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Deponia

Score: 78%
ESRB: Not Rated
Publisher: Daedalic Entertainment
Developer: Daedalic Entertainment
Media: Download/1
Players: 1
Genre: Adventure

Graphics & Sound:

Deponia is an adventure game with a lot of character and quite a few quirky elements that is sure to entertain pretty much any fan of the genre.

Deponia takes place in a future where the world is overrun by trash and society is divided into two groups, those that live in the planet-wide junkyard, and those that live in the floating city above it. As a result of the trash-filled landscape, the game has an odd steampunk feel to it that puts a lot of the junk in the scenes to good use. Deponiaís character design, both the main characters like Rufus and Goal and the rest of the people, fit the visual theme nicely. Those that live in the junk tend to fit the steampunk design style rather well, while those from the floating city are dressed in a manner befitting a utopia as seen in some of our older science fiction movies.

Deponiaís audio also goes a long way to sell the mood of the game. This is mainly due to the dialogue and voice acting that seem to really fit the worlds the player will be discovering.


Gameplay:

Deponia is a true-blue adventure game that mostly consists of inventory-based puzzles, but also offers up the occasional logic puzzle to keep things interesting.

The game follows Rufus, a man in his young twenties with a less than ideal reputation. Rufus has decided to leave the home he shares with a couple of close friends and find an adventure, or to put it a little differently, adventure falls in his lap. When a young girl named Goal from the floating city above crashes into Rufusís neighborhood, he takes it upon himself to get her back to her home, and if possible, sneak himself in as well. The good news is, he just happens to look like Goalís husband, the bad news is that he starts to fall for Goal, so he becomes less likely to pull one over on her.

Oddly enough, the part of the story that seems like it should be an early setup for the rest of the game, namely discovering Goal and getting her to join you in your attempt to make it to the utopian city, takes up at least half of the game. As a result, the first part of Deponia tends to be a much slower pace than the rest of the game. In other words, while Deponia as a whole is a fun experience, the early half of the game has some slower moments that are a a bit trying to get through, but the payoff afterwards is worth the hassle.


Difficulty:

As I said above, Deponia has some areas that drag and make it feel like a harder game than it is. There are plenty of inventory puzzles that I couldnít figure out a good solution to, so I applied the tried-and-true adventure gamer method, I went through each item in my inventory and used it on some on-screen element that I knew had to react to something I had. This often resulted in getting past a nearly frustrating, but simple, obstacle and I was on my way making fairly steady progress again, until I hit another similar road bump.

Game Mechanics:

One feature that helps with some of the pixel-hunting aspects of most adventure games is Deponiaís use of the Spacebar to display what items on the screen can be interacted with. I recently experienced a similar feature in The Book of Unwritten Tales and I liked it there as well. One of the reasons I found this to be a good addition to an adventure game is because it is a hint system that is unobtrusive, on an as-needed-basis only and it should help less experienced adventure gamers enjoy the game.

Like I said above, Deponia is a fun experience for those gamers that love adventure titles. It has plenty of rough areas and there are more than a few puzzle solutions that donít make much sense, but its visual style and comedic story do a lot to keep you from dwelling on those aspects too long.


-J.R. Nip, GameVortex Communications
AKA Chris Meyer

Minimum System Requirements:



Windows XP, Processor: 2.5 GHz (Single Core) or 2 GHz (Dual Core), 2 GB RAM, OpenGL 2.0 compatible graphics card with 512 MB RAM, DirectX:9.0c, 5 GB Hard Drive Space, DirectX compatible sound card
 

Test System:



Windows 7 Ultimate, Intel i7 X980 3.33GHz, 12 GB RAM, Radeon HD 5870 Graphics Card, DirectX 9.0c

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Game Vortex :: PSIllustrated