I wanted to like Deponia
– I really did, there's lots of great stuff here, but it all falls flat.
To me there are four things that make a great adventure game: A good story, clever puzzles, interesting characters, and an interesting world for those characters to inhabit.
Deponia gets one of those four right. The world of Deponia is
interesting. This great junk planet is not only a bit unique, but it is also beautifully rendered. A junk planet full of scrappy, adaptable people should be a great setting for an adventure game, right? Well...right. But that game is not Deponia
. Lets take a look at those other three categories...
Story. Can't have a good adventure game without a good story. Unfortunately for Deponia
, it didn't ship with a great story. While it starts off well enough, the plot becomes a bit predictable and uninteresting. Some reviewers have even complained about an undercurrent of misogyny in the game. My take? I can certainly see what those reviewers are talking about, but I'm not going to go into that here. Lets just say that there are few women in the game. Of those women: one gets naked, one is unconcious for 90% of the game, and the other is a man. And the unconcious one? Getting her and winning her over is the goal of the game. Her name? Goal. Clever.
Puzzles. Some are good, but most fall into the "meh" or unintuitive category. Puzzles don't have to be unintuitive to be wacky or challenging. It's a cheat, and a poor one at that.
Characters...well...they're forgettable. That's not the worst crime though. The worst crime is that the main character - the one you should be made to empathize with (or at least get a good laugh out of) is actually irratating and unlikeable. Rufus, who is supposed to be a likeable slacker with a sharp wit and an inflated ego often comes off as posessing a grating personality with few likeable qualities. The puns? Bad...in a bad way. A few might be amusing, but the rest are either cringeworthy or fall flat.
My recommendation: Skip it or wait to pick it up in a bundle on the cheap - and only if you're desperate.