Wicked phenomenon, yes? But, you know, it’s not any more "evil" than, say… fire. It all depends on your point of view. Try to get a better understanding of things before you make your judgement.Khan
An Anomaly, or Dark Star, is an extremely dangerous phenomenon that travels through the Metro. Anomalies only make appearances in three levels throughout the entirety of Metro 2033, in the Chronicles Pack DLC for Metro: Last Light, and in Metro Exodus. Composing of a mysterious floating orb that radiates electricity, this phenomenon is feared by humans and mutants alike. It's possibly an active form of energy, thought to be most likely a variant of ball lightning.
Later, during the level "Anomaly", Artyom learns to bypass the anomaly by staying still until it moves away. Near the end of the level, the same blue orb kills a horde of nosalises via an electric shock. Khan mentions here that, "it's not anymore 'evil' than, say - fire," implying that it can be seen as both a good and bad thing, like fire. When used correctly, it can be a powerful tool, but otherwise it is incredibly dangerous.The final appearance of the anomalies is during "Dark Star", where Miller, Ulman, Artyom, and the Rangers are on their way to D6. Upon reaching the airlock to D6, an anomaly floats into view, possibly being attracted by the electrical supply in D6. The Rangers panic, despite Artyom knowing how to survive, and start trying to force the door to open. What is more, a horde of nosalises are trying to flee from the anomaly and attack the Rangers, forcing Artyom to defend his companions with a flamethrower. The group only just manages to get the door open and scramble inside, avoiding the anomaly.
Metro: Last Light
The anomalies are only seen during the "Khan" level of the Chronicles Pack, in the abandoned tunnels to Polyanka. The entity is first seen after Khan and Uhlman leave an abandoned train - the anomaly floats into view, seemingly searching, occasionally emitting electricity. Khan warns Uhlman to stay still, and the anomaly passes on. Uhlman incredulously says, "that's a story to tell back at the base!".
Later on, the pair is attacked by a horde of rats, devouring all in their path. The two manage to make it to a tunnel, cowering around a torch while the rat flood surrounds them. Khan shoots a barrel and ignites the oil inside, blocking the passage temporarily. Uhlman manages to turn on the lights in the tunnel, which Khan hopes will attract an anomaly. Just before Uhlman is ready to find another way around, the anomaly appears, attracted to the electricity and movement. It electrocutes all the rats, leaving Khan and Uhlman unharmed. It then promptly disappears, giving Khan and Uhlman the chance to escape.
Metro ExodusAnomalies make a return in Metro Exodus, this time on the surface. They are present in the Volga region, particularly in areas with a lot of metal. They are more active at night, and if Artyom is lucky he may randomly witness the demise of an anomaly (the anomaly enters a particulary energetic phase before dispersal) that may or not have to do with being forced to discharge its energy too often by contact with mutants.
Additionally during the Novosibirsk level, when Artyom is inside the institute, there seems to be a new kind of anomaly that shines bright rays of light, while seemingly having a gravitational influence on objects within the level as chairs and tables suddenly start to float. It appears to follow Artyom from outside as he progresses through the building. The glowing ball also seems to give off more radiation when closer to it and activates keys on a piano when Artyom passes it. It also gives off lightning in a similar fashion to the normal anomalies, though it does not hurt Artyom.
Metro: Last Light
- The simplest explanation for the anomalies is that they are a type of ball lightning generated under certain favorable conditions in a few particular areas of the Metro.
- A time anomaly appears in Denis Shabalov's "The Constitution of the Apocalypse" trilogy from the Universe of Metro 2033, namely the following three novels: The Right to Use Force, The Right to Life, and The Right to Revenge.
- The anomaly in the Khan level will continually move closer to (and eventually kill) the player character if they do not stand still, as warned by Khan. Regardless of movement, the electric emissions (electric sparks) will kill the player character if they are standing too close to it.
- Similarly, anomalies can be shot, though doing so while within range of a jolt is a suicidal maneuver. If Artyom survives, Khan will make note of his action by saying, "Artyom what are you doing!?", and a moral point will be lost. If Artyom did what Khan said instead, he can gain a moral point.
- The anomaly is attracted to large amounts of electricity and movement, as indicated by Khan attracting one in the Polyanka tunnels.
- It is ironic that Hunter's policy of "If it's hostile, you kill it" almost got them killed by an anomaly, while Khan's pacifist policy of "You reap what you sow" saved Artyom. Although, if anomalies are non-sentient natural phenomena, they would not technically be hostile and should not be subject to Hunter's policy in any case.
- The anomalies of both the Metro Series and the S.T.A.L.K.E.R. series are derived from the anomalies of Roadside Picnic. Both Metro 2033's Dark Star anomalies and the S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Electro and Tesla anomalies were inspired by the "комариная плешь" anomalies in Roadside Picnic. In fact, the Dark Star very closely resembles a Tesla.
- During the level "Anomaly", Khan tells Artyom to "Try to get a better understanding of things before you make your judgement." Though the parallels to the game's ending are clear, this line is also possibly referring to Khan's alleged journeys to Sevastopolskaya and the "end of the dead line" theorized in the novel.
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