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The subject of this article appears in the Metro 2033 novel. The subject of this article appears in the Metro 2033 video game. The subject of this article appears in the Metro Last Light video game. The subject of this article appears in the Chronicles Pack DLC for Metro Last Light. The subject of this article appears in the Metro Exodus video game.

 Khan has other uses. Please see Khan (Disambiguation) for other meanings. 

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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.

— Khan

Khan Aitmatov (Russian: Хан Айтматов, pronounced Han Aytmatov) is a wandering soldier, philosopher, and occasional associate of the Rangers. He appears only in the first novel and the games.

Metro 2033[]

Khan in the video game is a mysterious character, though he's even more so in the novel. He is familiar with the various paranormal or mystical phenomena in the metro and possesses a very powerful and charismatic personality, which even lead to Artyom wondering whether he was a Wizard. With his aid, Artyom manages to survive a trip through a ghost-occupied and very deadly tunnel. The questions Khan asks Artyom will echo in his mind multiple times.

In the game, Khan and Artyom first travel though a tunnel where "neither man nor beast walk", as Khan puts it. The tunnel is full of ghosts, and Artyom discovers the rumors of the "singing pipes" to be true. Bourbon also references the "singing pipes" upon leaving Riga Station as "just a load of bullshit". Khan is revealed to have been the only surviving member of a group of men guarding a barricade near the end of the tunnel a long time ago.

Upon arriving at said barricade, Khan tells Artyom to remain silent and stay behind his back. Khan begins to chant something that makes the ghosts of his former comrades move and allow them to pass. He asks him not to question what he chanted and to forget seeing or hearing what he did. During the Ghosts level, Khan gives Artyom several survival tips, and speaks about a variety of legends of how everything came to be. He is last encountered at Sparta Base.

Khan seems to be one of the few people that believe that the Dark Ones have a right to live. He is also notable for believing that nothing in the world truly is evil: it is just its nature, and it's not man's place to judge.

Khan's chapters of the games explores the more mystical and darker parts of the metro featuring ghosts, deadly anomalies, and hordes of mutants attacking human settlements. Khan's chapters are often considered some of the most eerie and scary parts of the games.

Metro: Last Light[]

Khan is the first person Artyom meets in Metro: Last Light, waking Artyom up from a bad dream as he is sleeping in D6. Khan tells Artyom that he spotted a surviving Dark One in the ruins of the Botanical Gardens. As Khan is telling Artyom about the Dark One, Ulman passes through the hallway and glances into Artyom's room and berates Khan, telling him to leave D6. Ulman agrees to take Khan and Artyom to talk to Miller. Khan informs Miller about the Dark One and proposes that him and Artyom should go and look for it. Miller agrees but assigns a sniper along, his daughter Anna, to kill the Dark One. Khan objects and is restrained before being escorted out by the guards on Miller's orders, as Artyom and Anna continue the mission on their own.

Later, Khan, along with the Hanza police, saves Artyom and Anna at the exit of Oktobraskaya. Upon being released from quarantine, Khan takes Artyom to a supernatural place in the Metro which he calls the River of Fate. The River of Fate brings much of Artyom's deeper memories to surface. Artyom is shown a vision of the Dark One on a train and he and Artyom set out to save him. Upon reaching the train, Artyom jumps aboard to save the Dark One as Khan is seen being led down a different path by the rails. 

Artyom brings the Dark One to Saint Basil's Cathedral, where Khan and Miller are waiting for him. Miller is about to kill the Dark One, but Khan convinces him otherwise. Khan and Artyom are shown a vision of the Dark Ones trapped in D6 and urges Miller to open the door to set them free. Khan, Artyom, Miller, and the Dark One travel to Polis, where the peace conference between the Metro factions is being held. Khan interrupts Comrade Moskvin mid-speech, calling him a liar and uses the Dark One to open Moskvin's mind and reveal Korbut's plans to attack D6. Discovering that the Red Line assault force is already in route to D6, Khan joins Miller, Artyom, and the rest of the Rangers in defending the bunker from the Red onslaught. In the C'est la Vie ending, he perishes with the rest of the Rangers when Artyom detonates the bomb to destroy D6 while in the Redemption ending, he leaves the Ranger and disappears without any reason.

In the Chronicles Pack DLC level, Khan and Ulman, the player character, travel to Polyanka station after blowing up the train from the Chase level, by going through an abandoned tunnel. Strange things begin happening to Ulman in the tunnel with many ghostly visions appearing to him. After passing an anomaly, they enter an air vent, but are forced to retreat when a huge horde of hungry rats attack them. By using a torch and a drum with fuel in it, they make a wall of fire between themselves and the rats. Ulman is able to jump-start some of the electrical devices around them to attract the anomaly nearby, which roasts the rat horde and gives Khan and Ulman a clear route to Polyanka. In Polyanka, they see the ghosts of some of Khan's old companions, as well as a vision of a younger Khan and his companions defending Polyanka from nosalises. The vision ends with Khan getting wounded after blowing up the airlock and he is forced to close the gate on his friends, trapping them inside with the nosalises. Khan tells Ulman that he hopes that he will never have to make such a decision again.

Metro Exodus[]

Khan briefly appears in the Eternal Voyage ending of Metro Exodus. After Artyom passes away from radiation, he wakes up aboard a darker version of the Aurora. Upon arriving to the bridge, he meets a shadowy version of Khan, who seems to be reaching out to Artyom from the land of the living. At the time Artyom meets Khan, it seems that Khan was leaving offerings and lighting candles and incense for the deceased; similar to real-world practices in that doing so can help a spirit, or in this case, allow Khan to briefly communicate with Artyom as he is carrying out his task. He says to Artyom he had not thought he would see him there as he expected Artyom to have a better fate, and reminisces a time in which Artyom was a boy who simply wished to remember his mother's face. He also informs Artyom about the world they are in, that the sun never shines, that he can neither stop the train or leave it, and that there are no stations. Khan subtly admonishes Artyom for forgetting his teachings, and tells Artyom that he will be returning to the Metro soon and that he will give everyone in Exhibition Artyom's regards, bidding goodbye.

In the Novel[]

Unlike in the game, Khan doesn't play a large part in the novel. First mentioned by Zhenya as the magician in the metro, Khan helps Artyom at a diseased station before escorting Artyom and Ace to the next station. After a Nazi attack, Khan, Artyom, and Ace are separated from one another, but Khan does find Artyom's home station and gets a message to Artyom regarding his decisions in life as well as Artyom's mission.

According to Artyom, in the English translation of the novel, Khan looked very similar to his in-game model. In the novel "the man was over fifty, but he looked surprisingly fresh and robust. His arms, which were supporting Artyom [at the time of his description], were firm and didn't once tremble with fatigue the whole way back. His short hair was turning grey and his little sculpted beard surprised Artyom - the man looked too well groomed for the metro, especially given the godforsaken place where it seemed this man (Khan) lived". Also in the novel, Khan uses a "strange gun", which could quite well be the Helsing from the game.

In the novel, it's implied that Khan makes Artyom nervous, considering the fact he wanted the conversation with him to end as soon as possible.

It appears Khan has a gift when it comes to convincing people to do something: when he and Artyom were in a diseased station, Artyom witnessed a man was who was being prepared for execution, having been suspected of carrying the disease. Artyom tried to save the man but Khan stopped him with just the look on his face and a few words. Also, when the people of the station were confused on what to do after this event, Khan convinced them to leave the station with him and Artyom without an argument, and lastly Khan managed to scare Ace into surrendering to him when the latter aimed his pistol at Artyom.


Khan was an unusual man...but I suppose he was also a man of his time, moving between the dark and the light, searching for answers buried in the rubble.

— Artyom

Khan considers himself "a wolf among jackals" and considers Artyom a "wolf pup". In other words, he is considered a bit of an outcast due to his beliefs and he considers or wants Artyom to be someone like him in sharing or passing on his beliefs, almost like a Khan-in-training. Unlike most other characters in the series, he seems to be quite spiritual, and is acquainted with many of the mystical or supernatural phenomena found throughout the Metro system. This often makes him appear strange or in some cases, crazy to other characters since he knows something they do not, such as how Miller dismisses Khan's attempts to argue that the baby Dark One should be spared. He knows a few hymns to repel ghosts, and knows how to avoid electrical anomalies and use their motion-sensing tendencies to his advantage. He also speaks cryptically to Artyom throughout the game, and one of the things Khan says will come to Artyom's mind depending on whether or not Artyom has been acting morally throughout the game.

He is quite charismatic and knows his way around words, and speaks like a true philosopher at times. He generally accepts the present situation no matter how grim or hopeless it may be, which could also indicate that he is in atonement with the new and hostile reality that he and the rest of mankind now live in.

Khan doesn't believe in one universal time for all Metro system, instead believing that the Sun was the only worthy representative of Time and that once the humans had cut ties with the Sun, continuation of keeping the same time everywhere was meaningless. Furthermore, Khan believes that for some people time goes by faster (or slower) than for the others and by that standards people should time their own time.


In the novel[]

  • Khan calls himself the last incarnation of Genghis Khan. Genghis Khan was the founder, Khan (ruler) and Khagan (emperor) of the Mongol Empire, which became the largest contiguous empire in history after his death. It's possible that, because of this, the original concept art of Khan depicted him as being more Mongolian in appearance.
  • Khan states that he is only known as Wolf in some stations.
  • Khan states that his surname is Aitmatov.
  • When first meeting Artyom, Khan was wielding a "strange" gun in one hand. He never pulls it out again instead using Artyom's new Kalash, the one he got from Bourbon, or the pistol he took from Ace. In all instances he never fires a single shot, winning with intimidation alone.
  • In the novel, Khan is a smoker.
  • The manually-powered flashlight that Artyom starts off with in the game is actually given to him in Chapter 6 of the book by Khan, in exchange for the map that Artyom gave him.
  • Of all the major characters from both games, Khan is one of the few that appears and is only ever mentioned in just the first book - never to be heard of again in Metro 2034 or Metro 2035.

In Metro 2033[]

  • In the Russian versions of both games, Khan is called Хан - which is actually pronounced Han, not Khan. In the Polish versions of the games, Khan is also known as Han. In both cases, it's most likely due to the fact that the "Khan" in Genghis Khan is written and pronounced differently in some Slavic languages (Russian: Чингисхан - Polish: Czyngis-chan; both are pronounced Chingis Han, not Genghis Khan).
  • Artyom can earn quite a few positive moral points towards the end from Khan. Simply do everything he asks the way he asked it, and one will earn Moral Points (Example: Listen to the pipes, Avoid Ghosts - don't shoot them, don't shoot the nosalises when the Anomaly is present).
  • When finding Khan in Sparta Base, he tells you the quote that can be heard near the end of the game, depending on Artyom's morality. This quote is still said even if Artyom does not speak to Khan. Regardless of the moral points you have, you can always listen to him in the Sparta Base, which will give you more moral points.
  • If Artyom chooses stealth approach in the level "Dry", Khan will assist Artyom by silently killing bandits with his Helsing, and the arrows can be scavenged for free. Khan is also the only NPC that uses an pneumatic weapon like the Helsing.
  • Khan owns a unique variant of the Kalash, with bayonet and laser sight attached.
  • Khan, along with Bourbon, Miller, Ulman, and Pavel, is considered one of the main companions of the video game Metro 2033.
  • The very last finishing lines of the game's "enlightened ending" were originally said by Khan in the original Metro 2033 novel.
    • The game further accentuates Khan's presence in the ending if Artyom has enough moral points to get enlightened ending. In it, Khan's speech can be heard after Artyom survives the dark one's attack at the end of "Ethereal".
  • Khan's hymns in the level "Ghost" is Latin. Khan encourages the ghost to 'walk towards the light' (rough translation).
  • Khan and Artyom are the only two known characters to have used pneumatic weapons.

In Metro: Last Light[]

  • In Last Light, Khan uses a variant of the Ashot unavailable to players.
  • In a lot of promotional images, Khan is shown with a VSV yet he never uses one in the game.
  • In early builds, Khan had a Triquetra tattoo known as "Trinity Knot" on his left hand. In the final build of the game, this was changed to a stylised Hand of God tattoo on his right hand which is an ancient Slavic symbol.
  • In one of his notes, Artyom wonders about the true nature of Khan, a traveling philosopher, a wizard, or a guest from another dimension.
  • During the level "Chase", he destroys a railcar with an Ashot despite having only one shot.
  • Despite being a smoker in the novel, he consults Ulman on his smoking habit during "Sparta" and "Khan (Chronicles Pack Level)" in Metro: Last Light.
  • Khan seems to be distrusted by the Rangers, possibly because of his opinions on the Dark Ones. Artyom himself states that he doesn't trust him. Despite this, he is one of the few non-Ranger member to have access to D6.
    • Khan himself is probably not a full time member of the Order, since he lacks any kind of uniforms and Ulman urges him to leave D6 since it's a "classified and Khan shouldn't be there". Although Khan is seen sharing the Order's duty and tasks such as protecting Cursed Station or helping at Oktyabrskaya.