Review: Goodbye Deponia

After two previous adventures, Deponia (2012) and Chaos on Deponia (2012), Goodbye Deponia is the last of a trilogy by Daedalus Entertainment, so is this game better than its predecessors or worse? Short answer: this is the best of the bunch.

Goodbye Deponia picks up where Chaos on Deponia left off. You control an anti-hero named Rufus, an imaginative and, quite frankly, reckless inventor. You’re still trying to save the world of Deponia from destruction while impressing your possible, maybe girlfriend, Goal, a young woman from the floating city far above the planet surface, Elysium. Their ultimate goal is now within reaching distance: finding a way to Goal’s hometown and saving Deponia from an almost certain destruction.

This is essentially the same goal as the previous two games, which is a little disappointing. You would think that, after two other games, the goal might be different (Lord of the Rings doesn’t apply to this thought process) but alas, this at least means that each game genuinely ties in with each other rather than going from one thing to another without nothing in between.

The graphics in Goodbye Deponia haven’t changed since the first game and this is not a bad thing; it still looks amazing, cartoon-like and brilliantly animated. Each screen is wonderfully detailed with objects pushing up against the foreground and pushed back all the way in the background. Little details, such as birds moving on roofs in the distance, create liveliness to each place you visit and makes sure that the environment is not a completely static image that you can move around on.

goodbye-deponia-pc-screenshots-11

The gameplay also has not been tampered with, providing a fairly standard point-and-click mechanic akin to something like Broken Sword. Left mouse moves Rufus around and lets him perform actions, such as in one scene where he interacts with a baby’s outfit on a clothesline in order to trick a grandmother and grandfather in to making them give you a lollipop. Clicking the right mouse lets you examine things so you know what they are or can do before you interact with them. Again, it’s a fairly standard point-and-click mechanic, but it works just as well here as it does on the best point-and-click games.

Moving the mouse wheel lets you open your inventory, in which you can right-click on an object to examine it or left-click to hold it and try to use this object in the current scene to progress further in the game. Pressing the spacebar shows you all the hot spots in the current scene you can interact with and examine and, while I found this to be somewhat cheating, it certainly would be helpful to those who might need it. It’s all fairly standard stuff and most players would just be able to jump straight in and understand the gameplay, but I would recommend watching the tutorial, anyway, just because it’s so funny and breaks the fourth wall more than once.

Goodbye Deponia includes a mixture of inventory-based puzzles — like the aforementioned left-click option to utilize an item — and mini-games, where you have to move things around to achieve a goal in order to progress. There are a few puzzles that can be a little bit far-fetched sometimes and these are the ones I struggled with the most. Luckily, these puzzles are not frequent enough to ruin the experience and they, for the most part, are wonderfully executed. The mini-games are usually fun; they involve things like helping Rufus distracting security cameras, so they’re looking at Rufus instead of Goal, thus allowing Goal to hack into some computer consoles. They are also better presented here than they were in the earlier games. They even have some instructions, but if you do have any trouble, you’re given the option to skip them completely.

deponia2_2012-11-11_22-05-10-28

For the most part, you’re allowed to visit numerous places at any given point and the game can throw lots of different puzzles at you to tackle in whatever order you want. Goodbye Deponia is not a linear game and it benefits from this; you’re given a wide range of options most of the time, so if you are stuck on one particular puzzle, you can choose to go after another puzzle instead. It helps keep you interested. If you do get stuck and start trying to combine random items together or put items in a wrong hot spot, the game often makes genuinely funny comments that’ll make you laugh, despite being stuck. Sometimes, I found myself just doing this on purpose to see what the game would say.

Conclusion:

My verdict is that I had a ton of fun playing Goodbye Deponia. It looks gorgeous, it’s challenging, and its one of the funniest games I have ever played. If you thought the other two games in the series were funny, you haven’t seen anything yet. Each of the voice actors do a really good job in making each character unique and you can get a sense of their personalities that text alone does not give you. In the inevitable sequel, I would like to see Daedalus create a totally different story. For now, though, if you enjoy point-and-click and adventure games, I probably couldn’t recommend any other game more than the Deponia series right now. It is one of the best titles and series in this category we’ve seen in the past ten years.

Low Score – 7.5

A few puzzles are a bit silly
Story is still the same after 3 games

High score – 8.5

Genuinely funny
Makes you really think about the puzzles
Looks beautiful, sounds amazing

Final Score – 8