by Robert Thomas
previewed on PC
One Small Step
Adventure games have taken us all across the our world, and beyond. Now, developer KeokeN Interactive is seeking to take us to the Moon. In Deliver Us the Moon, you play as an astronaut exploring an abandoned great moon station, on a last-ditch, secret mission to save the dying world of earth. Although it’s a solo mission, this astronaut’s bravery could stop civilization from ending.
In the year 2069, Earth has depleted its resources and has lost all hope of sustainability. In order to save the world, all the nations on Earth banded together to create the Worldwide Space Agency (WSA). The WSA worked together to build a Moon station, though things quickly turned sour between the nations, who began to bicker amongst each other. Unable to work together, the Moon base was abandoned. This is where you, a humble astronaut, come in to save the day in a last resort mission.
Up on the Moon
To save the planet, you will trudge across the Moon base, solving puzzles from a third-person perspective. There is an interesting weight to your movement, with different gravity and a presumably heavy space-suit both hefting your movements. Despite the Moon base being simple, there is a large variety of areas that require different means to solve puzzles. To interact with things, you can hover over it with you mouse, moving them or using items on them. There is plenty to interact with, so you will be hovering a lot. To assist you on these puzzles, you will have a robot sidekick named ASE (All Seeing Eye) who has the tools to help solve puzzles. As of now, most puzzles are rather simplistic, but will probably increase in difficulty upon the game’s final release.
The combination of a third-person perspective and a more photorealistic environment, can create some truly beautiful and unique imagery. Indoor environments, though somewhat sterile, look great, while space and the outside view look fantastic. There’s an unfortunate lack of color throughout Deliver Us the Moon, but the look achieved by the developers is very unique to adventure games.
One might expect the soundtrack for Deliver Us the Moon to be somber and quiet one, but the developers have subverted that. Music reflects a more typical adventure game, with songs that are slightly upbeat. Since the space station is quite lonely, the music helps to keep the pace refreshing. The ambient noise, as well, is nice, without any attempts at scaring you. Though I’m not sure how loud space would actually be, or if there’s wind sounds on the moon, it is an excellent touch. Still, it’s a very relaxed and fun soundtrack.
Delivering Us the Moon
Most adventure games can bring you in with a good layer of charm, using interesting or witty writing to keep your attention. I don’t know if the developers plan to keep it this way, but right now Deliver Us the Moon really lacks that charm. The premise is interesting, but there’s not a lot of interesting bits of story along the way to keep attention. Perhaps a few scattered notes, or a sarcastic radio character would help. At this point, this moon base feels way too sterile.
Deliver Us the Moon is on track to be an interesting journey. The world feels authentic, with an atmosphere and aesthetic that looks very, very promising, and it does actually feel like I’m controlling an astronaut on the moon. It could use little sprucing up in the writing department, and some more intuitive puzzles, but it’s on its way. I believe Deliver Us the Moon can deliver a great adventure game.