When a lunar colony that’s supplying power to an energy starved and desolate Earth goes offline and plunges the world into chaos, a lone astronaut is sent to find out what happened but the truth turns out to be something more. This is what faces you in Deliver Us The Moon, a sci-fi adventure from KeokeN Interactive. A third person game with a strong narrative your astronaut will spend a great deal of time exploring the abandoned colony learning of everyone’s fate through logs and recordings while trying to restore power and help a struggling planet.
That description above does make it sound like the game firmly falls into the “walking simulator” genre however there’s enough action and puzzle elements that help keep players on their toes and push it outside the genre’s popular tropes. One is your propensity to die which often pushes you to keep moving forward simply because you often find yourself running out of air and needing to reach that next airlock. There are plenty of trial and error sections too so don’t expect it to all go your way and once you are exposed to the basic mechanics the puzzles begin to get a little more creative and deadly. The game itself takes about three to four hours to complete so it’s quite possible to make it through a sitting or two which feels like its intent. Some of the puzzles are definitely used to telegraph future ones so having that immediate familiarity goes far in being able to solve them quickly and continue your journey. Not all are pushovers so still expect a few more deaths thrown in there too. One sequence felt inspired by the film Gravity was pretty incredible to see in action and an impressive set piece too. Checkpoints are generous so you’re never sent back too far in the event of a failure.
Graphically the game is quite good. The space station and lunar colony look realistic with a consistent design that reminds me of a modern take on the art design from 2001: A Space Odyssey. Adding color are a lot of incidental items scattered around like posters and personal items that not only help break up the monotone palette but make it feel like it was actually lived in. They even remembered to include toilets! As for outside it’s admittedly hard to make a lunar landscape look good with the abundance of grays but you can still find some impressive views both inside and out. There were a few times I had to stop and take a look at the world around me and it was begging for a few screenshots. Though I did have to be quick else I’d run out of air! The audio is mostly focused on atmospheric sounds and voice chatter but I felt it was perfect and succeeded in making your isolation even more apparent. There are sections in the game like the rocket launch and the previously mentioned Gravity sequence that are incredibly impressive in their presentation and really sell the world your character inhabits. I did run into the occasional bug with my character getting stuck in geometry but thankfully they cleared up with a reload from the previous checkpoint. That none of the issues persisted made it very easy to keep on playing.
Deliver Us The Moon succeeds by giving players a strong experience with enough action and adventure to keep you entertained without spreading itself too thin. If you’re thinking of movies the most obvious one to compare it to is Moon (of course) as it nails a similar tone but it’s got a few extra tricks up its sleeve too. Once I started playing I had to stick with it through to the end and really enjoyed it.
Deliver Us The Moon is out now on PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. Played on an Xbox One X via Game Pass.