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File:250px-Metro2033 wiki.jpg


Fear the future...


Metro 2033 is a First-Person Shooter with Survival Horror elements based on the novel of the same name, released in 2010 for the Xbox 360 and Steam. Set in Moscow twenty years after a devastating nuclear war, much of the action takes place Beneath the Earth, as humanity now shuns the surface wasteland in favor of living in the remains of the Moscow Metro system. The story features the 20-year-old Artyom, who embarks on a journey to solicit help from the Rangers before his home station is overrun by the mysterious and unstoppable "Dark Ones". Extremely bleak, incredibly atmospheric, and really quite scary.

Along the way, Artyom faces danger from not only the Dark Ones, but also the "normal" mutated wildlife that prowl the tunnels, unpredictable and deadly electrical anomalies, the hostile environment of the surface and, of course, unfriendly humans (from bandits to militant Soviets and resurgent Nazis). Oh, and there are ghosts. Nothing quite gets you like seeing the silhouettes and hearing the screams of people who aren't there. Especially when everyone else notices, and the hard-as-nails veterans completely lose their shit...

The world is bleak and resources are scarce; weapons are mostly cobbled together and the trading currency of choice is prewar military-grade bullets, giving intrepid Disaster Scavengers (and the player) a choice between taking on threats with substandard ammo or literally shooting money. Of course, then expense will probably be worth it to you when find yourself under attack by monsters, who threaten to leap out of the shadows and smash your gasmask right off your face while you're in the middle of a cloud of Deadly Gas and your headlamp is failing...

A sequel to the game titled Metro: Last Light was released in 2013.

Tropes used in Metro 2033 (video game) include:
  • Abandoned Playground: And how! While Artyom is walking through a ruined district he starts to hear voices and see things that are not actually there. At some point he comes across an old and rusty playground. Suddenly a freaking Flashback Echo happens. After a couple of seconds a vision vanishes and Artyom notices that the Dark one who was stalking him for a while was behind all that crazy stuff [cue awkward silence].
    • When the flashback ends, a swing seat keeps moving as if a child was playing here just a second ago.
  • Abnormal Ammo: Subverted. Military grade rounds are normal in other games, but here they are the only form of currency, which means that using them literally means you're shooting money away.
  • Above the Ruins: The ending cutscene, both "Enlightened" (Sparing Dark Ones) and "If It's Hostile, You Kill It" (Destroying Dark Ones) variants.
  • The Ace: Miller/Melnik, Hunter, Khan and Ace.
  • Achilles' Heel: Super Nosalises in "Cave" are afraid of the light.
  • Adam Smith Hates Your Guts: The only form of currency is prewar, military grade ammunition. Ammunition you could be using for an extra edge in a fight... but then you'd be literally shooting money. There are a few nice guns to be found if you take the time to look around, however. After a certain point in the game though, there's no place to buy anything, so you're definitely encouraged to use it against tougher mutants you come across.
  • Afterlife Express: Complete with bright lights and the shadows of passengers in the windows.
  • Artificial Brilliance: Somehow, the AI is surprisingly smart and good on Ranger Mode.
  • Artificial Stupidity: The loading screens can suffer from this. Sometimes if you get killed by being shot or by Nosalises, you will be told that you were killed by an anomaly. An anomaly in game is a ball of light that spits lightning at anything that moves.
    • The A.I. of human enemies for this game was widely mocked, as they often do things like run back and forth between cover points at random without actually stopping to use the cover to shoot at anything, even when being shot at.
  • Badass Boast: Hunter has a good one at the beginning.

Hunter: You can go like lambs to the slaughter but I'll hold on to what life I've got with teeth and claws, and I'll take more than a few of your "Homo Novus" with me to Hell!

    • Miller also gets one after seeing hangars in D6 filled with dozens of tanks, MRLs and SCUDs perfectly preserved underground.

Miller: Our heritage, our future, how much power is here. With all of this we'll rule the Earth once more! We won't have to live like rats, with sword and fire, we'll win back the sky and the sun! We can climb out of the dirt, rebuild the cities and the Metro tunnels will be once again filled with fast silver trains.

  • Badass Grandpa: When you realize that Miller had been in the Soviet Army, which had been dissolved 42 years prior to the events of the game and about 20 years before the nuclear holocaust.
    • The old man from the Hole station. You can find his body and his spear gun in the arsenal of the station and a long line of dead lurkers with arrows stuck between the eyes at the shacks.
    • Sasha's uncle also counts.

Sasha: They jumped at him, but he started shooting, and then the big nosalis bit him in the neck. But uncle is really strong, he killed him with his knife.

  • Bad Future
  • Bayonet Ya: The semiautomatic shotgun can come with a bayonet, which is a rather effective way of saving ammunition.
  • BFG: DShK mounted machine gun. It uses 12.7x108 mm bullets and leaves big holes in concrete and flesh. Sadly, no Ludicrous Gibs. Also a very limited supply of ammunition, roughly a hundred bullets (Unless you are riding a stolen Nazi cart. During this part of the game it can only overheat and never runs out of ammo).
    • The Heavy Automatic Shotgun fits that trope too. Basically, it is a DShK that was modified to use 12x70 ammunition and is light enough to be carried by a human. Initially it was available only in a pre-order version of the game from Gamestop, but the Russian community already made it available for any versions.
  • Before the Dark Times: Pre-War Earth.
  • Big Damn Heroes: When Artyom was captured and nearly executed by Nazis, Rangers Ullman and Pavel come into the room and swiftly eliminate the captors without firing a single bullet.
  • Bilingual Bonus: Subtitles in the English version differ greatly from the Russian ones, especially during Artyom's narration that accompanies loading screens. Sadly, several localizations are based on English translation, not the Russian original.
    • None of the songs in the game are translated. Instead different language settings use different songs. Bourbon's song in Riga is Sodatushki in the English dub, but it is replaced by Vladimirsky Central in the Russian version.
  • Blast Out: Bourbon and the bandit leader at the Suharevskaya station (called "Dry" in the English version). Both die.
  • Blind Idiot Translation: "Melnik" is a windmill worker in Russian. Melnik is also one of the main characters' surname. He becomes Miller in English dub.
    • Good Bad Translation: Windmills were used for milling at one point in history, so...
      • Names of people and places are not translated as a rule of thumb and for a good reason. Think about a marvelous metamorphosis awaiting a male name Dick otherwise.
  • Blob Monster: Giant Amoebas
  • Blown Across the Room: Partially averted. Bodies generally react to shots like you would expect them to (unless you shoot them with a DShK machinegun). Ragdoll Physics often glitch though, as they don't seem to collide with non-terrain features all that well.
  • Boom! Headshot!: Although a number of enemies wear protective headgear, aiming your shots at the head/neck region is a very effective tactic against humans.
  • Boss in Mook Clothing: Actually there are three different ones, Librarians, Demons, and Plated Nosalises.
    • The Librarians are found only in the Lenin Library. It is possible to stare the normal grey-white ones down in order to avoid confrontation for a short time, but the black Librarians found in the deep parts of the Library will attack you anyway and they are even tougher.
    • Bit- I mean Demons, are the deadliest enemies in the game. They're pretty much dragons, except that they don't breath fire. They are the most durable enemies in the game and are adept at instantly killing the unwary on the surface.
    • Plated Nosalises are the toughest form of Nosalis and they sport some sort of black-blue shiny plating on their skin and have big glowing eyes. Fortunately, shining your light on them stuns them briefly, so you can use that to score a few hits.
      • All of these, except for the Demons are Made of Iron, capable of surviving being stuck by a sticky grenade.
  • Butt Monkey: Artyom.
    • Falls off a rail cart at least three times.
      • During the third time, the rail cart flips over and nearly crushes him.
    • Subjected to a number of incapacitating hallucinations.
    • Knocked out and beaten up by a pair of Nazi soldiers.
    • Often very nearly falls to his doom because the surface or object that was supposed to support him gives way.
  • Cap: There is no limit for ammo (which means that you easily carry a 100 kg equivalent of ammunition) but throwing knives, grenades, sticky grenades and morphine syrettes are limited to five each.
  • The Chosen One: Artyom.
  • The Coconut Effect: Apparently western players won't understand the game takes place in Russia without people speaking with heavy accents and raspy voices.
  • Combat Tentacles: The fleshy tendrils that hang down from the ceiling in the Library. The Biomass in D6 also attacks you with these.
  • Computer Voice: D6 crane keeps informing Artyom of his progress in a calm prerecorded female voice while the biomass tries to break into the cabin.
  • Contemplate Our Navels: The preferred past time of some Metro inhabitants, generally trying to make sense of a post-apocalyptic world. Notable musings include the guy that speculates that ghosts and the like now exists because the nuclear war blew up Hell.
  • Cool but Inefficient: Scopes on pneumatic weapons and firearms. There are only two levels in the game big enough for long-distance sniping, glares and oily thumbprints on the optics obstruct vision in the dark and the zoom is excessive for even medium-ranged combat. Scoped Tihar rifle looks awesome though.
    • Some players have a habit of keeping their gas masks and nightvision goggles on at all times despite running the risk of damaging the gas mask or suffering the tunnel-vision caused by the goggles.
  • Cool Car: The Ranger's vehicle. In the book it was a regular firetruck that broke and was abandoned in the depot while the Moscow burned, in the game it's a modified GAZelle truck.
  • Cool Garage: A fortified orthodox Russian church.

Ulman: This is the first and so far the only human outpost up here...

  • Cool Guns: The AK-74M and VSK-94 are as close as your get with real weapons (Aside from a rare woodland camo and worn down wooden handguards instead of plastic ones that were present in the Beta version), but the AK-2012 is highly reminiscent of the P90.
  • Creepy Child: One of the child models in the game looks disturbingly similar [dead link] to a Type 3 Screamer from the 1995 film with the same name. It even seen holding the same teddybear on promo screenshots.
  • Crapsack World
  • Cuffs Off, Rub Wrists: Right after Artyom escapes the communists in Arsenal Station.
  • Cycle of Revenge
  • Dark Is Not Evil: But you only see it if you manage to get the "Enlightened" ending.
  • Deadly Gas: D6 is filled with it. Artyom has to climb the crumbling catwalks and kick-start the ventilation system to clear it out.
  • Deadpan Snarker: One of the soldiers in Frontline, whose interruptions are very much contrary to the Commissar's grandstanding.
  • Diegetic Interface: It doesn't rely on any sort of digital HUD—it's post-apocalyptic Russia, so no Powered Armor for you). Damage causes your vision to red out, while low air makes it go blurry. There's a button for looking at your watch (which shows both time left before you need to replace your gas mask filter and has a sensor for ambient light level, to help you sneak), while another brings up your journal (showing you your current objectives and a compass pointing toward it). The only non-diegetic part is your weapon selection and ammo counter, and even then, on most weapons you can see how much ammo you have left without looking at the HUD ammo need to use your journal to track ammo.
    • You have an ammo counter except on Ranger Hardcore, where you have to check your journal in order to get a definite count.
  • Difficult but Awesome: Ranger Mode.
  • Dirty Communists: The Communists, called the Reds, are definitely presented in a negative light.
  • Disaster Scavengers: Stalkers.
  • Disc One Nuke: As of the first (and presumably the last) DLC release, one can find a Volt Driver (home-made rail gun stolen from a caravan) in the bandit camp near "Рижская" station ("Riga" in the English version). It kills Librarians in five shots or less when overcharged and most other foes in one. It uses the same type of ammunition Tihar pneumo rifle does. It's the cheapest ammunition in the game, you can receive eight bearings in exchange for a single military grade round.
  • Driven to Suicide: Doctor in the Hole station hospital.
  • Do Not Go Gentle:

Pavel: Take this you bitches!!!

  • Downer Ending: The default ending, in which Artyom opts to destroy the home of the Dark Ones and is left to wonder whether he did the right thing.
  • Dueling Games: Compare with Fallout 3, in which a youth has lived underground his entire life, and must embark on The Quest to the surface and beyond.
    • It's basically STALKER, except more linear. Bonus points for 4A Games actually being founded by a couple of people who were involved with Stalker's development, specifically the underground lab levels. Both are also based on sci-fi novels by Russian authors.
    • Plot-wise it's also reminiscent of Hellgate:London, which had pretty much the same premise, only with demons instead of mutants.
    • Arguably, Call of Cthulhu (tabletop game), you fight demons, CHUD's and blob-monsters while dodging supernatural phenomenon in a moldy old subway.
  • Easy Level Trick: On the mission Frontline, if you listen to the right conversation you can find a shortcut that takes you right to the other side of the level, missing out most of the harder parts of the mission and making getting the no casualties achievement for that level much easier to get.
  • Emergency Weapon: Trench knife. Also throwing knives and Hellsing. Sort of. If you don't forget to pick up knives and arrows you will never run out of ammunition.
  • Escort Mission: Two, both towards the end of the game. The first isn't so bad as your escortee has rather high health and a pretty good gun, and is also supported by several invincible Rangers decked out with the best weapons and gear in the game... in fact you can really only fail it if you don't realize your escortee isn't invincible too and just let the monsters wail on him. The second, though, can easily be the game's Scrappy Level, as your escortee is a suicidal chipmunk who casually strolls down a hallway into endlessly respawning waves of exploding amoebas that can kill you in just 1 or 2 hits. You can actually destroy the spawners the amoebas emerge from to make this somewhat easier, but it's still rather annoying.
    • Bourbon essentially hires you to escort him to where he wanted to go, although only the first few levels before Market station play out like this. Afterwards, you get split up, briefly reunited, and are split up once more.
  • Every Firearm Is Open Bolt: Played straight in the original. Averted in Metro Redux.
  • Everything Is Trying to Kill You
  • Evil Gloating: After you get captured by Nazis, lampshaded a few seconds later.
  • Evil Phone: Twice in D6 bunker: In an airlock during Prologue and in the main chamber during "D6" chapter. The place was abandoned and decaying for at least twenty years, the government was destroyed during or dissolved shortly after the third world war, yet the phone rings when you restore power and press some buttons on the control panel. The player can't answer the call and other NPC don't seem to react at all though.
    • Game files refer to that specific sound as "d6_signal_4.ogg" and beside several scripted events it's supposed to happen at random. And it does.
    • It's possible this was based on the mysterious transmission signals people noticed in the area of Moscow. These signals are theoritized to be a part of a Russian fail-deadly "Perimeter" system nicknamed Dead Hand in the West.
  • Expy: Byakhee (demons) and Formless Spawn (Ameobas) from Call of Cthulhu (tabletop game).
  • Fingerless Gloves: In the game, Artyom starts off wearing a pair of knit fingerless gloves. The suit upgrades also change your gloves: full-fingered black leather gloves for the stealth suit, fingerless olive green combat gloves for the heavy armor.
  • Fire-Breathing Weapon: Flamethrowers.
  • First-Person Shooter
  • Gallows Humor: Pavel.
  • Gameplay Ally Immortality: To varying degrees. Near the end of the game, this happens twice with nearly-invincible rangers (though you have to escort a scientist during one of them). Any time you have only one companion, however, they can be swarmed, and they can die. In an early-game case, Bourbon can die in Dead City if he is mobbed too heavily by Howlers.
  • Gas Mask Mooks: Anyone (including you) in a heavily irradiated/poisoned area.
    • The Nazi Stormtroopers wear gas masks, even indoors. In fact, their distinct gas masks (different in style from the ones everyone else wears) is the one shown on the front cover of the game.
      • They are met indoors patrolling a warzone and those masks are strong enough to deflect at least one 5.45 or .44 bullet. Almost every Red trooper wears a similar protective helmet.
  • Genius Loci: You apparently stumble into one with Bourbon; the tunnel he originally planned to take was sealed off, forcing you to detour into a small side room where the Nosalises refuse to follow. It turns out that it's full of the dead bodies of other explorers, and as Bourbon tries to find a way out, he begins to hallucinate something singing to him. As his hallucination gets worse and worse, you start seeing the room as a dark alley, with a slowly-opening gate at one end increasingly shrouded in an ominous red and black atmosphere. However, thanks to Artyom's psychic resistance and a little help from a Dark One, you manage to escape from the room's deadly grasp.
  • Go Out with a Smile: The dead soldier with a broken gun on a pile of Nosalis corpses at the airlock of the Hole Station is smiling.
  • Guide Dang It: You obtain the 'true' ending by listening to conversations, lingering in hallucination sequences and so forth...the problem is that the only indication you've achieved anything with these actions is a brief, unexplained flash on the screen.

Khan: You reap what you sow, Artyom. Force answers force, war breeds war, and death only brings death. To break this vicious circle one must do more than act without any thought or doubt.

    • 4A Games team made an armor attachment system that worked just like it should: Every pouch, helmet, magazine or armor plate honestly did it's job and subtracted a certain amount of damage dealt by a projectile that hit them. But it was never explained to the player, which led to mass confusion and complaints that enemies are literal bullet sponges, while all it took was a single bullet to the neck.
    • You never need to buy any guns you see in shops, because you can always find the same gun, or a better version in some cases, for free hidden on the levels.
    • The Library is a level where you need to spend a lot of time of the surface. Hope you brought plenty of filters!
  • Groin Attack: Heavily implied in the Armory level, where a malcontent mocks that a Communist soldier is attacking the part that attracts him the most.
  • Gun Porn: The game is filled with it, despite the fact that as a Scavenger World, most of them are cobbled together pieces of crap. Probably the best example is the revolver shotgun, which has a complicated reload mechanism because of the fact that only four of the six shells are accessible. The reload animation shows all of this accurately, reloading in the correct order and manually cycling the chamber as necessary.
  • Harder Than Hard: Ranger Mode. It doesn't matter whether you pick Ranger Easy or Ranger Hardcore, you are still going to cringe more that once. The fact that the game is noob unfriendly to begin with doesn't help at all. A list of the notable things it does to murder players includes:
    • Ammunition is extremely scarce. Ammo pickups are down to 1-2 bullets per magazine or pouch from a solid dozen on Normal difficulty. It will be a rare occasion when you fire a gun; you'll be using your knife for almost everything.
      • Unless, of course, you keep your eyes open to find all the military rounds around and make the right deals at marketplaces. This way, you can literally go around with hundreds of bullets for every gun you have and never be afraid of running out of ammo.
    • HUD is disabled save for laser pointers on mid to late-game weapons (And those can be turned off in the game settings as well).
    • Damage, dealt and taken, is several times higher. Both Artyom and his enemies, human and mutant, are glass cannons, killing and dying incredibly fast, up to the point of one hit - one kill.
    • Artyom's gas mask breaks incredibly fast making surface or toxic levels far more deadly.
    • The player is forced into stealth since a head on approach is generally met with a game over screen within seconds.
  • Healing Potion: Rather than using bandages or the like, a medkit consists of syrettes[1] of painkillers. Artyom can carry up to five of them in an orange Individual Medkit used by Civil Defence.
  • Heroic Mime: Artyom. While he narrates the story during the actual gameplay he only ever actually says something when a railcart is about to fall on him. Also lampshaded by multiple characters who comment on his silence.
  • Hide Your Children: Heavily averted, there are many atmospheric moments featuring kids living underground, including an entire level dedicated to carrying a very chatty young boy on your shoulders, as you attempt to reunite him with evacuees from his station.
  • Hollywood Silencer: Spectacularly averted. Save for the VSK-94, which is pretty close to this trope in real life, silenced weapons are still fairly noisy (the revolver sounds like a firecracker going off), and enemies aren't oblivious to this sound. Using a silenced weapon versus an unsilenced weapon is the difference between enemies going "Something's up. Stay alert and check it out," versus "Someone's firing a weapon right over there. Get to cover!" rather than keeping you from being noticed at all.
  • How We Got Here: The game begins with a section pretty close to the end. Most of the game is leading up to that initial fight up until a Demon lunged at you.
  • Humans Are the Real Monsters
  • Humans Are Special
  • The Hunter: Hunter and the Order he belongs to. "Any danger should be eliminated by any means necessary".
  • Hyperspace Arsenal: Partially averted. You can carry only 3 types of weapons at once. Primary (assault rifles of all sorts), secondary (shotguns/pneumo rifles), a handgun, a medkit containing five syrettes, several pipe-bombs, and five throwing knives. Ammo count is unlimited though, so a careful player might stack up several thousands of bullets by the end of the game.
  • Idle Animation: Stand in one place with any weapon at the ready (or even your battery-charger) and Artyom will fiddle with it. Some of them are amusing, like one gun almost falling apart, or him tossing it up in the air where it takes too long to fall down. See Idle weapon animations.
  • If I Do Not Return: Sparks the plot.
  • Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy: Very much averted by human enemies, especially soldiers.
  • Improvised Weapon: Bastard assault rifles, and Double-barreled shotguns, as well as the Hellsing and Tihar airguns which are cobbled together from junk, as well as the bullets. Needless to say, a pre-apocalypse AK is a very valuable piece of hardware.
  • In Medias Res: The prologue level takes place towards the end of the game. You then go back to the start of the plot and work your way back to that scene.
  • Instant Win Condition: Finding the D6 documents triggers a cutscene and instantly ends the library mission. Hidden deep within the underground archives, these mystical papers bestow upon Artyom a host of wondrous abilities, such as banishing Librarians, bypassing locked gates, breathing poisonous air without a gas mask, and summoning his friends in a bulldozer. It's particularly jarring because the preceding narrator voiceover implies that getting out of the library alive with the documents will be an uphill battle as grueling as getting in was... and then it's over in less than thirty seconds.
  • Interface Screw: Some of the surreal sequences can evoke this. Also, the small, low contrasts fonts are not easily legible on smaller screens.
  • Intoxication Ensues: There's one scene where you and a buddy are stuck just below the surface in a room with an anomaly. Your friend starts babbling about "the Great Gate" and "marvelous songs", but Artyom's resistance to anomalies means that you don't see what he's seeing, so he seems high or drunk.
  • Invulnerable Civilians: Noncombatants are never found outside fortified stations, and Artyom holsters his weapons whenever he enters a safe zone, making it impossible to harm them.
  • It's Up to You: Occurs a few times, but not to the point where Artyom is the only one who does anything.
  • "Join the Army," They Said: Troops on the train to Frontline. Mentioned word for word.
  • Jump Scare: Surprisingly scarce.
  • Kill It with Fire: Thrice. Chapters 1 (Flamethrower), 5 (Flamethrower) and 6 respectively (MRL).
  • Knife Nut: On the harder difficulties, it is advisable to conserve ammo by using your knife where possible.
  • Large Ham: The Commissar on the frontline level. He tries to start off the welcoming of new recruits by singing The Internationale, but gets interrupted. He then gives a grandiose speech with a comedically high pitched nasal voice and mispronounces his r's like w's (An obvious parody on Vladimir Ilyich Lenin himself). It's filled with propaganda and then cut short by a soldier snarking. He finishes by telling everybody to get their shit together.
    • Several minutes later he orders an execution of a man who found and marked the secret passage under the rails on the basis of suspected mutiny as if it's a daily routine. After that he casually asks an executioner to check if the passage actually exists.
  • Last Stand: Defenders of the Hole station - Children of the Underground.
  • Licensed Game
  • Lies to Children: Dialogue of a father and his son on Exhibition station during Chapter 1. Also a bit of a Tear Jerker.

Boy: Daddy? When mommy will come back?
Man: Soon, very soon...I wish she saw how grown up you are now...

  • Lighter and Softer: Compared to the source material, the game world is downright optimistic and hospitable.
    • Granted, it's still a dreary Crapsack World. But even the merest shred of hope makes all the difference.
  • Living Shadow: Silhouettes.
  • Lost in Translation: A minor case but crucial to the plot: Hunter's adage if it's hostile -- you kill it originally was any danger should be eliminated by any means necessary. This contrasts with the words of Khan who tell Artyom that not everything that is dangerous is necessarily hostile.
  • Lost Technology: MRLs used to destroy the Dark Ones' hive. Also any prewar weapon, especially the AK 2012.
  • Lost Superweapon: D6 is filled with them: Operational train cars with autopilot, tanks, MRLs, SCUDs and so on.
  • Made of Iron: A lot of things in the game. Artyom himself survives multiple severe injuries and then gets right back up afterwards, but only in cutscenes.
    • The toughest enemies in the game can definitely seem like it. Anything covered under Boss in Mook Clothing definitely counts as this.
  • Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane: What the hell was that thing in the Lost Catacombs?
  • Meaningful Name: Artyom is the Russian masculine form of the Greek name Artemisios, relating to the Greek goddess of the hunt. She obviously had to have excellent aim, as Artyom himself is said to have by Hunter... but two of the possible Greek cognate words for "Artemis" can also be read as "safe" or "butcher".
  • Meat Moss: Ameoba hives, Biomass.
  • Mistaken for Badass: Artyom is occasionally assumed to be a member of the Rangers, once after (optionally) freeing a group of POWs from the Nazis and again after returning a child to his mother after a mutant attack.
  • Mistaken for Spies
  • More Criminals Than Targets: Averted, unlike similarly themed games. You only encounter a very small number of bandits throughout the whole game, consisting of two small encampments with less than 15 men each.
  • More Dakka: Most of the time subverted. Ammunition is always precious, so the only way to use automatic weapons effectively is to fire in only short bursts. You can easily run out of ammunition if you aren't careful.
    • The Trope is entirely averted on Ranger Mode, where you will fire all weapons one shot at a time and count every single round fired.
  • Moscow Metro
  • No Bikes in the Apocalypse: Averted. A primary means of getting transportation around the metro tunnels is by taking handcars powered by working a lever.
  • No Canon for the Wicked: Averted. Last Light uses the book ending as canon.
  • No Scope: You will want to use your weapon's sights every time you fire. However, it's an enforced trope when using any of the shotguns, as the double barrel uses one fire button for each barrel, the semiautomatic shotgun has a melee attack mapped to the aim button, and the heavy shotgun will fire no matter which trigger is pulled. Fortunately, you can use a HUD crosshair to make up for this.
  • Night Vision Goggles: Both highly realistic and highly effective.
  • Nightmare Sequence: Several times as the plot progresses. And just like in the book, Artyom eventually receives more and more control over his body during those, progressing from just watching at unfolding events to breaking from the nightmare on his own volition.
  • Nintendo Hard: The game is not easy in any case, but Ranger Mode pushes the difficulty right into the absurd.
  • Not Even Bothering with the Accent: Almost completely averted, since most of the voice actors in the English version of the game actually are Russian, but one man who lets you into the Armory station is quite obviously voiced by an American. This character speaks with an American accent even in the book, however—Moscow being the biggest city in Europe, it's not surprising that there are foreigners around, even After the End.
  • Nothing Is Scarier: Frequently! A large part of the immersion of the game comes from the fact that not everything that spooks you is actually dangerous.
  • No Swastikas: The Nazi faction's symbol is a big "C" instead of any actual Third Reich-related imagery. This C is the Moscow Metro sign for stop/no entry, symbolizing the Nazis' attempts at getting rid of all ethnic groups other than their own.
  • Obvious Trap: Almost every trap is clearly visible and has a thick rope as a triggering mechanism, which is hard to miss when you're moving carefully. If you're involved in a fight or frantically searching for a new mask filter, however, you can stumble into one. Justified by the fact that these traps are presumably meant for dangerous wildlife, not people. There's only one trap that is actually very hard to notice, and it misfires, so triggering it only gets you a "click".
    • The exception here would be broken bottles, or other ground clutter that makes noise when you step on it—on stealth levels, these can be deadly (alerting the enemy to your position), and you have to be very careful to avoid them.
    • The traps are instant death if you're not used to being careful and paying attention to the environment.
  • Offscreen Start Bonus: On the second map of Dead City. After going down stairs, you spawn in a room that implies you went down some form of tunnel. However, there are two rooms behind you that contain dead bodies with some ammunition you may collect.
  • Oh God, with the Verbing!: "Enough with the talking. Get out! Form up!"
  • The Order: The Rangers. They seem to focus their considerable talents on countering threats to the Metro as a whole, like the Dark Ones and the Nazis.
  • Our Ghosts Are Different: Faceless shadows that have to relive their last moments forever. Touch one - and you will join them.
    • Which is in turn a nod to the source material, where it's suggested that the nuclear war blew up the afterlife as well.
  • Percussive Maintenance: Done and lampshaded by Miller in D6.

Melnik/Miller: Just like in old Hollywood movies about Soviet Union!

  • Please Wake Up: Sasha and his uncle.
  • Plot Armor: When you go out to the surface in order to reach the Library, you attract the attention of a Demon which won't die no matter how you hurt it. Once you're inside the library and it appears in the window, you can kill it.
  • Press X to Not Die: Shows up as "quickly tap (use button)", both in-game and during the cutscenes. In-game, it happens when you're about to get mauled by a mutant and need to shove it away and carve it's face off with a big knife. During cutscenes, it's often needed to avoid falling to your death from flooring/ladders collapsing.
  • Psychic-Assisted Suicide: What Dark Ones attempt to do to Artyom when he brings "death" by making him jump off the Ostankino tower.
  • Punch Clock Villain / Gray and Gray Morality: Most of the Communist and Fascist soldiers enlisted for food and a warm bed, or for the money, or to keep their families safe. Very few of them actually believe in the political message their chosen faction is espousing.
  • Pacifist Run: Completing certain missions without killing any human opponents earns you a morality point that influences whether or not you can get the true ending.
    • In fact, one can finish the game without killing any humans except for the obligatory unskippable massacre at the Lost Tunnels level, but it takes a lot of effort. See the pacifist/stealth walkthrough playlist.
    • According to 4A Games they did a stealth overhaul for Last Light and plan to let the player do a full stealth run as a viable option, unlike M2033 where there were certain moments where Artyom had to shoot his way through.
  • Quick Melee: The semiautomatic shotgun performs a melee attack either with the butt stock or a bayonet depending on which version you have.
    • You can hold the button down to do a more powerful strike.
  • Quick Nip: Pavel hands Artyom a hipflask after he and Ulman rescue him from his would-be Nazi executioner.
  • Ragnarok Proofing: Massively averted. Survivors live in squalid conditions and metro is a maze of crumpled concrete and rusty pipes. Even most firearms are improvised and only few can afford a still operating prewar automatic weapon. So much so that when, near the end of the game, you encounter a functional subway line with cars that look completely pristine and are apparently still running back and forth on auto-pilot, it's incredibly creepy and the characters all even remark as much.
    • The aforementioned subway station, D6, is a secret bunker deliberately designed to be Ragnarok Proofed. In addition to its still perfectly intact stockpile of tanks, ordinance and other military supplies, many of the electronics are still functional. Yet even then, 20 years of neglect have already taken their toll (such as rusting gangways and the fact that some of the automated systems had to be activated manually).
  • Red Shirt: Played With. A nameless unimportant Ranger NPC almost dies no less than three times, each time being a thinly veiled parody of the cliched "nameless ally gets killed to show how dangerous things are" scene.
  • Revolvers Are Just Better: The only handgun available is a no-name .44 revolver and its numerous modifications. Justified since 9x18 or 9x19 ammo is too weak to use against mutants. It still looks weird as revolvers are practically non-existent in today's Russian Federation and civilians are no allowed to own handguns, nor is anything in a pistol caliber available to them.
  • Rodents of Unusual Size: Howlers and Lurkers.
  • Sawed-Off Shotgun: Double-barreled one. Also one of the most powerful weapons in the game and it is available practically from the start.
  • Scavenger World
  • Scenery Gorn: The ruins of Moscow in the snow look absolutely sublime, and vaguely depressing. Gawk all you want, just make sure not to look at the Kremlin!
  • Schmuck Bait: If you pay Nikki, the prostitute, you will get a "big surprise".
  • Science Fantasy: Post-nuclear wasteland with humans surviving off pigs and fungus, fighting mutants and crawling through ruins—more-or-less a standard After the End setting. Then we throw in the murderous ghosts and Afterlife Express...
  • Shoot the Dog: The Communists do this to a soldier who found a secret way into the Nazi base, charging him with desertion.
  • Shotguns Are Just Better: And revolver shotguns with bayonets are even better!
  • Shout-Out:
    • Metro 2033 the book shows up a remarkable number of times in Metro 2033 the game. An NPC in Exhibition station will apologize for borrowing the book (from Artyom!) for so long, and Artyom's father has a copy as well. Later, in Armory, Andrew the Smith has another copy in his room plus a giant poster for it pinned up on his wall, and there's yet another copy on the train with you when you catch a ride out of Armory. There's actually a mod created by the Russian community that replaces all of these with pornography and cheap detective novels (a mildly NSFW example [dead link]), presumably to avoid the Mind Screw that comes from Breaking the Fourth Wall or remove the aggressive Product Placement.
    • There are people called Stalkers, who play the same role as Stalkers in Roadside Picnic. Made explicit at one point during the Great Library level, when one of your companions stops to look at the books on a shelf.

"Hey, Roadside Picnic! There's something familiar!"

  • Sinister Subway
  • The Smurfette Principle: There is exactly one named female character, and she's a minor NPC. Oh, and also a prostitute.
  • Spiritual Successor: To the STALKER series. Actually, more like an estranged spiritual brother, in a manner of speaking, since the people behind Metro 2033 left the S.T.A.L.K.E.R. team during Shadow of Chernobyl's infamously protracted development - though now that S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2 has been canceled, this trope may be played more straight in Metro: Last Light.
  • Stay in the Kitchen: Men go out and protect the stations, run the trading caravans, and maintain machinery and equipment. Women stay home and take care of the kids, cook the food, and watch the pigs.
  • Stealth-Based Mission: It's not actually required, but there are a few levels where stealth is the obvious solution and easiest way through. Two of them give an achievement for making a Pacifist Run, but one also has an achievement for taking the exact opposite path.
  • Sticky Bomb: The spiked grenade, which comes with a bit of a twist. The grenade is "sticky" not because of some kind of adhesive, but because it's bristling with razor-sharp nails. Ouch.
  • Stupidity Is the Only Option: In the Armory station. The only way to proceed is to walk right into a Red Commissar and get arrested.
  • Super-Persistent Predator: Reconstructed with one very hungry Demon that chases Artyom through the Alley and sewers below it, crashes a part of the State Library facade at him, crawls in through the front doors and claws at the makeshift barricade, attempts to grab Artyom through the barred window, is scared off by gunfire repeatedly, cripples Danila in the Reading Hall, circles around the building while Artyom makes his way through the Repository, then finally breaks into the halls and gets into a fight with Librarians over Artyom's body while the player falls down the elevator shaft.
  • Supporting Protagonist: It's evident that Artyom is really dependent upon the help of the more experienced veterans.
  • Surprisingly-Sudden Death: Boris in the Dungeon.
  • Survival Horror: Oh big time. It's bleak, resources are tough to find, enemies can easily mess you up, and there's plenty of horrors to be found.
  • Take Your Time: Cursed.
  • Taking You with Me: Occurs more than once.
  • A Taste of Power: The prologue section, where you have powerful guns and a relatively high amount of ammo.
    • Except on Ranger Mode, where you can barely scrounge one full magazine for your primary firearm even if you turn the entire tutorial level upside down.
      • For comparison, on the easiest difficulty setting the player gets 400+ bullets.
  • Ten-Second Flashlight: Actually done very well. You start with a flashlight, and later obtain night vision goggles. Both greatly improve your ability to see (especially as some parts of the game are pitch black), but both need electricity to work. So, the game gives you a hand-crank dynamo to recharge them. A charge will last for a few minutes (and make your light burn brighter) and powering back up is easy as pie... assuming nothing is trying to eat your face at the time.
  • Those Wacky Nazis: The main opposition to the Reds.
  • To Absent Friends: Bandits at the Dry station.
  • Too Awesome to Use: Military-grade bullets.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Artyom and the player take several throughout the story, going from getting your ass kicked in almost every encounter to fighting on an even level with the resident Badass Normals.
  • Trial and Error Gameplay: Good luck operating that crane before the Biomass tears it to pieces.
  • Unbreakable Weapons: Bastard AR overheats when fired in full-auto though.
  • The Undead: Apparently, the world got blown up so good that Heaven, Hell and Purgatory were atomized as well. When someone bites it, they haunt that stretch of tunnel forever. There's one tunnel that's so haunted that even the mutants and rats are too scared to go there; Khan comments "This tunnel must re-live its past. And those unfortunate enough to walk here at such a moment, usually join that past." There's one very creepy scene where Khan chants at a bunch of ghosts so that they let you through.
  • Underground Monkey: It's not really noticeable, but there are only five main types of monsters in the game: Nosalies, Howlers, Librarians, Demons and Amoebas. Even fewer in the book, as most of the monsters are only mentioned in ghost stories and are never actually encountered by Artyom.
    • Three of the monsters in-game have subspecies. Nosalises have the black (stronger than usual), winged (more agile and has a special attack) and armored (fast and very hard to kill) varieties; Howlers have Lurkers (even faster, smaller and more annoying); Librarians can be found in a black (stronger and more aggressive) variety. They tend to have a distinctive look to them however, so it isn't all that bad.
  • Universal Ammunition: Most weapons seem to be chambered to accommodate ammunition based on the 5.45×39mm design.
  • Unusually Uninteresting Sight: It's rare to see anything that isn't ruined, creepy , or defunct.
  • Urban Warfare: All your fights and encounters with hostile humans.
  • Vader Breath: You breathe very loudly while wearing your gas mask, and more so as the filter gets worn out.
  • Villain Has a Point: A Nazi soldier at the Black Station rationalizes atrocities committed by his faction as an acceptable evil that will eventually lead to prosperity of the whole Metro. Nazi controlled stations are some of the safest, wealthiest an prosperous ones in the Metro, but are facing empending doom due to aging population. Nazis face extinction without expansion, Metro faces extinction without a unified government and law.
  • Voice with an Internet Connection: Vladimir in D6.
  • Walk It Off: However, the health regenerates a lot slower (though not as slow as in a certain comparable game) compared to contemporary FPSes, that you may want to rely on your good'ol medkits in case things get too intense to let you regenerate at all.
  • Wall of Weapons: Most shops.
  • Was Once a Man: It is hinted that Dark Ones and Librarians are mutated humans.
  • Weaksauce Weakness: The Boss in Mook Clothing super tough Nosalises with the glowing eyes in the cave can be briefly stunned and made vulnerable to attack just by shining your flashlight on them, giving you a few seconds to whale on them.
  • Wham! Line: The last line of dialogue before the ending cutscene

The Dark One: "We want peace."

  1. a sort of syringe that has a squeezable bag instead of a rigid tube and a piston