints with Destiny and Watch Dogs the past year.

mankind divided

To be fair, we do have some information on Deus Ex: Mankind Divided gameplay from the most recent issue of GameInformer. However, we’re still a ways off from real in-game footage. Additionally, the GameInformer article is not free to read if you don’t already have a subscription to the magazine. If that’s the case, fortunately, user shinobi602 sums most of it up in this NeoGAF post.

There’s quite a bit of detail there. But is it enough info to make an informed purchase? It might be. If you’re a die hard fan of the Deus Ex series and you’ve committed to buying this game no matter what, then that’s totally cool. We all have games that we feel that way about. We should. It’s fantastic to be so passionate about and connected to the games that we’re playing. On the other hand, no one enjoys being caught off guard by let downs.

This isn’t to say players ought to expect all developers to drop the ball. Even a well-executed game may fail to impress if a pre-order is too hurried. It’s about matching expectations with delivery. Without additional in-game footage beyond this great cinematic, pre-order availability so early may open the floodgates to preemptively hyped players. Players, keep reveling in that trailer, but when it comes to that purchase, you might want to question whether you need to see more first.

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