Metro Exodus, the third game in the wonderful Metro 2033 FPS trilogy, is very nearly here, and we've just had an extended, final hands-on with the game. We noticed many interesting details, but perhaps the most curious is the fact that there are no Metro Exodus side quests.
Unlike the previous two games, Metro 2033 and Last Light, Metro Exodus is an open-world game - or at least a game with open-world areas you can freely explore, like BioWare's Dragon Age Inquisition (not one open world, but a number of them). So it's perhaps surprising that there will be only one main mission to head for, and no side missions at all. Fortunately, however, there are other things you can do.
At the event we attended to get our hands-on with Metro Exodus, Huw Benyon, Head of Global Brand Management for Deep Silver, stated that despite having open-world environments there were "no side quests" in the game, although there are still other things the player can do.
We noticed upon playing that he was correct - the only missions you get officially set are the story missions, but that's not to say there aren't other things to do. You can scan the open-world environment with your binoculars and pick out places of interest, which get marked on your map, and will always result in interesting fights, loot, lore, new weapons or something else worthwhile.
We even got an optional "request" from the sniper character Giul - when venturing into spider-infested halls, she asked if we could find a picture of her mother somewhere there. After a bit of searching we found it, and returned it to a grateful Giul as we left. We have honestly no idea how the story would be affected if we hadn't found the picture, but we didn't get any immediate reward for it, and it wasn't marked on our quest log. A side quest... but not a side quest, in that there was no obvious benefit except for the look on Giul's face when we returned it to her. We'd do it again...
Metro Exodus is out on February 15, and it's shaping up to be a truly special game - and even without side-quests, there's still plenty to do in the open world areas.