Deliver Us Mars Review

KeokeN Interactive's Deliver Us Mars improves on its predecessor Deliver Us the Moon in every way -- check out our review to find out why.

Published: February 7, 2023 11:00 AM /

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Deliver Us Mars Review - cover_0

There have been countless stories throughout history telling the tale of a hero traveling to a faraway place to save their homeland. In Deliver Us Mars, that faraway place is Mars and your homeland is Earth 50 years in the future -- a dying planet that has been ravaged by ecological disaster.

Deliver Us Mars serves as a direct sequel to Deliver Us the Moon. In the previous game, your faceless protagonist journeyed to the moon in order to restart a power station and send some much-needed clean energy to Earth. Our new protagonist Kathy Johanson is setting out to follow in those noble footsteps by becoming an astronaut with the WSA.

Deliver Us Mars Review - Kathy, Sarah, and Ryan in an ARK
Kathy Johanson (left) often clashes with her crewmates, either to her inexperience or naivete. Her drive to save Earth, however, is unparalleled.

Facing Your Problems

Compared to its predecessor, Deliver Us Mars is simply bigger and more ambitious in every conceivable way. The levels are grander, the plot is more complex, and the stakes are far higher.

This growth is best represented by a shift in narrative style. Deliver Us the Moon features a silent, voiceless, and faceless protagonist who accomplishes his mission completely alone. You see only the distant remnants of the people who came before you. Deliver Us Mars, in comparison, features a voiced protagonist and several other voiced characters who travel with you to Mars.

I'm not ashamed to admit that I sometimes had to spend five or ten or fifteen minutes working out a puzzle and trying to reason out which thing goes where.

Kathy Johanson is the daughter of Isaac Johanson, a brilliant scientist who works on the moon and is diligently trying to save Earth before it turns into a dustbowl. That same diligence is reflected in how he raises his two daughters, most especially with our heroine Kathy. Kathy has effectively been going to her father's version of astronaut boot camp since a very young age, learning to SCUBA dive, climb cliffs, and more.

Switching to a voiced protagonist with a face and a story is in no way a detriment to the charm of the game; rather, I view it as an improvement. The addition of distinct voiced characters -- each of whom has their own motivations -- allows for a richer, more complex story.

Deliver Us Mars Review - STREAME puzzle
Many of the puzzles are essentially centered on rerouting emergency power. Somehow, Deliver Us Mars manages to make something that should be mundane into a compelling challenge.

Gravity is Working Against Me

Deliver Us Mars isn't quite hard sci-fi -- there are certainly some slightly fantastical elements with some of the futuristic tech. All of these technological wonders are believable for a game set nearly 50 years in the future. What is not believable, however, is how it feels to be on Mars itself.

Mars' gravity is roughly 38% of Earth's gravity. You wouldn't quite have the bounce in your step as if you were on the moon, but the average person would be, relatively speaking, much lighter. You would run differently, jump differently, and fall differently, in every way both big and small.

This is the one major area where Deliver Us Mars, well, fails to deliver. Kathy's movement throughout the game feels appropriately floaty at times and strangely grounded at other times. It didn't just feel inconsistent -- it was an overall poor demonstration of what moving around on Mars should look and feel like.

I have other physics nitpicks, too -- the ARK's draining of oxygen (and its effect on the plot) appears to ignore the fact that there would still be breathable air in the massive interior of the ship for quite some time -- but my main beef is with the gravity. I have to wonder how Deliver Us Mars may have been different if it felt like a more authentic experience in terms of movement. It feels like a missed opportunity.

Deliver Us Mars Review - Climbing the Ice
You can only climb on a handful of designated surfaces -- and sometimes, you'll have to make a leap of faith to the next one.

More Than a Walking Simulator

Gravity aside, Deliver Us Mars avoids many of the pitfalls of narrative-heavy games. There are engaging puzzles in every chapter and there are serious hazards to overcome at times.

Some of the puzzles were real head-scratchers -- I'm not ashamed to admit that I sometimes had to spend five or ten or fifteen minutes working out a puzzle and trying to reason out which thing goes where. Completing puzzles felt satisfying, all the more so due to the delightful audio cue that accompanies them.

The climbing, perhaps, is where the gameplay really shines. It's rare that a single mechanic can carry a game so well, but KeokeN Interactive managed to squeeze every drop of entertainment out of climbing. Nearly every subsequent climbing section had a new challenge or a new twist on the formula. It's a little sad that you can only climb in certain designated areas, but the upside of these limitations is that each climbing experience feels like a worthwhile use of your time and attention.

The one element missing from this game is combat. At one point, Kathy throws a crate of weapons down a cliff, almost as if it were a metaphorical rejection of the concept of armed conflict. And yet, the game does not shy away from depicting violence committed by other characters -- there is death and violence at multiple points throughout the game, and one of the most iconic scenes is a literal room full of corpses. Still, Kathy is an explorer, not a fighter -- I can accept and appreciate the game eschewing combat entirely.

Deliver Us Mars Review - A Flower on Mars
Deliver Us Mars has a surprisingly complex narrative. There are no clear good guys and bad guys -- there is what needs to be done to save Earth and the people with the willpower to do it.

Deliver Us Mars Review - Final Thoughts

By the end, I found Deliver Us Mars to be a satisfying experience, especially when viewed in light of its predecessor. It's an improvement in nearly every measurable way.

It took me around 10 or so hours to complete Deliver Us Mars, and you should expect the same -- plus or minus a couple of hours depending on your aptitude for exploration, puzzles, and platforming.

The addition of distinct voiced characters allows for a richer, more complex story.

All of the new mechanics and the addition of a much deeper story must have made for a lot of extra work. Keoken Interactive bet big and it paid out wonderfully -- Deliver Us Mars is an excellent sequel (and an excellent standalone game, too, if you've never played Deliver Us the Moon.) I'm all the more excited by the sequel hook at the very end, setting up a potential third game at some point in the future.

I can wholeheartedly recommend Deliver Us Mars for gamers of all stripes. There's a little something for everyone (with the sole exception of combat). If you're looking for an engaging experience to play over a couple of evenings, Deliver Us Mars would make a fine choice.

TechRaptor reviewed Deliver Us Mars on PC via Steam with a key provided by the publisher. The game is also available on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X|S.

Review Summary

Deliver Us Mars improves on its predecessor Deliver Us the Moon in every way with a richer narrative, fun platforming, and challenging puzzles. (Review Policy)


  • Challenging (But Not Frustrating) Puzzles
  • Entertaining Platforming and Climbing Sections
  • RIch Narrative with Complex Characters
  • An Improvement in Every Way


  • Mars' Gravity Doesn't Feel Right
  • Hair Physics Gets Weird Sometimes

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A photograph of TechRaptor Senior Writer Robert N. Adams.
| Senior Writer

One of my earliest memories is playing Super Mario Bros. on the Nintendo Entertainment System. I've had a controller in my hand since I was 4 and I… More about Robert N

More Info About This Game
Learn More About Deliver Us Mars
Game Page Deliver Us Mars
KeokeN Interactive
Frontier Foundry
Release Date
February 2, 2023 (Calendar)
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