The Big Question: Action Or Stealth?

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As most of you know a new Deus Ex came out this week, which is always exciting. Invisible War might not have set many hearts alight, but the series has been consistently good nonetheless.

But every Deus Ex game always presents me with a problem. Do I want to absolutely, positively blow away every enemy in the building — or should I opt for the stealthier route?

Most gamers in practice, of course, will end up using a mixed course of action. But the question mark over my head is one of principle, and role-playing. I build my character from the beginning to favour certain styles, and I'm always perplexed as to what I want those styles to be.

Action games always have bosses. And dealing with bosses quietly often isn't an option, or at least not one that's available to me.

So more often than not, I build for the guns blazing route. I go for the high-powered sniper rifles, and then whatever else is necessary for precision headshots after that.

What's your preference? Are you the sneaky type, or more of a John Woo fan?


    For Deux Ex I'll go stealthy / non-lethal because it's more of a challenge and also more true to the flavour of the background.

    That being said, I'll generally do a guns blazing playthrough as well, just for fun :-)

      Yep. That's how I tackle most Hitman games. Go through the whole figuring out the puzzle aspect of the game without unnecessary kills, leaving no evidence and approaching everything the way the character would. I like to end every Hitman game knowing that my playthrough fits into the whole 'practically a myth' narrative. Then I'll go back and lay waste to the world.
      Although Deus Ex I find there are parts where an action sequence suits the narrative better than a stealth sequence. My ego usually takes over there and I go for the challenge of stealth.

    Staying stealthy until the best possible moment to drop in like a cat among pigeons to cause the maximum chaos has always been my approach. It's usually how I approach video games too.

    Last edited 24/08/16 11:20 am

    I wanna say Action. But I suck at shooting... and end up being sneaky.

    Stealth until the inevitable cock-up that forces me to murder everyone still conscious. I like the idea of being stealthy, but I'm under no illusion that I'm any good at it :P

      +1. I try stealth, I love the idea of it. Then I try to no non-lethal. Then I wind up gunning down everyone in my way.

      Yip yip yip yiiiiiiip (alien noises)

      Same same. I wish, however, that it was more often possible to have a balance of both in games rather than either being a stealth ghost through the whole level or a single mess up causing every dude in the building to come running to you and forcing you to massacre all and sundry.

    Try for stealthy, end up in a blood bath. IF the guards just ignored me and let me think I'm all ninja stealthy they could have gone home to their families...............but no, they wanted to do things the messy way so sorry Timmy, your dad is dead and Christmas is cancelled...

    Whichever gives the most exp.

    Reward systems influence player behaviour: Truth.

      Very much this! I don't tend to like games that force stealth, but if there's decent enough reward for being stealthy, I'll always give it a try!

    I never kill in these games unless the game literally will not allow me to go the non lethal approach. I think that was partially for trophies last Deus Ex...

    Stealth I think, if only by virtue of the fact I usually creep around at a pretty slow pace checking out every little thing and being cautious of what's up ahead, especially in high tension/scary games.

    Stealth with a heavy side-order of hacking.

    Stealth non-lethal. Playing it on Deus Ex difficulty too. Difficulty balance feels really good for now.

    I was like a kid in a candy store in Prague. So many keypads to hack. So many vent accesses and balcony jumps. It's so good.

    Last edited 24/08/16 11:47 am

      Yup this is why deus ex is king for me, it rewards exploration

    I think VGCats explains it best:

    Stealth its the best defense and best offense... done right both by the game and player stealth usually rewards with big one hit kills/stuns (like a silenced headshot in Fallout 4 or Sniper Elite) and defensively cause the enemies dont know your attacking or where you are you dont get hurt.

    I always prefer the non-lethal option. I love blowing shit up and killing baddies as much as the next guy but it's always more of a challenge to be better guy and not kill.

    Anybody can kill but it takes the better person avoid it.

    Tactical Espionage Action!

    If they are done right then either is a great option. I love stealth but when it's painfully executed then I just unload all the clips hahaha

    For me it's all about slowly neutralizing the enemy so I can poke around to my hearts content. That said I'm not averse to shooting shit up once I have maxed my stealth skills and can put some points into action. Installing it right now....gaaaaahhhh

    Stealth! STEALTH! Steeeeaaaalth... That and taking the high road by going non-lethal. It tells the enemy that you were SO good at your job, that you didn't need to kill their asses.

    Killing is for axes. Whereas you're a scalpel.

    Last edited 24/08/16 8:39 pm

    Stealth/non-lethal every time. Half of my Steam library is straightforward fps stuff and when I have the option to avoid that I'll take it every time.
    Also I think it's more fun and appropriate for the tone of the game. The only time I broke my non-lethal rule in my first play through of HR was when they were shooting at Malik and my previous restraint made going mental with the revolver (now with explosive ammo) insanely satisfying.

      I just got up to that bit (finishing on BC) and damn your right I held down the B button on those punks

    Stealth was always the way to go in HR but eventually my cover gets blown

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