Life of Delta is a sci-fi point-and-click adventure game by Airo Games and Daedalic Entertainment and released on Steam on March 14, 2023. I have said it before and I will say it again, Daedalic Entertainment publish some of the best point-and-click adventures that I have played over the years. The most recent is Children of Silentown but there have been many examples over the years of classics for me. I am pleased to add Life of Delta to this list as it is a fantastic adventure with heaps of challenging puzzles that are logical and fun to complete.
After the Great War, all humans are wiped out. The only survivors are decaying service robots and humanoid lizards that were born from a long nuclear fallout. We play as Delta who is a small service robot and like any other robot, he is just trying to survive in this harsh environment set in post-apocalyptic Japan. One day he is forced to embark on a journey across a vast desert and through a grungy cyberpunk city to get to the military base to find his lost friend. Because of his small size, he needs to use all his wits to overcome all dangerous scenarios and challenges. There are some cutscene sequences that connect your travels and areas together which is a great touch as it’s good to take a slight break from the puzzle gameplay and have small snippets of the story shown to you.
Right from the opening sequence, the hand drawn art is outstanding. The characters have a personality before you even interact with them. The characters speak in garbled tones – most of them are robots after all with the occasional lizard-looking being or a race of grunts that look a lot like Rocksteady and Beebop from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. The written English translations are ample and humourous in parts. Each area is impeccably detailed, and objects that you can interact with stand out just enough that you don’t have to pixel hunt all the time. While the premise is set in a post-apocalyptic world, there is still ample colour in each area which lightens the mood as we explore looking for clues and puzzles.
Life of Delta has a simple inventory system where you move the mouse to the top of the screen, and it drops down the few items you’re carrying at the time. This isn’t a RPG where you’re going to collect a whole heap of items. I very rarely had any more than five at a time, and usually only two to three. You can combine items within the inventory just by dragging them onto each other, and the item combinations required are very logical. There’s no guessing which ambiguous items are going to combine. The game’s music is soft and inquisitive, providing a perfect backing soundtrack that suits the scenes we explore and keeps your mind going while you’re pondering the puzzles.
The puzzles are a heck of a lot of fun. Some are challenging and had me scratching my head, but then the solution presented itself. These were ones that you needed to manipulate objects on a board. There’s no verbal or text instructions, just the puzzle base and then possible objects to use or interact with. Trial and error prevailed here. While others required you to have collected other items or helped other people to obtain additional items, then bring them together and work out how to use them. It is very clever and never too difficult thankfully. As you move to the next main area, your inventory is cleared of any unused items which is a great idea.
Delta faces numerous problems throughout his travels but always has other robots that can help. They will ask for Delta for assistance with something that adds a task to your screen. In the menu you can click these tasks and see the related conversation which was very helpful if I picked up the game after having a night or two off. They don’t give you all the answers, but enough to jog your memory or give you a hint in which area to look or robot/creature to investigate.
Overall, Life of Delta is an excellent point-and-click adventure with challenging puzzles and an inquisitive story, wrapped in a fantastic hand-drawn sci-fi world. There was a good balance in exploring the small areas and finding what you needed to solve the puzzles which had great variety.