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YMMV / Deponia

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  • Awesome Music:
    • The Organon Hymne, both the instrumental version that plays in the main menu and the absolutely triumphant chorus version heard at the end of Goodbye Deponia. For being so simple lyricwise, it's one hell of a Villain Song for the Organon race.
    • The main menu theme of Deponia Doomsday takes the familiar narrator song instrumental and remixes it in an instrumental style reminiscent of Two Steps from Hell. It feels just as epic as this would imply.
  • Broken Base:
    • Over whether or not the conclusion of Goodbye Deponia was a satisfactory end for the trilogy (see below.) It's Mass Effect 3 all over again...
    • Deponia Doomsday's ending isn't much better. In fact, the ending of that game failed to fix anything wrong with the last one. Nor did it intend to.
  • Crazy Awesome: Rufus continually does things that other people tell him are impossible and/or will kill him. Despite all odds, his recklessness and arrogance lead him to victory time after time... albeit with a lot of collateral damage. It's even lampshaded in the third game, where people explicitly turn to him for a Crazy Enough to Work last-second gambit.
  • Crosses the Line Twice:
    • It is difficult to tell how intentional this was on Daedalic's part, especially since Goodbye Deponia has several Crosses the Line Twice moments, but at one point Rufus sells a young woman in what is basically debt slavery, as a "dancing monkey" to a man who forces her to wear a revealing outfit. According to the game's writer, this was meant as an Intended Audience Reaction to show how little Rufus takes into account what happens to others while he's trying to achieve his own personal goals due to his narrow minded nature, and the audience is meant to be uncomfortable at the fact Rufus' plans aren't always completely heroic like those of other adventure games protagonists.
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    • Rufus willingly leaves four young children (including an infant Goal) alone in the pipe forest of the sewers... unknowing to him, he places them in the mouth of a giant, child-eating slime monster, wraps them in burrito wraps to keep them warm and douses them in gravy. The monster, who had decided to become vegetarian, can barely contain itself from eating them, and eventually spits them out... but when Rufus returns, two of the children are missing and are never seen again. Unfazed, Rufus leaves the remaining (or surviving, depending how you interpret the events) little girl there, alone. Again.
  • Darkness-Induced Audience Apathy: Critics of the series take issue with the fact that Rufus is basically a completely despicable, utterly irredeemable Jerkass who blithely engages in Kick the Dog moment after Kick the Dog moment without remorse, often purely because it amuses him (even if these actions do end up necessary to solve the puzzles and proceed with the game- or possibly because they do). The Rock Paper Shotgun review of Goodbye Deponia called it "a horrible game", with the reviewer absolutely loathing Rufus.
    The star, Rufus, is a defiantly unlikeable playable character, whose selfishness is his only motivation, and his offensiveness a source of glee to him alone. He’s clearly meant to be a form of anti-hero, and in the first game it was uncomfortable, but almost worked. By the second, brief and dreadful game, he had become outright repulsive. In this third and final chapter, he continues in the same vein, his unrelenting revolting attitude just a constant drain on the player.
  • Earworm:
    • The Floating Black Market theme music is an in-universe one.
    • Good Morning Porta Fisco.
    • The narrator songs, even if the lyrics don't make a lot of sense.
      • Actually, they mostly recount Rufus' adventures or fill in gaps between the cuts, if in an idealized form that doesn't reflect on his moral dubiousness. The times they don't refer to the game directly, the narrator draws out a frame story about a failed relationship that develops parallel to Rufus' character over the games — from selfish uncaringness to repeatedly getting pointed to what is going wrong to finally accepting the situation and moving on.
    • Both Cowboy Dodo songs, let's not forget.
  • Ending Aversion: Some players declared the ending of Goodbye Deponia enough to make the entire trilogy up to that point almost not worth playing, if this is the conclusion it all led to.
    • Esoteric Happy Ending: To wit, a lot of people consider the Bittersweet Ending of the trilogy to be downright bitter. Due to some awfully contrived circumstances, Rufus supposedly falls to his death moments before finally accomplishing his life's dream of reaching Elysium. Cletus assumes his identity (thus also taking Goal back)note  with no one aside from possibly Goal knowing that it's not actually Rufus finally standing on Elysian soil. Elysium has crash-landed on Deponia, Argus may have survived, and even if he didn't, there are still 11,000 Organon on the highboat raring to take over Elysium, which at the very least is now fated to remain stranded on Deponia unless Cletus/"Rufus" can come up with a plan (which is implied to be unlikely due to not having the real Rufus' "spark".) The game tries to depict this as a positive thing by explicitly stating to the player that Rufus chose to fall and let Cletus assume his identity (which technically makes it a Heroic Sacrifice and supposed to represent some sort of redemption for Rufus) and that Elysium and Deponia might make it together, but many players aren't buying it. Overall, things are actually worse off than the start of the installment and some fans have taken to calling it a cliffhanger for a sequel the writer doesn't intend to make.
      • It was worse before fans finally got the writer to concede that Rufus may have actually survived the fall and that neither outcome is actually indicated to be canon, asking the players to use their imagination to fill in the blanks. This alleviated the flack somewhat, as it allows an end that some folks initially saw as outright depressing to be seen as more of a Ray of Hope Ending and a chance for the story to go on past the games' end.
    • Deponia Doomsday's ending only seems to make matters worse, not just because the game is pretty much one big fuck you to anyone who disliked Goodbye Deponia's ending, but because it makes it apparent that changing the ending with time travel will never work. It's quite clear that the creators do not want to change what they started, regardless of what the fans want. It didn't help that the release trailer for the game made it out to appear it was going to fix everything from the last game when the actual game says otherwise.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse: A few examples:
  • He's Just Hiding!: Due to the ambiguous nature of the ending of Goodbye Deponia, many fans are standing by this for Rufus. We never see him die exactly, and the possibility of having him cloned again is somewhat likely. The outcry for the ending was so divisive that the creators had to reinsure that it's totally out there that Rufus could be alive in some form or another, though they want it to be up to the viewers to decide.
    • Argus as well, since we also never find out what happened to him either. Considering his Organon troops are now on Elysium at the end of the series, one can only assume that he will come back somehow and take advantage of that.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: Of all things, the tutorial level. In the first two games, it was an amusing hypothetical scenario where the player learns the basics and Rufus ending up getting squished by the junk press. In the third game, however, Rufus speaks of the room as a recurring nightmare of his during the tutorial session, which still ends the same way. But, halfway through the game, Rufus ends up in this room once more, and not only can he actually be killed, this time the player sees his bloody remains. Even though he revives after death, this cycle will continue until the player can figure a way out. After doing so, it's revealed that the press is part of the cloning facility where Rufus was made, and is used to process materials to make new clones from biomass.
  • Heartwarming Moments: There is a moment in the fourth game where, just once, Toni is not only completely supportive of Rufus, but also shows utter faith in his latest zany plan (something that nearly shocks him). To top it off, the typically narcissistic Rufus is literally bending space and time to vindicate that trust. It all dissolves into a Tear Jerker when, despite his best efforts, he disappoints her not once, but multiple times. When he fails for the final time, she's so disappointed that she simply walks away without hitting him, and it's clear that her bitter disappointment hurt Rufus more than her fury.
    • In the second game, some of Rufus' interactions with Baby Goal and Spunky Goal count. Baby Goal voices her utter trust in Rufus and her readiness to follow him everywhere, whereas Spunky Goal simply seems to share Rufus' playfulness and humor; they really seem to enjoy their bickering in the pub, and both declare at the very same moment and with the same enthusiasm their plan to go ice-swimming, which apparently leads to an off-screen water battle between them.
    • After trying so hard throughout all three games and infamously falling to his death within seconds of his goal at the end of the third, Rufus finally, finally makes it to Elysium. Even if it doesn't last, the look of joy on his face is a sight to behold... for the five seconds it lasts.
    • After finally fulfilling his lifelong dream, (and thanks to a convenient time loop) Rufus is given the chance to live in an ideal paradise for all eternity... which he quickly abandons once it becomes clear that he wont be able to spend any of it with Goal.
    • In Deponia Doomsday, in order to reach Porta Rustica in time, Rufus, Goal and McChronicle have to take a boat, but the owner only allows passage if Rufus presents a picture that proves he and Goal are in love with each other. Rufus goes off on yet another of his Zany Schemes, intending to take a picture with a fake Goal, but just as he completes it, he's interrupted by Goal herself, who reacts with surprised disapproval and tells him she'd convinced the owner to let them pass. In Porta Rustica, however, Goal drops a photograph that Rufus picks up... which depicts Goal with a fake Rufus, meaning that Goal had successfully undertaken the exact same Zany Scheme while Rufus prepared for his. When Rufus is surprised by this, Goal gets a mellow smile on her face.
    • Surprisingly, Bailiff Argus and his relationship to the rest of the Organon race; to his individual Mooks he's shown as being a Bad Boss or at least a very harsh leader, but his main motivation in the game is to provide the Organon with a better life — or even a chance at living at all — in defiance of the Elysian council's plans to use them as a disposable Mook race. In return, the Organon all love him and are allegedly enraptured by his speeches. To put it in perspective, Argus' motivations are more selfless than Rufus's (at least before his Heroic Sacrifice at the very end.)
  • Inferred Holocaust: The game ends with the original problem unsolved: Elysium needs to blow up Deponia so it can get to an inhabitable planet because it wasn't designed to stay in the air indefinitely and its resources are limited, otherwise it will crash into Deponia. Only now Goal and a good portion of the supporting cast are stuck on board, and they are going to need food, and the only remaining shuttlecraft was destroyed, meaning they are all stranded. Rufus is dead, and he was probably the only one who could think up a Crazy Enough to Work plan to fix everything, leaving only Cletus, which as the game points out is not Rufus even if they are genetically identical. Plus the entire Organon is also on board, and Argus might still be alive, and there's no indication he still won't carry out his coup.
    • Actually, the very last scene shows Elysium landed on Deponia. The problem the Eysians have now is that they definitely won't get away anymore and have to learn how to live on Deponia.
    • Deponia Doomsday actually depicts the results of Elysium crashing back down onto Deponia, with at least some casualties among the Elysians, though it does not seem to result in heavy damage to Deponia itself, with a coastal settlement overlooking the crash site surviving seemingly intact, and Goal surviving the impact.
  • Jerkass Woobie:
    • Toni. Sure, she's ill-tempered, but what do you expect from someone who has had to deal with Rufus's antics for so long? She gets help from a therapist in Goodbye Deponia, but Rufus ruins it by causing her to snap after seeing that there are more than one Rufus running about. She gets better, though.
    • Rufus himself. He is selfish, narcissistic, rude, and constantly causes pain and misfortune to himself and those around him, but at the same time suffers from the hatred and isolation from his fellow Deponians because of it, not to mention his father issues, causing him much insecurities about his purpose on Deponia in the first place. In addition to that, despite his jerkassery, he prioritizes the survival of the planet and what few people he can call "friends", and particularly Goal's life and happiness, over his own benefit, ultimately committing a Heroic Sacrifice in order to ensure it.
  • Moral Event Horizon:
    • In the third game, Seagull proves himself a completely irredeemable bastard by lethally shooting Green Rufus. His own son (well, one of the three copies of his son.) He would've finished the job and killed Red Rufus as well, if Blue Rufus hadn't dropped out of the sky at that moment and landed on him, killing both Seagull and himself.
    • Argus in the ending. He backstabs Rufus and Cletus at a crucial moment, letting Cletus seemingly jump to his death and planning to leave Rufus for dead behind a spinning rotor for not joining him in his plan to take over Elysium. He also immediately gets his when Cletus appears alive and throws hims into the rotor. He is presumably killed once the jammed rotor starts up again.
    • While Rufus has never been the most heroic person imaginable, the third game has him solving a puzzle by literally splitting up a loving couple and having each partner enslaved in some form or another. To say nothing of (debatably) being responsible for the deaths of two children.
  • Most Annoying Sound: The cyborg dog's laughing in Chaos on Deponia is absolutely ear-bleedingly awful, and is made worse by the fact that you hear it with pretty much every interaction with the creature (so expect to hear it A LOT thanks to Trial-and-Error Gameplay). Seems to have been done on purpose, as it's one of the only voice clips in the game that cannot be skipped.
  • That One Achievement: "1001 Jackalopes" in Deponia Doomsday requires you to try every animal combination on the jackalope generator and clone them using one of the two available cloning machines. That's three creatures with five interchangable features for a grand total of 243 different variations. Even if you streamline the process by creating three unique variations on each use of the jackalope generator, that's still 81 clone/switch cycles. Not a difficult achievement, just absolutely tedious.
  • That One Puzzle: The "knocking" puzzle in Chaos. Rufus has to remember a secret code knock, but keeps getting distracted by the catchy music that plays in the marketplace, making him forget the knock. So what do you do to solve this puzzle? Craft some earplugs for Rufus? Find a way to destroy the speakers? Nope! You go into the game's settings and turn the background music off. Note that you are never called on to do anything even remotely like this at any other point in the series, making this a frequent sticking point for players trying to do a no-guide playthrough. The only thing can be somewhat seen as a hint is a completely optional, one-time-only dialogue with the pharmacist, where he says "That rhythmic background music drowns out everything" — but, even if that line is slightly more direct, it's still a long shot, and you must remember that line when the puzzle comes.
  • The Woobie:
    • Poor Bozo. He gets dragged into problems by Rufus, who makes fun of him all the time, calls him a pirate despite his insistence otherwise, makes free use of his ship, destroys his things, and eventually destroys his ship. And Bozo is too nice to do anything about it. Plus his girlfriend is violent and his family are kind of jerks. One can't help but cheer for him when he finally snaps at Rufus in Goodbye.
    • Special mention must also go to Goon. Rufus pretty much ruins his life through the course of the second and third game, from forcing him to eat a shoe to separating him from his girlfriend and putting him in a dead end job at a burrito stand. One can only hope things get better for him, since the game series ends without resolving any of his problems.
      • It actually does. After Goal and Blue Rufus crash down from the sky, Goal mentions they landed "on some burrito stand", destroying it in the process. And when Rufus comes up with his crazy plan to shoot them all up to Elysium with a kind of rocket car, there's a ot of arguing in the back of the car, several voices of Rufus' allies fighting for room since it's just too narrow a space... and among the voices, if you're attentive, you can hear both Goon and June, implying they were indeed reunited.
    • Goal. The extent of her ordeals has to be seen to be believed. To recap, she's a fairly normal, sweet young woman from Elysium who gets uppity and insists on accompanying her husband-to-be whom she did not get to pick to Deponia, and gets entangled in a Government Conspiracy covering up a genocide in the making. She is then accidentally knocked down to the surface, sustains serious injury and spends a few days being carted around by an Unsympathetic Comedy Protagonist. Once she regains consciousness, her would-be husband and Rufus mess with her memory and treat her like an object until Rufus grows some conscience. Then, her return to Elysium is accidentally sabotaged by Rufus, getting her seriously injured again and, through gross negligence on Rufus's part, causing her memory implant to shatter her personality into three parts, whereupon she becomes the victim of even more slapstick, up to and including being used as a living lightning rod after saying she's afraid of lightning. Finally, when things start getting better, Rufus gets them captured once more, resulting in her getting strapped to a torture rack and very nearly getting killed via an overdose of sedative. And as if that was not enough, Rufus then dies by performing a Heroic Sacrifice to ensure her survival, while she is stuck with Cletus, and even though she forces Cletus to keep up the masquerade from the ending of ''Goodbye Deponia'' and pretend he's Rufus, she understands that the real Rufus died just as she really fell in love with him. And then Deponia Doomsday reveals that, with the destruction of Deponia averted and Elysium's launch thus cancelled, Elysium soon loses power and falls back down on the planet, with apparent heavy casualties among the Elysians. Goal survives and is then forced to set off, alone and heartbroken, to find a new life on Deponia. And she goes through all this without being guilty of anything save for a little bit of well-justified rebellious attitude. Talk about harsh.

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