After a lengthy campaign filled with twists, turns, and conspiracy, Deus Ex: Mankind Divided concluded on a cliff-hanger, leaving the door open for a direct sequel. In one way, this is could be viewed as a positive, since, at the very least, fans can be sure of Adam Jensen’s return. However, he’ll only return if developer Eidos Montréal is allowed to produce a third title in its prequel series. Should such a project ever get off the ground, everything that felt incomplete about Mankind Divided will make sense, according to Jensen himself, actor Elias Toufexis.
In an extensive interview with VG247, Toufexis spoke on the controversy surrounding Mankind Divided’s final act. He voiced concern that because the title didn’t meet Square Enix’s sales expectations, Eidos may be inclined to start over, leaving Jensen’s story unfinished. In addition, the actor is excited about where the tale may go next, based on what he’s previously been told.
…as a fan, I want them to finish this game, and I want to bring closure to Jensen. I don’t even care if Jensen becomes a secondary character, as long as they close his story. There’s so much to tell, and there’s so much I know about where they were going, that they could change, but I know about where they were going that I want fans to experience. Nothing was set in stone. But what they told me about what was coming was really exciting. More exciting than Mankind Divided’s story. I remember going, ‘Oh man, God, I can’t wait to do that!’ And then, we still haven’t gotten around to doing it, so, hopefully.
Toufexis continued, noting that Mankind Divided’s ending concluded in the optimal place for a potential sequel, likening it to Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame. The actor express the following to VG247,
I’m not disappointed in the ending story-wise, because I know where the story is supposed to go. So I look at it and go, ‘Yeah, that’s exactly where it’s supposed to end.’ What I’m disappointed in, is that we haven’t finished it yet. When we move on, if we ever do finish the story, I don’t think Mankind Divided is going to be the sticking point that it is right now. I think people will go, ‘Oh, that makes sense.’ It’s like, imagine they did Infinity War? And then they’re like, ‘Oh yeah, one day we’ll get to Endgame.’ [laughs] You’re like, ‘Come on!’ That’s kind of how I feel about Mankind Divided. Everyone’s pissed off about it now, and that makes sense, but once we finish it, you’ll see why it ended where it ended. We just have to fucking get on it.
Of course, as Toufexis explained, things could indeed change. Curiously, the story in Mankind Divided changed two months into filming. According to Toufexis, the extensive work accomplished during that lengthy period was tossed aside in favor of rewrites.
What had happened was–and I don’t want to step on anybody’s toes, so I’m going to be vague–we had filmed about two months of an entire game, and it was going to be a completed game, if I remember correctly, and me and a couple other people had a big problem with where the story was going, and it wasn’t working. So they rewrote the entire thing, and they made it much bigger.
Apparently, the rewrites led to an ambiguous ending, which was intended to receive closure in a third Deus Ex prequel. As Toufexis explained it, Eidos Montréal’s initial plans were to get right back into the swing of things after shipping Mankind Divided. Speculation contends this didn’t happen because of less than stellar sales figures.
And we were going to, as far as I know, finish up where we finished up in Mankind Divided, and continue into whatever the next game was going to be. And I don’t think that Mankind Divided shipped their goal in terms of sales that they wanted to hit. So it immediately back-burnered. But I know that they said, I knew we were going to go right into it. In my mind, I had said, ‘Okay, we’re doing this one, and then we’re doing the next one.’ And then suddenly I stopped getting phone calls.
Hopefully, it won’t be too long before the actor starts receiving calls from Eidos once more.