Maybe without the technical issues this would have been a acceptable game.
20 to 40 Hours
The Bottom Line:
On my machine, Deus Ex: Invisible War largely failed based upon its numerous technical issues. It regularly crashed, there were clipping issues, at one point I fell between 2 wall segments and in a way that I have not experienced in any other game in recent history.
That said, its poorly filled out environments with few people to interact with a lack of tension did not do it any favors. Rarely does one encounter more a few NPCs to interact with and many of those feel thin and with little depth.
The story itself was not satisfying, and it lacked the tension and drama that its predecessor had. While I played though the entire game, in the end it seemed a waste of time. The reveals when they occurred were telegraphed so far ahead of time, that there was little surprise or excitement to them.
What could of been better. But actually worse.
10 to 20 Hours
The Bottom Line:
"Almost, but not quite"
The first Deus Ex was a great game, the missions where fun and the online play WAS AWESOME!!!
Then you ask, whats so bad about the second one? Well, this is whats so bad.
First off, there is no online play. The original Deus Ex had brilliant online play that was really addictive. But now they have taken it out of the second one and now your just stuck with the missions.
I have a feeling this game was only meant for xbox and just a weird port to PC. The controls are worse then the first one, and the inventory space is very, very tiny. Also all the good RPG elements where taken out so half of this game isn't a FPSRPG its just a casual FPS with slight RPG
Anyway, the people tell you to sneak past people by hiding in the shadows... The game is way to easy even on hard mode so all you have to do is just shoot a few times and the enemy's are dead! So who cares about sneaking?
The original game had some really good stealth elements, unlike this one. This game hardly deserves the name "Deus Ex"
Also, the final boss is JC denton (the character you play as in the original!) WHAT? The criminal is JC? But thats the guy you play as in the original!!
Anyway, the original never gets old no matter how many times you beat it. This, well, it gets old.
It's not bad, but just could of been better.
I really loved the original Deus Ex. What a great game that is. A true classic. But Invisible War was a hugh disappointment for me. The graphics are pretty good, even by today's standards, but the environments are very claustrophobic; and the plot, and the general feel of the game world is unconvincing. I gave up on the game every time I tried to play it. I just could not get into it. Also there is a problem with the ammo system in that there is very little of it about at critical moments. Also the augmentation system which in the original game was very much like a leveling system was screwed-up and dumbed down in IW. The only good thing about the game was the music from the Kidney Thieves (awful name - yeuch). So I would say definitely give it a miss....really...and if you haven't played the original game...read the reviews...and play it! You can probably get it for a couple of Euro or Dollars online. Well worth it.
A supreme disappointment.
10 Hours or Less
The Bottom Line:
Deus Ex Invisible War isn't a bad game. It still has a strong player choice aspect and is more open than a lot of other shooters combined. But when you compare it to the original it falls apart. Everything is smaller and simpler, and while it is graphically more advanced; art direction is horrid.
The game follows a ll new character, but unfortunately the developers did not manage to give him the same "coolness" factor JC had. The end result is that you play a dweeb that you don't really give a damn about. The story opens with you being attacked in your local Tarsus academy, which allows you to escape. You set off to figure out who's pulling the strings, a lot like Deus Ex 1.
Unfortunately, it's not very interesting. All of the organizations are so radical it's hard to find anyone you'll like. Extremes are taken to the point of being disgusting. Due to this the ending seems irrelevant, and implausible.
Another issue with the story is that you're choices seem meaningless. There are no consequences for anything. Murder is wanton and goes unpunished. You can betray a faction and they'll forgive you...again, and again, and again. While these decisions were probably made to cut down on frustration, it's too heavy handed. Choices have consequences and Invisible War fails to show that.
Gameplay has been changed a lot. Skills are out, and combat has been changed. Biomods are simplified. The scale of the game is noticeably reduced, and is disappointing. Removing skills is the dumbest choice on part of the developers. While I do have a heavy RPG slant in my blood, removing Skills added nothing to the experience and takes away a very important part of the Deus Ex experience. Progression.
As for combat, removing the skills has a big impact. Aiming is more accurate and shooting is definitely better. Still, it has a long ways to go. By removing stat-driven combat, Invisible War has to compete with the greatest shooters...and it can't. Aiming is clunky, and bullets weak. Weapons have no real power and aren't satisfying to use as a result.
Biomods are no longer a hard, strategic choice. They can be switched out at will, leaving no real purpose to even think about your decision. Canisters now add biomods and upgrade them. The fact that any canister contains any power undermines another aspect of the original's decision making. There are less slots too, again we can handle it, don't dumb it down.
The game inherited Deus Ex's poor AI, and managed to make it downright stupid. Enemies commonly don't react to being shot. They ignore the bodies of their fallen comrades. They give up searches almost immediately. If you find a good sniping spot, you can kill practically an army, no sweat. In the actual cities, people do absolutely nothing, ever. It all feels lifeless, The complete opposite of the original's cities.
The interface is horrible. Everything is too concerned with looking aesthetically pleasing, not being functional. There's no map system, the inventory is a pain, and all the HUD elements clutters up the center of your screen. There is a fade option, but a little thought on the developer's end would've been appreciated. It's a real struggle to get the smallest bit of info from the menus which is not a good thing.
Honestly while the graphics are better technically, Artistically and in terms of style Deus Ex 1 wins out. Character design in Invisible War is horrendous. Everyone is horribly ugly, unrealistic, and dweebish. The environments are too "new" and perfect. In the supposed "dusty" parts of town, chrome plating is everywhere. Worse, the environments have been scaled back, which makes them noticeably less impressive.
The last major gripe is the game's length. I beat this in little under 6 hours. SIX hours. Most shooters are about that long today, but back then at least 10-15 hours was the standard. The original was 20+ hours. If you do all the side quests expect about 8-10 hours tops, there's no real place to explore anyway.
Deus Ex Invisible War is a decent enough of a game. it still has more player choice than many games put together but when you compare it to it's predecessor, it can only live in shame. Everything is a step down from the original, and the story is so poor (in some cases it's borderline stupid) that there's no point in playing this if you have played the original.
A worthy succesor !
20 to 40 Hours
The Bottom Line:
Being a great fan of the original Deus Ex, I have for a long time been looking forward to playing Deus Ex Invisible War. Frustratingly Deus Ex Invisible War has been standing idly on my shelf for several years, due to the game mysteriously crashing every time I had installed it and tried to run it. In the end I had given up...it was most likely something video card related issue, DE IW was infamous in its day for its high videocard requirements, yet it simply mystified me that the games installation menu told me my video card was fully adequate (and well it should be, the pc being from 2009 with a 1gb video card, far beyond DE IW´s 2004 releasedate). In the end I accidently found out what was wrong and why the game stubbornly crashed...it was´nt video card related afterall. I found a solution to the problem and finally : I could play DE IW. I had read a lot about the game. Generally negative comparisons with the original Deus Ex : DE IW gameplay and story was not as good as the original game; it was disappointing etc. So I had lowered my expectations from the start. But even if the game was inferior to the original DE, I was still looking forward to playing. Now that I have completed it, I must say that my relatively negative expectations was not fullfilled : The game is a worthy successor to DE. Sure, there are certain gameplay elements and design choices which are controversial and can be criticized: The absence of the skills system from DE; the relatively small levels (generally rather disappointing given that the Unreal 2 engine which was used for DE IW should be able to handle large outdoor scenes); and the A.I of the enemies which was somewhat weak. But also a lot of improvements to the original DE, apart from graphical side (both games of course falls short of todays standards, but that is hardly surprising given that DE are from 2000 and DE IW from 2004, and cannot hope to compare to the new fabulously looking DE 3) : More gameplay choices and sidequest than the original game and generally more freedom of playing style; good story, probably better than the original, and the whole atmosphere : music, leveldesign, the snippets of political and philosophical thoughts which also characterized the original DE game and the whole general "feel" of the game, sneaking around, taking guards out and avoiding surveilliance hardware - very much a worthy follow-up to DE. So give this, by now ageing, game a try, if you like games with a complex storyline and freedom of play.