From publisher Wired productions comes a new unique science fiction story called Deliver us the moon. Originally released for PC on the 28th September 2018, the game now comes to consoles 2 years later. Let’s take a look and see how it did. Starting with story.
After the great energy crisis in 2030 left earth without natural resources, humanity created the World space agency to look to the stars for solutions. One solution came from the moon, in the source of Helium 3. In 2032 a lunar colony was established on the moon to harvest helium 3 and send it back to earth via an energy network called the MPT (Microwave Power Transmitter). This new energy source allowed earth to continue, sustaining the planets energy needs. However, like all good things, they come to an end. In 2054 the power sent from the MPT was no longer being transmitted from the moon and communications to the lunar base was lost. The lights of earth went dark and so began the blackout of the planet. The following year in 2055 humanity began to give up hope and so it was that the World Space Agency was closed down. Earth remained powerless for 4 years, yet in 2059 a group of former WSA colonists refused to give up hope. Determined to discover why the moon went dark and restore the MPT, they have been preparing their mission in an abandoned desert launch facility.
The first mission of the game puts you the player in control of starting the launch sequence and then launching the rocket called Fortuna to then dock with the Pearson space station to then descend to the moon base.
Now right off the bat I loved the opening to this game. It had a slight sense of Apollo 13 meets Ad Astra. The story hooked me immediately. I am a big fan of science fiction and what I love more than say fantasy Sci Fi like Star Wars and Star Trek is the more believable science fiction, like the Apollo missions and stories set in orbit above earth, or within our solar system. So to come to this game after playing vast science fiction games like Mass effect and the Outer Worlds was a breath of fresh air for me.
The story and the gameplay flows together in union to the point it makes you feel like you are in the boots of an astronaut. What do I mean by this?
In the first mission you are at the abandoned launch facility. You make your way through the facility learning about past events through audio logs and interactable plot devices. Once you make it to the launch control room you must prepare the Fortuna for lift off. What follows is a simple puzzle you must work out in order to prime the engines. Once you have done this you race against the clock to climb the launch tower and board the command module before a dust storm hits and aborts the launch. The next part of the gameplay I really love. Instead of a cut scene like most games, you get to prep and launch the Fortuna yourself by interacting with the controls in front of you. The interesting element here is that there is a sequence to activating the controls in order for the launch to work. Now earlier while exploring the launch facility I found a blueprint of the launch sequence order and took a picture of it using my phone. Now the same blueprint is in the command module while you are doing this but it’s a bit obscured so it’s worth exploring the facility beforehand.
The next mission starts with you taking control of the docking between the Fortuna and Pearson space station. This sequence felt like a scene right out of Apollo 13. Now the gameplay while on Pearson station does feel a bit clunky and slow at first. You are operating in zero gravity so your character is floating around in order to move. At first the controls here were very disorientating and fiddly. On Xbox One forward and back on the left thumb stick will move you back and forth. A will move you up and B will move you down. Rb and Lb will tilt you left or right. Once you play like this for a bit you do get the hang of it. However, you can tell here that this was originally designed for a keyboard. I imagine it would flow a lot easier, even when aiming to interact with objects such as the Fortuna launch controls. The movement just doesn’t feel smooth as compared to the movement in similar zero g space game ‘Adrift’.
Once on the moon base you follow simple puzzles in order to progress through each stage of the colonies facilities to make it to Tombaugh station and reactivate the MPT. Along the way you gain a companion in the form of a ASE. Which basically is a floating football shaped robot that can open doors, interact with consoles and move through air ducts to reach those inaccessible places.
Graphically the game has some issues. Most notably with frame rate. The frame rate drops quite a lot throughout the game and never feels like its running smoothly as compared what I’ve seen of gameplay on PC. For example while leaving an outpost in a moon rover to go on the moon’s surface the frame rate suddenly dropped and the game appeared to have frozen only to then pick up again and the airlock door was now open.
There are also glitches in the graphics. Textures drop, then come back. Lighting glitches, for example while I was looking at the MPT core at Tombaugh station a lighting glitch was right in the way of what I was supposed to be looking at. I had to restart the game and suddenly the glitch had gone.
All of this being said though, the graphics are very pretty to look at. Wired Productions has done a very good job in creating a world that feels lived in and habitable, be it either on earth, Pearson station or on the moon. The partial effects of explosions while in space after a hull breach feel real (like living out the film ‘Gravity’.) The main thing this games graphics does well though over everything else is its atmospheric lighting. It really sets the tone and feel for each location. At times making the space of a location feel vast and at other times very claustrophobic.
Finally, I want to point out the fantastic sound design and music that this game has to offer. The sound team on this game have composed trailer music and created audio for Hollywood blockbusters such as Daredevil, Justice league and Alien: Covenant. The sound design in this game really lends to that feeling of isolation of your character being the only living thing on this colony that you are exploring. The music is beautifully arranged and composed by Sander van Zanten. It’s atmospheric, tense and at times emotional.
In all Deliver us the moon is a Sci-Fi experience like no other I have played in a while. Gameplay, story and sound combined made me feel like an astronaut alone on the moon with the fate of earths future on their shoulders. Unfortunately graphical glitches and clunky controls did hinder the experience. However, the story, and interactable plot devices kept me coming back for more. With an average gameplay time 5-7 hours (when really exploring what this game has to offer) or 3 hours (if your speed running), Deliver the moon is worth the experience.
Deliver us the Moon is Developed by KeokeN Interactive and published by KeokeN Interactive and Wired Productions
Deliver us the Moon is available on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PC, Linux and Mac
This Review is based on the Xbox One Version of the game
You can purchase the game on Xbox One head here.
To purchase the game for other system head here.
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Deliver us the moon
Deliver Us The Moon is a Sci-Fi thriller set in an apocalyptic near future, where Earth's natural resources are depleted. A lunar colony providing a vital supply of energy has gone silent. A lone astronaut is sent to the moon on a critical mission to save humanity from extinction. Will you save mankind or be forgotten in the dark abyss of Space?
Product Currency: GBP
Product Price: 19.99