An incredibly hilarious physics based game that forces you to deliver parcels in the most preposterous way with your friends. Like Death Stranding, if it was written by Monty Python.
Let’s be completely honest here, Totally Reliable Delivery Service, the new open sandbox physics based game by We’re Five Games and TinyBuild is not a revolutionary game. It doesn’t have the best level designs, its missions aren’t exactly the most complex, it’s certainly a flawed game on many levels… but saying that, I had an absolute blast playing it in multiplayer.
Totally Reliable Delivery Service is one of the funniest games I have played, but it’s certainly not a brand new experience. It is safe to say that this game will be heavily compared to the like of Human Fall Flat and Amazing Frog? especially when glancing at its art style. It’s clear to see where it got its inspiration. Robin, the CfG boss, said to me “its like Human Fall Flat crossed with Crazy Taxi”… and that is almost exactly what this game is.
The aim of Totally Reliable Delivery Service is simple, you play as a character that lacks the ability to walk normally, hold things normally, and just behave in a normal manner. You have somehow set up a delivery company and your goal is to get parcels and deliver them from one spot to the next. Think of it as a comical version of Death Stranding.
The real goal here is to find the best and easiest way of getting this package, be it a fragile box or a explosive barrel, from point A to B in a set time or without it breaking. Depending on your performance, you will be awarded a Gold, Silver or Bronze and with these awards you unlock customisable vehicles and accessories for your character. Your character is fully customisable and you can make it as normal (that’s debatable) or as ridiculous as you like. Remember this isn’t a serious game so…I wouldn’t try and focus too much of making it look as realistic as possible.
The challenge is in progressing around the world; the physics engine is absolutely ridiculous and you will flail around not knowing what on earth your body is doing and how your character is failing to do simple tasks like driving a car.
Mastering the physics is where most of the fun will come from. Trying to drive an extremely wobbly 3 wheeled car carrying your package can end in disaster so many times, but I can guarantee you, failing a mission in this game will not irritate you or frustrate. Most of the time if you fail a level it is because you did something stupid like letting go of a helicopter that you’re precariously dangling from, whilst grasping on to a package. And blow yourself up. The slapstick mayhem guarantees you a big laugh as you try and figure out what you can possibly do next.
There are a wide variety of vehicles to drive within the world and all of them have different ways of handling. Helicopters for example are an utter headache to pilot because of how complex the controls are. Here you have to make your character raise their arms out and hold onto the helicopters joysticks, you then have to use WASD to control the helicopters propellers and then use your mouse to steer it. Sounds simple right?
Wrong. So very wrong. I cannot tell you how many times I crashed as I tried so desperately to take control of the finicky copter, it was an absolute nightmare but at the same time it was very funny to play and watch.
Multiplayer is an absolute hoot as you and your friends, or strangers, attempt the delivery missions. I tried playing on my own, and whilst the flailing nature of my balloon body cracked me up at times, I found it a bit boring on my own and the missions felt more of a chore.
As soon as another player entered the world, the whole game changed; we experimented more with missions, we messed about with the physics system, chucking our characters into each other and taking each other out with farts (Yes that’s an actual game mechanic) and we competed against each other in the Rocket League parody arena.
Suddenly the game had so much replayability and it was a real blast with some extremely funny moments. I don’t usually say this, but Totally Reliable Delivery Service is a game to play with your friends rather than on your own. The way levels are designed, it encourages you to play with someone. On your own, it just doesn’t have that same charm to it. I’m sure you will have some fun in solo but this game is clearly designed to be multiplayer (the same could be said for Human Fall Flat). Right from the main menu you have a choice between Local play and Online play. There’s no solo adventure to this game, all the worlds are the same and there’s no difference between a world with one of you and a world with 4 of you in.
On local you can play up to 4 people even on PC, although I do question why the local game menu has the Xbox controller layout to it when playing on PC. Having the menu say ‘press A to join’ is a bit weird, but I guess that’s simply because they don’t imagine all 4 of you to be playing with keyboard and mouse. But then with online you are also able to have 4 players and you’re given the options of open to everyone or private to friends. Although saying that the friends only seemed a bit bugged. We think it was an Epic Games Store problem but couldn’t be 100%, but for some reason my friend couldn’t join my friend only server. Oh yeah by the way did I mention this game was Epic Games only on PC…just in case that’s a make or break for you – however it is free until April 8th 2020. Meanwhile it’s also available on consoles at £13.49/$15.
There are a ton of different islands to explore within this big map, you starting off on the basic map, you venture through the towns delivering simple parcels to the neighbours within that area, and it’s pretty simple. Then you move on to more complex areas such as the Jazz City. There’s a lot to see in this world and if you played this game seriously (why would you?) it could take you probably a maximum of around 6 hours to complete everything.
Graphically the game is pretty simple but I think that fits the nature of this game. Once again it will be heavily compared to Human Fall Flat but for me it doesn’t have that same sheen to it, Human Fall Flat feels much cleaner and more polished; Totally Reliable Delivery Service hit and miss at times, but the amount of colour this game has really makes it pop of the screen.
You don’t need a big PC to play this game, it’s pretty easy going spec wise, and if you are running this game on a potato then there are graphic options to turn off the shadows, lower the graphics and make it run smoothly. Quite honestly this game should run fine on whatever you run it on.
Sure it sounds great, but there are quite a lot of issues, some on a technical side and some in the game design.
The music and the sound effects are extremely loud by default. When getting thrown into the game you will get hit with some very repetitive and VERY LOUD music that drowns out everything and will get on your nerves very, very, quickly. When driving a car, if you hit into a tree or a building, the collision sound is just so loud it will peak your headphones.
There’s also a vent, which if you drive over will make an incredibly loud sound! When we first encountered this, I’ve got to admit, we laughed a lot, but on reflection the sound effects are just so loud. If your friend, who is on the other-side of the map, goes into one of these things you will still be able to hear it despite being absolutely miles away from them.
You can turn down all the sound effects and the music, which is a godsend, because it is seriously way too loud throughout.
The next problem is related to the missions. They’re are simple in their design, get from point A to point B in a specific vehicle, occasionally you need to avoid an obstacle like a log which falls down hill or a giant crab which circles around the beach… although annoyingly just clips through most of the surroundings. The problem is, if you travel to your destination and end up failing it, there isn’t an option to fast travel back to the mission start, instead you have to travel back there to try it again. This just breaks up the fun completely and makes you want to just not bother with that mission and move on to something else.
There is a fast travel to your HQ, which is where you spawn at the start of the game, but there’s is no way to go back to the last mission you started. If you get lost at sea, the game will also spawn you at the nearest bit of land, meaning you can be miles away from where you want. There is a map which you can ping, you can see locations and you have a system which allows you to track a specific quest, but there needs to be a respawn system that allows you to travel back to the job you started, especially if you just failed it.
Your character also feels very floaty. Yes, I know this is meant to be a silly physics based game but doing simple tasks like just walking is super hard to do at times, your character flails about way too much and can make it more irritating than fun to get about. A little tuning and tweaking could increase the fun here.
The extra maps and some of the cosmetics are listed as DLC. The review copy we got had access to all of them, but it’s hard to tell if these will be additional purchases or if they will come later as you progress through the game. Currently on the Epic Store (on the writing of this review on the 31st March) there is no sign of any additional accessories to buy alongside the game, but that maybe subject to change. But it will be a bit annoying if you have to buy all the DLC because some of it is really basic stuff like a standard looking hairstyle. Hopefully this game isn’t plagued with micro-transactions.
Then there are the bugs, and there are quite a few of them. In our play through we experienced a variety. There were moments where our body would stretch and get stuck in the map and start glitching out. My friend experienced duplicated models which would just linger on the map and you could go through, and there was a weird moment where a log would appear on our screens at different times, it passed through my friends screen then seconds later, it appeared on mine and collided with our vehicle. It felt like there was a big delay in the server response time; hopefully the netcode can be improved.
There were a lot of little things that happened during this play-through which were just odd, like getting stuck on terrains and clipping through areas, but with a small patch these could probably all be fixed relatively easy.
Despite all that, I really did enjoy this game, it isa good fun party game to play with your friends and having it come to Switch, PC, consoles and mobiles means there are a lot of ways you can play this and I can guarantee you, you will laugh a lot as you desperately try to deliver a parcel whilst your friend grapples you in a car and tries to drag you out of the driving seat.
I highly recommend Totally Reliable Delivery Service, it’s the ridiculous mad fun game that we need right now, and I had an absolute blast playing it.
It does have some problems, but at the end of the day, this is not a serious game and some of those problems add to the comedy of the gameplay. With a few patches, I think this could be a great experience and at the price point is certainly a game to pick up to play with friends.
3.5/5 Totally Delivered Packages
- Extremely funny gameplay
- Great fun with friends
- Vibrant simplistic art-style
- Hilarious physics
- Simplistic missions
- Lots of bugs
- Lack of a fast travel system
- Floaty movement
Thanks to tinyBuild for the review code!
You can get Totally Reliable Delivery Service now on Epic Games Store, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Android and iOS, phew!