The Deer God is a beautiful, bug-ridden adventure
The App Army Assembles
Each week, we ask members of our App Army for their feedback on the latest and greatest releases on mobile.
One top pick this week was Crescent Moon Games's scintillating animal adventure, The Deer God.
Let's see what our App Army had to say...
Whoa, this game's intro was pretty cool. It was short, but what a twist of fate!
As a hunter the main character is on the verge of shooting a deer, but then he's killed by wolves. You're then met by a deer deity of some sort who reincarnates you as a deer for all your crimes against deer kind.
Very cool and unique opening. Awesome pixel art so far too, I might add.
The swiping attack input seems very unresponsive at times. I clearly have enough stamina for multiple consecutive attacks, but sometimes it won't register an attack when you perform the swipe to attack command.
Changing it in the options to "Button to Attack" seems a lot more reliable. If the devs could improve upon the "Swipe to Attack" mechanics that would be wonderful as it would make it a lot more convenient than having to rely solely on the "Button to Attack" gesture.
Oh deer, do I lack faith? Just one of the deep and mesmerising questions posed in this beautiful experience.
Reminiscent of Crescent Moon's other exploration games like Mines of Mars, and a little bit of Sword & Sworcery, The Deer God is a fun adventure.
However, there are a few oddities in the game too. I got stuck under an alligator and had to go back to my last save point through the main menu.
I also accidentally tapped my special power when there was an "okay" box next to it during dialogue. The sound effects play in both sides of my headphones, but when I run right, the music plays on the right side and when I run left it plays on the left.
It's also very easy to die in this game. When I'm trying to run away, the deer stops at every food source to eat, even if a hunter is on its trail. That, along with many hidden spiky chasms, ensure a good number of deaths if you're not too careful.
Problems aside, I love how this philosophical adventure makes you think about how your actions affect others, and challenges you to grow your horns.
I wanted to make a particular selection at the end of the game, but the screen wasn't registering any of my touch commands, so I just started spamming the screen until it selected the option I didn't want.
I guess I'll just have to beat it again!
Sorry to hear that. Is it good enough to start again?
I've enjoyed it a lot. That's why I'm going to play it again for the other ending. If you like platforming and survival, you should enjoy it.
The thing is that I can see it getting repetitive for some people, since you're doing most of the same actions over and over again - jumping from platform to platform, killing the same creatures, and constantly looking for and eating food.
What I like about the game is that it doesn't hold your hand. It just throws you in and you're supposed to learn what to do through trial and error by dying and returning as a baby deer.
Eventually you get the hang of it, and you're able to grow and stay in adult form by not dying as often.
May have to get this one!
I understand the developer went for a zoomed in perspective on the iPhone so it was easier to see. However, I'm hoping we'll get an option to zoom out eventually... I seem to jump into spikes quite a bit!
Just beat the game a second time now, and it only took about three to four hours, maybe even less since I wasn't checking time. The post-game content is pretty neat, but I won't spoil it!
The Deer God is intriguing at first, and poetic thereafter. It feels like a panting in terms of its construction, and its architecture is completely immersive.
Crescent Moon Games and Cinopt Studio are are offering an adventure with a real message, mixed in with a well-balanced challenge for you to enjoy.
Sadly, some bugs in the game may spoil your enjoyment of the game. Sometimes your deer can disappear when you're resuming the game, and missable missions can be a pain.
I do hope these bugs will be fixed, but it's an exhilarating quest all the same.
Oh Deer God, I think I'm officially done with this game! I did everything there is to do, and my file shows the game as 100% complete.
The game is pretty solid for the most part, but there are a few minor annoyances that definitely need to be addressed.
While it's a rare occurrence, you'll sometimes get stuck between structures which force you to quit the game and hit the continue button again.
Occasionally the game will also completely glitch out where your deer gets stuck in a neverending loop of the same area, where you're unable to go more than a few steps before being teleported back to the same area.
Also, despite managing just fine without it, I still acknowledge that the game needs to be zoomed out more in order to have a better field of view.
The default "Swipe to Attack" touch mechanics need to be improved because the commands don't register sometimes. This is remedied by simply changing it to "Button to Attack" in the options.
The most annoying thing is how the special abilities menu is too close to the jump command. This means you're constantly opening up the special abilities menu and changing special abilities when you don't actually mean to.
Fixing this should be priority, as it detracts from gameplay to the level of sheer annoyance. Other than the aforementioned quibbles, I utterly adore The Deer God.
I'm stuck at 8%. What shall I do?
If you're stuck at 8% it probably means you didn't complete the monocle quest at the beginning. I suggest you start a new game.
When the old man ask you to get his monocle, it's right outside his house in one of the bushes.
The Deer God is a wonderful story of karma, and the game itself is a great experience. The music's neat, and if you pay attention you're treated to some beautiful sights... albeit in pixelated form.
The controls work for the most part, and the choice of using the button attack is a relief over the swipe mode.
The game doesn't always make the landscape clear to you, so at times you may not be sure of where to step.
Add to that the zoomed in effect that hides the view of your surroundings and you end up walking on eggshells and hoping not to end up dead.
I'm still impressed by the mood of the game, and how the choices you're faced with eventually determine your future.
You'll die a whole bunch here, but you'll still come back for more. Life's a deer and then you die.
The game has an audio issue when playing with headphones. The sound effects come out of the side that your deer's running towards, while the music comes out of the opposite side.
This is a problem since you're constantly changing directions in the game when fighting enemies and traversing the landscape.
I believe the devs were going for some form of immersion with this, but it does not work at all. If anything, it's less immersive.
I do love the soundtrack though. My favourite track so far is Baby Featherlight by Evan Gipson. It sounds so tranquil, yet it has an awesome beat to boot.
The Deer God is a little odd, and pretty ambiguous. Wasn't sure what to expect, and I definitely had a surprise. I'm finding the ramming mechanic isn't very responsive though.
The Deer God is a real love or hate game. If you enjoy platforming, survival, and pixel art, it should be right up your alley. If you played and enjoyed Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP, you'll probably like this too.
Nooooo! I got quite far - 77% - and now everytime I launch the game I get this screen and I can't do anything.
Letting myself die doesn't solve it either. Now I have to start all over again!
Same issue here Sjoerd. I'm stuck, and the only thing I can do is start over. Oh Deer God why?
If you have the teleport ability, use that. Once i got stuck somewhere and restarting the game wasn't fixing it. Then I tried teleporting and I was able to get out.
Oh Deer God, this game is beautiful!
Sadly though, it's riddled with bugs. I've had to start a new game four times now because of bugs. This is extremely frustrating. I'd recommend waiting for an update before buying this game.
The objectives aren't always apparent, the animal AI is a tad off, and the environments repeat constantly, all of which make the game less fun.
Having to touch the centre of the screen to eat is really annoying on a big tablet. The rest of the controls work fine, but I think they can be improved considerably.
The Deer God is a great game, but has tons of irritating flaws.
I loved The Deer God at first. Every component of it is beautifully atmospheric.
There's not much voice acting, but what's there fits perfectly. Throughout the whole game I felt like I was being hunted. I had to rush and move on as quickly as possible, yet stop just enough so that I wouldn't starve.
The idea of being punished if you don't do what you're supposed to is pretty novel. The only problem with that was getting punished repeatedly despite not always knowing what I was doing wrong.
I would've loved to finish the game, but I got stuck in a wall and couldn't get out. Even after waiting to starve and respawning several times I still couldn't get out. After this happened two more times I had to a completely new game.
It's still a great game. If these glitches ccan be fixed and a "kill" button could be added (it's really annoying waiting until you starve if you get stuck), I could even see The Deer God becoming one of my favourites.
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Did you pick up The Deer God? What do you think of it? Let us know in the comments below!
Okay, after reading everyone else's experiences with The Deer God I'm starting to feel that I'm pretty lucky to have beaten the game twice without having to restart.